I wrote this letter to myself. Because I knew that doubting my ability to recover from an eating disorder is part of the recovery process.
A Letter to Myself for When I Am Doubting Eating Disorder Recovery
Dear Doubting Me,
I know you are reading this letter today because I told you to read it anytime you’re struggling with old thoughts. And I’m so glad you remembered and took the time to read this.
We knew there would be times like this. Times in recovery where you would struggle with body image, times you would debate restricting again, and times where you compared everything about your food and exercise life to others. You knew there would be times when you’re doubting this whole recovery from an eating disorder thing.
These moments are normal and totally okay! You are not a recovery failure, nor does this mean you have to go back to your old eating disorder behaviors.
Let me take a moment and remind you of 10 reasons why you chose recovery…
1. You want to stop lying to the people you love
2. Recovery means you can go on trips and actually have fun!
3. You want to experience life outside of the gym.
4. Kid’s are fun and you might want to have one someday. But you need to be healthy and have a period to do that.
5. You want to have deeper relationships with people you care about.
6. With recovery, you can go out to eat and not plan on compensating for the meal by restricting the rest of the day. You can fully enjoy the conversation and food when you go to restaurants.
7. You want to be able to enjoy football games again.
8. Instead of always making food and body number one, you want to live in alignment with what you truly care about.
9. You want to stop feeling defined by a diagnosis.
10. And finally, you’re choosing recovery because it’s time to stop merely surviving- it’s time to start living.
Wow. Those are such beautiful things, right? I have watched you doing those things and have seen the utter joy and deep happiness within you during them. I have also seen the pride you feel in finally being able to do them after struggling for so many years. Which brings me to the current moment….
I know you are considering restricting right now. I know you’re thinking about being a smaller size or having a flatter stomach. You may have debated weighing yourself (just once, right?). You might be doubting if recovery is even worth it.
But would you really give up that list above just to have that single moment of fleeting satisfaction?
You are stronger than these thoughts and worth way more than a life defined by numbers, sizes, and lies. You are so much more beautiful than you think!
Push through these thoughts! Reach out for support if needed! Re-read this list 1,001 times if that helps. Do whatever you need to do to NOT go back to those old ways.