I want to share something very personal with you and that is that I recently started working with an eating disorders specialist. If you’ve been reading my blog for awhile, then you’ve probably read about my struggles with emotional eating. I’ve discussed it on and off, but I never really come to any conclusions. The truth is, I’ve suffered for nearly 30 years with episodes of binge eating, restriction, and body image issues, and I’m ready to do something different.
About two years ago, I joined a program to learn mindfulness techniques called Emotional Brain Training (EBT). While the program isn’t focused specifically on eating disorders, it has been an incredible experience for me in terms of stress management and learning to feel and process my feelings. I was part of a weekly telegroup for almost a year and a half to learn and practice the skills and “graduated” from that program in early March.
For awhile, though, I’ve had increasingly difficult times with food and my body image, partially because of wonky hormones (PCOS) and weight fluctuations since having my thyroid removed. So, rather than spend another 30 years obsessing about the size of thighs, I decided it was time to get specialized help. The therapist that I found has a background in EBT and binge-eating disorder and we’re using that as a framework.
It’s embarrassing to admit I have these issues and, frankly, it’s been as hard and sometimes harder to deal with than having cancer. However, I’m proud to say that I’m getting help and I only wish I had done it sooner. One of the issues I’ll be examining in my own head and hopefully exploring here is how to move forward with my whole foods, plant-based focus, without running into issues of restriction and “good” and “bad” labels.
Even though I’ll be sharing my journey of recovery here on my blog, I would be remiss if I didn’t encourage anyone else suffering to seek professional help (I’m not a medical professional and these are just my opinions). There are some wonderful resources on the National Eating Disorders Association website. I’ve also gained a lot of insight and courage from fellow bloggers including Lynn of The Actor’s Diet, Gena of Choosing Raw (and all of the stories in her Green Recovery series), and Amanda of Running with Spoons.
I love this photo of a sunset I took recently near the beach combined with a quote that gives me hope for the future:
Be well, friends.