Great Expectations

 I never expected this to happen
When we read those anorexia horror stories in middle school
I never expected to let myself fall into such a deadly trap
I thought I had more sense, more awareness, more control
I never expected to be sitting in a doctor’s office
Shrunken, shriveled, darkened, dulled, DIAGNOSED
I never expected to become so shallow
As to choose my own twisted ideals of “beauty”
Over my health
And what about my family?
I can’t imagine what it must be like for my parents
Seeing the way I treat the body that they gave life to
Wondering what changed between Thanksgiving dinner
And Easter brunch
Wondering when exactly my obsession with nutrition
Morphed into THIS
I never could have expected that I would be so uncomfortable in my own skin
That clothes shopping would be such a daunting task
That I would break down in a fitting room because the double zero jeans were too tight
I never expected that I would weigh myself more often than I eat
That three meals would be TOO MANY
Or that I would be afraid to even drink water
Because it causes and immediate
Fluctuation
I never expected that I would have brown urine
That my extremities would be purple
Or that I would lose chunks of hair in the shower
I never expected to be in such imminent danger
Of my organs rebelling against me
Or just shutting down completely
I never expected that such danger wouldn’t motivate me to
STOP
I couldn’t have expected what this illness would do to my mind
How it would nestle into every part of my psyche
And influence every thought, every action
How I could be so unwell for so long and not even know
I never could have expected that my only happiness
Would come from the scale reading lower than the ever-decreasing limit
I have set for myself
Or from people expressing their concern
Because too many of my bones are showing
I never expected that I would take
“Skeleton”
As a compliment
That a concave stomach would seem so appealing
I never expected that I wouldn’t eat my own birthday cake
Or that I would be afraid to butter my toast
I didn’t expect to spend my highschool years living off of tic-tacs
And substituting meals with showers
I didn’t expect that I’d be so sick, so STUPID
That I’d be so blind
not even knowing
Until it was too late
I didn’t expect that I’d ever be wrapped up in the mess that is anorexia
I expected more for myself
I WANTED more for myself
I wanted to wear pretty dresses
And eat pizza
And go swimming
I wanted sunshine and friends
Not pills and BMI charts
Scales and measuring tapes
I wanted to be happy
Because I knew I deserved nothing less
I knew I was more than a number
More than every unsightly pound that made up my unsightly body
I didn’t expect to forget that
I didn’t expect to forget who I am
And I can no longer expect anything
I can only hope
That one day
I will remember






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