Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Update at Sweet Sixteen

It is Waif's sixteenth birthday this week.

She is happy, sunny and well nourished.

I do absolutely bear in mind the cautionary tales that some of my lovely readers have posted, but I dare to hope.  Waif now acts like a normal teen - she sneaks in chocolate bars, she picks at food on others' plates, she eats healthily at meals and enjoys eating out.  I am grateful on a daily basis that I no longer need to monitor when and how much she eats as she seems to be doing so independently.  Yes, she could hide fasting from me for weeks now as I seriously do not check up, but clearly she is doing fine on her own as her weight remains steady.  I know that part of being a mother is letting go as my job has been to train her to live her own life:  at 12 with anorexia, I believe I was right to take control of her everyday living.  At 16, and healthy, the world is hers for the taking and I take a step back.  I am going back to work in September (term time only) so she will have lots of autonomy.

Waif is still doing lots of sport:  she cycles absolutely everywhere, without a helmet, but I live with that as I live with anything else so long as she is EATING.  She has even had a go at track cycling now and may take that up seriously.

Waif has a wonderful figure - slim but not boney.  She even has some curves.  She has a lovely supportive boyfriend whom Waif has decided is too thin and is now feeding up.  BF is indeed thin but I reckon that goes with the territory of being 6ft 5 inches tall at the age of 16.

Waif is still eccentric in a delightful way.  She wanted a Segway for her birthday until someone much wiser pointed out that you cannot legally ride them on either the pavements or the road in the UK.  She is settling for an hour of all terrain Segway riding in a nearby forest.  You have to be aged over 10 and over 7 stone to do it.  Happily, she is both of those!

My heart goes out to all of you reading that are either struggling with your own demons, or supporting a loved one with an Eating Disorder.  I hope that our story can give some hope of a happy outcome (yes, I am touching lots of wood, and I will always be looking out for Waif).  Whilst you are going through it, it really can seem that there is no hope.  I wish I could help everyone.