Sunday, February 26, 2017

Dear ED

In honor of #NEDAweek, here is something I found from an old journal entry that I wanted to share:

July 25, 2012
"Dear ED-
Hello, it's me-Brooke. I know you know me. We know each other very well. In fact, most of the time I can't tell us apart. We have such a strange relationship. I want to keep you around but I don't want you to control  my head. I'm scared to let you go because I don't know who I am without you. I thought we were friends, but I'm finding out that you lie to me. I've always relied heavily on my feelings and been easily swayed by my emotions, but that's where you live. You live in my feelings and emotions and twist them into lies. Do you know how hard that is for me? I don't know how to not trust my emotions which means I don't know how to not trust you. I want to want you gone, but I'm scared of life without you. Doesn't make much sense, does it? I'm sad of life with you, but scared of life without you. I guess that makes me stuck."

Thankfully, 5 years later, I can say that I am in a different place. I have experienced who I am without ED. I have experienced tastes and glimpses of true freedom. I've become unstuck. And while recovery isn't linear, as Shauna Niequist says, "We don't arrive. But we can become. And that's the most hopeful thing I can think of."

NEDA week 2k17

February 26th-March 4th, 2017. It’s officially #NEDAweek. I’ve had so many conflicting thoughts about posting about this, but the theme of this years NEDA week is “It’s Time to Talk About It”, so here I am. Did you know that at least 30 million people of all ages and genders suffer from an eating disorder in the U.S.? Did you know that eating disorders are more common than green eyes? It’s definitely time to talk about it. But why are we so afraid to talk about it? It’s a topic that brings about a lot of shame and hard emotions. However, Brene Brown says that shame cannot survive being spoken. So yes, it’s time to talk about it. Because we all have a story and all of our stories are valuable. We all have things we are good at and things we struggle with and things that make our hearts smile and things that make us weep. And that’s the beauty of life. (Disclaimer: Recovery is one big Brene Brown quote). Anyways…Brene Brown also so wisely said, “the irony is that we attempt to disown our difficult stories to appear more whole or more acceptable. But our wholeness, even our wholeheartedness, actually depends on the integration of all of our experiences.” Isn’t this so scary and so true? Being vulnerable is so hard. We refrain from telling our stories for fear of critique and judgement. And yet isn’t that when we feel the closest and most connected to others? When they are open and raw and honest and emotional with their stories and experiences. We are all works in progress and we are all in this life together.

National Eating disorder Recovery Tattoo Design:
So this NEDA week, even if you don’t struggle with an eating disorder, there are still ways to be participate. Be open and honest with your story, ask for help when you need it, take time to relax and take care of yourself, eat a healthy breakfast, exercise because you love your body, get off the scale, smile at yourself, really listen to others as they share their life experiences, embrace your story and know that you are exactly who and where you are supposed to be, and love well, including yourself.