The 31-year-old actress told a story about the time she shot the pilot of PLL. It was a freezing December day in Vancouver, but the show was shooting for a summer scene.
She wrote, “Wanting to be the most professional I could be, I sniffed back the snot that was threatening to ruin every take and forced my shoulders to stay where they were, even though I could see my breath on the air. I looked around: Lucy, Ashley, and Shay all seemed cold but fine; they looked professional, powerful. Was I not cut out for this? I pushed that thought out of my mind. Suck it up, Bellisario, do your job.”
Bellisario didn’t want anyone to think she was a “diva” for asking to stop production when she lost the feeling in her feet. She also felt guilty when a crew member offered her help. The actress questioned why she needed to ask permission to take care of herself.
“As someone who struggles with a mental illness, my biggest challenge is that I don’t always know which voice inside me is speaking.”
Bellisario also discussed her history with anorexia and how her mental health affected it: “There is a part of my brain that defies logic. Once, it completely convinced me I should live off 300 calories a day, and at some point, it told me even that was too much. That part of my brain is my disease, and there was a time when it had absolute authority over me.”
She admits the battle against mental illness isn’t easy, but she’s determined to scream back at her disease and say: “I am enough.”
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