I wish I could understand if Anorexia is a choice, or like other illnesses, just something that happens to you. But if it were something that "just" happens to you why do you get the choice to get better? So, if you get the choice to get better, the choice to be ill must be in your hands too. What if choice is the cure to anorexia, like a pill the cure to other diseases?
It all sounds so simple to heal from anorexia, but it's far from simple. Its that hard that I, having lived with and through it, struggle to find the words to describe it and understand it. So where do I start? How can I help you understand the nature of anorexia when I still struggle to understand the enormity of it myself.
An illness doesn't just become your experience alone, it equally becomes that of your family, friends (to a certain extent) and the medical team supporting you. Anorexia takes away your identity and tries to fit you with another, an identity that isolates you, eats at you and eventually can kill you. I don't want to talk about statistics of anorexia and its extent, because even if its affecting one person, thats one person too many. It's a known fact that anorexia exists, so I want to focus less on analyzing anorexia and rather expose what I do know about it and what its like to live in a world trapped by anorexia.
I am aware that the way I put and see things can be confronting and seemingly exaggerated to some people, but I can honestly say that its not. Words don't have the capacity to explain how lonely, scary and manipulative, to yourself and others, anorexia is.
I have the ability to talk about anorexia from a sufferers point of view, to help give you a better understanding of the thought patterns of an anorexic, the way the affected person perceives the world and what helped me most on my road to recovery.
It's important to me to help people other than the affected person to understand anorexia. My parents were very much part of the experience, they lived it with me. I know, especially my mum, would have loved to have heard from a past sufferer that there is a way out, her girl could get better. Now I'm here to tell you that she can, I did.
Mum and Dads take on anorexia is different to mine, neither take is wrong because they are all real, they simply give you a different angle to look at the illness. The way I perceived my parents actions was with threat and I feared (or was it the anorexia that feared) losing control over my life, yet ironically I had long ago lost control over my life. I found my parents intrusive.
My parents perceived my actions as desperate, selfish and full of fear.
FACT - my parents were instrumental in my recovery, without their support it would have been alot harder to get better. I don't know if I'll ever be completely free from "the bitch" (the name I like to give anorexia, because Ana or rexi, as some girls call it, is far too amicable), but I will stay in control of her as opposed to her being in control of me. I've learnt to be honest and ask for help if I need it, important things to be able to do in order to beat "the bitch".
Never ever give up, even when it seems hopeless at times, never give up on yourself dear girl/boy... never give up on your daughter, son, wife... YOU, your LOVED one, can get better!