Today as John and I drove up to Goodwill I sat in the passenger seat crying hysterically. In the trunk were bags full of all of the clothes that no longer fit me. Clothes that were full of memories and a twisted sense of comfort. They were the clothes that I wore at my sickest and clung on to for dear life. Throughout recovery as my body has changed, I still hung on to those clothes for safety even though I could no longer fit into them. They were my back-up plan: If everything else failed, at least I could lose weight and fit into them again. Keeping them was my way of allowing myself to go back to the eating disorder if things ever became too difficult.
Getting rid of these clothes wasn't easy. It meant being honest with myself and facing the harsh reality that my body will never be that small again. It meant letting go of a lot of things.
As we drove away, I was so overcome with sadness, I felt like I couldn't breathe. Yet it was bigger than the clothes and their size. I was sad for all of the years that I based my worth on fitting into those clothes. The fact that I based my safety and comfort on a pair of shorts. I was sad for all of the years I berated myself and believed that the only way that I would be ok and loved, was if I wore size X.
To be honest, I am still upset. Today I feel like I lost something that was important to me. Yet I also feel relieved. I no longer have to look at those clothes everyday. I no longer need to see reminders of my illness or feel the pull of the eating disorder every time I walk in the closet.I am still working on coming to terms with my body changing and it's size. On hard days, I still sometimes believe that maybe if I were smaller things would be better, yet deep down I know that's a lie.
Although I am sad, I don't regret getting rid of those clothes today. I wouldn't trade the life that I have now to fit into them again. As I stood and cried into John's loving arms, I was reminded of what real love, comfort and safety are and for that I am truly grateful.