Trying to explain the way I perceive my body is something I have always struggled with. My first reaction is to indulge the disordered part of my brain. By doing this I lost any hope of being an effective communicator and usually end up spitting out words which are purely emotionally (read: hatefully) driven. I do admit that my difficulty separating my emotions from this particular topic is quite common given the way that an eating disorder works, but that is also why conveying my experiences feels that much more important.
The human brain (or at least from my own experience) seems to find some sort of solace in “normal”. Wherever possible it will do its best to adapt your experiences to fit into it’s preferred way of functioning. *I know that I’m simplifying this a lot more than is probably correct, but I’m just going to keep rolling with this* I’ve recently been thinking about the way I see myself in terms of neural adaptation and habitual behaviour. There have been multiple studies on the brains ability to adjust to changes in environment and I hope that I do not cause too many injustices to their studies. If, for example, you are unlucky enough to find yourself stuck upside-down for a prolonged period of time; your mind is eventually able to re-invert that image to give you a view that is as similar as possible to what you’re used to. After learning that is it such a stretch to say that by maintaining an unhealthy body weight (in my case, an underweight one) for an extended period of time, I begin to see this body as my “normal”? I am in no way saying that I am healthy! Purely that I have spent so long looking at this body that my mind has become accustomed to it.
My hope is that, if anything I’ve said is remotely true, the unhealthy reflection I currently see as healthy can (with time and weight gain) once again become realistic. Am I being too optimistic again?