So there I was standing in the middle of the Forever 21 dressing room during my break from school, almost about to cry.
The pants I wanted to try on didn’t even go up half way up my leg .
That size that 6 months ago would be too big on me, now it can’t even get over my calves.
OK, maybe they ran small, I tried to tell myself.
So I got one size up. They went up my leg, but they didn’t zip or button.
I literally tried everything I could to make them zip up; suck in, pull the material together, lay back-nothing worked.
I decided to just take them off and leave.
But once I took them off, I found myself just staring at my body in the mirror.
Dressing rooms have the absolute worst lighting possible.
For whatever reason, it’s the kind of fluorescent light that shows every inch of your skin.
Imagine that light plus Ed together, it was like a mini gang up attack on me.
It didn’t make me want to restrict because I am still grateful for the place I’ve worked to get to in recovery, but it did make me just flat out mad.
Is this what part of my recovery is? Being the girl in the dressing room whose pants don’t zip up ?
I guess one of my biggest fears about becoming that girl came to life today.
There was no denying it, that girl was me.
But I left that dressing room because I had to go interview someone for a story I am writing for the school paper.
After she finished talking with me and getting to know me, she nonchalantly asked “so, what’s your story?”
What’s my story? The answer to that question can change on a minute to minute basis in recovery.
Yesterday my story was that I had an alter ego. Today I felt like saying my story is that I’ve become the girl in the fitting room whose pants don’t zip up or button.
But somehow, I managed to say “I’m a journalism student about to graduate in December and I want to be a writer.”
That definitely was not what I was feeling like in that moment at all, but my actions spoke louder than my thoughts today.
Yes, I thought I was that girl who now can’t fit in her old size pants who is having a hard day in recovery from her eating disorder.
I could have stayed in that dressing room, sat on the floor and cried, like I wanted to.
But I didn’t.
I didn’t let my thoughts drive my actions into doing that.
Instead, I was sitting across a wonderful professional woman getting an interview for my story that will be published next week.
Regardless of my thoughts about myself today, that action speaks the truth about who I am.
And I’m going to do my best to hold onto that.