This is your life.
This week, my sister flew out to Utah to an anorexic treatment centre and obviously the topic is weighing heavily on my mind. I realise it is different from the normal tone of the blog, but eating disorders are a reality everywhere – even for runners.
I wish that I could sit down with everyone struggling with a “nervosia” of any kind and have a little chat. I would love to show them the other side of eating disorders that the media never shows. (There always is another side). Putting aside any physical damage that destroys any ability to have children or damages your I.Q. or weakens your heart, I would say that it not only destroys your bones, but it destroys your relationships with other people. It robs you of those free moments of carefree thoughts. It sentences you to a life of guilt.
And then it begins on the people you love.
Anorexia is devastating to families. We have been living with one in our house for 5 years and it has left gaping wounds for everyone. Parents are forced to focus on the affected child and not on each other, and their relationship weakens as a result. There are feelings of sibling worthlessness because of the massive attention centred on the anorexic and they often turn to radical measures to deal with the pressure. Anorexia consumes you and those you love.
Why the soap box proclaimations today? I just got a text message from my mom, saying ” We did the right thing. She is safe and cared for here. Now it is time to go home and heal.”
Go home and heal indeed. It has been a rough few years since anorexia entered the scene. My middle sister battled depression and overcame it.
Old picture. But I love it. Nothing could hold her down – she overcame it!
My parents had to watch all of their children engage in self destructive behaviour but have stuck by each other’s side through it all. It hasn’t always been perfect, but it’s been real.
And me? Well, I have alluded to this in the past, but I struggled a few years back with an eating disorder as well.
Luckily, it has a happy ending.
I am so fortunate to have a beautiful family that loves me and is willing to battle out the hard times together. Anorexia may have broken us, but it will not destroy us.
(because we are tough like a biker gang.)
So if you or someone you know is struggling with an eating disorder, be gentle…on yourself, on them. It is no one’s fault and it’s real. People are beautiful, lives are meant to be lived and anorexia will rob you of that life. You have one shot.
I will leave you with the lyrics of This Is Your Life by the Newsboys:
This is your life
Treat yourself right
Treat others right
Live like you know you should
This is life
Fight the good fight
Fight for what’s right
Do what you know you should.