It was my 20th birthday, my roommates decided to make me a cake in order to celebrate. What was intended to be a fun, celebratory notion was in reality my worst nightmare. On my 20th birthday I was in deep with anorexia. This being the case, I did not have one morsel of my birthday cake.
To this day I have guilt about not having a piece of that damn cake. I wanted so badly to show my appreciation for the time my friends had spent trying to make my birthday special. I hated the way I refused it, constantly saying maybe I would have some later. Did I have some later? No. That cake sat on the counter until it became stale. This was a tangible reminder of how much my eating disorder had control over me.
The fact that this cake still haunts me, six years later, is proof of how much influence an eating disorder can have on your being. Your thoughts and actions are no longer your own, you are owned by ED. For a long time I convinced myself that I was the one who was making all these choices. One day I finally realized these weren't choices at all. I literally felt as if I had to do the things I was doing, there was no other option. Not following the orders of my eating disorder would only lead to more anxiety, obsession, and a feeling of failure.
I have had birthdays since with no cake involved and that makes me sad. I'm upset that cake is still a scary food and that my demons won't let me enjoy even a single slice on a day that is supposed to be filled with joy and celebration. I would never deny anyone else of birthday cake. Why do I do this to myself? This is constantly a question that frustrates and digs at me. I fully, rationally understand that it is okay to 'treat yo self' on your birthday or any other special day yet the irrational eating disorder tends to win the argument.
I fully intent to not let another year pass with no birthday cake. Eating disorder, it's my turn to chose. This year I chose to celebrate with some delicious cake. Happy Birthday to me.