Like many women, I have felt the pressure to be beautiful and sophisticated and attractive, and also thin. I am doing my best to be in shape. However, I have decided not to overdo it either. A few years back, I decided to exercise frantically and cut almost all of the meat and desserts out of my diet. I ate mostly fruit, vegetables, and the occasional dairy product. I lost twelve pounds. Then, I gained back sixteen pounds. I kind of believe in the mantra of Women, Food, and God. I also do my best to watch portions and to eat many healthy things, including lean meats, vegetables, and fruit. However, I do not make desserts forbidden because guess what? I am going to want them...very badly. It seems to work. I bought six boxes of Girl Scout Cookies almost two months ago; and all of them are still in my freezer only partially-eaten. The moral of all this do your best to keep yourself healthy; but also love yourself and accept yourself for who you are. God does not make crap.
Writer and painter and niece of fashion icon Ralph Lauren, Jenny Lauren, unfortunately has a problem with eating. it is just the opposite though. She does not feel that she should eat. She is on the ultimate quest for the perfectly-chiseled body. She believes that food is "too delicious" and why would she eat because she would not have to worry about burning off calories while exercising? You think I am kidding? These are beliefs that she states in her own memoir, Homesick.
Ms Lauren is Anorexic and Bulimic. She describes in very intense detail how her eating disorder began at age ten and how it escalated until finally she ended up being hospitalized twice in her teens. Unfortunately, in her early twenties, Ms. Lauren ended up having to have surgery to literally put her intestines back together. For the next several years after that, she struggled to heal while being told that the horrendous pain after surgery was all in her head. Her eating disorder was not yet under control. Finally, after meeting an understanding psychiatrist and also taking the advice of some friends, Jenny receives confirmation that both the surgery and her eating disorder are what is causing the horrendous pain. She tries some unconventional treatments which ultimately help her to put her life back together.
This memoir is very raw and emotional. It is extremely honest. You cannot believe that someone would actually believe that they have to be perfect and would punish themselves for years in order to attain this perfection that really is not perfection at all. It is really death. Thankfully, Jenny Lauren was able to find something that worked before that happened. Sadly, many women and men do not.
Anorexia and Bulimia are not "phases" that someone just goes through. They are life-threatening illnesses. If you or someone you know has an eating disorder, please get help. Please visit the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders for more information and to find out what resources are available. Or, tell a parent, a friend, a teacher, a counselor - please get help before it is too late.