Killing Anorexia With Kindness: Shelby Wright’s Story, Part 2
This story was written exclusively for EatingDisorders.com by Roxanne Scolari-Wright.
When Shelby got sick, so did I, and I started my own journey into hell.
As a caregiver for my mom and my daughter, I needed an escape – and I found it in a bottle. Watching my daughter slowly disappear was unbearable, and I knew that I would find her in her room dead one day from heart failure.
When my mom died in December of 2009, I fell apart. I thought that nothing could be as bad as losing her. Boy was I wrong: eight months later, I lost my dad, and one year to the day I lost my beautiful daughter Shelby. I prepared so long for her death that when it came it was bittersweet. I was happy that the pain was gone. I took her death really well, but never preparing to live without her sent me to a very dark place. However, two months before Shelby left, she made me pinkie swear to never drink again, so I’ve been sober 20 months and will never drink again.
I am fighting my own eating disorder trying to keep Shelby here. My brain knows she’s not here, but my heart cannot accept it. I will never be the same person I was. I don’t know who I am anymore. This road that I am traveling is not anywhere I want anyone to go.
Living without my best friend, my daughter, is not what I had planned for my senior years. Knowing that I will never meet her as a successful adult, getting married and having babies. Can someone tell me what I am going to do with my wedding dress now? I won’t ever hug her again, smell her stinky feet, brush her hair, or hear her laugh. I have been told to reinvent myself – into what?
I keep Shelby’s memory alive with a kindness campaign. She wouldn’t feed herself, but every day at work she bought lunch for the homeless that were outside of Vons. Shelby’s memorial is Kill Anorexia with Kindness. Please visit, and remember: Just a kind word could turn a suffering person around and save them.
I hope our struggle to live helps someone. My goal in life is to not have anyone feel the pain Shelby felt, the loneliness that was her life. I want to help people live a happy, healthy life. I know all of those terrible feelings are gone now, she is at peace, she has no pain, she is happy. As a mother, that is what I have to believe. Every day I get through is one day closer to seeing her again.
Kindness is easy.
In Shelby’s name,