I’ve been doing a lot of visual research for my book and today found two pics from my 20s that really freak me out. I wrote last week about my struggles with anorexia nervosa, but the photographic evidence was still tough to see. Back then I thought I looked so fly but in the one at left I am covered with a pelt of fur and at right I am literally concave. Please note: There’s nothing inherently wrong with body hair but it’s disturbing that the thick dark hair covering my limbs and abdomen fell out when I started eating regularly.
I may be flattering myself but I think in my zaftig 40s I actually look younger. Certainly it’s unclear if I’d be heading round the bend to 50 had I not found a way through my anorexia. At 25, I had auto-immune issues, joint problems, a jaundiced complexion, digestive disease, and frequently fractured bones. Yet no doctor connected these problems to the fact that I was severely underweight. It is a betrayal of the social contract to ever comment on another’s weight, yet I received so much approbation for walking around obviously ill that I was drafted as a model. (Not a humblebrag, modeling is fecked.) To be fair, it may have been hard to tell I was eating-disordered since I have my mother’s strong and sizable bones. Still. My head loomed like–well, my head loomed like fucking Barbie.