My anorexia recovery tattoo saves me from Eating Disorder relapse

Are you in recovery from a mental illness? Check out the reasons behind this eating disorder recovery tattoo!

I started writing this post in hopes of triggering something within me to find out why I am the way I am. I started tracing my family’s past to see if I could find anything significant, to see if I could find a place of relevance that might give me some peace of mind, a place to escape to. I looked into the biological side of my existence; the XQ+ Chromosome that lives within me that will shape the future of my children. I read old journals, blog posts, and watched videos from my past to try to see when my anxiety and depression began.

Looking into who I am led me to one conclusion; it doesn’t matter how I became the person I am today, it matters that I am the person I am today.

Every person has lived through events that shape them and I am proud that my life has given me a seemingly endless amount of battles to fight. It has done nothing but prove to me how much I am capable of.

I’m reminded of who I am not by the face that looks back at me in the mirror – but by the tattoo permanently embedded into my skin.

The battles I’ve faced, the people I’ve met, the challenges I have overcome; everything resides in the wordless story drawn into my skin.

  Tattoo done by: Shaun Smith (@leathershod) • Currently working at Tattoo Voodoo in Poughkeepsie, New York • Available for appointments at leathershod@gmail.com 

 

Tattoo done by: Shaun Smith (@leathershod• Currently working at Tattoo Voodoo in Poughkeepsie, New York • Available for appointments at leathershod@gmail.com 

Anorexia was by far the one demon I did not think I had the strength to defeat. The disease is still with me and will forever haunt me, but it will never be strong enough to take away my life as it did six years ago.

The summer of 2013 marked one year of being recovered from Anorexia. As a promise to myself to never go back down the dark path that took me so long to escape from a year earlier, I got a recovery tattoo.

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My back in December 2011 vs my back in June 2013

My back in December 2011 vs my back in June 2013

Rib Cage

Symbolizing Anorexia and the constant fear of not being able to touch and see every bone in my body

Black Eyed Susans

Symbolizing my mom whose name is Susan

“None of what you hear, half of what you see”

Symbolizing the full quote which my dad is notorious of saying, “Believe none of what you hear and only half of what you see.” Along with symbolizing the fact that when you suffer from Anorexia you should not believe anything the voices inside your head are telling you, and you should look harder at the girl in the mirror starring back at you. The mirror tells the truth but your eyes and your mind are deceiving you into seeing what isn’t there. Don’t believe full heartedly that the person looking back at you is you.

My parents are the only two people that stood by my side during the entire time I was suffering. They were the only two who could see that I had no control over my own mind and even though they didn’t understand, they never gave up on me. If it weren’t for their constant support I wouldn’t have ever been given the help that I needed. I would have never recovered and I most likely would not be alive today.

recovery tattoo outlines

I would love to know about other recovery tattoos!

Leave a comment to share your own experiences and what your battles for recovery look like.

Enter your information in the fields provided to enroll in my free 4-day mental health advocacy email course, Turning Wisdom Into Words!

Marissa Pane

New York