Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Tears, fears, and wasted years

She went to her A.N.A.D. meeting. She cried through the entire group. When she gets in these group situations, she can’t help but feel so hurt in her heart.

People entered the room of A.N.A.D. in groups of two’s, three’s, and four’s. She entered all alone. The roar of talking and laughter before the group started was deafening. But she sat there quietly in her shell, shrieking from every opportunity to break in.

The meeting started with a group check-in of everyone’s name. She had them all memorized, hoping for the courage to go up to someone and call them by name after the meeting. She introduced herself, but, to her, nobody seemed interested in who she was. The meeting began with someone sharing a funny story about recovery. Everyone laughed, except her. Shrunken inside her own private world, she could not relate to what was being discussed. Feeling isolated and alone, the tears began to flow. Her heart burst in pain. She wanted to stop the group and tell everyone how lonely she was feeling, but her bravery never materialized. She was afraid everyone would laugh at her.

She compares herself against every single body in the room. She believes she is alien, different. Her body is covered, head to foot, in scars and burns. There is no absence of self-abuse anywhere. Silently in group, she mourns the loss of unblemished skin, of a body not so damaged and ravaged by self-destruction. She studies the weights of the girls intently, hoping to find someone the size and shape of herself. Again, she is alone. No such group member exists.

She eyes the cliques of girls in the room, remembering the years in school when the popular girls shunned her. Some things never change. She again concentrates on the comparison of bodies. All the other recovering anorexics are smaller than her. What is she doing wrong, she wonders. Why is her body betraying her? She condemns herself to destruction because she can’t measure up.

She is wrapped in self-hatred, with no chance for self-esteem, self-worth, or self-confidence. She is a fragile shell, splitting and cracking each day. It really is pitiful and sad. The only thing she wants is the very thing that’s eluding her.

Her mind shifts to people in the blogging world. It is a mirror to her life. The “popular group,” who e-mail, call, and text each other, ignore her. She tries to reach out, share how she feels through her blog, but is afraid people will laugh at her. She wants to comment and reach out to other blogs, but she is stripped of anything valuable or worthwhile to say. She is alone in the blogging world as she is in real life.

Her mind comes back to the meeting. She is so scared to say how she feels that she sinks back into the imprisonment of her head. She thinks she may blog about her alienation but is sure no one could understand the depth of her sadness and hopelessness.

The meeting wraps up and she leaves behind the sound of friendships and laughter. Through the sting and blurriness of her tears, she finds her car and cries to herself all the way home.