Margherita, 19, London

“This is my story, my passion, my pain & my recovery. When I was young, I was happy. I was a free spirit, known by my family as, ‘the wild one.’ But I was also determined, and my determination became a vulnerability.

When I was just twelve, I was accepted into a very prestigious ballet school to attend an associate course on Saturday mornings. At this time in my life I had only been dancing for a few short months, so the news came as an unbelievable surprise, I couldn’t quite believe it and my passion to continue dancing was flying. Although when I lost my place at the school just two years later, I felt crushed. However not only did I feel crushed but I also felt fuelled! I was full of determination to improve my dancing and get myself back there.

But the harder I worked to improve, the higher I felt the pressure rise inside me to become the ‘ideal’ dancer and I soon began to channel all of my energy into changing my physique. My passion to improve soon turned to pain.

I had found purpose in ballet. I felt like an accomplished artist who inspired many with peak control of my physicality. But my competitiveness, came at a price.

My love for ballet drove me to attempt to mold my body into an unrealistic and stereotypical ‘ballerina’ physique. This obsession lead me into a dark pit where I suffered with anorexia nervosa for 6 long years. My devotion to dancing had met my false deception on how a ballerina must ‘look’.

My devotion to fulfil the extreme demands of my craft pushed me to the limits of what a human body could take – I found myself in a downward spiral – striving to achieve perfection, no matter how painful it was starting to become.

All and any progress I had made would be disguised by a false sense of failure and resentment had started to take over – my burning desire to be the best I could be had misguided my perception of reality. Every time I saw myself in the mirror, the hatred for myself grew and festered, withering away at my body.

I felt sick, but – perhaps worse – I felt like I deserved to feel this way. It was this moment that I realised that Anorexia was coming for my life…

Then the fight began…

With help from a handful of therapists who had spent months trying to reach me, I was finally able to make the split from my anorexic personality. I was determined to use all the sustenance that I could gain into rebuilding my health.

And I did…

Finally, my faith was restored and my purpose had taken a new form – as I realise that I am just one of many that need help in overcoming serious eating disorders. My love for dancing was reborn and my passion and focus within dancing is now on my movements and not on the mirrors. I love dancing now for how it makes me feel, not how I look doing it.

I’d like to share my story, not for sympathy or fame, but for my fellow warriors to see themselves in my journey. For them to realise that they’re not alone and for them to see that there is in fact light at the end of the tunnel.

My experiences helped me find purpose. Let me help you find yours.”


You can follow Margherita’s journey on her homepage or instagram.


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