The room was silent except for the ticking of the clock. Jane looked round her noticed the full plate of nourishing dinner from the night before waiting on her desk; her eyes were drawn to it like her worst enemy and the food stared back mocking the look of fear in her eyes. She lay in silence which was soon broken by her noisy alarm.
As it beeped instantly she could feel it penetrating her space. It was the starter’s pistol and the rest of the day was a marathon to her. She was like a tired athlete trying to please her demanding coaches and competing everyday.She had lost sight of the goal.
The finishing line had become blurred. She dragged her exhausted, weak body from bed and stood in front of the mirror; where, in only her underwear, she stared at her body. Jane had always been flawless: perfect figure, hair, eyes and teeth. She was always one of the prettier girls at school.
But when she looked in the mirror there was only one way to describe what she saw: FAT. Jane had looked up the word fat in her school thesaurus and gazed her horrified eyes over the words: overweight, chubby, heavy, and large.Each word struck her like a racing car crashing at full speed. The words screaming and taunting her mind like a bully intimidating her and eating away at her self esteem.
Her life was a constant struggle and each day took more and more out of her. Her parent’s attitude was like a heavy weight that she carried around on her shoulders and the damage was started to show in her physical appearance. The weight was growing heavier everyday and was restricting her growth and development. Each day at school was a continuous battle striving to stay at the top.
The free teenage life that she used to have was slowly falling apart and the strain of hard work was taking over when all of her spare time was allocated for homework. Once dressed, down to the kitchen she went but, of course, not for beneficial morning breakfast. Only for the usual morning lecture she would receive from her mum about trying hard, being the best and achieving her goals. She would never notice Jane’s lack of appetite or lack of body weight.
She was blinded to the demand and strain she would bulldoze onto her daughter’s shoulders each morning.Her day at school was the same as any other. Practise, pressure and overall perfection. She would usually spend lunchtimes studying or getting a head start on homework.
The lunch hall was a forbidden area. Through time she lost all physical energy: she walked slowly, couldn’t take part in P. E and her body lost all physique. Not all eyes were as blind as her parents, however, and the ultimatum was given during school when one day when she was called to her guidance teacher’s office.
Jane was jumping to all conclusions and thoughts of disappointment and failure were consuming her mind.She sat in the waiting room outside the office for five minutes, her body shaking and palms sweating with apprehension. The waiting room was dark and she could feel the for walls closing in on her trapping inside and forcing the feeling of fear through her body. Another five minutes passed and the door opened and Miss Thomas stood in front of her.
She kneeled down and her gentle face smiled and said, “C’mon in Jane lets have a quick chat”. Jane sat quietly for the whole time. Miss Thomas tried to talk to her about her dramatic weight loss and how tired she looked as teachers were getting concerned.She spoke slowly and quietly, asking Jane her opinion and trying to keep the conversation soft and respectful.
Jane would simply disagree and deny any change. She left the office with a huge sigh and Miss Thomas called her back. She placed a sharp white envelope onto her bony hand; noticing the colour of her pale hand fading into the white paper. Jane stared down.
The address and her parents name on the envelope screamed painfully at her. The rest of the day was a blur as the only thing on her mind was the letter. She walked home slowly scraping her feet along the pavement.Other children walked swiftly, straight past her laughing and joking with their friends.
She walked gently like a small fish in an ocean of sharks. She reached her front door, quietly opened it and tried to sneak up to the safety of her bedroom. Before she was even half way there her mum called her back down in a sharp quick voice. It was obvious that a phone call had been made from school.
Her mum and dad were sitting at the dining room table, Jane entered the room feeling weak and intimidated by the vicious painful stare she received as she slowly walked in. Jane sat at the dining room table with her mum and dad sitting across from her.She was glad there was a barrier between them. Jane already knew she had no choice but to give them the letter and wait for an enraged reply.
The letter was placed into her mum’s hand and she forcefully snatched it and impatiently ripped it open. Jane watched as her mum’s eyes read over each line; she felt as though the rest of her life hung from this one sheet of paper. She read the letter and Jane sat waiting for a yell, a scream anything to show her fury. Instead everything fell silent.
Her mum slowly raised her head and stared at her daughter. Jane pale pathetic face stared back.Jane could see the look of remorse in her eyes. Her dad turned to her mum and began to shout, “See I told you.
I said this a couple of weeks back, but you. ” “You never listened! ” He squeezed his fists with rage and felt his whole body bursting with frustration. An argument erupted; hurtful words tumbling from their lips and spilling into the air between them. Accusations were being thrown around.
Both parents needed someone else to blame. Words of hatred were being conjured up as if it meant nothing and anguish filled the room. Jane sat watching as if it were a nightmare; she was fading away and losing her voice.She had to get away from the madness.
She stood up and merely walked out the back door. None of her parents took notice; both too caught up in their own minds and problems. She walked along the frosty white gardens which surrounded her house. She was like an angel floating through the clouds.
She began walking faster and it soon turned into a run. She felt as though she was running away from her life, onto something better. Each step took more from her weak body but she moved onward. The trees, which were standing tall above her made her feel safe, like a line of knights guiding her in the right direction.
Her mind became oblivious to anything and everything went blank. Her feet were gliding her along as if wheels were attached. She kept running until she felt sick and a sharp stabbing pain caught her repeatedly in the rib cage. She couldn’t feel her feet.
It was hard to walk in the blistering cold and she could feel her legs going numb: she fell, and the cold consumed her and the darkness surrounded her and her mind switched off, momentarily. She woke unaware she was. She screamed for her mum, her dad, anyone with a familiar face. She saw her mum outside the room crying, and a man.
Was she in hospital?Her mum entered the room and spoke to her. It was tough for her mum to actually speak, trying to hold back the tears and be strong. All the worries about school work and meeting expectations were the least of her troubles now; she had anorexia. As her mum said it Jane was bewildered.
Was this actually happening to her? It couldn’t be? This was something she saw on television or read about in teen magazines; it wasn’t something that could actually be happening to her. She was just a normal teenage girl, right? Jane lay and stared blankly. She struggled to take it in and her mind was empty; this one word froze her soul.All her strivings and hard work were dismissed by this one term and the bluntness of it was almost too much for her to handle.
Six months later Christmas Eve had arrived. Her parents were sitting cosily on the couch with the fire roaring in front of them. Jane excitedly ran down the stairs. She was glowing with happiness.
She was on the way to health and her natural beauty was beginning to return. She sat beside her mum and dad and they all talked about the snow falling magically outside. Of course the snow is not permanent and her recovery will be slow but the three of them sitting together Jane could enjoy the magic of the moment.