Did you know that 1 in 5 women struggle with an eating disorder? Hi, my name is Anna, and I’m that one. In my last post I scratched the surface of my insecurity with makeup, but there’s so much more to it than that.
I don’t know when it started, but some time in high school I decided I was too fat to eat. I was 110lbs. soaking wet, but it was too much in my eyes. I started by shrinking my meals, then skipping a few a week, then one a day… By the time my last semester of senior year rolled around, I was eating one meal a day, and forcing myself to vomit every night before bed.
I moved away to college and we had community bathrooms, so I went form vomiting, to my one meal + several hours of cardio per week, desperate to see my hipbones and wrap my hands around my own ribs. No matter what anyone told me–how beautiful or tiny I was–it wasn’t enough. I wasn’t enough.
It was horrible.
Looking back, it’s a miracle I managed to stay together, but let me show you what progress looks like:
As of today, I’m roughly 116lbs. I eat at least twice a day, and snack frequently. I lift weights 4+ days a week, and there’s no more puking before bed.
I’m not cured. A lot of days are still hard. Looking in the mirror is still a challenge. It takes a lot of effort to not count the calories in every bite I eat, and when I finally feel full, it’s hard to resist the urge to barf it all back up. Some days I’m sick, or I’m tired, or I’ve got too much homework and I don’t make it to the gym. I still panic on those days, as if that one day of missed training is going to result in me crossing the line into obesity.
I finally decided that being strong wasn’t about restraining myself, but training and taking care of myself and my body. I can honestly say that most days it takes a lot more strength and discipline to take care of myself. My medication suppresses what little appetite I have, so it’s incredibly easy for me to tell myself I don’t need to eat because I’m not hungry. But I’m working on it, and every bite is another step in the right direction.
I’m teaching myself that the numbers on the scale don’t matter, it’s about the body I have and taking care of it. I like the way I look now so much more than I ever liked myself at 108lbs. or less. I’m not ashamed of the way I look, or trying to cover up my body every time I go out in public. I am so much more confident in the person that I’m becoming than the person I was, and I’m only getting stronger every day.
I’m not perfect, and up until this year, I was the only person that expected me to be. I’m putting that burden of expectation down every day.
Reader, I write this to tell you that if you’re in a dark place like I was, struggling with your body, your weight, your skin, whatever, you can get through it. Take care of yourself, and concern yourself with progress, not perfection. The numbers on the scale and all those pretty people online aren’t the standards you should be holding yourself to anyway, and it’s okay to still struggle sometimes, what matters is that you keep on keeping on.
I’m right here with you.