Letter to ‘It’

It’s been quite a while since I put up a post on ‘Freedom and Hope’ but I’m back! Today I thought I’d share a poem I wrote about 2 years ago. At this stage I was doing better in my recovery journey, but still had a bit to go. I knew my illness was ruining my life, and although most of the time I wanted rid of it – I still wasn’t free. I remember this being the first poem I wrote, and it really helped me release my thoughts about things that had happened in my life the previous 3 years. It helped me see that my illness, Anorexia Nervosa, was horrible and gave me determination and hope for freedom…

Dear ‘It’,

—————

You came to me slowly, then all at once,

Until you left me in a trance.

I thought you were my only hope,

But secretly you held my death rope.

————————————————————

I thought you were my greatest friend,

But how could you be, when all you wanted was my life to end?

You told me things, lie after lie,

Until all I wanted was to quickly die.

————————————————————

You were quite nice to me at the start,

Telling me, my body would be a work of art.

You encouraged me and praised me when I skipped a meal,

How I wish I knew everything you were about to steal.

————————————————————

You stole my body, my eyes and me,

But what the outside world couldn’t see,

Was how you told me day after day,

That starving was good for me and everything would end okay.

————————————————————

But looking back, what was good about all this?

Crying with hunger and exercising in secret without a miss.

You had me trapped, your long arms entangled around,

Until I could no longer hear an outside sound.

————————————————————

It was like we were a team, you and me,

You told me what to do, but I was no longer free.

All I wanted was a sense of control,

But this way was only going to take it’s toll.

————————————————————

That ‘nice’ face you showed me at the start, 

Had quickly turned into an icy, cold heart.

For everything I did for you, although it was tough,

You let me know it just wasn’t enough.

————————————————————

The targets you set, quickly became harder to reach,

I would do something ‘well’ and then you would screech.

Shouting “one more star jump”, “one less bite”,

This team we were part of, quickly turned into a fight.

————————————————————

I sat in a hospital bed, skin and bone, 

My face, my body, my thoughts didn’t seem like my own.

I felt lost, discouraged, what would come next?

All I knew that you Anorexia, had me perplexed.

————————————————————

The doctor came to me, needle in hand, 

To give me a drip, I was too weak to stand.

I lay there looking round me, what on earth had I done?

What had I let my life become?

————————————————————

The people who were trained to help, and my family, my friends,

You said were my enemies, but I couldn’t comprehend, 

How one moment I loved them and knew how much they cared,

And the next was shouting at them, with big black eyes I stared.

————————————————————

Eating, the thing I once so enjoyed, 

Became my worst fear, I was terrified, thinking it was all a ploy.

“You just want to make me fat”, I screamed at my mum,

While inside me you laughed, watching this you thought was fun.

————————————————————

You distorted my thoughts and my perception of my looks, 

The real girl in the mirror, that image you took, 

I still struggle with this, right to this day,

But now I know this path isn’t the right way.

————————————————————

Because right here, right now, I want to live,

I will no longer take my life, myself and give,

To you, the darkest enemy I have ever known,

I’ll take my strength, my determination and you, I’ll disown. 

————————————————————

Naomi Lloyd, written age 16, 7-3-15

Looking back, I can see how this illness ruined years of my life. But at the time, it was like a safety net for me, and during recovery when I was fighting against ‘it’ for freedom…I remember still at times having a fear of ‘life without it’ – probably because it had become such a massive part of my life.

The good news is, 2 years later, I have found freedom – and it is great! Even though there was a time ‘life without it’ seemed scary, I now know that ‘life without it’ is incomparably better to the days I was trapped in ‘it’s’ grips. Freedom is good; recovery is possible; and if you are trapped in an illness like Anorexia Nervosa – please fight for freedom, it is worth it!

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