Writen by M.P
I grew up in Cyprus, where body stereotypes where still a thing and beauty standards where impossible to reach. I was only a teenager, a confused teenager, a vulnerable teenager. It wasn’t very hard to be overpowered. And so it happened, I was overthrown by a demon, a demon named Ana.
Ana was a demon that loved promises. Ana had promised me results. She had promised that she will make me skin and bones.
It’s 8:00 pm on a Tuesday I’ve burned 4,262 calories and I’ve consumed 500 but Ana told me I consumed 5000 and according to her it was time for another intense step aerobics class and I always listened to her demands so I ran into my room I threw on some sweats and I started my online step aerobics class.
It’s 2:00 pm on a Wednesday I just came home from school. My parents begged me to eat but Ana had trained me well I knew exactly what lie to tell. “Mum, I’m not feeling well”. “I ate before I came”. I always got away with it and it felt good.
It’s 8:30 am on a Monday. Today was 3 months exactly from the day I started to starve myself. As I walk in school my friend Alex saw me and the first thing he told me was “Wow! You look amazing” and for the first time I felt proud of myself. I felt proud for finally starting to look skinny.
10 kilos turned to 15, 15 turned to 30 and 30 turned to 40. Ana had given me the life I always imagined of. She had given me a life where I was skinny, beautiful and accepted, a life where I was finally within the beauty standards and I life where I felt useful, powerful and in control and all she ever wanted from me was to listen to her commandments.
I didn’t decide to be anorexic but it just snuck up on me. I started to hate how much I need her. I lost my world just to be beautiful. I was barely breathing. My pulse rates where just about touching the 20s. My hair fell in chunks and my fingernails were blue. I was depressed. I couldn’t laugh like I used to. I stared at myself every single day in the mirror yet I was too blind to realize that I was running out of fuel. Yes I was still breathing but I was definitely not living. I was just struggling to survive and fighting to walk towards the light. I used to hope and wish that I would make it through another day.
It’s 2:00 am today I’m eating a whole bowl of ice cream while enjoying my favorite series and for the first time in my life I feel happy.
The thing with anorexia is that no magical thing can make you feel better there’s no easy recovery and it is certainly a life-long recovery but it’s worth it. I learned that recovering wasn’t about being perfect but it was about making small daily changes and decisions even if I felt scared that society would disapprove of them. It was all about letting go. Trust me when I say once you surrender you will realize that the only obstacle to happiness is yourself and your inner demon and that there’s a life out there that’s beyond what you have ever imagined.