"Mockingbirds don't do one thing except make music for us to enjoy. They don't eat up people's gardens, don't nest in corn cribs, they don't do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That's why it's a sin to kill a mockingbird."
- Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird
You, the mockingbird radiate goodness and you are too precious to have an eating disorder reside inside of you. For your spirit to be sucked out of you, for your life to be stolen.
Eating disorders are complex, psychological disorders which can concurrently affect your physical health. Eating disorders can affect anyone regardless of age, gender, race or weight.
An eating disorder is an unhealthy relationship with food. You may have abnormal and disturbed eating habits. Obsessions around your diet, weight, shape and size and you may have an extreme fear of weight gain and engage in preventative or weight loss measures. Some complications include muscle loss, low bone density, anaemia, fertility difficulties, organ failure and suicide..etc...
Eating disorders have the second highest mortality rate of all mental health disorders, surpassed only by opioid use disorder.
With various treatment methods it is possible to overcome your eating disorder and in turn reverse some of the medical complications/damage done to your body.
There are no simple explanations as to why someone may develop an eating disorder.
There can be many reasons, including any form of trauma, bereavement, bullying, any form of abuse, family or relationship break downs or difficulties, there may even be a generic predisposition, there could be many reasons. Eating disorders usually pray on the vulnerable, many already having low self-esteem, poor confidence, who are also struggling with life and who are desperately searching for ways to cope and to keep their heads above water.
It isn't a crime to want to feel better about yourself, to want to create ways to cope and overcome the difficulties life brings. When we feel trapped or lost, we Instinctively look for ways out, to me an eating disorder is "a bad resolution to something that initially had good intentions."
May be characterised as rapid weight loss and having a low body weight (although you don't have to have a low body weight to have anorexia.) Sufferers have an obsession with calories and food and often place a high value on weight, shape and size by equating thinness with increased self-worth, confidence and achievement. Sufferers may use extreme measures to keep from gaining weight such as restricting caloric intake, cutting out fearful foods and food groups, excessive exercise, purging, misusing diet pills, laxatives, diuretics etc..
The disorder is accompanied with an intense fear of weight gain and distorted body perception. No matter how much weight is lost, it is never enough, you are never satisfied.
Symptoms may include;
Characterised again as having a preoccupation with your weight, body shape and size and having body distortion and dissatisfaction.
Sufferers may binge in secret, therefore eating large amounts of food quickly and in a short period of time. Then an intense feeling of guilt, disgust and shame will often follow the binge. So sufferers will use ways to try and rid themselves of the calories to prevent themselves from gaining weight. E.g. purging through self induced vomiting, fasting, restriction of calories, excessive exercise, the misuse of laxative, diuretics and diet pills..
Symptoms may include;
Binge eating disorder (BED)
Symptoms may include;
Other specified feeding or eating disorder (OSFED)
Just as serious as the other ED's, a diagnosis of OSFED is usually when you don't typically fit the diagnostic criteria for disorders such as, anorexia, bulimia, BED etc...
Symptoms of OFFED may include symptoms from a range of eating disorders, e.g symptoms from anorexia, bulimia, BED and the symptoms may be of low frequency and/or limited duration. Purging disorder and night eating syndrome are categorised under OSFED.
AVOIDANT RESTRICTIVE FOOD INTAKE DISORDER (ARFID)
A happy, fulfilled and true life is lived through small changes.
“Stop looking for happiness in the same place you lost it."
"The anorexia was like a shield protecting me from the pressures of the big wide world. It helped me forget and numb out. It gave me something else to focus on....losing weight and pleasing the anorexic voice firmly rooted in my brain. Restricting my caloric intake, exercising beyond the point of exhaustion but to collapse. Numbers, calories, the scale, measurements, BMI. It was all consuming and nothing else touched me. Anorexia was my everything and my ultimate anorexic goal was limitless. I didn't care about the consequences. Anorexia was my armour, my protector."
I feel uneasy and rather horrified at the admission above and how I thought all that. I was truly bewitched.
Now, it couldn't be further from the truth.