Relationship’s are hard, it’s a universal truth and if you want something to last you have to work for it. My relationship with food has been and still is one of the greatest struggles in my life.
I came to terms with my self that I will never be one of the slim girls, I have curves (in all the right places) and for a long time I hated the way I looked, I never saw the beauty in my self and if someone complimented me I had the terrible habit of thinking that they were secretly mocking me.
My body image struggles started at quite a young age, I’m not sure how or why but I remember days when I would just be sad and unhappy for the way I looked and I remember praying every night asking God to make me ‘thin because I don’t want to be ugly’ and this was when I was 8 or 9 years old. For me I think food is a form of punishment (terrible I know) every time I felt sorry for my self, weak or if I feel like I have done something wrong I would turn to food and it was never comforting because after eating I would just feel worse than when I started and if there’s anyone who can relate I’m sure you’ll know what I’m talking about.
The first time I went on a diet was when I was 13, the age when the opposite sex starts to make an appearance in a girl’s life. All my friends would talk about how a boy has started talking to them or texting them and there were no boys talking to me and naturally I blamed it on my body, I hated my body with a passion and it consumed me so I stopped eating and I started working out to a point of over exhaustion. I was constantly hungry but I remember telling my self that the feeling of hunger was my reward, I was proud of my will power and the compliment’s only made we want to keep going. The diet went on for a couple of month’s (it scares me to think what I did to my 13-year-old body) until one day when I was at Sunday mass and I remember kneeling down and I opened my eyes in the hospital. I blacked out from starvation. I was given saline, and a course of vitamins, the Doctor said that I was dehydrated, my electrolyte’s were off-balance and I had symptoms of Anorexia Nervosa!
After this episode I was under strict watch by my parents and my food intake was carefully monitored, I remember it being a very hard adjustment but I got used to it, I gained a few pounds but I started eating healthy and started swimming regularly and after a while it wasn’t so hard and life went on, the world didn’t end for me because I was not ‘thin’.
I wish I could say everything was all good after that but in reality it only got worse, I remember my weight starting to bother me again at the age of 19. This happened because once I left to Australia I was told at the end of that year my cousin was to be married and I was her bridesmaid. My mind went into a frenzy and I immediately got my self into the most drastic diet no carbs, no sugar, no dairy.. no anything! There would be days where I would only have black coffee from morning until night and I would eat a bowl of cereal and go to bed, towards the end of the year I was going on an apple and water.
I take no pride in admitting any of this, I have managed to destroy my body within a few years because of my physical and mental struggle with food. I have been anorexic, bulimic, binged, purged and everything in between. I am sad now that being in pain was seen as a reward for my self. Yet I still struggle with food!
I am more comfortable with my skin these days than I used to be but there are days I am brutal on my self. I thought of writing this today because I started yet another diet & my usual workout routine. People may think that dieting and exercise is all about wanting to fit in and being accepted but for me the struggle has always been about accepting my self.
I still have a long way to go with this challenge but I am certain that slowly but surely it is something I can over come. If I have the willpower to go without eating for 3 days, I definitely have the power within me to break away from another bad relationship.