In today's society the pressure to be thin is found nearly everywhere. As a dancer the desire to have that "perfect figure" is even stronger and can in many cases start to take over your entire life. I grew up watching my tall and very slender older sister be admired by both family and friends for her ever striking body. I aspired to one day become just like her. As a child I was never overweight but for as long I can remember I have always been overly occupied with my reflection in the mirror. As young as the age of seven I so long wished for smaller legs and felt self-consious in my pink leotard and tights at my ballet classes each week. Over the years my insecurities began to grow stronger as my body was starting to develop more into the body of a young women. The comments that my mother made, who had never gone two months without being on some sort of a weight loss diet, did not help either. Though I realize now that she never meant any harm by the things that she said, I came to the conclusion that I must be fat. I began my first diet at the age of thirteen and dropped from 125 pounds to 103 pounds in a matter of eighteen months or so. Friends noticed and commented on how good I looked and for the first time in my life I actually felt proud. My menstrual cycle stopped that year and yet I had not the slighest idea as to why it had. My dieting never became constant and soon I gained my weight back and was up to a healthy weight again. Unfortunataly this period didn't last long.At te age of fourteen I developed Bulimia which eventually led to Anorexia, something which I still struggle with today. I joined two new dancing companies around the same time and in a matter of months I had dropped down to as low as 89 pounds. I have had to be hospitiliazed three times in a single year and the medical complications due to my eating disorder began to grow worse. Eventually I had to be hooked up to a heart monitor and had IV's going in me because I was so dehydrated. Recently my Phsycologist had made the decision to send me off to a treatment facility to fully be able to start my recovery process. Anorexia is a terrible and life-threatening disease and can affect any one and should never be taken lightly. Hopefully people will one day realize how the media and the trillions of diet and weight loss adds that can be seen just about everywhere is affecting many of all ages and the scars and damage that it is leaving up to 70 people worldwide.
January 30, 2009