Katie's Story Anorexia Nervosa

I remember after one dance class my teacher called me over to speak privately with me, to tell me that I needed to lose weight if I was ever to become a professional ballerina. I was 7 at the time, and yet I have carried those words close to me for 12 years now.

This time last year I had lost 20% of my body weight and I had not had my period in over a year, but it wasn't good enough. I would set deadlines for myself, like "I just need to be thin until prom, or senior week, then I'll let myself eat normally again." But every time I would continue on, narrowing my food options so that certain foods were actually evil to me. Eating candy and fat wasn't even an option to me, but I remember people constantly asking, "why can't you just eat it?"

One particular night, my parents gave me a dreaded Ensure to drink because I had not eaten all day. I sat in front of them at the dinner table holding the drink sobbing because I could not physically bring myself to drink it. The more they encouraged me to eat, the more I refused. I'm recovering now after hospitalization, but it is still a struggle everyday.