i stopped sleeping the night my parents came to visit.
i don’t know why i stopped sleeping except for the memories that accompanied them. memories of decades ago, memories of sitting in my bedroom feeling very alone, memories of mum and i throwing things at each other and dad forcing me to see a counselor and i’m not even sure which memories are true anymore and which are made up,
for anorexia will do that. make things up until you believe them. it will tell you you’re beautiful when you’re skin and bone, and it will tell you God doesn’t love you and your parents want you to be fat and the only one who can understand you is your disorder. so you cling to it until it eats its way into your soul,
and you’re stuck, two decades later, unable to sleep for the memories.
and i spoke to a therapist about this, about the anxiety that comes from communing with a family that i know loves me, that i know would die for me in a heartbeat… and how to overcome, the disorder which still manifests itself through insomnia and obsessive compulsive disorder and fear?
“you need to take the child-you to Jesus,” he told me. “you’re trying to have needs met by your family that weren’t met as a child, and while those needs for affirmation and acceptance and emotional connectivity are good and fair, only Jesus can truly meet them.”
then, he told me, “you need to be the adult-you with your family.”
and so, i’m working on taking those needs to Jesus: asking him to be the protector i always longed for, the one to love me so tight i can’t breathe and then, to love me some more because i’m needy that way. and i’m working on accepting the family he has given me with all of its memories, and to appreciate the kind of love they are able to give, instead of demanding more of them than they’re able.