…Because they lied when they said I have 20/20 vision.
Technically speaking, Specsavers were in fact telling the truth with my 20/20 diagnosis, no matter how much we all used to try to lie to what letters we saw magnified on the board in the eye examination. I’m sure they were never convinced anyway, when I conveniently misidentified the individual letter at the top each time, but was correctly able to distinguish the bottom row with no hesitation.
I’ve always unfortunately had to experience the overwhelming disappointment we all felt at the age of 7, when it wasn’t required of us to choose those snazzy pair of pink-rimmed glasses from the row of choices, which we could then show off in our classroom the following day. I’ve so far been extremely lucky in having fairly competent vision without glasses, though I’m starting to think maybe I’ve been seeing life through a giant pair of magnifying glasses all along.
It’s fairly well-known that body dismorphia is very common within those suffering with an eating disorder. Although I think we’re all incredibly influenced by the different body types that traffic our social media, I think most could easily quantify either their own, or someone else’s fatty areas, muscly areas and bony areas, to a relatively standardised degree.
I now see life as a before and after: the old me, 18-24 months ago, and the person who I am now. All I see and think of when someone says that I seem more like my old self again, is the new me greedily eating her way back to being fat again. With scales no longer around to confirm whether I’ve gained weight or not, just means the magnified glasses masking my eyes, shows a version in the mirror of what I used to see 2 years ago – the old me. Something, somewhere, is persistently telling me that because I’m eating more, I should of course expect to look and feel like the Heffalump I deserve to now be, regardless to what other people say and what they see.
Though it would seem incomprehensible, I am in fact able to recognise that though I at times still regard myself as fat, it doesn’t for a second insinuate that I am challenging someone else to be the same too; should they be heavier than me, or perhaps a dress size greater than me. It’s an incredibly complicated concept that I’m still not able to fully understand myself. I’m able to look at tens of different figures and see likeability in so many, thinking they look great, whatever size they are; not think they’re fat yet still recognise when someone is painfully underweight. However, it’s become borderline impossible to establish what it is that I’d like to be seeing reflected back at me, each and every time I scrutinise all parts of my body in the mirror. When really a skeleton, barely stretched over with skin is probably what’s actually there, I’ll still claim to have too much excess fat around the dimples in my spine and that my hips are looking as though they’d be better suited stuffed inside a muffin case, perched proudly in the window of Gregg’s.
Maybe I should follow up on that overdue eye test…