I am raising money for the Irwin Unit, Parkview Clinic in Moseley. The Irwin Unit offers care and treatment for 11-18 year olds with all types of Eating Disorders.
Here is my Story and why i want to raise money for the Irwin Unit...
When i was just 12 years old, i started to feel uncomfortable with my body. I’d always compare myself to others. Whenever i looked in the mirror i’d see myself 10x bigger than what i actually was. I just simply wasn’t happy in my own body. All these thoughts and feelings about myself carried on up until the last few months of being 13. I specifically remember being in the process of moving schools which scared me in every way possible. I continuously looked in the mirror and told myself i had to change. This is where Anorexia became stronger and completely took over my mindset...
I knew that going on a ‘normal’, healthy diet wouldn’t make me drop weight quick enough. Instead I reduced my food and liquid intake drastically over the next month. Each day I developed a need for more and more control around food, by this i had to eat 2 bites less than what i had the day before. A couple weeks went by, my parents became worried and knew their was something wrong. My weight was dropping rapidly. Anorexia had completely took over my every move.
I had to exercise even though i was severely underweight, because Anorexia told and made me believe i was still fat.
I had to move my feet and legs even when i was sat down, because Anorexia told me i couldn’t afford to be lazy.
I had to be in control of what my parents were cooking for themselves, because Anorexia knew best.
I had to wait for everyone to go to bed for me to then get out of bed and stand up for 2 hours, because 8 hours of resting was not something I deserved.. said Anorexia.
I had completely lost myself to Anorexia, their was nothing i could do about it. I was so malnourished and disorientated by this point. My parents took me to see a doctor to be weighed, and they were convinced the scales were broken because of the amount of weight i had lost. They said it must be ‘impossible’. But the scales were infact working perfectly, the number on their was true. I was there and then transferred to CAMHS, who then immediately admitted me to the Irwin Unit, an Eating Disorder’s Hospital in Birmingham. By this point i had not eaten anything for 4 weeks, and could only drink 2 glasses of squash a day. I was cold and weak. My kidneys were severely dehydrated and on it’s way to packing up. My eyes would black out. I was told i was so close to losing my life, but even then anorexia still made me believe i was fat.
I spent 7 months on my life in the Urwin unit in 2012. The importance of this treatment at the beginning was to get my weight to a stable condition. After reaching a stable weight the hard work then began with family therapy, which helped tackle my mental state and my parents understanding of the illness. Each day was filled with fear foods, screaming, crying, a ridiculously huge amount of fortisip, arguments, tantrums and me telling the nurses and staff how much i hate it there and want to go home. But even after all that, THEY NEVER GAVE UP ON ME. They showed they cared each day and that is what i needed the most at such a young age. They made me see that there is a life out there which i couldn’t see at that time.
The hours the staff at the Irwin Unit put into caring for children and young adults is just amazing. The support they gave me whilst being there helped me get through such a hard fight. Even if they had a million other jobs to do, they would make me a priority. I really can’t thank them enough.
Even though i have had 3 other 6-8 months hospital admissions, (one of them being another admission to the Irwin unit) so basically spending 2[phone redacted] in hospital.. everything the Irwin Unit have said & done for me has helped me get to where i am today. The hope they gave me and the love they showed me made me believe their is happiness in the world, and i would achieve it.
For all they have done for me and my family, We want to give something back. I want to raise money for the Irwin Unit, for everything they do each day they deserve to be recognised.
6 years later, and i can proudly say I AM a survivor of Anorexia Nervosa! For all those who are struggling at the moment and believe their is no way out, just know that their is a life out there waiting for you. You are strong and capable of anything. For aslong as you keep strong and fight, you are a step closer to happiness!!
Thank you for taking the time to read my story.
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