An ED Recovery Journey

February 22, 2022 3 min read

Abstract image of a rainbow

TW:  This post contains expressive language relating to disordered eating.

 

"Now, this is a story all about about how my life got flipped turned upside down..."

  

No, not from Philly.

 

Let me start from the beginning.

 

My eating disorder was never about the food...

 

I was a normal happy kid , growing up half in Massachusetts and Plano, TX. I had plenty of friends and stayed active with dance class and outdoor activities.

It wasn’t until I went off to college in LA that things started to shift. I was struggling to make friends and keep up with the pressures of school.

While I was never overweight in the medical sense, I NEVER felt comfortable in my body. Men would constantly comment on my butt ALL. THE. TIME. I would try to cover it with t-shirts and over-sized jeans but it was always a topic of conversation when I turned around.

 I was always hungry and even though I was always active I never was able to lose weight.

 But, now I think back- I didn’t need to lose anything. I was beautiful.

I internalized all my emotions from an unstable household. My father was very strict and had a bi-polar wife along with my mother - unable to stay sober.  I tried to be the optimistic mediator for our family.

 The day it started :

 It was the day after the twin towers went down in NYC that I made my initial descent as well.

I was deeply deprived of friends, connection & control that I created a “hobby” that kept me busy. It became my beautiful secret.

What may have started as a way to lose weight - became an obsession to remain EMPTY.

 I had filled myself up with YEARS of anger, fear, and guilt - the purge was a way to exhaust those unsaid, unheard feelings out of me.

 At first it felt great, I was releasing so much pain and anxiety that had been dormant in me. But thru the years I became afraid of food. I was scared to eat anything other than the minimal amount of calories. I didn’t want people to see that I ate or enjoyed food. Food was a sin and I was punishing myself by eating.

It wasn’t until I moved to NYC that my best friend at the time called my whole family to tell them I had a serious problem. I was rail thin and did not want help. I thought I had so much control but really I was powerless to this disease. I wouldn’t stop until my heart would stop me first.

 I agreed to go to a clinical research program at Columbia University to become an outpatient for eating disorders. I went to cognitive therapy and filled out a number of questionnaires to get free medical help.

I found some Overeaters Anonymous meetings in the city and realized there were many people going through the same issues.

 How am I today?

Honestly, eating disorders are so exhausting! I was thin, malnourished and lethargic all the time. I never slept and I was obsessed with what I was going to eat just to let it go.

 I had to relearn how to eat. Once I realized I wanted to live, my relationship with food became about eating to live NOT about living to eat. I am happy to say that I enjoy food and have healthy boundaries with it now. Also, teaching yoga and meditation have also saved my life. The movement calms my anxious mind and meditation helps me observe my emotions.

Food is no longer the enemy, it’s the nourishment to keep me thriving on my path. 

Thank you for allowing me the space to share.

I hope that my story helps someone out there to feel not as alone as I had once felt.  One day & one bite at a time. Be patient.

You are loved.❤️

 

The author has chosen to remain anonymous.


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