I hope this message finds you healthy, happy, and warm on these chilly December days! It’s hard to believe that 2016 is almost over, but I find that there’s a certain magic in starting off a brand new year. It’s a wonderful time to reflect on the year that was, to connect with the here and now, and to project some light and warmth toward the months ahead.
When I first went into recovery, I knew that it was going to be a learning curve, but one of the hardest lessons I had to learn was to do with exercise. There had been so much focus on my weight and eating habits in the early stages of my recovery that exercise was anything but in the forefront. It wasn’t until about a year into my recovery that I was faced with a difficult truth: exercise isn’t always healthy.
I’m very open about my eating disorder history. Something that has resulted in people coming to me privately and saying, “So how did you finally recover?”. I’ll start off by saying that I personally don’t think that you simply recover. I feel like recovery is more of a constant continuum.
The countdown to the holiday season has arrived. For some this is a really exciting time of year and for others it can bring about quite a bit of anxiety. Whatever your feelings are about this season, one thing we know for sure is that it is filled with lots of socializing and eating. Here are a few things I recommend you do to make the holidays more merry and less stressful.
But…do I really want to recover?
Throughout the past years filled with multiple attempts at recovery, it was always this same, tenacious thought that would throw me off the path. Knowing that you need to let go versus actually letting go of your eating disorder...
It’s been said that there’s great strength and power in community. At the Looking Glass Foundation, we definitely believe in that. It’s with our bighearted community of people and organizations, that we truly can make a difference in the lives of others, in the lives of those fighting this dreadful disease. It is with our community, that we can put an end to eating disorders.
One of these organizations is Sympli, a Canadian fashion manufacturer dedicated to helping women feel "wildly comfortable in their own skin".
Question: What are ways that I can assist my child with meal support during his/her recovery?
Answer: Support tends to look different for everyone and what works for one person doesn’t always work for another. Even in my practice, one of my recommendations can cause someone to turn a major corner in their journey to recovery and that same recommendation may fall completely flat on the next person who walks through my door.
Last August, I experienced my first foray into the Looking Glass Summer Camp. This past August, I was lucky enough to attend a second time. Both years I got asked a lot of questions following the week at Camp. Friends and family were eager and excited to hear about the time I had. Last year, I tried to explain in detail how incredible Camp was and why. Somehow though, after these interactions, I felt some of the magic of Camp leave me, like I had somehow explained it away. Not wanting to repeat that experience this year, when asked how Camp had been, I would pause, feel my body ground into the earth, a solidity and peace washing over my body, a smile passing over my lips, and would say, “It was wonderful”.
I’ve been on the other side of my eating disorder for a few years now, but some of the insights and realizations I have gained about why I struggled with anorexia for so long are only just beginning to become clear. Fortunately, my understanding of how and why I am able to stay strong in recovery is also increasingly apparent to me. I’d like to share with you three key lessons that I have been able to internalize and master through my recovery process, that keep me healthy, positive, and resilient in times of stress.
Advice by Kaela: Thanksgiving Is Coming Up And I Am Anxious About How To Navigate The Meal Time With My Family
Question: Thanksgiving is coming up and I am anxious about how to navigate the meal time with me family. Any suggestions?
Answer: The holidays are always a challenging time when you struggle with an eating disorder. Food is often the main focus of Thanksgiving, which makes the whole weekend feel overwhelming.