It’s a chilly but stunningly bright fall day as I walk outside and take in a deep breath of the crisp fall air. AsI step outside I start thinking about how I’ve always loved autumn. It’s by far my favourite time of the year, ever since I was a kid I would get giddy just thinking about the coziness autumn brings. Although I think I may be a bit biased since my birthday is fast approaching in October.

These few brief months are the ones I feel most at peace in, Halloween candy, pumpkin patches, hot apple cider, chilly enough for cozy sweaters but warm enough to not need to pull out the coats just yet, everything just seems brighter to me in autumn, happier even, but that was before my eating disorder spoiled it. 

When I got sick, it seemed to be a common theme for relapses to occur in the fall. I don’t know why, maybe it was the coziness of autumn that lulled me into a false sense of security, tricking me into believing that I didn’t need to work as much or fight as hard. Maybe it was the switch of weather, the sun losing its warmth or maybe it was because it was a period of transition in the world and I’ve never been the best at handling change.

Whatever the reason, the temptation to relapse when the leaves start to fall is something I still deal with to this day.

In the last few years of my life nearly every fall I was in the hospital. The days were long and dragged on, and I watched the changing colours from the lounge windows instead of on my porch drinking tea. I longed for apple picking, nights out with friends, roasting marshmallows on an open fire, and that feeling of peace I had had so long ago. This year I’m home, I finally get to live my autumn dreams again and that’s exciting but I would be lying if I said I wasn’t a little scared too. 

I remember vividly who I was last autumn living through this pandemic trying my hardest not to relapse, and although looking back at her makes me sad I’m also so grateful to her. She survived what she thought she couldn’t, she faced the pain and heartbreaks of fighting her illnesses and she got me here. She carried me to this healthy body, to this autumn at home, to cozy nights by the fire, and apple pie making contests with my family. She got my fall serenity back and for that I am forever grateful. 

Now it’s time to put all my hard work into action and make this another autumn at home. I am embarrassingly excited to sip a pumpkin spice latte in an oversized hoodie and not give a damn how many calories are in it. Autumn bring it on!!

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