Anorexia almost took my life
By: Gaëlle Charvin (Spain)
I am 26 years old and I have anorexia. I am currently in the process of recovering a normal life for a woman my age.
Since adolescence I had a fixation with my body, but it was not until I was 18 that everything began to get out of control, after a long period in England. The daily stomach pains began and after several tests they did not find anything that caused these pains.
The problem was that I was suffering my negative emotions physically, but, as I did not accept that this was the problem, I have been getting worse physically and mentally and, without realizing it, the anorexia was already very advanced.
At the age of 20 the situation got worse, as I was becoming afraid of food because my pain persisted, so the restrictions were increasing ..
The trigger was at age 24 after grieving the loss of a person that led me to have obsessive control over my body, since it was the only thing I could control.
The alarm that made me aware that there was a problem was the repetitive and uncontrolled purges.
As soon as the pandemic appeared, the situation worsened to the point of having to leave work, at the same time that the university had come to a standstill. Having to face my chaotic mind, the situation worsened to the point of depression. I stopped eating, the purges increased and I exercised excessively.
My brother noticed and raised the situation to my family, however I got worse and lost more and more weight, losing 30 kilos in a few months. I came to weigh so little that the collateral damage of the disease appeared at the same time that my desire to live faded, and I was fading.
I chose to seek help, so together with my family doctor, the process began with various tests that led me to an urgent admission due to risk of life. Since I lost all emotions, I did not feel anything, my heart was going to 30% , and the disease had come to steal my body and even my life. During the time in the hospital, the emotions of the disease were manifested and my way of trying to handle it was to write.
In this process, Covid came to me, so they isolated me, to face the disease alone.
I will always remember the day when I went slowly to the bathroom and said to myself, looking at myself in the mirror, “You are going to fight, you are strong and you are going to defeat this disease.”
My motivation? My family. I fought and I fight for them.
I have started this project to fight eating disorders on my Instagram @lainvisibilidadelavisiblelucha along with the slogan “Brave glazed warriors”, as a challenge and necessary to make this disease visible, to support, and to inspire.
I have obtained the first space (the first in Galicia), for all those people who suffer from a TCA who seek support, moderated by a psychologist specialized in this field and free of charge.
My depression, anxiety, social isolation and anorexia persist to this day, but I rely on those who love me: my therapist, my family and my dogs as a form of therapy.
I have my days where I’m underground but still I fight.
It is a long and slow process of self-knowledge and of rediscovering parts of myself that were hidden, since I am full of projects, initiatives and a lot of creativity.
I believe in 100% recovery, because if other people have made it, why can’t I?