Do you have a dream that is big enough to beat Ed (aka “eating disorder”)? Would you like to share your story in an effort to help others (and win a copy of my new book Almost Anorexic in the process)? If so, please enter my Dream Big Pinterest Contest! With this contest as well as the new “Dream Big” section of my website, I hope to share many of your courageous stories. In my experience, we heal through connection with others.
Last month, Sarah sent me a letter with her inspirational story. Thanks, Sarah, for allowing me to share your journey.
My dream is to raise daughters who are confident and happy and who know that their worth comes from more than the size of their jeans.
I am still very much in recovery. I have a long way to go. But reading Goodbye Ed, Hello Me has been my biggest turning point so far. I was amazed by this vision you created for me of what a recovered life was like. I’d assumed that being recovered simply meant no starving, bingeing, or purging—but I now see that being recovered is so much more than simply stopping some bad behaviors. Your outlook, your goals, your LIFE just seemed so bright and free and full of everything I could ever want.
I have a two-year-old daughter, Sophie, and am expecting another little girl (Aurora) this fall. Having an eating disorder through two pregnancies has been brutal. I thank God every day that Sophie is healthy and that my baby on the way appears to be doing great too. My toddler is now old enough that she is very much aware of when I am happy and sad—and soon she may notice how that sadness seems very tied to the unhealthy things I do with food.
I finally swallowed my fear and sought professional help for my eating disorder. While I’ve passed on half of my genes to my daughter, I did not want to pass on my skewed relationship with food and my body. I realize that plenty of men also suffer from eating disorders, but I find myself significantly more worried about my little Sophia than I would be about any sons I might have someday. Finding out my second baby will also be a girl has further strengthened my resolve to truly recover and become whole. I want these precious little ones to have a confident, strong, healthy mother, who is a voice of sanity and love in the maelstrom of body image poison they may face growing up.
When my toddler looks in the mirror, she often walks away, only to shout seconds later, “More Sophie!” She then runs back to the mirror, because she’s so tickled at seeing her amazing little self reflected back. My dream is for Sophie and her younger sister to keep that same attitude all of their lives. I know I can’t control everything, and they may struggle in spite of the best parenting in the world. But if there is anything I can do to raise my daughters with a healthy perspective regarding their bodies and food, I want to do it. They are worth it.
I am worth it too. I admit that I have plenty of rough days where I sometimes doubt that I am. But, even on my hardest days, the dream of being better for my girls is always intact. They are my reason for fighting this fight! My daughters are my dream big enough to beat Ed.
As always, I love hearing from you! Please comment and share your experience: do you have a dream big enough to beat Ed?