Harriet Manaker is a 17 years old junior in high school. She has battled anorexia nervosa for approximately three years, and was recently hospitalized for about 3 ½ months. Similarly to many high schoolers, Harriet has struggled to discover her true identity. Unlike her peers, Harriet feels that her life has been dominated by her disease. Before she turned thirteen, Harriet was an athlete, musician, and scholar; during high school, her health deteriorated to a very dangerous point. Harriet remained Valedictorian for 2 years, joined the canoe and ski teams, danced, figure skated, played the guitar, and continued to participate in a multitude of extracurricular activities.

This year, anorexia prevented her from enjoying her life, and eventually sent her to the hospital. Surprisingly, being hospitalized has had an incredibly positive impact on Harriet’s life. Being forced into eating against her will hundreds of miles away from home has been excruciatingly painful for Harriet, but she has finally realized her own strength, tenacity, determination, intelligence, and will to live a happy and meaningful life. She wants to help others find peace, joy, and significance; She wants to make a difference. Most importantly of all, Harriet has come to believe that she truly matters. Many will affirm Harriet’s new mantra: “I can do anything I set my mind to. I am enough.”