Sunday, November 4, 2012

Beating the Odds

Fuck the Facts and Figures

Believe that You Will Be the Exception

Before I begin this entry I would like to apologize in advance for my harsh language. I don't usually include such profanities in my posts but I felt that in this case it was necessary and appropriate. While doing research for my mid-term assignment that I mentioned in my earlier post, Why So Serious?, I came across a very disheartening quote. The source of this quote is author and mother, Harriet Brown, who was personally effected by anorexia because of her own daughter's struggles. The quote that follows both angered and empowered me-

Isabelle Caro in advertisement attempting to spread awareness about and fight against anorexia-

“Between 10 and 20 percent of people with anorexia die from heart attacks, other complications and suicide; the disease has the highest mortality rate of any mental illness. Or [one] could [lose their] life in a different way, [lose] it to the roller coaster of relapse and recovery, inpatient and outpatient, that eats up, on average, five to seven years. Or a lifetime: only half of all anorexics recover in the end. The other half endure lives of dysfunction and despair. Friends and families give up on them. Doctors dread treating them. They’re left to stand in the bakery with the voice ringing in their ears, alone in every way that matters.” 

- Harriet Brown

Me at an unhealthy weight. This is nothing to envy-
This quote angered me because I know it to be true. I know from personal experience what it feels like to lose years of my life to repeated relapses and subsequent treatment. I have had friends that died from their illness. I have friends that have lost more than 7 years of their life bouncing in and out of treatment. I know from endlessly reading statistics that 20% of anorexics will die prematurely due to effects of their illness. These statistics have taught me  5-10% of anorexics die within 10 years of onset, 18-20% will die after 20 years, and only 30-40% will ever fully recover. Brown's quote only served to remind me of all of this information and I became furious. Her startling words hit me hard but somehow actually managed to empower me. I am not a statistic and I have already been able to beat one of these facts and figures. I have suffered from anorexia nervosa for over ten years and I am not dead. I am very much alive and plan to be for quite a while. 
Me more recently. I am fighting and beating the odds !
I am not one of the 5-10% who died after 10 years of suffering from anorexia. Not only am I alive but I am living. I am not merely subsisting or surviving and I am grabbing life by the balls and making the most of every moment I have on this earth. I am saying fuck the facts and figures. I am going to beat the odds. And I will be the exception. So after this rant that reeks of self-empowerment, anger, and eating disorder blabber you may be wondering what this has to do with you. Why am I talking about an issue that is so specific to me? How does this have any relevance to you if you don't happen to be suffering from an eating disorder? Well I am going to tell you exactly why- we all suffer from or struggle with something. We are all told that we can't or won't do something. A number of us are given facts and figures, numbers, histories, statistics that tell us we are unable to do or overcome something because the odds just aren't in our favor. Well no matter what it is we are dealing with we need to believe that we will be the exception. We must have faith that we are strong enough to beat the odds and prove to everyone- doctors, scientists, friends, families, psychologists- that they are wrong. I have an affirmation for us to reflect upon today that will hopefully empower us and enable us to believe that we will beat the odds when they are seemingly not in our favor-

By refusing failure, I gain the strength and determination to keep going no matter what tries to stand in my way.

Fuck the Facts and Figures!
By refusing to fail, refusing to let statistics get us down, refusing to accept any diagnosis as a death sentence we empower ourselves. We enable ourselves to continue moving forward, fighting, and living. No matter what you are struggling with- infertility, an eating disorder, cancer, graduating college, depression- never stop fighting and never give up. Don't let what others may say dissuade you or make you feel disempowered. Don't let statistics convince you that you have no choice or that you are doomed. Scream out loud "fuck the facts and figures!" "I will be the exception!" We cannot allow these upsetting statistics and information permeate our minds. If we do so they will control our thoughts, dictate our moods, and alter the way in which we live our lives. We need to believe that we will beat the odds or we are resigned to a life of unhappiness and defeat. We cannot forget that there are exceptions to the facts and figures that are presented and we must believe that will be the exceptions. Yes, Brown's quote infuriated me but it empowered me as well. I am not a statistic and I will not become one of the numbers of anorexics that die a premature death. I will not lose my life to years in and out of treatment. I will not lose my life to dysfunctional, eating disordered thoughts. My anorexia will not take my life from me. I will continue to fight and truly do believe that I will be the exception. What will you choose to be?

Never ever give up on yourself!


  1. I love this!!! Thanks as always. Reminding me to start/save my life.

  2. I believe in you! Believing in you helps me believe in me. You empower me!