home
RSS
December 12th, 2012
12:39 PM ET

From 58 pounds to thriving: One woman's story

Editor's note: In the Human Factor, we profile survivors who have overcome the odds.  Confronting a life obstacle – injury, illness or other hardship – they tapped their inner strength and found resilience they didn't know they possessed.  This week we introduce you to Chelsea Roff, who had a stroke at 15 brought on by her severe anorexia. At the time she arrived at Children's Medical Center Dallas, she weighed 58 pounds. Now 23, Roff is a writer, speaker and yoga instructor. Portions of this article were originally published in the book 21st Century Yoga: Culture Politics and Practice and on Intent Blog, where Roff is managing editor.

The first emotion I remember is rage. It was a violent, fire-in-your-veins, so angry-you-could-kill-someone kind of rage. I wanted out. I wanted the pain to be over. I wanted to die. I was mad at myself for not having the courage to just do it quickly, angry at the hospital staff for thwarting my masked attempt.

I was convinced that I was “meant to” endure this, that my long, drawn-out starving to death would prove my willpower to God. In the days prior to my stroke, I’d had vivid hallucinations — of Jesus on a wooden cross outside my bedroom window and a satanic figure sneaking up under my bedroom covers to suffocate me at night. I thought I was meant to be a martyr. I thought God wanted me to die. FULL POST


Advertisement
About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.

Advertisement
Advertisement