The title of this post is inspired in part by an unexpected note - rich in its beauty - I received tonight from someone who was part of a small circle of friends and family early in my relationship with Kirk. She had somehow stumbled across this site and obviously through what I have shared, learned the truth about these past months and perhaps was able to place our time together in some broader context.
Her words - coming the day after Christmas - struck me because those early times with Kirk - my first experience of actually moving in with someone and knowing as I did at the time - that the "me" Kirk, his children and the broader community who loved him had welcomed into their lives was not real - they did not know the truth - did not know about my eating disorder - something that I had valiantly tried to hide until confronted by the very real concept of sharing the same living space with other people for an extended period. So the person they knew was someone else - someone they perceived very differently and in my mind had I been up front at the time I would have risked everything. So the person she described in her note was a person it is hard for me to recognize - even though I understand that may be difficult to accept.
However, her words also evoked some connection with what I have been feeling when I leave the safety of our house. The words in my most recent post - expressing my insecurity about the impact of my illness on my physical self. And how this morning when I saw images my dad had captured with his camera of my time with him and my sister's family on Christmas Day - I knew how I had struggled to find clothes to wear - was so deeply conscious beneath the layers of my clothes of the port that sits in my chest - allowing me to administer my own medication - asked Kirk until he was likely deeply irritated if I looked okay...if it was okay for me to go. So when I shared an image captured with my sister today - I did it almost waiting for someone to say it is time to stop.
I suppose it brings me back to the feeling of what others really see when they look in your eyes - when they share moments with you that reveal something deeper - what they may perceive that you fail to perceive. What version of me do they really know? Something to ponder when the rest of the household is deep in slumber, in search of sweeter dreams.