I’ve debated about posting this for a long time. But, I felt that it was important, and I owe it to myself to celebrate how far I’ve come. And as long as I am sharing the positive parts of my life on here, I owe it to all of you to be open and honest about the hard times, as well.
For most of you – friends and family included – you probably never knew that I battled an eating disorder. That's perhaps one of the scariest truths about eating disorders: they're not always obvious. Just by looking at me, you wouldn't have been able to tell that I was struggling. I suffered with bulimia on and off for three years, and it was the biggest, most shameful secret I’ve ever kept from anyone. It became my reality behind closed doors, part of my daily routine. I lied to my family and friends. I kept it to myself and let it weigh on me for months and months. It took a toll on my relationships. It ruined my life. I had completely lost sight of the beautiful person God created me to be and let my own distorted self-image take over my life. I felt alone, simply because I was too afraid to ask for help. I ended up in the hospital because of it. But it wasn’t until the fifth or sixth time my mother asked me if I was "okay" that I finally admitted to her, and to myself, that I was not. A huge weight was lifted off my shoulders that day and I felt like I could finally breathe again. Just telling someone – that was the first step to getting my life back.
If you can relate to my story, if you’re struggling in any way, take that first step and talk to somebody about it. Don’t stay stuck. It is okay to ask for help. People are willing. People care. I wish I had talked to someone sooner. I wish I had listened to those who loved me when they told me I was “perfect” the way I was. I wasted three years of my life hating myself, not feeling good enough, killing myself to achieve an unrealistic and unreachable "goal."
Recovery wasn't something that happened for me overnight. It was an uphill battle. I relapsed. Several times. But I grew so tired of lying and hiding things from people who were trying to help me. Without their support, and without God's unfailing love and mercy, I would probably still be struggling with those issues today.
But I'm not. I'm healthier and stronger than I've ever been. I have come a long way and am proud of it. I no longer hate my body for how it looks. Instead, I love it for all the amazing things it does for me, and for how hard it works every day.
If you’re thinking about doing something, changing something, I am here to tell you that you can fight your demons (whatever they are) and win.
“I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” – Psalm 139:14