The Girl Who Didn’t Want to Grow Up

Isabelle Caro

€ 15,00
Publisher: Cairo Editore
Pages: 240
ISBN/EAN: 9788860522047

«There’s a photo of a woman on the billboard. Or, at least, of a creature of the female sex, judging from the two little bags of wrinkly skin that are hanging where there should be breasts. Yes, because the creature in front of the lens is completely naked. Sitting on a smoky grey background, one leg stretched out and the other slightly bent to conceal the pubes. But the bones are very visible. This photo makes me feel ashamed. Because it’s a photo of me.»

This is the beginning of the story of Isabelle, whose gigantomachy became impressed on everyone’s mind and shook the conscience of many. The story moves back in time from the advertising billboards to her childhood in the Paris region lost in the shadow of her suffering mother and two absent fathers, her biological father and her putative one. Isabelle was a recluded child, kept away from playing in the garden, forced to wear dresses and shoes that were too small for her. Her mother doesn’t want to lose her, doesn’t want her to grow up and go out into the world. She is driven by love, by fear and by madness.

That is how Isabelle’s descent into the hell of anorexia begins. Days marked by the scale, by obsessive calculations of calories until the first few times this “walking skeleton” was taken to hospital. Years marked by the oppression of her mother, the indifference of the doctors, the inadequacy of the facilities, the ignorance displayed by everyone else. But it is also the story of Isabelle’s superhuman efforts to get out of the tunnel that was leading her to death. Isabelle fought against her illness – her body still shows the signs – yet she is here to testify that this battle can be won. There is no bitterness in her words, even the rawest ones, but there is the hope that for every indifferent person, there will be another ready to understand and help. The girl that didn’t want – didn’t know how – to grow up today emanates great strength that forces us not to look away any more. And she invites us to do something: «The next time you pass an overly skinny girl on the street, give her a smile. She really needs it.».

The author
Isabelle Caro, born in 1982, is a stage actress who now lives in Marseilles. This is her autobiography.

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