It suddenly dawned on me last night as Ben and I sat across the dinner table eating Italian bean, aubergine and red pepper stew on buttered ciabatta with parmesan cheese (and, in Ben's case, a boiled egg on top) that I was looking in the face of Recovery.
For the first time his body and face look fleshed out properly. For the first time he looks very similar to the photograph I have of him sitting in the same position back in the December of 2007 when he was 14. He is a little thinner, but then he's not playing rugby these days. Or any sport for that matter.
And Ben looked happy and was behaving normally, planning the social activities that he is slowly easing himself into as a result, I think, of the CBT sessions he's having every Thursday.
I guess I could pick out a few things that still wouldn't be exactly right. Like the fact that on some days (not all days) he will keep a tab on calories to make sure he's not eating too much - or too little.
But these are minor details which I am sure will fade over time, just as all the other glitches have faded.
I was wondering why I'm finding it really difficult to stand up and say: "My son, Ben, is now completely recovered from anorexia." And I think the reason is this...
It's almost by saying this I feel as if I'd be tempting fate. It's almost superstitious; as if - by not saying it - Ben won't ever relapse. Yet if I said it - ping! - he'd begin to go back downhill again.
This is ridiculous, I know.