Thursday, 16 January 2014

My struggles with anorexia nervosa

  1. anorexia
  • lack or loss of appetite for food (as a medical condition).
  • an emotional disorder characterized by an obsessive desire to lose weight by refusing to eat.

I've always been the biggest of my friends, as they grew taller and slimmer, I stayed the same height and put on weight... It never really bothered me, I was never happy with my weight, but didn't have a bad body image.

I don't know why I became ill. I just remember being stressed all the time. Little things would turn in to big things. So, I feel back on my anorexia- it was almost a support system- it was there when I thought no one else was. 
There are a few things I could blame: 
  • Exams
  • Friends
  • School
  • Work
  • Home life 
But they never seem like good enough reasons? I guess everything just built up and it began to feel like I was carrying the weight of the world on my shoulders and my way of coping was to stop eating.
I began to lack energy and focus, therefore, I was dropping grades at school and started to lack motivation to catch up. I'd never been amazing at school, but I'd never been bad either- I hardly ever failed and always tried my hardest.
Around the same time- I'd fallen out with my best friend, she was practically my sister and she began to spread rumors around school that people believed... so I bunked 1 day of school and went to the local mall with 2 of my closest (now best) friends. Long story short, we got caught- I guess that's what you get when there's 5 unexplained absences. 
That's when school made me go see the councilor, they new it wasn't like me to do something like this and could see that my grades were dropping, so there must be some sort of explanation and so I ranted to the school councilor for 2 hours, about everything; even my eating and that I was eating under 300 calories a day.
I had told him how, I wouldn't have breakfast and I'd throw out my lunch, then I'd eat a small portion of dinner- literally not enough to feed a small child. As soon as we'd finished with the session he rang my dad in a state of worry that I was going to make my self ill, little did he know it was already too late.
My parents had already noticed a difference in my attitude and the way I looked, so it wasn't a surprise for them when I was diagnosed with anemia at my local doctors 2 days after the council session. 
From then on everything becomes a blur. I remember feeling more and more miserable with myself and began to self harm and so I was referred to my local hospital by my GP and was seen 3 weeks later.
It was there that I was diagnosed with anorexia nervosa and anxiety. 

Since then I've been put on something called the 'Maudsley approach'
Maudsley is basically a a family based treatment that consists of 3 steps.
Step 1: Weight gain- parents taking control.
Step 2: Regaining control- teen gaining back control.
Step 3: Dealing with the 'leftovers'- coping with anxiety and body image.
I'm currently working my way through step 1. I am having 3 meals and 3 snacks each day, with as many calories in each meal as possible.

I'm slowly becoming more like the Lottie my parents knew last year, I know that this won't last forever and sometimes is so hard to think positively when you're tied up in negative thoughts, but getting help was the best thing my parents could have done for me and if it wasn't for them, I would be in hospital right now fighting for my life.
I still have days where I think they're just doing this to 'make me fat' and I still have days where I'm so miserable and full of self hatred, but that's all a part of recovery and it's not easy.

I'm on my way to a healthy weight and a healthy life. In a way I wouldn't take back my anorexia, although it's my worst enemy,  it's going to teach me to love myself and not take anything for granted in the future.

I hope that sharing my my story will help some of you.
I'll try stay up to date, with how I'm going through recovery and if you have any questions at all feel free to drop them in the comments!
Thank you

Before anorexia 70 kg (November 2012)

Recovery 64 kg (January 2014)