perjantai 12. toukokuuta 2017

"I can't cosplay him if I don't get thinner!" - in the clawing grip of anorexia nervosa

This day's post is, indeed, quite heavy and speaking about this topic isn't very easy to me. I've made a video about this a few years ago but since I'm not very active in YouTube I decided to write about this - maybe someone who fights with same kind of things finds some help here. Remember: if you want someone to talk to, my contact information can be found from the "How to contact me" site on my blog.

And, at first: this post is from my point of view. I don't mean that bigger-sized people wouldn't be good cosplayers or couldn't make good costumes - damn it, I've seen a lot of bigger cosplayers who are absolutely fantastic and way better than I am. This is basically a story how a sick mind works and terrorizes itself.


I had just gotten into cosplaying - and, almost immediately, I bumped into this topic: is person X valid to cosplay the character Z, if the person is bigger-sized than the character? In my opinion it was - and is - okay to cosplay a character which isn't the same size than you are, but back then I was very cruel and criticizing towards myself. I have never been, and I will never be, a thin person.

But back then I thought that I would have to lose weight in a maniac speed to be able to cosplay Sasuke Uchiha.

And so I begun my project of losing weight!

Taken in 2012 before I begun losing weight.

I think that I had a healthy base for my project in the beginning of it; I just ate smaller meals, decreased the amount of candy I was used to eat and exercised more. Yep, I changed my way of life to the healthier direction!
...except that all of it escalated rather quickly.

I had no memories of these messages but my friend reminded me about these:

A friend: "Are you feeling okay, you looked a bit sick today?"
Me: "Yeah, I have a small fever... Anyway, I have to go out for a walk so it might take some time for me to answer you." was December 2012. There was a snowstorm going on outside and it was fairly cold. I had a fever. I went out for a walk - and did that two times because I just had to.
Guess if I had eaten basically anything during the day?
If you answered no, you're correct. I had already stopped eating proper food. If I saw it, it made me nauseous. Basically I ate just a few fruits during the day and almost immediately after eating I had to exercise because I "felt the fat level increasing in my body". Well, of course that can't actually happen, but... A broken mind is broken.

I quit visiting my friends - I had to exercise.
I quit attending relatives' birthday parties - there might be cake and I HAD TO exercise.
My brother begun to put some of his own food onto my plate because in his opinion I ate too little.

But I lost weight and, in my own opinion, begun to look like a decent human being.
I lost 17 kilograms in less than a month and a half.

Okay, I know it's derp but I don't have better pictures from those times... I wore (and still wear) clothes that are too big for me.

I never looked like a skeleton. People usually think that if someone has anorexia the person must be very, very thin. But I wasn't. Yes, I got thinner but I was never a skeleton-like being. But I don't even want to know what I did to my intestines, for example my kidneys.
I'm also quite a good example of the fact that anorexia nervosa is a mental illness which just has physical symptoms. The main Hell happened inside my head.

In the end someone told me that I should seek for help. I don't really remember who it was but I think that it might have been Gure. At first I was quite resistant - I was okay! I was healthy! I was thin!
Then I had to contact the psychiatrist for other reasons (yes, I went to a psychiatrist since back then I stressed about everything so much that it affected my mental health and not in a positive way) and I happened to mention that I had been living like that for a while.
My healing process begun from that moment - but the battle was still not over.


27th of December, my 19th birthday. 
I hadn't been eating for the past few weeks basically at all - the food, once again, made me nauseous. It had happened again, the illness had developed itself slowly but surely again. 
I went to Rauma with my father and little brother. 

Those two hours we spent there were hellish. 
I shook, I almost fainted and vomited, my pulse was way too fast. I was pale as fuck, I was sweating and I couldn't breathe properly. I was quite sure that I was going to die. And it wasn't a panic or anxiety attack, I can tell you that. 
And it happened again two days later. I was supposed to travel to the north for New Year's Eve but I cancelled it and said that I didn't feel too well. 
I was too weak to even walk properly. Not to mention training or running. Nope, even rising up from the bed felt very, very bad. 

After that I begun to eat. The urge to vomit was always there, I didn't want to swallow - I just had to. And day by day I ate more and more until I finally reached the level called "normal". Trust me, it took me a lot of time...

This was taken during that healing time. And I'm starting to think that I should cut my hair again, lol.

Nowadays I'm on a diet which purpose is to develop my muscles - I train four times a week so I didn't want to just to lose weight. 
But nowadays I eat. A lot. And quite often. 
In a healthy way. 

It's not easy to get out of the claws of anorexia - I had it going on, more or less, for three years. And mostly it was because of cosplay. I'm not even kidding you. 
I didn't want to be labelled as "the one who is too big to cosplay anyone". 
Note: I'm not actually blaming the cosplay community. Eating disorders are just a symptom of a mind being sick - it all starts with it. But bullying (in school) and reading about the "who can cosplay and whom" topic didn't have a positive effect on my mind. 

I almost got myself into the hospital with this illness. 
I was waiting for the day I could count my ribs. And, every now and then... I still do. I just have to be strong - I can't let myself slip back to the old, damaging ways. 

This could have killed me. 
The worst part is the fact that at some point I begun to dream about dying - at least I could be the handsome skeleton then. 
Anorexia nervosa isn't a trend or a joke. It affects thousands of peoples' lives even now. It's one of the most common eating disorders in the world. It's definitely not a joke - people die because of it. And, had I not been strong enough to break its hold, I would've been one of them.
And even though I got thinner, it didn't make me happy. I never looked at myself like "wow, good job" - no, every time when I saw myself from the mirror I thought "there's still too much fat, I can't eat today either". So yes, being thin and losing weight might not make you happy. 

There's also a lot bigger reason behind all of this but I'm not actually ready to talk about it just yet. Someday, yes, maybe in the near future too but right now it's too much.

I have forgotten things from those years, I know that I don't remember everything. Maybe it's okay. Maybe I don't have to remember everything.
This post was everything but easy to write, really. But I'm still happy that I managed to do this - this is one of the ways how I deal with this thing. I'm pretty much healed from this sickness by now, and trust me: I'm very thankful to my friends who told me to get help. Without them I might not be here writing this blog post.

Everybody, take care of your friends, your family etc.

(A random make-up test for my OC Duante.) 
See you next time.


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