My amenorrhea

4 years have already passed, and I believe that I could never tell a part of my story if I did not add, now as now, the reflections made during this time spent.

Time that I needed to understand and to learn from, probably, the hardest lesson I have ever received in my life. I often talk about when I was sick of anorexia and as far as, consequently, I did not have menstruation. And this is where you say: but how are you not talking about it? And the books? Your speechs?

When I write, I enter a protected area, I refuge behind simple pages with the belief that these can cover me, defend me, hide me, from that monster called judgment or, even worse, from the most total indifference. The same thing is true when I decide to do a speech, finding myself to accept the assignment only if carried out in comfortable situations that can make me feel "protected" by the same words that I decide to use and, to be honest, by people. So that, what I decide to tell, can be heard only by those who really want to sit next to me, letting me tell.

The menstruation is lost after a few months of illness. I was absolutely not aware of suffering from anorexia nervosa, and as much as I had always wanted to have menstruation, to feel more woman in the most etymological sense of the term, that sudden absence of life did not disturb me at all. Anorexia had completely infected my mind, so I conclude everything with a simple "eh, oh well .. no more pain and breakage, so much children don't want them".

Something strange happens, when you are anorexic. Your body "must" adapt to your mental rigidity, is nothing more than a thing to fix, point 1 of a endless list hanging on the refrigerator, a visible unexpected that prevents you from being what you would like: mentally light. As if the weight of our body, at that moment, could define that heaviness of the soul that is made in every way to relieve. As if it were nothing more than a distorted and desperate research of a freedom and independence that seems to go far beyond those simple lines that define the shape of our body.

It was for this reason that I was almost happy to no longer have any bonds with that "heavy" Valentina that I had wanted to get rid of for some time, celebrating the biological end of something that I had defined badly, which I had always seen as an impediment and not as a sign of the health of my body and, consequently, of my mind. I wanted to feel different from other women, from all other people, showing myself that my willpower could have stopped every natural flow of life.

I wanted to feel powerful. And I felt. And so, my universe split.

Reality said to me: "If you no longer have menstruation it means that there is something wrong. Call the doctor "but my mind shouted:" Everything is going as it has to go ". It was the first sign that my body desperately tried to send me, it was the first sign to show me that, unfortunately, I was lost.

If menstruation, in the common imagination, also denote a sense of strong belonging to the group of women (which I do not agree with), I absolutely did not want to be part of it. I had never felt accepted by them and I wanted, unconsciously, to move from the same but above all by that stereotyped idea of ​​the female who, still today, tends to persecute us.

As if the absence of the cycle, it could help me make me feel like this, free from the sexism of men but also from that of women. As if, the absence of the cycle could protect me from the sexualization and continuous objectification that I suffered (and suffer) continuously by men.

As if, the absence of the cycle and the achievement of a body of child could make me indifferent to that male hungry gaze that was able to destroy my soul and my person. And, at the same time, he could make me free from the envious and contemptuous gaze of the other women.

I enjoyed a void full of anger that I had meticulously created to be able to survive something real but bigger than me, to something on which I could not have control, something that was literally devouring me inside. Something that, in reality, I was not fault.

"I am nothing more, so I belong to the void, to what is not there and that does not exist and, consequently, in this void, I have to create a den in which to survive".

I unconsciously chose the path of death, after being repeatedly rejected by life.

I remember very well the day when menstruation returned. It was summer, the season I hate the most ever. I woke up in the residence in which I had been hospitalized many months earlier, totally unaware that, shortly after, something unexpected would change the course of events again.

My body was talking again, after three long years of silence. That percentage of illness still present in my body went completely out of control and I had one of the greatest hysterical crises of my life.

I was not yet completely healed and accepting that my body was recovering (and therefore all that psychological background that I described before) was a bad news for my eating disorder.

I remember the surprise and smiling nutritionist, unable to hide the beauty of that moment that I lived with fierce anger.

This time, the cycle, the first signal that my body decided to send me to communicate to me his will to be reborn, his will to trust me again, to be ready to bring me all I had tried to hide.

It was the first visible brick that reality decided to put between me and the disease. Brick that was vital in the construction of that great wall that still divides me from what it has been. From my fears and torments.

Returning to life means facing everything that has been tempted in every way to suffocate, re -appropriate that reflection donated to the wrong people. Resuming full possession of one's true identity, taking care of one's health, renouncing that unattainable mental and physical perfection that this disorder obliges you to obtain. I could not deny that this experience has changed me deeply, and perhaps I will never stop analyzing it, including the different facets and psychological dietrologies that revolve around this kind of disease. But I know one thing. It managed to wake me up, to make me much more connected to reality, to other people who have passed situations similar to mine, to the problems that this culture causes to the most sensitive people and, finally, surprise ... to women.

Thanks to this I learned to feel like a woman, but really woman. Regardless of my forms, my weight, my menstruation. Woman in the courage to fight for survival, woman in the desire to tell and sensitize him, woman in facing reality, woman in crying and discomfort, woman in resilience, woman in helping and helping herself, woman in sisterhood and empathy, Woman in the rebellion and in the search for truth.

Woman in the soul and not only in the body.

Woman inside and deeply.

Woman is enough.

N.B. This article is related to my experience. If you are experiencing a eating disorder and you are under treatment, it is not said that menstruation always return independently. This does not mean that your body does not trust you, but everything is very subjective and relating to the details of the eating disorder itself (how long has it been suffering, as, etc.). In some cases, under choice of supervisory doctors, the cycle is stimulated as soon as the body and mind are ready to return to life.

There are no rules, of course. So no case is "wrong".

- Be Patient, take care, Keep Go On and Never Give Up. :)

Valentina Dallari

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