A Second Chance

My life should have ended two years ago.  I, as I have shared on other groups, have had an eating disorder in the past- a combination of bulimia and anorexia, known as purge type anorexia.  I overexercised and cut back to a maximum 400 calories per day and then worked off at least 700 calories each day.  I spent my free time in the gym on all the wrong machines and ended up destroying my stomach muscles.  Over a short period of time I lost seven stone and was severely underweight.  I of course, saw nothing wrong and decided that I was still fat and needed to loose weight.  I truly could not see a true image of myself in the mirror, I concentrated on the flaws. I went to work as an aid worker in Africa- the day prior to going, my yellow fever injection started to attack my lack of immune system and I was advised if I continued on my trip I would not make it home alive.  Being stubborn, I went anyway.  I worked in a slum city outside Kenya and in a orphanage for those suffering from Aids and HIV.  On the second day, one of the older girls at the home started talking to me about my see through skin and my lips being dried out and my thinning hair.  She asked if i was there to get better, as other people had went there to get better from malnutrition.  This proved to be the wake up i required, but not enough of one as within two days my immune system collapsed and I had to return home, on a flight that i was given for free, due to how much my appearance scared the flight operator officestaff.  My body was rejecting all food and drink, i was blacking out, I could not sleep and I was diagnosed with anorexia officially when I got back; but was told that i was in effect attempting a form of suicide in trying to fade away.

Two years later, I am at my healthy weight - i eat.  I have had surgery to correct what I have destroyed - namely stomach muscles and the like.  I have a completely new and improved life.  Not only was I given a second chance, but the firm foundations to ensure that I would have faith in the second chance. 

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35 Responses Jun 11, 2008

So wonderful to read this. Thank you.

is second chane real ?

my first boyfriends life did end back when i was 18 he was 17 he was "friends" with some of the gangsters on his street well they planned and succeded to kill him when he went to there house he got in they tortured him and they shot him to death<br />
i was so sad when i heard the news but not anymore

both sad, and wonderful.<br />
I hope any EP people looking for answers about eating disorders will find you.<br />
You have so much to offer.

Help and friends make all the difference.

Wow this is really an inspiring story.I love hearing about second chances.There are many reasons why people fall into anorexia and I am glad to hear you are making steps toward valuing you for you.You dont have to look like anyone else..you are beautiful for you.Thank you again for sharing.<br />
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Charityjh<br />

I'm so happy that you made it to get out of that swamp. I have never had anorexia but I was badly addicted to drugs and therefore know this kind of second chance. I also lost so much weight by doing drugs and not sleeping nor eating all the weekend every weekend that my therapist finally threatened to force me go to the clinic if I didn't go by myself. Today, I am successful in studying mechanical engineering and I will prospectively graduate next year. 7 years ago, this had just been unimaginable.

Praise God that you are still here to share your story and offer your unique experiences and story to others. What community are you apart of, may I ask? <br />
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I can relate to aspects of your story, and I, too, have been told I shouldn't be alive. I think it's important to remember that eating disorders can and WILL kill, if allowed free-reign. /hugs

Praise God that you are still here to share your story and offer your unique experiences and story to others. What community are you apart of, may I ask? <br />
<br />
I can relate to aspects of your story, and I, too, have been told I shouldn't be alive. I think it's important to remember that eating disorders can and WILL kill, if allowed free-reign. /hugs

i congratulate you flutterby for your courage in getting over your eating disorder and by speaking out about your troubled past and by doing this helping others. as i read ur story i ticked all the boxes with my own past, i have had bulima and anorexia for some years now,i have improved immensley to what i was when i was in my teens but i still have bad days when i feel the need purge.i know what a daily struggle it is and applaude you for getting as far as you have gotten with recovering and by helping others like me with sharing your story. xx

I'm so proud of you, flutterbly! And I'm very, very happy you're healthy now. *hugs*<br />
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(((((Hugs)))))(((((Kisses)))))(((((Hugs)))))(((((Kisses)))))(((((Hugs)))))(((((Kisses)))))(((((Hugs)))))(((((Kisses)))))(((((Hugs)))))(((((Kisses)))))(((((Hugs)))))(((((Kisses)))))(((((Hugs)))))(((((Kisses)))))(((((Hugs)))))(((((Kisses)))))(((((Hugs)))))(((((Kisses)))))(((((Hugs)))))(((((Kisses)))))<br />
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I am sooooooo glad you are here!<br />
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use your second chance well and be careful ....this story just showed me the importance of self esteem and acceptance :-)

(((((((((hugs)))))))))<br />
its something i learned once.... then i forgot it amongst some sort of pain.... its the hardest thing to remember, and the more ill you get the more you need to remember it, and the less you can.<br />

"I have been unable to cry for a long time now- except occasionally over the last while- i never cried during my eating disorder, i either fasted or purged or over-exercised. It is a crutch, it is a lifeline and it seems at times to be the personfication of the friend you never had, the only thing that has not abandoned you. But you have to stop thinking of it as a friend or a companion, as a crutch and a relief- you have to see that it is what is causing a great deal of your depression, it is what sustains it and it is not helping you, it is not enabling you to channel emotion in a healthy way as in fact it is trying to kill you and how it has destroyed your relationships and social life."<br />
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nothing has ever rung so true but been so hard to accept.<br />
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i don't think you will ever know the extent to which your writing helps me.<br />
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i love you sweet *hugs*

awesome story ... you clearly have a lot of love to share ... glad you put some back into you!

It is because of our journeys that we can show compassion to those that need it, offer a shoulder to cry on, or leave a comment that will lift the other person's spirit. It is because we understand that we can help.

I'm glad you made it too.

I am soooooo glad you are here now! xxoo

We all make mistakes, some people's are just more visible than other's. It is when you reach out to help others that you have truly learned from your experience.

You are truly an amazing lady, and as these people have rightly said, the world is a better place with you in it.

I have been there, had a heart attack at 17 years old due to Anorexia. Now 38 with 3 children, I do well. I am blessed to of had children, and will do what ever it takes to keep healthy to see them grow. Keep up the good work. We all have bad days, just never ever more than one day in a row : ) I am so proud of you : )

If you don't already have a pet, dogs are man's best friend for a reason. They are loyal and always there for you. They don't judge, or criticize. <br />
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It is a sick game that our minds play on perception of the image that has caused extreme behavior and for our society to crave perfection. I thank you for your story and the kindness in your heart. Going to Africa is a bold step in trying to make a difference for our world. I've always been had a different opinion on this though. I believe we should help ourselves before we help others. It's kind of like loving others won't work if you don't love yourself.

You are an amazing person, well done you for over coming this.

That's a really encouraging story. I've been dealing with Anorexia for a while now off and on. It's tough to give it up when it seems like it's the only thing I have to hold on to when I'm feeling low. Did you have this problem? If so, do you have any suggestions?

He almost killed you too. Glad you realized it early enough and came through it. You are a very giving human being and the world is a better place with you in it.

thank God He gave you second chance

I am so glad that you were able to get help and support in this battle. It sounds like you found a wonderful group of friends online.

Please give us the rest of the story! What happened in those two years? What is the firm foundation you mentioned?

I think it wasn't easy for you and all around you, too. But I'm happy you are now allright. :)<br />
Just try to be yourself and like yourself in the way you are made :D<br />
Everyone feels better when he likes yourself. <br />
Me too. :)<br />
Take care.

Good for you!! You make it sound like it was easy to change your life around however I bet it took a lot of courage and stamina. I congratulate you

Oh grace, your story is so sad, and yet hopeful. I'm so glad you are still here with us.

I'm glad you made it.

During your recovery, did you find out why you were trying to fade away?

I'm so glad you managed to wake up and see it soon enough... close shave. Thanks for sharing.

So am I.