When I had anorexia.
I lost weight
I lost my self esteem
I lost my personality
I lost happiness
I lost my values
I lost opportunities
I lost my memories
I lost all my energy
I lost enjoyment
I lost my job
I lost my friends
I lost easter, birthdays and Christmas to hospital
I lost my husband
I lost the ability to mother my children
I lost so many other things, and
I almost lost my life.
Mothering whilst fighting an eating disorder has been the toughest thing I’ve ever done. There are no words to describe how excruciating it has been to miss the moments, hours, days, with my children.
The guilt and the sorrow is unbearably painful.
No one speaks of mothering with anorexia. They speak of postnatal depression, anxiety….but the demon that is THIS mental illness is a truly unique one. It is evil in ways you never knew possible. It is all consuming and so powerful.
Mothering is a completely selfless and consuming role on its own. Especially mothering little ones. So trying to tame the E.D ‘demon’ to give me just enough time and energy to provide my children with their basic needs, keep them safe and happy, as well as trying to be there for them as a mother on any level.. is extremely difficult.
Some days has been impossible. Both mentally and physically.
The task of being a mum is draining when healthy. Having a serious mental health condition that also affects you physically, makes being a good mother impossible. Adding to the guilt, strain, and heart ache.
The worst moments of my life were the ones where I lay alone in a hospital bed, aching for them. For their heat, their noisy breath, their warm little bodies who at home would lie next to me at night. And knowing that if I was at home, I wouldn’t be there for them as they needed me.
Knowing that the only way to get back to them was to stay away from them, was one fact that I could accept in my mind, but not my heart.
Every inch of my heart was in agonising pain, counting the moments to get back to them. I missed the weight of my littlest on my hip, and the tears from my eldest son when he asked me why I couldn’t come home from them is something I’ll never forget.
The guilt and blame. Blaming myself for having an illness I didn’t choose but somehow made possible. Blaming myself for hurting them.
Mothering with an eating disorder and mothering whilst recovering from an eating disorder needs to be spoken about.