When I was in middle school, I went through something horrible. Growing up, I was never fat, but once I hit puberty (way before everyone else, I might add) I gained a little weight. But, I was also getting taller at the same time. Of course, kids can be cruel sometimes, and I got teased a lot about my weight. Around the middle of 7th grade, I don't know what came over me, but I decided to get healthier. It started off innocent, you know, just trying to eat healthier foods instead of junk all the time. I was also on the middle school basketball team, so I was getting plenty of exercise. After a little while, I started losing a little weight and started to get some compliments. I couldn't believe it, people were actually saying how GOOD I looked instead of how fat I was.
Fast forward a few months: I started getting a little more extreme in my healthy eating and started overexercising. I would get done with my basketball practice after school and immediately go straight to the YMCA and workout some more. Then, after a while of that, I started restricting food. Like, I wouldn't EVER eat anything that was considered "bad" for you. (which, btw, there is no such thing as a "bad" food in moderation) I started looking at the labels on every thing. At first, I tried not to eat anything with fat in it, but then started counting calories. Over time, the issue got worse. I would write down EVERYTHING that I ate and calories were all I could ever think about. I was miserable and had trouble sleeping at night. One reason is because I was constantly running numbers in my head and it didn't help that I was FLIPPIN' HUNGRY. I distinctly remember a point where I would not LET myself go over 1000 calories a day.
(THAT IS STINKIN' INSANE!!!! 1200 calories are the absolute bare MINIMUM somebody should eat and that is only if they don't move at all - like are sick and can't get out of bed...and still that's too little.)
Back to my story... I am VERY fortunate to have the BEST PARENTS in the world. They were always concerned with me, but of course, I begged them not to make me talk to anyone or go to a doctor. Eventually, they made me go and I am SO GRATEFUL for that. I was around 108 pounds at my lowest. I'm so glad my parents made me go before it was too late! I didn't have a period for over a year. The doctor told me I needed to put some weight back on so I would be healthy again.
My turning point was when my doctor told me that if I didn't have my period I couldn't have a family when I got older. That hit me HARD. I loveeeeeeeee kids (if you can't tell from all of my fun adventures with the kiddos I babysit). I cried and cried when I heard that and decided it was time to get back to a healthy weight. I cannot say it was easy, but eventually after many nights of fights with my parents about food and exercising, along with several therapy sessions, and a training session with a physical trainer to help teach me an appropriate workout, I got better.
I won't sit here and tell you that I don't get those STUPID voices inside my head every once in a while, but I can tell you that I recognize that they are in fact, STUPID, and don't listen to them. I try my best to eat for health, not to be skinny. I actually have that posted on my bathroom mirror as a daily reminder.
I also love the verse:
"I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." - Psalm 149:14
Without God and my wonderful, supportive family, I wouldn't have gotten through this. I am so grateful for an amazing God that loves me the way I am. He made us ALL unique. Why would I want to destroy my body? - It's kinda like saying, God, you messed up. But, God is PERFECT and doesn't ever mess up. My daddy pointed that out to me and that hit me too.
The thing that I have to keep remembering nowadays is NOT to compare myself to other people. I am the only me there will ever be and I don't want to be anybody different.
Wow...it feels good to get that off my chest. There you have it... my story.