AN anorexia survivor who once weighed just under three stone is celebrating after giving birth to her second child and completing the family she never thought she’d have.
Emma O’Neil, 28, suffered from anorexia from the age of 14 and weighed a tiny 2st 12lbs at her lowest point.
She was living off a diet of Shreddies and would starve herself for up to 10 days at a time in a desperate bid to lose weight.
Even though she eventually beat the condition, she was told that the damage she had done to her body meant she would never be able to carry children.
But now she’s celebrating the arrival of four-week-old Jenson, along with daughter India-Rose, two, at her home in Glasgow, Scotland, with fiance Jonathan, 41.
The mum-of-two, who now weighs a healthy eight stone, has opened up about how she overcame the illness.
Emma said: “One of the things that pulled me out of being anorexic was when I was told I was unlikely to ever have children.
“I had just met my fiancé, Jonathan, 41, and I knew that we wanted to have children and I refused to let my illness stop us from having a future.
“But despite that, being pregnant did make me very self-conscious, because suddenly my body was going from absolutely tiny to bloated and large.
“Jonathan gave me a healthy approach to food again, going on date nights and having him cook me big meals made me feel safe eating again.
“With how hormonal I was, and it’s such a vulnerable time, but having my children was the most amazing experience of my whole life.
“Now I want to help people realise how there is a way out of anorexia and you can turn your life around to normality.”
When she was just 14, Emma was hospitalised weighing under three stone.
She struggled to lie on a hospital bed because her protruding ribs bruised her skin.
She said: “I didn’t realise how ill I was and the effect it would have on my future at the time because I was so young.
“I was skin and bones – even lying on the hospital bed would cause me to be covered in bruises because I was so frail.
“As soon as I realised I was ruining my chances of having children something switched in my mind and I started the long journey to recovery.
“But then even during my first pregnancy, with India-Rose, now two, when I weighed seven stone, my recovery was tested.
“I had very bad morning sickness up until I was 36 weeks, which just played havoc with my mind-set because I wanted to bring food back up.
“But I knew that the safety of my baby was paramount, so I battled through again and that feeling of seeing my new-born baby made it all worth it.”
Despite using sheer determination and the love and support of her family to help her overcome her illness, Emma also thanks cannabis oil for helping her through.
Emma now owns her own business, Hashtag Organics, which supplies a CBD range for women which she claims will help women in a similar position to her.
She said: “I genuinely believe it was the CBD oil that helped me to fall pregnant with my son, because it relaxed me and made me leave my sadness behind.