The Derbyshire woman who has overcome anorexia has shared her story in hopes of helping others afflicted with the disease.
Annie Windley was at her heaviest weight when she weighed just 65 pounds, or just over four and a half stone. Her low weight put her at risk of a heart attack.
The 21-year-old Woolley Moore resident has struggled with anorexia for nearly five years through numerous hospitalizations, occupational therapy and intensive care.
Annie, on the other hand, is in a fighting situation and has used her passion for running to recover. Last October I ran the Chesterfield Half Marathon.
“I’ve come to the beautiful conclusion that drug addiction is a breathtaking process that should be exciting, unforgettable and amazing,” she said.
“I feel like anorexia will always be a part of me, but with every dose I’ve taken, I’ve learned to deal with it and calm my mind.”
“It’s never too late for positive change.”
Annie was first diagnosed with an eating disorder in 2012.
Her recovery started after two years and she faced many challenges, including splitting and losing so much weight that it would be difficult for her to cope.
“I can’t say exactly what happened, but in October 2017 I started fighting harder than ever and this time it was me,” she added.
“The fights were incredible, every day was filled with torturous emotions and tremendous courage.” I have gained three stone in four months and am now at my highest weight since 2014.”
Annie says she realized that a person’s weight doesn’t mean anything and it matters how they behave and treat others and how they treat others.
She explained, “These are the things that change life.”
“These are the things that are important to you, the things that will make you happy.”
“So instead of organizing your day around food or worrying about how to limit yourself, spend that time doing something people really care about.”
“Be a nice daughter, a good friend, laugh and talk to them.”
Exercise is often seen as a positive effect on mental health, and Annie is no exception.
Her passion for running has helped her recovery, kept her on track and given her something to aspire to.
She was rehabilitated through her participation in the annual Chesterfield Half Marathon.
Her hard work and dedication to racking up miles during her training paid off as she crossed the finish line of the grueling course.
“Now that I’m okay, I can live a more flexible and free lifestyle, and every morning when I get up and go for a jog, I use that time to remind myself how precious and valuable life is,” she added.
“I’m lucky enough to have strong legs and a beating heart, so I don’t waste time worrying about food or watching my calories.”
“Exercise should be seen as a celebration of what your body is capable of, not a punishment for what you’ve eaten.
“Focus on your passion and your desire to achieve what you want to achieve.”
Annie claimed she only skipped meals like pizza and chocolate because the voices in her head underestimate the numbers and percentiles.
But luckily she doesn’t feel that way anymore and she has a message for everyone who is in a similar situation to hers.
“Some days are hard; you feel dreaded, ‘fat’, you have no desire to eat, and you feel that the remedy is not yours,” she continued.
But that is precisely why it is necessary to continue.
We have to prove to our disruptors that we can do this. We don’t want to live our lives full of regret and unhappiness, wishing we could do the things that anorexia didn’t allow us to accomplish.
What do you think?