…She carefully placed a strand of yarn in a circular shape on the floor to represent my head. She then asked me to choose either side of my body and think about the parts of my right or left side which I feel look significantly different since I’ve been nourished during the re-feeding process over the last 3 months. I chose my upper arms, my stomach, and my legs. I was given white yarn to cut and place precisely on the floor in a circular representation of the size of those places I am now seeing as scary and tough to look at in the mirror. "This process will not work if you are not as accurate as you can possibly be. Only cut the yarn the length you think is needed to make the circumference of the size you truly see,” my therapist tells me. I visualized and cut and placed the yarn in their proportionate places, according to how my eyes see my size. It was not a game. This process took me longer than I thought it would as I would re-cut and re-adjust and stand up from kneeling only to get a little flustered. This was done with my head therapist, and there is no way I could personally do this with someone I hadn’t learned to trust. I wouldn't have been able to handle as much as a gasp of disappointment or a sarcastic comment concerning the circles that now formed my shell.
In her hands was a different color of yarn now. She took strands of this yarn and carefully wrapped it around my upper arm, then cut, around my stomach, and cut. Then down to my legs, and cut. She then asked me to place this yarn within or outside of the white yarn that already resided on the floor and once finished, to stand back and take a look. You know what happened. Each piece of yarn my therapist had cut fit within the yarn I had placed so carefully on the ground. You may think that this showed me how “off” my mind sees my size. You may think that this changed my reality,… but I saw the 2 circles of yarn as exceptionally close to the same circular size. Was my therapist shocked? No. Was I sad to see that I really can’t see this differentiation more clearly? Absolutely.
She bent over and took the longest piece of the white yarn that represented my reality, and placed it gently in my hand to keep and put somewhere special to remind me of my skewed vision each time I look at it. I couldn’t put it away in the days following that appointment. I tied it around my right wrist. It’s the “yarn around my wrist” now. It is symbolic of how much I need God at each point of this path because I don’t see. I need to trust what matters. God sees me as accurate and realistically as supernaturally possible. God sees Christ in me because of His love, and He absolutely does the same for you.
I’m so thankful that He can see.
Anorexia wants to take my life. I’ve been away learning to reclaim it. I’ve been practicing, and eating and trying very hard to internalize that God loves me “no matter what”, as demonstrated in the daily lives of my team toward me while I was living in their care, and in my family cheering me on. God loves my “new arms” and “new legs” and "new stomach." He loves how He carefully formed my heart. I’m trusting He will continue to help me see that I have something to offer because of Him, and not hide in my clothes and try to be invisible… because I desire to share Truth with you as we go along. One bite at a time, or maybe for you…one cup of alcohol poured down the sink at a time, or laying down one tool used for self harm at a time. I am learning to put myself back in the present and future of my family and back into the equation of life. It has truly been a privilege to have a loving family and friends and amazing care here at home to get me to inpatient treatment.
I’ve missed you so much! Writing is my intimidating friend that keeps me humble and accountable while delivering joy to my heart.
Consider the yarn. It teaches me daily to surround myself with healthy friends . professionals , and my precious family. They see the truth, while I feel the yarn around my wrist.
Love to You,
"I will not die but live, and will proclaim what the Lord has done." Psalm 118:17
**The last few months I spent at the Laureate Hospital's eating disorders program has changed my life and given me the tools to come home and continue this fight. To learn more about their programs for you or a loved one, visit their website at www.saintfrancis.com/laureate-psychiatric-clinic/eatingdisorders.