Tuesday 27 December 2011

"I'm alright, Jack"

Wondering what to write following a much better Christmas than last year and definitely the year before, there was the temptation to write about what a wonderful Christmas we had. OK it wasn't perfect and the ripples of Ed are still there, notably on his 18th birthday on the 23rd, but I could have gone down the happy and thankful route. Then I read my dear friend Charlotte's latest blog entry and was prompted to write something very different.

Yes, we are enormously fortunate in that our son is almost recovered. Yes, we are hugely lucky that Christmas Eve and Christmas Day were fun. Yes, I loved seeing my son tuck into his Christmas Dinner, Christmas Pudding, Christmas Cake, chocolate log cake, chocolates and umpteen other things he wouldn't have touched with a barge pole a couple of years back.

But forget about all that "I'm alright Jack" mentality.

The stark truth is that while our children recover there are others, right now, that are descending into anorexia at an alarming and dangerous pace. And who knows how long it will take them to come out the other side. If at all. Last Christmas I was reading desperate posts from a mom on the Around the Dinner Table Forum as she helplessly watched her daughter disappear down the 'rabbit hole'. By February (I think it was) the daughter had lost her fight.

This Christmas I read Charlotte's blog about another desperate mom who is being told that her daughter can't be medically assessed until January - yet as long as she continues to eat her 600-ish calorie intake a day and drink water she "should" be OK for the next 10 days.

So while we mums are enjoying our first ED-free Christmasses there are others out there that are helplessly watching their children disappear in front of their eyes.

And it this terrible merry-go-round will go on and on and on and on - until eating disorders are taken as seriously as any other potentially fatal illness.

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