The opening to my narrative essay on moral challenges for English,,, and I oof-
Here you go you depressed wenches (please don’t romanticize this because I’m trying my best to illustrate how horrible it is-)
Wake up to stars on the ceiling. Feel the creak in your bones as you reach for your alarm clock, the pounding of your head as you sit up. Blue. Everything is blue- tired eyes, mottled feet, the early morning light through the window. Shaking hands lift a small cookie to cracked lips- breakfast. Take your antidepressants to wash it down. Hide in baggy clothes that do nothing to warm you. Drag yourself to school. Smile. Trudge from class to class, legs burning on the stairwell, lungs chasing oxygen that tastes like Splenda. It’s lunch hour- hide. To the bathroom, to the library. Somewhere your friends won’t find you, won’t ask where your lunch is, or why you look so tired. Stare blankly at the wall. Thoughts obscured by a gray, cloudy curtain. The teacher is calling you. Blink. Mumble. You walk through your front door, finally home, though you can’t remember half of the day. Your mother watches you in the kitchen. Take a granola bar upstairs, stuff it in the trash bag of half-eaten and moldy food in the back of your closet. Stare at your homework. You don’t… you don’t remember any of the lessons. Did you go to that class? You can’t remember. Put the folder back in your bag. You’ll do it tomorrow. Peek through the blinds as your mother’s car pulls out of the driveway. Scurry to the scale, say a prayer. The number falls- euphoria. Lay in bed, text your friends, make plans. Stare anxiously out the window waiting for them as the smell of dinner downstairs fills your chest with dread. The car pulls up just as your father calls you down to eat. Grab your bag, run out the door. “I’m eating out with them.” Get in the car. “I just had dinner.” Your friends glance at you suspiciously but say nothing. Hop out of the car with them downtown. City lights are enticing orbs, smudged by failing vision. You run your hands through your hair and it comes out in your fingers. Brush it off. You will your legs to go faster, to keep up with your comrades as you walk past shops, food vendors catching your eye. Adrenaline. Run through an alley, call for them to slow down. Lean against the brick wall, coughs that taste metallic. They wait, sharing whispers of concern. Smile. Sneak onto the roof, feel the cold wind and the warmth of an arm around your shoulders as you gaze at the stars. Your smiles are a bit too wide, eyes a bit too empty, laughs a bit too breathless. But they say nothing. Step onto your porch at midnight, wave goodbye. Your smile fades as they drive away and you head inside, numb again, acutely aware of your emptiness. Look around. Shuffle to the fridge and stare longingly… no. Drag yourself upstairs. Crawl into bed, cold under layers of blankets. Ignore the pangs. Feel your heart fluttering aimlessly, and hope it doesn’t give out in your sleep.
This is an example of what my average day would have looked like in 2018. This is the everyday reality of living with Anorexia Nervosa. Statistically, it is the most deadly mental illness in the world. I conquered those statistics, but it’s not as glorious a battle as you might imagine. Initiating the fight to pry my life from the gaping jaws of my eating disorder was arguably the hardest and most morally challenging thing I have ever done.
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