Life without Anorexia

My motto is
'Dont let the sadness of your past & the fear of your future ruin the happiness of your present'

My life at the moment is completely different to how it once was. I spent 5 years sick with anorexia nervosia and depression as well as struggling with self harm and overexercising. I spent 2 years in different treatment centres.
And since 2012 i have been declared healthy from my eating disorder.

I have been blogging for 7 years, and my whole journey is written in my posts. I now represent healthy and happiness. I want to show anyone struggling that it is possible to recover, no matter how hard it may seem.

I now blog about recovery, my life, veganism and positivity!

If you have any questions leave them in the comment section as i am much quicker at answering there, otherwise you can always send an email: lifewithoutanorexia@hotmail.com

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Thursday, January 29, 2015

Readers story

I got a readers story sent to me the previous day which i thought i would share! (Remember that if you want to share any advice, your own story or something you have learned along the way or to write a guest post for me, its just to email me :) - and write in the subject what it is you are emailing about :))

I will start by saying that it was around the beginning of the year, just after Christmas and New Years that I decided that it was time to 'be the best that I can be' and get into a good, slim shape, I decided that I wanted to be the type of girl that other girls were jealous of because of the way I looked, although I had always been happy and healthy weight with little to no thoughts about food, I had nothing to be self conscious about! But I began my long journey by cutting out snacking, thinking it was only right to eat at meal times. Then I decided to allow my self one sweet treat a day, then one sweet treat 3 times a week, then one a week but only if I didn't eat breakfast. This is when I started to calculate every calorie I ate a day, and to do this I became obsessed with numbers and weighing food. I even found myself showing off to my classmates about how strict I was. Having always been sporty and quite good at cross country I began running everyday, feeling on edge if there was a day that I didn't run. I found that my Nintendo Wii fit was cheering me on to be more fit and track my weight, scorning me if I missed a day and rewarding me if I burned calories. This is when I starting seeing change, I was thrilled, my hard work was paying off, I was slimming down and looking older, coming into my features as everyone said.

Things continued downhill when in around april me, my mum and my sister visited my Aunt in Spain. I had always known my sister was greedy and gluttonous and this led to her being overweight, but witnessing first hand her lack of self control around food, devouring everything she saw without regard for health or moderation, I found it revolting. She disgusted me. I think it is what made me want to completely avoid food, after seeing the affects it can have. And I think that when compared to my sister my Mum noticed how little I was actually eating, taking only a handful of bran for breakfast, refusing to drink between meals, she then noticed my hip bones in my bikini. When we returned home she weighed me, and I was 7.11 stone, she told me that this was as light as she wanted me to get. But the fear of losing the control I had coined terrified me, so I grasped on, I began to miss breakfast, then I began to miss lunch until I ate only 300 kcals a day. My weight just fell off.
I was so unhealthy but I tried to lie to myself and say that I was happy, but I wasn't, I kept telling myself, I will eat this but not today, not tomorrow, but some time, meaning that deep down I knew I had a problem and I needed to get out. Thus began GCSEs. I spent all of my time revising, saying I was too busy to eat, my English teacher noticed my sallow, pale skin and asked if I was eating ok, I lied and said yes, though I was embarrassed, I quite enjoyed her concern for me. The lack of nutrition was now showing in my face, in my hands, my body, but most noticeably in my eyes, which had lost their twinkle and become dead like a shark's. My Mum found that the dinner money she was giving me for school lunches wasn't being spent and that I was replacing it in her purse, she was furious, because she was worried, here we started arguing, I felt as though my best friend was turning against me and starting to resent me, though deep deep down I was in there screaming for her help, I knew I needed it, so I began searching for 'recovery inspo' online and fell into your blog Izzy, I remember it, something switched slightly inside me, I was inspired, truly, it made me want to have the motivation to turn my life around, so I became I regular reader. When GCSEs finished my mum took me on a road trip, she had already found that making deals with me about food worked, and encouraged me to eat, though I was still partly reluctant, on this trip we saw my Uncle, who is my idol, my favourite person in the whole world, and even he noticed my lack of weight, his concern for me was motivation to commit to recovery, I hated the idea that he may not like me if I was too skinny since he is so big and muscly.

It was hard when school finished and my Mum was able to monitor what I did or did not eat, this caused many arguments, I could see my relationship, my friendship, with my Mum crumbling. I knew I had to recover, for my mum's sake but I had decided it would be on my terms, i would do it my way, which was wrong, it wasn't real recovery, I continued lying to my mum and myself, I was still hiding food in my pockets at the dinner table, I was still running when I said I was going for a walk. I, by this point had become a liar, I had stooped to levels I never thought I would. The idea of eating too much, or at the wrong time filled me with dread. After asking me to go to the ice cream parlour, and me refusing multiple times, my Dad decided to talk to me where he said ' we all love you, everybody loves you and no-one understands why you're doing this. You need to eat' but instead of taking his words and fully committing to recovery I got angry, I think because I was embarrassed, my mum saw my anger and told me my dad said what he did because 'I was breaking his heart'. that statement cut deep.
I felt guilty too the core, my relationship with my sister has never been the same, and i had never seen my mother cry before now and my Dad had told my mum that he couldn't bare to look at me. Growing up i had always been sullen and very pokerfaced, and my sister was the only one who could make me laugh, and when she did I roared, but one night I told her that she wasn't funny anymore, and my mum asked me why I didn't laugh and I responded 'because nothings funny and I dont have the energy to try' my Mum's face fell, thats when I realised that I was broken, I had broken me, I wasn't the same, I had stripped myself down to the bare minimum, I had no character and I was just a basic human.

After much struggling I was finally realising that in order to be healthy, I needed to gain weight, the number on the scale needed to rise, though i was reluctant I knew that this realisation was a step forward. While sites like tumblr. helped me become the lifeless wraith who thought that any fat whatsoever was bad, sites like yours Izzy helped me become proactive in becoming a healthy teenager. It was your site Izzy that made me proactive, and found that being strong and physically able was so much better than being thin and bony. I expressed this to my mum and she asked her personal trainer Ben, to give some time to give me some advice and perhaps a gym workout program, this was the first time I met him and he was just so cool, just a cool guy, he said it like it was without the sugarcoating, he simply said, 'you look thin, I can see in your chest bones and your legs, your skin and hair are awful' and I agreed. This was the day after prom for which I had bought a stunning blue 'Ghost' dress, it looked lovely when I bought it, but upon trying it on again, it looked horrendous, my hip bones and ribs were visible through it, I couldn't face my peers like this. My Mum told me that the only way she would let me do my gym program from Ben was if I agreed to carb load like an athlete, and drink my protein shakes that Ben had given me, three times a day. And after my first session lifting weights with Ben, I knew I had found a passion, i had fallen in love with weight training, and I was determined to dedicate myself to it, I researched and progressed and got stronger, and now I started to see a difference, and Ben said so too. I was thrilled, my hair had stopped falling out, my cheeks had become rosy and I could walk upstairs without feeling dizzy. When the scales started to go up, my fear started to go down, life was positive. Due to the lcm of fat around my face, I lost hearing in my right ear, eustachian tube dysfunction, but surprisingly it came back when I started to fill out again!

And now from less than 6 stone I now weigh just under 8, I know it doesn't seem much but i am determined to keep it growing, to keep seeing gains! I am stronger than I have ever been before both physically and mentally, I look in the mirror everyday able to remind myself that I am awesome and believe it because I hit rock bottom and crawled my way back up, and every second was worth it, it hasn't been a smooth ride, it was bumpy and everyone's journey is different but every single one leads to a happier fuller life. The fact is, I owe Ben my life, and I will strive to make him proud of what he has helped sculpt and create, and I think that more people need to understand that those who fall into anorexia's trap didn't choose to, yes they made certain decisions, but it is not an attention thing and it is not their fault! I've got my twinkle back!
Thank you Izzy

1 comment:

  1. Hello Izzy,

    Remember I am the 11 BMI girl to whom you recommendedto "increase with about 500kcal every 1-2 weeks so that your body has time to adjust" as I am in recovery process.
    Up to how much calories must I push, i am terrified, actually I am gaining 100/200g every day...and when I see my weight increasing so quickly I have to fight bad thought of food restrictions.

    When I saw I have put on 1 kg in a week (wich can seem absolutely ridiculous regarding my BMI and unsufficient), the first thought I had was to eat less today and not take my night snack bowl of pasta and oïl, yogurt and fruit.... to reduce my meals.

    Then second thought surged, thanks good (!), that have hit bottom and that I did not have choice than face things and continue putting on weight, even if it is hell, unconfortable and so on.....
    but i still struggle eating but gess it will pass that it it just a bad time to go through as my mind is completely fucked up.

    I try not to weight my food, I try not to have bad thought, I think & dream about you and that you did it.
    I admire you and want to be able to do something about my life now that I am almost 40 !!!! Crazy !!!

    I have trouble structuring my meals, do know up to how much calories a day I have to push up to as I have the tendency to greately overestimate my intakes......

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