I Hated My Own Body So Much It Almost Killed Me

Photo: Ekaterina Vidyasova / Shutterstock
woman pinching skin

For far too long I abused my beautiful body.

I talked down to her. I lied to her. I fought with her.

I created good and bad food lists for her to live by.

I punished her.

I chose to not nourish her.

I chose to hide her away because I was ashamed of her.

She was both my abused child and my abuser.

She was my worst enemy.

In return she was fearful.

She had no hope.

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She didn't live.

In fact, She died a little more every single day.

Then one day my older sister met me to go shopping. We went to lunch. She ate as I chewed on ice.

The next day I got an email from her. The subject line read, "I love you. Are you listening?

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She said she cried the entire way home because I looked like I was going to die. Attached to the email was a list of doctors. She offered to help me get well. She didn't want me to die.  

I tried to make excuses. I told her I had an overactive thyroid. 

Another lie to cover up the truth —​ I didn't feel worthy enough to live.

At 5 feet 10 inches tall, I weighed 96 pounds. Yes, I was dying.

About a week later I was moving items around in my basement and scraped my leg alongside a cardboard box. It was a simple scrape, not even a cut. 

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Two hours later my leg was still bleeding. I was so malnourished that my blood would not coagulate.

I went to the emergency room that night and will never forget what I saw. As I was putting on the gown I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror on the back of a bathroom door. There were 2 mirrors across from one another and I could see my back for the first time.

I could see every bone in my back.

Over the next few weeks, I began eating more and more. I wasn't overeating and I wasn't eating junk. I Just began eating. Soon, my hair was starting to grow and my skin began glowing again. As I got stronger, my mind became healthier.

It took almost 8 years for my menstrual cycle to return.

Every month since my menstrual cycle has returned, I have bought myself a dress. The dress serves as a simple reminder to treat myself. To be good to myself!

The dress reminds me that I deserve to live. It reminds me that it's OK to have the curves of a woman. 

I bought my new dress today!

To any of you who have ever felt the same ...

I love you. Are you listening?

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Andrea Cox is a YourTango Contributor who writes about body image and self-esteem.