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December 30, 2021
In the summer of 2020, I would brush my hair and see the blond strands land on my brush after one simple swipe. Hair loss was something I had never experienced or thought I would experience. My hair that had once been so thick and curly was falling out, a small thing that brought me so much sadness.
A secret not so well kept but left unacknowledged stayed with me for months until I reached out for help. Therapy was the last thing I wanted to be doing at noon on a Tuesday every week but I dealt. I didn’t believe I had an issue, but my parents wanted me to be there and I didn’t want to let them down.
The growl of my stomach was a sign, not one of hunger but one of success. I knew I was doing well when I felt like garbage. I was tired and quiet, people liked that. I had the most friends I had ever had but still felt the most alone.
The spring turned to summer, in a sea of swimsuits and crop tops I finally felt secure in my body. The curves I had once had flattened into one straight line all around my body. I told myself I looked amazing, but I look back now and cringe. The ribcage that popped out in that one Instagram post that I saw as a win. I was so sick, every single day was a struggle.
In the fall, I was alone again. Any feeling of normal that came with the summer days and seeing my friends withered away with the leaves on the trees. Covid was raging worse than ever and I was home. Home with my thoughts, I got medicated then, and it is still one of the best decisions I have ever made.
The idea of ever being open about anything having to do with my mental health or eating disorder was so foreign to me. I could not acknowledge my issue to myself, forget about my friends or family. But, when I spoke about my experience I realized I was not alone. I realized so many people silently struggled the same way I did. I’ll never forget the feeling I felt the day I posted my Instagram post, I was finally free.
The support I got that day made me feel less alone. If the support shown to me could be given to all the people, these hard conversations would be a bit easier.