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The Man At The Window

How An Unexpected Connection Healed My Eating Disorder

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I grew up a Tomboy. Yes, I can camp and throw a punch but this came with all sorts of body issues.

It was the day we were mooching around the skate park that determined how much I would hate my body. I had my fat skater shoes on. My older brother’s shorts hanging on my girlish waist, when one of the older boys came over. He told me how ugly I was and I suddenly had no idea where I fitted in.

I was no longer one of the boys. I certainly couldn’t be one of ‘the girls’ if I was ugly. Battling to identify with the feminine version of myself I grew up feeling, well, ugly. I was never chosen, never courted and certainly never hit on. When you feel like this, you tend to want to hide. Yet, you also want opportunities to affirm that you might not be ugly, even just to one person.

After some empty relationships, disappointing friendships, and a hate for socializing, I became severely underweight and horrendously unhappy. It was then that I met him. The man at the window. We had been working together for a year, almost unbeknown to me. I was so wrapped up in my own “stuff”. Entering a room was a mental battle of wanting to shrink while simultaneously searching for one friendly glance. I wouldn’t have seen genuine care if it jumped out at me in neon clothing. He practically had to do that before I agreed to have a drink with him.

It was months after I had left the company we both worked at that I did have a drink with him. This is when everything changed. A year and a half later, we have a dog called Benson and a beautiful home next to the ocean. In my opinion, he saved me. I didn’t realize how bad it was until it changed. My hair has stopped falling out, my skin has clearing and I don’t look so frail.

I no longer compare myself to anyone and know that I am the most beautiful version of myself. There is someone out there who adores me just as I am. It amazes me every day how much being loved right can change, even save a person. You just have to be open to it.

The man at the window. A colleague. My partner and my best friend.

Thank you.

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