I've spent my whole life trying to figure out who I was. In doing so, I became a chameleon with an eating disorder. There was something so deeply wrong with me, I had to do whatever it took to keep that buried and away from the world. And I did so at any cost.
I was young, just around my first decade of life, when I realized there was something that "wrong" with me. A secret that could NEVER escape lived in my head, and I spent every moment in public ensuring the protection of that secret. I got good at it, too. It was like an invisible armor that automatically dropped on me as I left my bedroom, and was magically removed when I returned.
My eating issues developed around 13. This secret became more scary around that time, too. By 16 it became so scary that I started the roller coaster of dieting. I had to starve it to death.
More than 20 years later, that secret is no longer buried as deep. It's still secret. It's still something I can't speak. But it no longer holds me hostage.
My therapist holds the secret. So does my dietitian. One of my BFFs knows, too. Sharing this secret with them has made it a little easier for me to carry myself. I'm still afraid to tell anyone else, yet the lightness that came from sharing with the few above? That they all still like me?
Secrets are insanely scary. Holding them and sharing them, actually. I was so afraid to even acknowledge my own secret, much less share it with anyone, for fear that the world would hate me even more than I hated myself.
I don't know what I'd do with out my treatment team. I've worked with therapists on and off much of my life, but nothing compares the support I have now. Secrets may stay hidden from the rest of the world, but having my team to share with? I wish everyone could have the chance for a relationship this therapeutic, it's the best gift I've ever given myself. Between my dietitian and therapist, I've never felt so optimistic.
I wish everyone could have someone to hold the horrid secrets that keep us captive in our own minds. As bad as my secret felt, it is held differently by my team than by me. Secrets don't need to destroy me anymore. Sharing them won't make me explode. It won't end my world.
Sharing them only makes me stronger.