I trained as a dancer from the age of 4. Dance was my life. At 16, I was accepted into Professional dance college and I signed with a commercial dance agent. I was a perfectionist. Everyone in my life could see that trait in me, In some ways it worked in my favour, but eventually it lead me into one of the darkest times of my life.
When I was 18, in my 2nd year of college, I became hyper-aware of my body and overwhelmed myself with pressure to have the ‘perfect’ body. I felt I was only going to be successful if I had 6 pack abs, and got rid of the bulk in my thighs. Of course, I fully committed to achieving what I classified as ‘perfect’, and this very rapidly turned into an obsession with the scales, food and exercise.
After 5 months of chasing the ‘perfect body ideal’, I was diagnosed with Anorexia, Orthorexia and Depression. In the pursuit of finding the best version of myself I completely lost my confidence,
Like any recovery from illness or addiction, it was a long hard fight. There were times when I thought I was recovered before realising that I had channeled my eating disorder into something more accepted than annorexia eg bodybuilding and various other regimented activities. It wasn’t until I discovered the world of ‘self help’, where I began to work on and understand myself on a much deeper level, that I was finally able to detach my worth from my image and realise that, actually, my body is the least interesting thing about me.
I used Instagram as a diary to document my thoughts and feelings throughout my recovery and 6 years on I am so grateful to have a community of over 100 thousand women who I am able to pass on my learnings and my wisdom to and through sharing my past and present challenges help to feel a little less alone in what ever they are going through.
If you feel like you need help with any of the issues discussed above, please contact your GP or Beat Charity.