"Even when I was counting the calories in my gum and running 20 miles a day, I didn't realize I had a problem."
Kay Connelly loves dogs, fashion, coffee and jamming out to music. She has a passion for performing, socializing, running and learning. She is a writer for Her Campus and transferred to Miami to pursue her ambition for organic chemistry. Kay is also recovering from anorexia.
At first, she didn't realize there was anything wrong with wanting to feel skinny, even bony. Even when she hit an extremely dangerous weight, even when her skin became a yellowish hue, even when her hair thinned out and she lost clumps of it every time she took a brush to it, she insisted she was fine.
"I have a sense of euphoria any time I am running on empty," Kay said. "I didn't want to recover. I was fine."
Kay had a difficult time in recovery, as many patients do. During the early stages, she would "gain a pound and lose two." But for her, it wasn't about the weight gain. It was about the ritual of the energy deficit.
Luckily, Kay found ways to cope. She turned to science to expand her knowledge on her illness.
Learning more about anorexia helped her overcome the illness. This year, she decided to "bite the bullet" and vow to gain 35 pounds by the end of the school year, while maintaining healthy habits.
"Most outsiders may say that it is wrong to eat as many jars of peanut butter as I have over the past year, but your body craves the calories," Kay said.
Her personal motto is, "Don't just purr; roar," which is about "living life to the fullest and kicking the bad as far away as possible."
Kay now has a very positive outlook on life.
"I think there is something you can find to love about anyone and anything. You just have to remember, you will never know the full extent of their stories."
Kay aspires to be a doctor or psychologist so she can help others with a variety of struggles, some of which she has personal experience with.
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Her journey can be followed on her Instagram, @kay.thatiscool.
If you or someone you know has an eating disorder, don't be afraid to contact the National Eating Disorder hotline, at (800) 931-2237.