I know, it’s been a while. But I’m back! Woohoo! And I’m here to talk about some… not so fun stuff.
So this is something I’ve never been very public or vocal about on the internet. Eating disorders are ugly business, and, like so many others who have struggled, it was my ugly secret to be kept. But that is some STIGMATIZING BS so we’re gonna break it down.
I’ve had an eating disorder darn near as long as I’ve been alive. After some childhood trauma, I turned to food as a means to control my life. I was 8 when I first started counting calories and purging. As it turned out, this would last a decade.
My ED was a constant presence in my life, varying in severity, but always right there. But when I was 13, things got a lot worse. Beginning sports was a game-changer for me. I am so grateful for my time in gymnastics for so many reasons- it taught me innumerable lessons about hard work, dedication, and achievement. But it also made me incredibly body-conscious.
We don’t need to go into the details of those times- everyone’s heard it a million times. Calorie counting apps, exercising in the middle of the night, going on runs before school, diet pills- I did it all. I spent years cursing my body and grasping at straws in the vague hope that it would give me control over a life that was getting away from me. But in the end, all it did was land me in a hospital.
I hit rock bottom in sophomore year. I didn’t leave rock bottom for a while. What people don’t tell you about recovery is that it a long, messy, arduous process. I spent 3 years relapsing, dieting, gaining weight, losing weight, convincing myself that I was fine and breaking down.
Finally, the storm began to pass. There wasn’t some massive seeing the light moment. It was just years of showing up, of trying every day to break down the thoughts and feelings going into the disorder, and, when all else failed, just fricking eating.
There’s no easy fix. It’s still hard sometimes. But I can tell you that I am the happiest I’ve been in my life. After years of putting myself through hell, I decided to cut myself slack. To value myself as more than a body. And I pray every day for the strength to keep going, that it will be easier tomorrow than it was today. And every day, it gets a little better.
It gets better.