24.0717 | hurting

i have been thinking a lot about recovery, and what it means to me. because despite being “weight restored”, despite eating “intuitively”, despite leading a relatively “normal” life that is no longer comprised of hospital visits and hourly blood tests and a regimented feeding schedule controlled by scales and clocks and measuring cups, i still have bad days. thoughts creep in and out of me. fears materialise behind my every shadow and step. memories – traumatic memories – haunt me daily. and occasionally, foods still turn into numbers, passions still turn into labours, relationships still open long-forgotten wounds. and on some days, i just wake up hurting. hurting with an inexplainable, unbearable, and nonetheless palpable feeling of grief and guilt and anguish – unable to breathe, think, speak, or imagine – suppressed by a silence so loud and a toxin so sweet that it feels as though i am experiencing nothing, and everything, all at once. and you know what? i’ve learned that it’s okay – it’s okay to hurt. it’s okay to feel sad, to cry, to loathe every fibre of your beating body, once in a while. because recovery doesn’t mean the hurting ends. recovery doesn’t mean the thoughts disappear, forever. recovery doesn’t mean you will wake up every morning with sunshine and merriment and rainbows and cheer flowing through your bloodstream – it doesn’t promise perpetual contentment – not for you, or anyone, on this earth. recovery, to me, means feeling without being. it means feeling without inflicting. it means feeling pain, without being pain. because you do not have to be small, to feel small. you do not have to lose yourself, to feel lost, and you do not have to break yourself, to feel broken. and just because you feel filthy, vile, foul, or “wrong”, does not mean that you are any of those things. because you can hurt without hurting yourself, and that is so, so important to remember. i can hurt without hurting myself, and that is something i will try not to forget. ☁️

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