I'm homesick for my eating disorder

by MB

I know I'm not supposed to say that. But after talking about it today, I realized it's true. I'm sorry. I miss my eating disorder.

I wish I could phrase that more eloquently. I don't know why. But I guess semantics cannot alter subtext.

I miss walking past a mirror and looking at my ribs, my clavicle, my shoulder blades. Back hunched towards a mirror, bones reflected back at a girl who wasn't there to smile.

I miss the excuse. The hunger high. The giddiness of pants that are too big and familiar faces expressing muted worry. Being the center of attention. Being "too skinny." Being a cause for concern.

I miss the satisfaction of a size zero, of a chest not on display, a body not overwhelmed; a body that is not too much. The accumulation of flesh which does not so easily reveal my imperfections. 

(I know you said you don't see a difference. I honestly don't know if I believe you. Not becuase you're not trustworthy - I trust you more than I trust most people - but because I just don't know how it's feasible. I look different. Fat. Disgusting. I can't even be good at having an eating disorder. Maybe I don't even have one.)

I miss the goal. The thing itself. The illusory, tantalizing, but always just out of reach person. The body almost attained. The high of one more workout, of one less meal. 

Shelter from vulnerability. From presence. From now and what's real. Without my eating disorder, I have nowhere to hide. My body is undeniable, its presence is too much.

I miss the absent space. The hollow cheeks and thighs which did not touch. I fear the feeling of my flesh atop itself (or worse, another person), skin rubbing together as if to say, "look at me, I am here."

I miss the attention. The accomplishment. The failure disguised as triumph. 

I miss myself. 

This practice in being present, in living, is exhausting. I miss the simplicity of hunger.