It starts with Katara giving up a meal so that her brother Sokka can eat more. It doesn't take long for Katara to start routinely giving up a meal a day so that others in her tribe have more food to eat. After the sudden death of a little girl, Katara vows not to allow any more children to starve to death. She put her all into hunting for food and narrowed down her meals even more to one a day (and even then, she sometimes would forsake that). It isn't until the day Katara faints that her family decides to step in and finally do something about this downward spiral of hers.
Survival provides examples of:
- Adult Fear: Living in the Southern Water Tribe is always a challenge, even if it weren't times of war. There's always the danger of starvation, especially for children. With so few adults around, it's especially hard to make ends meet. Finding food comes down solely on Katara and Sokka.
- Dark Fic: It's themed around the idea that Katara had an eating disorder prior to the series.
- Death of a Child: A four year old dies of unknown causes, though malnutrition is a likely reason.
- Fainting: While out trekking for food with Sokka, Katara passes out.
- Team Mom: Deconstructed. Katara's desire to take care of others leads to self-destructive habits, such as eating less, which in turn spiral into a full-fledged disorder.
- Weight Woe: Originally, Katara was only fasting so that others would have more to eat, but eventually this turned into an unhealthy body image.