Sharing my story of recovery has been the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done. To be able to take such a negative time in my life and turn it around into something positive is something I’m so thankful for.
I was talking to my dad last night and he made a comment how he always knew I would turn my story around and would do something good with it. My response to him was, “Really dad?” His response was,
Of course, there wasn’t a doubt in my mind.
Maybe he really believed that. Or maybe that helped him cope with the intense stress and scary life we were all living during my disorder.
After his response I let him know that there were times I really wasn’t sure if recovery was in the cards for me. When I said that my heart sank. It sank for the younger me and all of the people I know who are struggling right now. Feeling like you are going to live a life trapped in an ongoing cycle, being a slave to your disorder and the mind games it plays on you is hopeless, draining, and exhausting.
Why I share
Knowing that there are people feeling like that gives me even more reason and purpose to continue sharing my story. It motivates me to continue reaching out, educating, and fighting the stigma that surrounds mental illness and eating disorders.
The more people I reach with my recovery story, the more people will feel confident in their own recovery. More family members will know that there is hope and this is just a minor road block and the destination to recovery is on the map.
I’ll share my story with anyone who will listen and I’ll continue to share it because you never know whose heart strings it’s going to tug at.
You never know who has a friend of a friend struggling. There is help, there are resources, there is support. It isn’t easy, but it can be done.
…and you should too
I used to be ashamed of my eating disorder. Fear and shame kept it hidden from for so long. The truth of my struggle and recovery was tucked away so no one would find it.
So many people do this too. They worry that sharing their story will make others think differently of them.
I thought that too. Until I realized that my story could help someone.
My story IS helping people. I’m not just sharing my story so that people who are struggling will reach out for help, I’m sharing my story so that others who are recovered will stand up and share their story too. We lived it, we fought it, and we are better and stronger because of it.
If even one person hears my story and it means something to them, I’m doing my job. And I won’t stop until the job is done. I didn’t quit on recovery, and I won’t quit advocating either.