It is sad how society dictates how we should look, feel, and act – and this has led to a lot of people having low self-esteem because society’s so-called ‘standards’ are pretty high and difficult to attain!
One such victim is Gemma Walker, a girl who suffered from anorexia which eventually led to her having depression as well. Starving herself so she would be thin to ‘fit’ what society supposedly wants, Gemma was drawn deeper into her condition.
Suffering from depression and feeling numb about everything in life, she began cutting her wrists just to keep her mind away from what she feels – and this alarmed her parents so much that they feared they would wake up someday, only to find that their daughter had successfully killed herself.
So, each morning, Gemma’s father would sneak into her room to check if she’s still alive.
“They were the hardest and most terrifying years of our lives, checking on her each morning to see if she was still breathing, to see if her weak heart was still beating. Some nights we would just sit on the floor by her bed, just to be with her, there was nothing else we could do,” Gemma’s dad Steve recalled.
She would soon drop to 25 kg (56 lbs) and had to be rushed to the hospital.
Finally realizing that she was getting too thin that she was killing herself just by not eating anything at all, Gemma began to eat. But her parents’ joy turned to horror when the girl did not just eat what she needed but she went through the ‘refeeding syndrome’ suffered by recovering anorexics, eating 6,500 calories in 20 minutes.
Within 7 months, she tripled her body weight but repeatedly experiences hallucinations and would sometimes pass out from the excess sugar her body has to process within such a short time.
“My recovery was very traumatic. My weight gain was very rapid, in less than seven months I put on 40 kilograms, tripling my body weight, however I was at my worst mentally,” Gemma admitted.
“People believed because I looked healthier that I was better and no longer anorexic. Chronic binging and bulimia lasted almost 18 months, it was a complete 360 from strict obsessive rules to complete loss of control.”
Thanks to her parents’ unwavering support, however, Gemma was able to finally overcome her challenges.
Today, Daddy Steve no longer has to check on Gemma to see if she was still alive. She has made a full recovery. She has since launched her own skincare line and became an inspiration for people with eating disorders.