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 Aug 2017 Diane
I am going... to try.
Not for you, but for me.
I will go downstairs and I will eat dinner.
I will wake up tomorrow and I will have breakfast, I will have lunch, I will have dinner. I will eat my snacks.
And if I cannot do all of it, that is okay.
I can try again the next day.
It's alright if I make mistakes. I can do that.
But I am going to try.
It's not cool when people care about you because you made yourself throw up.
It's not cool when people care about you because you can barely walk or stand without being lightheaded.
It's not cool when people care about you because you are sitting at meals staring at your food like it's some sort of foreign object.
It's not cool when you receive attention for your vitals being so bad that you faint.
It's cool when people applaud you for the hard work you have been putting in.
It's cool when you've made progress and people tell you they are proud.
It's cool when you get to go outside everyday because you've earned privileges.
It's cool when you get attention for doing well and having someone put their hand on your back and say, "hey, I know today was hard. But you made it through."
My eating disorder is not cool. In fact it's proven to be incredibly uncool.
I used to hate when people told me they were proud of me, but as I got told today how much I was loved and how proud everyone was of me I realized how cool recovery was.
I am not going to give up. It's going to be incredibly difficult. And some days, it may feel impossible but no matter what,
I am going to try.

- thoughts after being kicked out of treatment
 Jul 2017 Diane
Clare Margaret
Have you ever seen your breakup
At the bottom
Of a toilet bowl

Last night i treated myself
To a three-course meal
Of mustard, spit, and toilet water splashback

Have you ever reached into the back
Of your throat with spider fingers
Digging for the right language
To communicate your pain
Spoiler alert: you won’t find it down there

But you will find:
Thick mucus
Strings of blood
Nail polish chips
And stripped knuckle-skin

And every time you pummel your four longest fingers
Back-and-forth against the back of your gag reflex
You’ll be pushing yourself deeper
Into the grave that nobody knew you were digging
 Jul 2017 Diane
Clare Margaret
Don’t ask me how I feel about food
because you’ll find yourself lost in stories
that glorify pathological eating patterns.
Yes, I am a loud-mouthed *******.
Yes, I will tell you
about the time all I ate on a Wednesday
was a single mustard packet
and you better believe I held the near-empty plastic sleeve
under my desk
ripped it open
and brought the splayed-out wrapper to my lips.

How about the Saturday night my roommate left
for her boyfriend’s house.
I waited for the sound of her car
pulling out of the driveway
then spent the next two hours
eating bowl after bowl of frosted cereal
and throwing them up one after another
until I couldn’t feel my jaw.
 Jul 2017 Diane
Clare Margaret
Your voice floods my ears
At 6:45 A.M.,
"Patient Number Four, it's time
to do your vitals."

I'm standing in the doorframe
of my hospital cubicle--
right hand in yours, the nurse's,
left hand in the shredder--
or is that the wire frame that's holding
me up like I'm a head on a stake?

"Have you eaten, how long has it been now?"
I try to tell you the truth, but my mouth feels miles away, riding on the train
that you people call my throat.
And my throat has brought me here, to your pristine prison cell because
I betrayed it too many times.

"I need to get your vitals, will you come with me?"
And how do I know, how do I really know
that you are not trying to ****** me
with gleaming round numbers
and records of compliance, cooperation.
How do I know that you are not trying to re-name me in this hospital's file-cabinet language?

"I need you to follow me to the lab."
Why are you trying to take me away
from myself?--
The self I spent so many years
constructing from the bits and pieces
of black earth I dug up eagerly, fearlessly.

I cannot move to your white room--
the other flavor of white reserved
for nurses, not the oatmeal in my cubicle.
I cannot leave this arm with its chewed-up edges or this crime-scene throat
with its flapping lid.

"Please give me your arm and make a fist."
I already told you, or tried to,
I cannot give myself to you.
I have given myself away too many times
under too many names.
And I am tired, so tired,
of chasing myself back to Me.

So you drain me right there in the hallway
and seal me back up
without a kiss--
So I kiss myself on the thick vein you chose and whisper
my real name to myself
Because I am terrified, so terrified
of forgetting it.

— The End —