So, today is my 22nd birthday! According to societal norms, 22 really isn’t anything special (unless you are a Taylor Swift fan… in that case, there’s a whole song about it!). However, I believe every birthday is a big deal and deserves to be celebrated. Especially, dear readers, when you’ve dealt with a life-threatening illness like eating disorders.
When I was a young teenager, anorexia nearly took my life. I was dangerously underweight, malnourished, and depressed. I was surviving on barely any food intake and was hospitalized multiple times. I didn’t think I’d live to see my Sweet 16, let alone make it to college.
After the darkest days of my life, I had an epiphany– life is truly a gift, and I needed to celebrate it. For this reason, I really do celebrate every birthday as if it’s the best thing to have happened to me. Because in a way, my birthdays are the best thing that continues to happen to me… and not just because of the presents and well-wishes.
My birthday– the gift of another year to tack onto my achievement list– is the best present I could ask for. When I think back to the days the professionals were concerned I wouldn’t make it, I feel gratitude that I am still here today. I am a survivor, and every year older solidifies my remarkable progress in physical and mental health.
So, I’m going to enjoy my birthday. I’m going to live life to the fullest and celebrate with my closest friends tonight. I have joy in my heart and gratitude in my soul because I am just so happy to be given the gift of 22 years! Happy birthday to me 🙂