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A healing of anorexia
"It's not fair!" said one of the girls at my table in the cafeteria as I pulled out the Hostess cupcake my mother had packed in my lunch bag. "You get to eat whatever you want and stay so skinny." She grimaced at her bag of rice cakes and turned toward me with a face that conveyed deep resentment.
After hearing such comments repeatedly in middle school, I began to be concerned about my weight and body image in a way I never had been before. I had always been taught to eat what tasted good when I was hungry for it and to stop eating when I felt satisfied. Sweets had never been off-limits in our house. Now all of a sudden my eating habits, along with what apparently were other quirks, were turning me into an outcast. I felt that I had no real friends. I was sure I would always be that geeky girl no one wanted to talk to. As I read over the journals I kept during those years, I see passages where I questioned whether it was worth it for me to continue living.
In an effort to fit in, I began to eat less of the coveted sweets my mother used to pack. I had always been called skinny, but I started to feel that I was not thin enough. I severely cut my food intake except on holidays, when I would ravenously devour large amounts of my mother's delicious cooking after weeks of "saving up." Years later, I saw a photograph of myself during this time, and in it I look positively emaciated. I was about 5 feet 4 inches and weighed only 83 pounds. (My normal weight at that height should have been about 115-120 pounds.) My teachers and parents were very concerned, but I denied that there was any problem. Clearly I had all the symptoms of anorexia.
Enjoy 1 free Sentinel article or audio program each month, including content from 1898 to today.
Creativity—'It's like breathing'
with contributions from Jessie Barth, Ruth H. Holmes, Cynthia Overton, Alexander Lehrman, Linda M. Cook
items of interest
J. Michael Parker with contributions from Todd Spangler
Creative power—right when I needed it
By Deborah Huebsch
Conversation on an awakening
By Warren Bolon Senior Writer
At work for the good of it
Steve Carlson with contributions from Georgia Engel
Always trying for the best she can do
By Kim Shippey Senior Writer
David C. Kennedy
Psalm: God's beauty
Hugh Pendexter III
Strings of the heart on I-84
By Mia Randall Krishnaswami
A virtual reality wild ride
By Mike Tupper
Leading a life of 'superclarity'
By Marilyn Jones Senior Writer
Beneath the stereotype
By LaMeice Elaine Harding
A healing of anorexia
Quick recovery from ice hockey injury
'Finally, I belonged'
Find your music and play it!
Stephen T. Gray