on eating disorders
Since the be.come project launched on Monday, my inbox has been spilling over with stories from people about their life challenges, body struggles, injuries, eating disorders, shitty relationships and how they are overcoming these through movement. It’s been a powerful week, and also one that made me realize it’s been a while since I talked about my history of eating struggles.
I battled anorexia and bulimia for many years, starting in college and lasting well into my mid 20’s. Once I won the fight over purging / starving, I was left with a new eating disorder – a mental eating disorder – obsessing over each bite I took and beating myself up over every meal because it was inevitably never good enough.
I wouldn’t eat the day (sometimes two) before I had a photo shoot. I constantly stood in the mirror pinching pieces of my body I didn’t feel were tight enough. When I worked out, I would let the thought of being skinnier consume me until my only motivation came from a place of self hate.
I hoped it would heal. I never dreamed it could disappear. And yet it did. And even though I can’t sum up every little thing that helped me along the way, I can tell you what created the most dramatic shift. I changed the conversation.
I threw away my bathroom scale. I only allowed myself to workout when my reason for doing it didn’t involve vanity or losing weight. I found a nice thing to say about my body everyday. I stopped reading nutritional labels and started reading ingredients. I said thank you to every piece of food I put into my body – even the ones that contained sugar, dairy and carbs. And then I created a business with the same message to help you be.come the same.
I thought it was interesting that I chose this picture to tell you this story. I’m covering part of my face with my hands. In my hands is a crystal representing protection. I’ll let you take that metaphor as you please. To me it shows that our pain and shame can be used for good to help others.