When I look at the calendar these days, I can hardly believe how fast time is flying. I have always had a problem with living in the moment. It's something I try so hard to do and yet I find myself constantly thinking about happy past times and making up stories about my future. Lately though, I have been much better about it. I have learned that this moment is all I have. That is one of the many lessons I have learned over the last 9 months. I have been overwhelmingly grateful and amazed at how much recovery has changed my life, and seeing as tomorrow will mark 9 months since my Mom made me come into her room, sit down on her bed, and admit to her and myself that I had an eating disorder and that I would take measures to eradicate it from my life, I would like to share with you what this process has taught me so far:
- You will feel worse before you feel better. I can't stress this enough. You won't believe me when you are at your lowest lows...I definitely didn't. I spent months believing that all that was happening was I was getting worse and nothing would ever be good again. But right now I have honestly never been happier. So there's that.
- There are people in your life that are going to be triggers. They can't help it. You can't help it. Accept it, don't stress out about it, remove them from your life, and move on. We can't all be best friends all the time. That's just life.
- Recovery takes way longer than you'll want it to. On October 1st, 2013 I was thinking maybe a few months and I'd be in the clear. HAHAHAHA. Hilarious. It has been 9 intense months of trying to figure out who I am without my disorder and I can say honestly that I am not finished yet. I am not fully recovered and I have do doubt that it will take at least a year. But you better believe I am on my way to full recovery and I will settle for nothing less.
- It is important to celebrate every single victory. Once you accept that (for example) having an ice cream cone in broad daylight with people all around you is something to be proud of, you have the power to be proud of yourself LITERALLY ALL THE TIME. It's amazing.
- Surround yourself with the people that support you and make you feel like the happiest, truest, version of yourself possible. And if you can, be in a show with all guys who are amazing human beings, true gentlemen, who don't give a CRAP what you do, what you eat, or how you look. If that's not possible, keep your friends close. Let the people who love you hold you up, and hold up the people around you in return. Just do me a favor and don't isolate yourself...Emily thrives in isolation!
- As much as it's not about food...it is about food. In order to heal you must eat every meal. It's corny and rhymes but it's the MOST true thing. You're not going to make any progress if you decide to fall back on to bad habits "just once."
When I was at the height of my ED, at my lowest weight, and putting on a happy face for the world, I felt like a perfect china doll. A delicate, precious little waif. I kept my porcelain body on a shelf and kept a smile on my face. Here's the thing though...china dolls break. Porcelain shatters.
Now I feel like a warrior. A woman who is falling deeply in love with herself. Someone who is on their way to full and total recovery...who will not settle for anything less. Someone who is leading a revolution of self worth. Building an empire of acceptance. I believe with my whole heart that we are all in it together. I don't think I can change society. But I think I can make it a little bit brighter for the people around me. Because life is too short. 9 months pass in a blink of an eye.
RECOVERY IS REAL. RECOVERY IS WORTH IT.