Six Meals a Day

January 19, 2010
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"To be anybody but yourself in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else, means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting." (E.E. Cummings)
This continues to be the best definition for the difficulties of daring to be oneself. Being yourself should be one of the most natural processes of life, when in reality, it is the hardest. We live in a world that idolizes the pretty, poised, perfect person staring back at us on the magazine. As humans, we immediately judge those who appear controversial, which makes it hard to strip away the layers that protect the heart and soul of a person. People become caught up with acceptance and approval. The fear of not being accepted is what makes the adventure of self- discovery so risky.
The irony of this question is poignant at this point in my life, because my own journey of self- discovery has already begun. As a junior I was diagnosed with Bulimia nervosa. On the outside, I was an outgoing, fun-loving girl, who was constantly surrounded by numerous close friends. Everything I tasted, I tasted twice as a way to compensate for what was going on internally. I knew that I needed help, but I was scared about what people would say, how my parents would react, and how the way I was perceived would change. As my weight decreased, my internal struggle grew larger. My self-destructive actions became noticeable and my friends interrogated me daily. I was scared of what would become of me if I continued on the path, scared I would have to go to rehab, scared I would die.
Reaching out to my friends seemed scary to me at the time. I wrestled with the idea of not asking for help over and over. I pinned my fears of the inevitable judgment and hoped for the best when I finally broke down and told everything to my three best friends. They supported me completely. They accompanied me to counseling, loved me, and stood up for me when others criticized.
People judged, while others respected my ability to admit my problem and seek help. I experienced the risky journey of self-discovery. I have been attending counseling for over a year now. Counseling has not only aided in my recovery, it has forced me to expose myself and begin my personal journey.
It is impossible for me to predict what difficulties and scenarios’ I will face in college. In this process of self- discovery I have learned that the greatest fear is what we find in ourselves. However, the risks are worth the reward. In those glimpses where I self reflect, I am content with the person that I have become, but aware that with college this person will change. On my journey I have learned that what is more important than self discovery is self acceptance. I don’t fear the obstacles I will be faced with in college, but I find myself full of anticipation for what I will discover about myself throughout the next stages of my journey.

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