Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Eat, Drink, and Be Merry...

... For Tomorrow We Die.

I think this echos within the walls of my empty little head whenever I get into binge mode. "Eat now, you'll never get to again." Everything tastes a little bit more intense, flavorful, rich. I get fuller, faster but that doesn't stop me. Tomorrow I repent my sins and absolve myself with fasting, or exercise, or laxatives, or some new restricting plan.


I've mentioned that I have several tattoos. One of them is the phrase "Memento Mori" scrawled across me in antique handwriting. There's a lot of complicated reasons for getting this, but I want to share the history of Memento Mori that led me to thinking about it in the first place.

The phrase is Latin basically meaning some variation of "Be Mindful of Death," or "Remember You Will Die," or "You are mortal." Blah blah. It's influenced a lot of artistic (or what we call art) movements spanning from Medieval sketches of Plague times--with skeletons depicted along with live or dying people--to Victorian society where families would have posed photograph portraits taken of their recently deceased loved ones, especially babies (it was popular to have portraits taken of dead babies because many times this would be the only photograph the family would ever have of the child. The mother usually wore a locket with this photograph inside). It's not a movement bounded temporally or culturally, as death is one of the few human universals across the globe.

(I couldn't bring myself to put up a picture of any dead people, despite my morbid fascination with death, but "Memento Mori Photography" is very googlable and I promise there's no gore. This is a piece from an art installation by Susan Seubert/>)


Sometimes I wake up and want to recover. Other times I feel like this drive for control-perfection, my ED, is the only thing I have and if I lose it, what will I be? No one should be forced into recovery or continue hanging onto a mental illness if they desperately want help. Live, because you will die. I don't have to seize the day, but I do check in with myself now and then to make sure all aspects within my life are how I really want to be conducting myself. Though I wasn't thinking about Memento Mori as it relates here when I got my tattoo and I'm not going to appropriate its meaning, I do think that the over all concept of "Carpe Diem" "Memento Mori" and all that Latin Bullshit can apply to those of us struggling.

It's about living your life the way you want to, because at some point, we will all die and I hope that every one of my friends (online and in the real world) will have lived the way they intended, not going through motions for someone else. Or worse, mentally torn as to how to live. Waxing philosophical.

Ending this entry on a completely non-eerie final word note, I recently started email following a blog that's gives me my dose of creepy/morbid... so if you're into that: Morbid Anatomy.


PrettyWreck said...

I really liked reading this. Personally, I'm a fan of tattoos. I have two, and I have another I've been working on for a few years (literally) and trying to decide where I want it/how I want it/what I want it to say. I have two phrases I want on me, but it's a matter of getting them planned out and where they'll be. I'm not the type of person to wear them where all the world can see. They're personal private thoughts scrawled across the body like scars, to show the landmarks of the soul, and the soul, for me, is to be bared to the special few only.

There are so many meanings we find in the antiquities of our past. That your phrase now wraps around you in this time of need is evidence as to it's strength and it's worth in that spot scrawled across your skin. Remember We Will Die, but remember we all must live until then. Live how you want, live in a way that makes you who you want to be, and never put it off.

I think these two phrases are the most important revealed in philosophy. Two simple things, but two very real lessons.

Anyway, I'll stop babbling at you. Recover, or continue, whatever you do, I just hope it's part of who you really want to be, at your very soul, and that you can continue on without regrets. ♥

nadja said...

i recogize myself a lot in this post. *hugs*
and the pics are absolutely beautiful.

SkinnyBitch said...

I've been wanting to get a "Memento Mori" tattoo. I think I may.

I think I'm being naive in thinking that I can stop all of this whenever I want. I don't think that I can. I mean, I've stopped it for a long period of time before, but look where I am now: I'm back.

Hopefully soon I can learn who/what I really want to be. But maybe nobody ever really learns that.

SophiaRuins said...

ahh i love the phrase memento mori. and i love the philisophical factor in this post.
i truly do believe that everyone should live as if today was their last day, and they need to live how they WANT not how they think they should.
i adore your writing.
and thanks tons for all the support youve given me, it really means a lot =]

love you hun!

XOXO Sophia Ruins <3

MiniKitty said...

That was an amazing post to read. I have 2 tattoos one of which is on my wrist and says breathe. As someone who struggles with both an ED as well as anxiety it helps to have that little reminder when I start to spin out of control. I'm so happy that there are others out there that I can both gain support from and hopefully lend a little myself. Thank you for all of your posts they are so inspirational!
Stay strong, think thin!

Tulip said...

I googled memento mori on google image search, I've seen photos before of this from films mainly (recently The Haunting in Connecticut) and I get goose bumps just looking at them. I'm not scared of dying, I've come close many times before and it doesn't scare me but it’s the line between dead and and alive that scares. As much as it interests me I have fears of things I don't understand. I've spent alot of time in hospital, very close, sometimes just on the other side of a curtain from someone that’s passed away, I've heard people's last breaths, last words and the ‘death rattle’. I've seen the black covered beds being wheeled to the mortuary. Death when it’s about to strike causes a unique atmosphere, something I'm not able to describe but you know its there when it’s around. My auntie is a spiritualist which fascinates me at the same time it really scares me because it’s the unknown and I don’t understand it.
Sometimes I do wonder about my reasons behind what I'm doing what do I do when there's no weight left to lose? Do I actually believe I will die if I don't do something about it? Will I do something about it? And I guess my biggest question what will it take?!

Anonymous said...

This rings true for me. I'm trying my best to allow myself days where i ignore the screaming voice in my head which says DONT DO ANYTHING FUN, IT'LL MAKE YOU FAT and actually live. I hope everyone else manages this at least some of the time.
Love your posts, hope your current hiatus doesnt last too much longer. (is it pathetic that i get really worried about some of my favourite bloggers if i dont hear from them for a few days? I go longer without speaking to my best friends or my parents!)xx

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