I came across this amazing campaign online (while busy reading about blogging!) and just had to post.
I have written in the past about my ongoing struggle with depression. I have had MANY days in my life when I did not want to live. Many, where my apathy threatened to rob even the most basic of joys, like enjoying the laughter of my daughter. Very simply, it has been the amazing support of family and friends, coupled with my willingness to seek any and all answers (therapy, medication, exercise, meditation/prayer etc.) that I have somehow managed to keep going. However, today, I’d like to raise awareness to a different type of suicide and that is anorexia.
There was a time in my life when I was trying to deal with my pain by starving myself. Unlike the stereotypical view of anorexia, I wasn’t doing this to fit into a size ‘0’ or to look like Kate Moss (The physical appearance focus is a popular misconception fueled by, I believe, people’s desire to make sense of the disorder). I was starving myself because I didn’t know what to do with my pain. As one of my therapists said to me at the time: “This is your attempt at a solution.” What WAS the REAL problem? Fears leading to anxiety, which led to depression, which gave birth to hopelessness. I didn’t see an end in sight to my pain or my inability to cope with life’s stressors.
So I started small. I began withholding something in order to boost my feeling of strength and accomplishment. It started with cutting out fat, moved to ‘no dessert’, led to skipping a meal, skipping 2, skipping all.It is still difficult for me to admit it, however, I WAS, slowly, committing suicide. Fortunately, as difficult as it was, we (myself as well as my family) saw the seriousness of the disorder and so reached out for help – without that help, I wouldn’t be alive today.
This was MANY years ago now and as I reflect on my experience with the benefit of hindsight, I can see how many things changed because of my experience. That my eating disorder became the catalyst I needed to bring about change in what appeared to be a hopeless situation.
I continue to journey through, battle on and try to accept my depression. It is my hope that my fight isn’t for myself alone – but for SO MANY others that suffer from this difficult disease.
Together – we are stronger!
Becoming Ordinary: Day 41