At first glance it might seem that I am just a happy, normal girl who loves to bake and walk her dog. However, I have suffered with an eating disorder since I was 13. It was only in May 2014 when I realised that this Voice in my head was slowly but surely trying to kill me. And so began the long, hard, and painful journey which is recovery...

I want My Cocoa Stained Apron to be a special place...a place for reflection, memories, shared stories...and of course a little bit of cocoa-staining ;) Recovery might be the hardest thing you ever choose to do in this life. But it is also the bravest and best decision you will ever make.:)

Friday, 22 January 2016

Looking into that mirror...I saw a girl that the rest of the world could not see...

Out of all the works of English literature that I was obliged to study back in my days at secondary school - the novels and the classics; the long and drearily tragic pieces of epic poetry; the plays that didn't make any sense no matter how many times you endeavoured to read them - there is one particular poem that has, till this day, remained etched upon my mind, as if the lines themselves were inscribed upon my own memory, the same way as they were printed upon that smooth, blank page in the middle of my English poetry anthology. That being, Mirror, by Sylvia Plath. The words, the haunting imagery, the eerie insidiousness of that poem stilllingers with me, despite the fact that it's now years since I set my eyes upon that page.

I am silver and exact. I have no preconceptions.
Whatever I see I swallow immediately
Just as it is, unmisted by love or dislike.
I am not cruel, only truthful...

Now I am a lake. A woman bends over me,
Searching my reaches for what she really is...

But a mirror can be a cruel, cruel thing.

Because we see in that silvery glass a figure who we believe is a true reflection of who we really are. The mirror never lies...or so we are led to think.

 Because I know, deep down, what the truth really is.

Today after collage, I was standing changing my t-shirt before the tall, long, room-length mirror in my bedroom, tossing off the flimsy white garment I had donned earlier that morning to replace it with a top more suitable for walking. At my back, my reflection moved with me, mimicking my movements as I crossed the room to the wardrobe and leaned in to rummage through the line of clothes hung on the rails . Picking out the top that I wanted, I slipped it on over my shoulders, trying to ignore the Voice whispering repeatedly, at the farthest, darkest corner of my mind, to look, look, look. It was no use. Slowly I turned around, not wanting to see, not wanting to look, but powerless, so powerless to the merciless pull of the mirror. My reflection gazed mockingly back at me. All I could see was my stomach, bloated after lunch. I slid one hand upon the skin and tried to swallow the lump in my throat. At the back of my mind, that cruel Voice taunted. Ah, look at you. How could they ever say you look as if you have lost weight...? they are lying to you! The mirror never lies.

For looking into the mirror through the eyes of my eating disorder, I could see - I mean, I can still only see -  a girl who is not the same as the one seen by the rest of the world.

And that is the thing...the thing, that I need to realise, that I need to grasp. That when I look into the eyes of that girl in the mirror...I need to say to this really me. Am I really choosing to see...the real girl in the glass? The slenderness of her legs and arms; the small, girl like, barely discernible breasts? Am I choosing to ignore the darkness of the shadows under my eyes; the cracked, dry, wrinkled skin on my hands? Am I refusing to see what the rest of the world can see, but which I, blinded by malignant, sneering, heartless taunts of my eating disorder, cannot acknowledge every time I looks upon my face and body in that glass...?

The body...the body of a child, a girl. Not a 21 year old young woman; not that of a healthy, happy girl who does not have this Voice in her head. A Voice which tells her, every single hour of every single day, that she is fat and repulsive. A Voice that tells her that she must, on pain of life itself, not gain weight. A Voice which tells her she should go back to starving herself; A Voice which tells her she will never, ever be happy, unless she remains underweight, thin, skinny.

But this is what that little Voice in my Head is telling me, when I look at the body of the girl who is me, in that mirror. Just look at aren't that bad. Your body is just...the way it should be. 

But that Voice...that Voice is a cruel, deceitful,  cold-blooded liar...
And that girl that I see in the mirror,

Is not the girl that the rest of the world can see.

I cannot see this girl...

You were never truthful to me, Eating Disorder...

You are never truthful. Only...only cruel.


  1. The voice only lies and tells us that we are worthless. Please don't thrust these frauds, you are such a warmhearted and lovely young lady, turn your back on this picture in the mirror, it is just an image manipulated by this horrible voice. I send you all my love and all the strength you need to keep on the right track to a healthy future and freedom.
    Hugs Maria

    1. <3 thank you so much dear Maria, that means so so much <3 i really hope you are doing ok, all my love back to you <3 xxx

  2. Emily, I was just reading Izzy's blog about bloating -- a post from a while ago where she'd posted pictures -- and you'd commented what an inspiration she was. Bloating happens all through life. We all have to cope with it. You are a beautiful soul. Love that stuff "deep down" where you "know what the truth really is" -- that is your guide and friend, it is just gentler than the bullying ED Voice. But it is stronger too. With love and hoping for you to flourish. Btw, you write *beautifully*.

    1. thank you so, so much, your comment really meant so much to me today, I can't even begin to thank you enough <3 everything you say is so true, thank you so much for sharing your insight with me <3 xxx

  3. Brilliant entry. I really felt like I could empathize with you and what you are going through. Such an honest and gripping post, brilliantly written. Keep it up, Em x

    1. <3 thank you so, so much, you are too kind..your comment really meant so much to me, thank you, truly. <3 <3 <3 xxx