Yesterday would have been the 17th birthday of a very beautiful person (inside and out) and a person I miss a great deal. Pip lost her fight December 2015 and I’ll never forget her (or her contagious laugh for that matter). She was such a genuine, hilarious, human being – there was no one she couldn’t make smile. I have so many incredible memories of her, she made some of the worst days of my life slightly less crappy and I will forever be grateful to her for that. People often tend to romanticize the dead and I’m not saying she was perfect, we all have bad days but she was exactly what so many of us needed during a really dark time in our lives. Recovering from an eating disorder is hard, probably one of the hardest things I will ever have to do but you know what they say – laughter is the best medicine – and she certainly gave us lots of laughs…
The bear in the picture to the right? Yep that’s Pip! Well, the bear was originally named Barbara but we un-stuffed her and Pip climbed right in to cheer up another patient when she was having a bad day (I was too tall 😦 ) The video of it never fails to make me grin like an idiot!
I have so many more memories I could share – creating the corridor of positivity, singing the ward song, doing impressions of all the staff, the night we all went wild when there were none of the permanent staff on, the time I literally peed myself a little laughing with her (I’m not proud!), the time we sang and danced to the entire top 40…so.many.memories. We were in hospital and that sucked but she brightened so many days, she was one of the strongest people I knew and I never imagined I’d lose her. I’m skeptical about the whole ‘heaven’ thing but I’ve got every body part possible crossed that I’m wrong and there’s somewhere hidden way up there so that I can see her again. If there is she’s probably eating PB and making inappropriate jokes as we speak!
Okay this next part is to you, the person who doesn’t believe that they’d be missed, who thinks that the world would be a better place without them, the you that isn’t sure whether they want to carry on or not.
If you are struggling with anything, and I mean anything, then please, please, PLEASE, reach out – get the help you need, the help you deserve. Because if you’re thinking the world would be a better place without you then you’re wrong. You have had a much larger impact on a much larger group of people than you could possibly ever imagine. Because of you someone’s bad day turned into a good one. Because of you someone else felt loved or worthy and someone else was the recipient of a smile that carried on long past you’d walked round the corner.
And if you’re thinking you won’t be missed then you’re wrong. If you ever left, your family would be devastated, your parents broken-hearted, sobbing, as they sorted through your belongings, digging out a favourite toy from when you were younger, never to be hugged again. Your siblings would have to stand by and watch your parents grief while wrestling with their own incomprehensible emotions. Your pet would stand at the window, waiting for you to come home, never understanding why you never do.Your friends, classmates, teachers, colleagues, grandparents, cousins, uncles, aunts, people you don’t even know by name like the bus driver that always smiles at you or the old woman that waves as you walk past with your dog…so many different lives that would never completely be the same again if you left.
I know what it feels like when you’re not sure whether you can carry on much longer, I know what it feels like to completely give up hope. But I also know what it’s like to regain that hope again, to question everything you thought you wanted – to see the light after so very long in the dark.
So please, if you ever feel like giving up, think of me, the girl who’s been into a black hole and back out, the girl that’s still fighting every single day not to be sucked back in again. Think of Pip, the girl gone too soon, missed by too many. Think of you, the person worthy of so much more than this. Get the help, find your share of the world’s happy again. I promise you it’s out there.
So much love,