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This Interminable War

By: Lulu S.

My name is Lulu Salvaterra and I am 16 years old. For the past 4 years, I have been dealing with an eating disorder. It has turned my world upside down and penetrated so many wounds. That said, I believe that everything happens for a reason and I want to use my story to create change. I hope that sharing my journey can help inspire others to be vulnerable, whether that is through writing, talking, art, etc because I know the power of a pen… it has saved me.

2nd Place · High School Writing (2023)

Because suddenly…

My thoughts became a bit deeper

My screams became a bit louder

And my light became a bit dimmer


It’s an odd thing to watch yourself slip away

A peculiar sensation the deprivation provides


But there isn’t an instant realization of the destruction you’ve caused

Even with the world around you pleading for you to stop

Your head praises you for the way you’re disappearing

Its’ validation only igniting the flames you use to burn each calorie

And yet that sense of delusive contentment that that millisecond of validation provides

Somehow makes you forget about the interminable despair your world is now constructed of


But yet the validation does not equate to satisfaction

For it will never be enough


I do not believe I am sick I thought

As my heart began to slow,

vision went black,

And my world went silent


I have to be good enough I thought

And even as they asked me what good enough would be I couldn’t tell you

All I could tell you was it was something that I was not

Something that I was misled into thinking would be attainable by manipulation

That ruining my health would result in wealth

And laying in a hospital bed at the age of 13, was a step towards being enough


I turned into an engine only running off the validation of others

Hoping that draining myself would soon nourish my dismantled soul

And the world would serve my worth to me like I served it my joy…

It was not a fair trade


It morphed from a way to change my body to a way to change my being

It provided a sensation of stillness as my world disintegrated

Only hiding from the fact that it was the executioner of this hurt


And I hate it for what it did

But I long for the feeling of deprivation it gives

And I’m ashamed for missing the storm

But sometimes being stuck inside can be even more warm

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