Before and after: Kylie Jackson, on finding her true weight
Before and after: Kylie Jackson, on finding her true weight
From quite early on, Kylie felt a pressure that her body needed to look a certain way ...
Kylie: “I remember my grandmother warning me not to eat too many lollies, because they would make me fat. Then at school, I learnt that to fit in, there must be, at all costs, an avoidance of ‘being fat’.”
Kylie had a very natural confidence about herself, and her body: “I didn’t understand everyone’s obsession with being thin. I used to love choosing my clothes and getting dressed up. I remember loving how I looked in the mirror and would go to school, to a party or wherever, feeling great. But then if someone made a nasty comment, which would happen regularly, I would feel crushed. At that time I knew it wasn’t true but I started to get confused about the mixed messages with the compliments and criticism.”
After a while, Kylie could feel her confidence fade as she gave more credit to the jealous comments, than to what she knew to be true. She began to doubt herself and her lack of confidence was growing.
Kylie: “In my teens, I began seeking advice from my sister or friends about what I should wear, how I should do my hair or makeup. I was in absolute indecision. I felt like I couldn’t trust myself to ‘fit in’. I had to trust others, because they saw things differently. I felt like my reality must be different to everyone else’s. I felt I was not good enough as I was. I remember thinking, that everything would be ok if I was skinnier ... If only I was thinner then, “that boy would like me”, or, “I will have everything I have ever wanted” ... The crazy thing was, I had a lovely body! And yet, I held this idea in my head that I didn’t – and that I would not be happy until I had a perfect body.”
One day one of Kylie’s teachers in high school spoke to her about her exercise routine: “I walked every day. She told me that I didn’t need to walk every day if I didn’t have the time – and that I had a really lovely figure. I was a little surprised by this and thought she was just saying it to me to make me feel better."
"It’s funny when I look back at photos and realise how beautiful I actually was and how I never appreciated it.”
Kylie was using her body as a scapegoat and an excuse for why her life wasn’t all she wanted it to be: “I thought my body was why I didn’t feel accepted or loved. Whenever something didn’t turn out the way I had wanted or expected – if I ever felt rejected, or not loved or accepted – I blamed my body. I always thought my body was 'letting me down’.”
THE PERFECT BODY
On her 21st birthday, she decided to make some changes: “I was tired of always blaming my body. I had just been hurt by a man and ‘thought’ that, if I had a perfect body that I would not get hurt or ever feel not good enough again – I would have everything.”
Living in Italy at the time Kylie began eating more healthily: “I gave up the pasta and rice in exchange for more vegetables and exercise. I began feeling lighter and felt much more confident quite quickly, and it wasn’t long before others noticed this and complimented on the change in me.
This fuelled me to continue my regime – and gradually refine it – refining the foods I chose not to eat and exercising more and more. The better I felt, the more committed to my new program I became.
However, my choice of eating and exercise was not ever chosen in a way that honoured my body – it was done from the drive of wanting to change me so that I would not ever be hurt.”
Kylie became so dedicated to her program that she did not listen to her body’s needs: “Even on those days when I was not well, or I was super tired, or my body genuinely needed to rest – I would push through. Some would call this commitment, however I was not committed to the true wellbeing of my body – it was a dedication to my need to attain a certain look. I didn’t feel I was good enough, just as I was.”
Over many months she became consumed with and by this way of living: “I had developed this crazy image of what I should look like to be more loveable to others. Some things that I thought I needed to have were: tanned skin (all the popular girls were tanned), thin (of course), light-coloured hair, an athletic body, etc."
Kylie then became heavily invested in that image: “Exercise formed not only a part of my day, but became my whole day and night – I did my exercise routine, and then turned everything I needed to do during my day into exercise – walking everywhere – I mean everywhere! And then dancing at a nightclub into the early hours of the morning, and then walking home, changing clothes and going out for my morning walk. I did not stop.
I refined my diet more and more until I was virtually not eating at all. If I succumbed to a teaspoon full of fat free tofu or something – I would resort to bulimia and then exercise twice as much to burn it off."
Kylie was caught in this tortuous imprisonment that did not cease:
“The thoughts were relentless:
- How much more exercise could I fit in?
- What else could I remove from my diet?
- How can I avoid that lunch or dinner with my boyfriend or friends?
During this time I was absolutely defined by how I looked and what others thought of me. I completely lost any self-confidence. I arrogantly thought that my ability to starve myself and do copious amounts of exercise made me super-human and super-healthy. It was a mind-game that kept me going and going and going ... My life revolved around losing weight.”
Kylie had been approached by a photographer in Italy and did some photographic work with him:
“After that, I became consumed by the idea of modelling. I had begun to develop a relationship with one of the modelling agencies and they were making me promises of where I could end up. Modelling was the perfect source of recognition to fill my lack of self-worth. If an entire industry could say that I was good enough, then I could show all those nasty comments and moments of not feeling good enough, who I really was.”
But even then Kylie did not appreciate herself:
“I never ‘enjoyed’ my body at all. Even if I did receive a compliment or feel momentary recognition – it was met with an extreme anxiousness and thoughts of doubt or having to step it up even more."
None of it was real, and, NONE of it was love
"Each and every day I lost weight. Even when things went too far and I knew I needed to eat something – I couldn’t eat because of the fear of putting on weight.”
"I needed help!"
FACING THE TRUTH OF ANOREXIA
Kylie at first confided in a friend and her boyfriend at the time and then began seeing some specialists in nutrition and psychology. This brought some changes in her behaviour – however, not in the condition.
Kylie: “With the enormous support of my family, I eventually I agreed to come home to Australia. My family had arranged everything for me and I immediately commenced treatment at a specialised centre for eating disorders – one of the best in the country.
I could see that my body needed help – based on the reactions from all of those around me. The looks of shock and disgust actually shocked me – they were seeing something different to what I saw.
It was a strange experience to look at my body and still see areas where I wanted or thought I needed to lose weight – and then, at other times, to catch a glimpse of my reflection somewhere and only see bones. I was the skinniest person most people had ever seen.”
Today it amazes Kylie how far she had pushed her body:
“My skeleton frame was barely supported, and my exercise was now limited as my family and doctors feared I may have a heart-attack. My body was coated in a fine layer of hair to keep me warm. I could not sleep due to severe hunger pains and yet I could not eat. My mind did not stop. I was a mess!”
It was a very difficult time. Kylie’s family and all around her were shocked, and just wanted her to get better:
“I agreed that the way I was living could not go on, but I didn’t know how to get out of it – so I surrendered to the help offered. I followed the diet given to me by the nutritionist – we agreed that I would not weigh myself and she would help support my body to stabilise me without putting on weight – to build stability – to stop losing weight – that was the first step.
This went well. My body plateaued for a short time and we built trust in the relationship. Next, we agreed to very slowly in small increments increase my weight slightly. We did this step by step until my body reached a ‘healthy’ weight range. I was still very small, but was considered much healthier than the scary point I was previously at.”
To some, Kylie could now almost pass as ‘skinny but normal’. However, on the inside, she was still being run by the same condition:
“I didn’t feel anyone could really understand me. I knew I could now not stop eating entirely, or rule out certain foods, or exercise all day or all night. But my mind would play with how much exercise I could fit into my allotted exercise time. I would still figure out how I could eat the low fat or low carb, low sugar versions of all the foods I was ‘supposed’ to eat.
I was still in control and being totally ‘controlled’ by something that was not me at all. And, I still held modelling as something I wanted to do. I still thought the way my body looked would bring me all the love I ever wanted and deserved.”
WHAT NEXT ...?
Kylie was doing everything she was told to do by the doctors, nutritional, psychological and family support around her:
“But, I was still not myself! Then someone very close to me recommended that I see an Esoteric Practitioner in Brisbane. I had tried virtually every new age and alternative therapy under the sun, none of which helped me to feel anything other than momentary relief. I thought I may as well give it a go.”
But this appointment was different:
“From the moment I walked into the room, it felt different. The practitioner met me in a way I had never been met. She understood me. She saw the real me, and spoke to the real me. I had never felt so loved by someone I had never met before.
The feeling of that session was so profound that I knew I was ok. There was a lot going on with my body that I needed to work on, and deal with – but I, Kylie, the real me, was ok – and I had something to live for ... me!
I began to feel how far away from myself I had gone and that I was not loving myself at all – let alone letting anyone else love me. I had been ruled by what and how I thought I needed to be for others.”
Kylie began working on her relationship with herself:
“I continued to see this practitioner, who offered an amazing, consistent support, and my life began to change, as I made more self-honouring choices. The support of these sessions worked in conjunction with the medical support I was receiving, and finally the pieces all came together. I was working on my issues and treating all of me – all of those things I had not addressed throughout my life were being presented to me to deal with."
Kylie: “A little while later, I met Serge Benhayon for the first time, for an Esoteric Healing Session. Again, this session was so profound, and I felt deeply met and honoured like I had never felt met before. In these sessions, I was truly honoured, respected and loved, more than I could honour, respect and love myself at that time.
I had been experiencing panic attacks, extreme anxiousness and also suicidal thoughts. There was no joy in my days – the energy that was running me was tortuous. With the support of Serge Benhayon, my practitioner in Brisbane and Universal Medicine, I began to deal with the pain I was feeling and began to choose differently."
"I began to love me"
"This was not easy at first, as I had given myself away to this way of thinking and living for some time. The pattern was strong and it felt like there was a battle between what I was now realising and feeling to be the real me – and the ideals and beliefs that were not me."
"I chose the real me, again, again and again. Until what was not me began to fall away"
The healing sessions assisted Kylie to feel and surrender into her body: “This helped enormously. When I was feeling my body – I could not abuse it like I used to. It was only easy to abuse myself when I was in my head. I learnt and began to use techniques to listen to my body.
Over the course of 9 years, my entire life has changed. And I mean everything.
I have gone from an anorexic, anxious, depressed, suicidal state – where I did not feel any joy, where I was abusing my body, was unable to be present and connect to those around me and was unable to function ‘normally’ in life. I had given up hope of my life being what I felt it could be deep inside. I did not even feel worthy to exist on Earth. I was ruled by exercise, food (or lack thereof), what people thought of me – and how to receive recognition. I had no true love for myself or my life.”
“Well, now I am truly living with joy every day. My body has returned to my natural and true body. My food, exercise and living choices are based on what honours and supports me, and are never ruled by how I ‘think’ I should be, or what I should eat to lose weight. I do not even weigh myself. My body reflects to me how I feel."
I am married to this amazing man who loves the real me, and our relationship is just as amazing. I accept and appreciate myself daily. I love feeling my body. I am committed to work (which I love) – working 6 days a week, for a well-known establishment in the area and also have my own business. I am now myself a great practitioner of Esoteric Healing and offer Beauty Therapy in a way that is truly nurturing. My relationship with my family and everyone in my life is truer, more loving and better than it has ever been.
My relationship with food and exercise is also better than it has ever been. When I started making more loving choices with my body – building love from the inside out – my food and exercise naturally shifted and adjusted. I choose to not eat gluten or dairy or sugar these days, because I don’t like how they feel in my body. It is not based on how they will make me look.
I have a fresh, healthy diet. But the most amazing thing is not what I eat, but my relationship with food.
In the past, my entire life revolved around how much exercise I needed to do, and the absolute minimum I needed to eat to stay alive. This pattern is non-existent now.
I exercise when, and if I feel to (and gently so) ... there is no more running for me!
I eat when I feel to, in a way that nourishes and honours my body – and there is not even the slightest hint of a thought about needing to ‘work it off’. I can’t even compare my relationship with food now to how it used to be. They are two completely different worlds.
Even my doctor and dentist are quite amazed by my health and that the life I used to live is almost non-existent in my body. That’s remarkable!"
"My life is truly amazing – in every way"
No one, not even Kylie, could have imagined such a true turnaround from where she was, to where she is now. There are not many that truly recover from anorexia – let alone, truly heal from it.
Kylie emphasises that there was no ‘quick fix’ or miracle cure: “It was hard at times, although there was an enormous amount of love and support to my taking responsibility for myself and my commitment to making true choices.
And, I know that there is absolutely no turning back – ever!
My life and my health are more joy-full and amazing than they have ever been! And this is shown in every area of my life. Universal Medicine has inspired me to live the real me – in every aspect of my life, my body, my relationships, work, health, home, family – all have transformed, through my Livingness of love."
"A body of Love –
now, there’s nothing more beauty-full than that!”
"A woman’s body will always be beauty-full to her, if she but allows who she truly is on the inside to model it."Serge Benhayon Esoteric Teachings and Revelations, p 548