This is My Story. This is Who I Am.
I have a part of me that I’ve kept secret for a very long time. It’s been very sacred and precious to me because its something that I’m so very proud of. I don’t want anyone to ruin this thing that I have, and so I have tried to keep it safe inside of me and haven’t shared it with many– only those who understand, who get it.
However, as this part of me has grown over the years and has turned into an amazing business and life for me, and is now completely supporting our family financially, I feel it is time to truly let the world know what it is I have been hiding all these years.
I had a hardcore eating disorder.
There, I said it.
I was severely depressed and suffered from extreme anxiety and PTSD.
I used to do drugs and abuse alcohol as well, however those weren’t as seductive or satisfying as the eating disorder. It was easy for me to quit drugs, relative to the eating disorder.
Because you can just put those down.
You can’t just stop eating.
As I open up about this part of me to you all, I feel a slight hesitation as there has been so much shame attached to this in the past, which is why I never wanted to talk about it with you.
I’m at the point now that I just don’t care, and I am going to take a risk and be vulnerable anyways because this is my life.
This is who I am.
I am not going to feel ashamed about a part of me that at one time was horrid and ugly, but is now beautiful.
I’m talking about hating yourself so much that you want to die.
I mean fucking waking up every morning and despising the very skin you are in, and wanting to cut all of it off, and wanting relief from being who you are every second of every day because you fucking hate it.
I’m talking about being so desperate and afraid and alone that you will do anything to try and make the pain stop.
These are the parts that people don’t understand. “Oh but I thought that the eating disorder was so that you could be skinny.”
No, bitch, no.
I didn’t want the eating disorder so that I could be skinny.
I wanted it so that I could disappear.
I didn’t want to be here in this life.
I wanted to punish myself so bad.
I wanted to die— or let me re-phrase that, the EATING DISORDER wanted me to die.
I tried to kill myself several times in my life. The first time I tried to hurt and kill myself was at a very young age. I don’t know why I grew up not liking myself. I just didn’t. I thought I was ugly and fat and disgusting and why would anyone like me.
I did anything I could to escape that person that I hated so much. When it wasn’t enough, and it wasn’t enough, and it wasn’t enough… slowly over the years the grip of the eating disorder was getting stronger and stronger… and eventually it took over my soul and consumed me.
It controlled me. It was powerful over me.
I surrendered to it most days because it was pointless to try and control it.
At my worst, I wasn’t digesting anything at all for months and months. I couldn’t. My body wouldn’t let me. I was binging and purging probably 10 or 15 times a day. I couldn’t stop it. My body was deteriorating and breaking down.
I was scared but it was okay. I wanted to die.
I numbed my pain during the day with cocaine and weed, then at night I would buy enough food for a family of four and binge and purge my brains out.
It felt so good at the time, and I understand that you probably don’t get that. You would only understand if you have been through it. It felt so good, because that is why we do it. It provides such a relief, and the only thing that shuts up the evil voices in your head is to engage in the eating disorder. You don’t have any other choice at that point.
There were many days where I felt my body shutting down and I was paralyzed. First it happened with my hands, they locked up in a fist and I couldn’t move them. It was scary and the panic attacks came more and more frequently. Then it started happening to my feet and legs, and I would temporarily have to stay laying down on the floor because I literally couldn’t get up.
Now this part is the most shameful of all, but I’m going to share it because I think it is important for me to let all of this out. I am really good at talking about everything else, but the actual behaviors with food is what is the weirdest and strangest to me sometimes.
People say a lot to women with eating disorders, “why don’t you just eat?”
Well, FUCK YOU, if I could eat I FUCKING WOULD.
My body had gotten so used to purging that that is what it did. It purged up everything I ate, automatically. I didn’t have to do anything or stick my fingers down my throat. I just better sure be near a bathroom so I don’t have to be uncomfortable with my food traveling up my esophagus or I’d have to swallow it back down. Feels better just to get it out.
Anyways, as a result of this I obviously lost a lot of weight. I loved it at the time because it meant that I was skinny and disappearing.
I started shopping at the children section in the store. My bones started to stick out and be really noticeable to others. It was uncomfortable to be looked at in this way, I didn’t like it but I couldn’t help it.
In the summer I had no body fat and even though it was 90 degrees outside, I still had to wear many layers because I was just cold all the time. My body started to grow lanugo on it, little hairs that newborn babies are born with, as a protective means to keep me warm. I hardly remember much from this time in my life.
But I digress.. LOL I didn’t even share the part that was the most shameful yet. I think it is that I used to have to throw up in bags because if I threw up in the toilet or shower then it would get clogged. It was just too much.
I would eat and eat and eat and eat and then throw up in zip log bags and take them out to the dumpster. On my way to work I would stop and get food and know all the bathrooms on the way to work where it was safe that I could purge. I would purge outside, anywhere I could.
It was this big giant secret that I kept from everyone but then again, obviously the people in my life knew I had a problem.
After a few near-death experiences I honestly knew that I needed help, and there was this piece of me that pushed me to reach out. I almost died doing it too, it felt so hard and painful.
I did it and ended up in a treatment center which saved my life obviously but that was not the end of it. Of course not, it would not be let go so EASILY.
The eating disorder is malicious and vicious and sly and cunning and does anything it can to sneak back in. Within 2 months of leaving treatment at a almost-normal but still low body weight, I was right back to binging and purging and doing drugs.
But this time it wasn’t just cocaine and weed. It was meth. I started tweaking and working a full time job in California. I started to go down that deep dark hole of depression and isolation again for many many months.
The one thing that I can say was a miraculous event was getting pregnant with my daughter. I never thought I could get pregnant, but somehow I did and during the pregnancy I experienced the first relief from the eating disorder thoughts and behaviors.
I thought I was done with it. But that’s not how eating disorders work. You can’t just decide to stop using the behaviors if you haven’t done the deeper work underneath to make it go away permanently.
Honestly, most women NEVER recover. It is a fact— anorexia has the highest death rate of all mental disorders, and the percentage of people who go on to actual “FULL” recovery is low.
But no one really knows because people define this differently. Some professionals believe that if you aren’t engaging in the behaviors and have a normal body weight that you are “fine.” You can be “recovered.” This couldn’t be further from the truth. Because I “looked” fine on the outside after I had my daughter, but slowly and surely those evil voices started screaming inside my head again and I relapsed into the eating disorder again. I didn’t understand why and I was angry and pissed off at myself, which made it even worse.
To make a long story short, this has been a struggle for me for a long time and I was finally ready to be done with it.
So many people in my life told me that I would never make it. I left AMA (against medical advice) from the hospital one day when I was in the depths of the eating disorder chaos, and I had the director of the program tell me, “You are going to die if you leave these halls.”
I gave them all a big FUCK YOU and walked out the door.
I knew that what they had to offer just didn’t work for me.
That was my third time going inpatient, and I knew that once I left that I would be left to my own devices, and I still hated myself, I still felt out of control, and I didn’t know how to be “normal” without it.
Inside those walls it is all about control and monitoring and rules, and to be honest, it was easy— easier than being on the outside. It was safe. However, it fed into the eating disorder’s illusion of control.
It didn’t teach me how to do this OUTSIDE of those walls. They were only concerned with how it looked on the outside. About “coping” and “managing” the “symptoms” of this life-long “dis-ease.”
I didn’t just want to “struggle” and “manage” and “cope with” the disorder for the rest of my life. What the fuck would be the point of life?!
I WANTED TO FUCKING BE FREE FROM IT. FOR GOOD.
I made a decision that I was going to recover.
I dove headfirst into this new way of life for me and had to shift and change EVERYTHING about myself, and challenge EVERYTHING I believed about myself and the world and that was fucking scary.
Now that does NOT mean that it was easy or that I didn’t have set-backs. Of COURSE I did. I fell down. I fucked up. Shit got messy. Many many times.
However I never gave up and I started to shift into thinking about the lessons I was supposed to be learning from it. I started to believe that everything that was happening to me was happening for a reason, if I could just get outside of myself enough to see the jewels of wisdom contained within my pain.
It was the beginning of a beautiful yet terrifying and challenging journey for me. And it’s still not over. I continue to grow and change and evolve and learn my lessons, but I can wholeheartedly say that nothing from the past is true anymore.
I am a completely different person.
I am freed from all of those dysfunctional eating disorder chains.
I have found peace and happiness inside of myself.
The biggest shift of all is that now I fucking love the shit out of myself!! And not in a selfish way, I just love and understand and have so much compassion and appreciation for myself like never before.
I know and believe with all my heart that I am fully recovered and will never ever ever go back to that life again.
Even if I wanted to. I could not. I know too much and have come so far, that it isn’t even in the realm of possibility to treat myself in that way ever again. I love myself too much now.
Because that’s the core of it— the biggest thing that made the biggest difference that I had to work on the most in my recovery was loving and accepting myself.
I used the eating disorder and everything else for so long as a way to escape who I was. I didn’t accept myself. I didn’t love myself.
In doing the work on myself, I began to see my brilliance and my magnificence and truly learned to love who I am. And trust me, it took a lot of hard work to get to this point, lol!! I’m just being honest here. It was NOT easy.
But I love who I am now and it is only because of my past that I have become the amazing woman I am now.
Without all of the shameful things from my past, I would not be where I am now, and for this I am grateful.
This is also why I am sharing this with you today. Because my pain has turned into my greatest gift and for that I am proud.
That doesn’t mean that life is perfect and unicorns and rainbows all the time. That is far from the truth. But what it does mean is that I can actually deal with it now and see it all as lessons along my path.
It is here to teach me what I need to learn. I resisted feeling what I felt for so long because I thought I couldn’t handle it.
What I found is that I am strong beyond belief and I have endured so much struggle and pain that nothing could truly be worse than this.
I have come SO FAR since then.
I have been fully recovered for over 5 years now. One day I had an epiphany after doing the work on myself, and realized that “I am fully recovered!!!” It was no longer an issue. I didn’t worry about food, I didn’t hate my body, and in fact it was completely the opposite.
I LOVED my body. I had made peace with food. And biggest of all, I made peace with myself and started to enjoy life again.
I found joy for the first time in my life. I found my true authentic self, I discovered who I truly am, and I found it in my life after my eating disorder.
It tore me apart, and had to break me down to nothing before I was able to build myself back up again.
When I realized that everything had been such an amazing gift to me, I immediately wanted to give back and share this wisdom and knowledge that I had learned with others who were still struggling.
Somehow I just knew I had to do it. I felt an impulse inside that I couldn’t ignore. I volunteered for a nonprofit organization and began mentoring women in my spare time. We would do weekly phone calls together, email and text in between our chats.
And you know what? These women created MAGIC in their lives from what I shared with them. It was amazing and it blew my mind.
I couldn’t believe just from answering their questions and what I was sharing with them made such a HUGE difference in their life. I felt on top of the world just talking with these women.
I did it out of the goodness and generosity of my heart and dedicated so much of my free time simply giving back and being present to witness these women’s stories.
I allowed them the space to be heard and share their deepest innermost feelings, thoughts and secrets. And in doing so, they were transformed!! Their lives were transformed in truly magical ways.
Many of those women that I worked with in the very beginning are now fully recovered and are helping others to do the same. It is amazing to me.
At this time in my life, however, I was extremely unhappy with my career. I had a series of businesses that all failed and didn’t know what I wanted to do— all that I knew was that I had to work for myself because I wanted to stay at home to raise my kids.
I hired a life coach to try to motivate me to build a business that wasn’t truly my passion… and she knew it. She started asking me questions like, “what would I do if money wasn’t an issue?” “what are you passionate about?” and “what could you do all day long that you love and would never get sick of?”
My answer was simple— “I want to work with women.”
The next week I quit my job and launched my website— Healing for Eating Disorders.com. I didn’t know what I was going to do, or how I was going to make money with it, all I knew is that I am here to serve.
Fast forward 3 and a half years. I am now living my dream life and love love love my business and everything I get to do on a daily basis, which is a miracle and a blessing to me!!!
This hasn’t been completely easy and it hasn’t been without hard work and struggle at times, but it has all been worth it.
I work my business full time and it completely more than supports our family financially at this point. It feels so good to say that because it has taken a lot of hard work to get to this point.
I work with women all over the world to help them heal and fully recover from their eating disorders. I am a coach, a mentor, a healer, a holistic life coach, a consultant, a teacher, speaker and inspirational leader.
I am many things to these women but most of all I feel that I act as an example to others.
My life is my example and I lead through how I live my life.
I don’t sit up on a pedestal and tell people how to live their lives. I literally get down and dirty and go into all the stuff that no one wants to talk about, or feels comfortable sharing with even their therapists, and we heal it.
We create HUGE visions for these women and I support them in going after their dreams and following their passions.
I help them learn how to be more assertive and stick up for themselves, and believe in themselves and their abilities.
I help them see how valuable and special and brilliant and magnificent they are.
I guide them into peeling back all of the layers of all the old programming and conditioning that has developed over 10, 15, 20, 30, sometimes 40 years or more of struggling with dysfunctional thoughts and behaviors.
I teach them how to be courageous and feel their feelings so they can forgive themselves and heal their deepest wounds.
I show them how to have faith in this world and in themselves so that they can also believe that full recovery and freedom from the eating disorder is possible for them, too.
I hold their hand and walk the path beside them along their healing process, because I have already been through it and I help show them the way.
They know that finally someone understands and they finally feel heard and loved and validated, and in this way they also learn how to show up for themselves and love and accept their own selves.
I allow them to be real and honest and authentic and reveal a part of themselves that has never been allowed to show itself before.
I create a safe and sacred space for their healing work— and challenge them to face their fears, while I sit back and witness and provide guidance throughout their healing process.
It is not always easy but it is always rewarding.
It challenges me to step up into my brilliance and most powerful self every single day.
It allows me to be more of myself and integrate more and more of my higher self into this physical body every day, and so in that way this healing work I do with others facilitates my own evolution.
Because that is why I am here— to help heal the planet.
I am a light worker and I am here to shine my own light and give others permission to do the same. Through my own work on myself, many are also liberated.
I am here to help women heal and truly own their true authentic selves and take back their power as powerful co-creators in this world.
It is amazing the power that comes from connecting with this deeper part of you, and the work I do also facilitates the connection with their intuition and accessing their internal guidance.
We are evolving out of the space where we are externally driven out of a place of fear, and into an internally driven place where we act only out of love— for ourselves, others, and the world.
This is the essence of this work, and in fact is my Divine Purpose.
When I show up in this way out of LOVE and offer myself to others, MAJOR transformation, growth and evolution occurs.
These women are able to finally forgive, accept, and let go of their past which frees them to be present in the moment, appreciating all that is, but also dreaming and creating their futures.
It is an empowering process and one that I would encourage all to go on, if you are ready! This work is not for the faint of heart and it takes being a courageous warrior to go on this journey… if you are ready to wake up and take responsibility for healing your life.
In this way, this is my gift to the world and I am speaking of it from a place of such deep gratitude and joy that I cannot possibly express in words. Many days I experience an overflowing of these amazing feelings of grace and bliss and love and gratitude and joy that it brings me to tears. I am bawling as I write this because sometimes it feels like I am living a dream and I have to pinch myself and remind myself that it is real.
Imagine that— just 10 years or even 7 or 8 years ago, I could not imagine that my life could even possibly remotely look like it does today.
I followed my heart and it has led me into the most wondrous and amazing places I only imagined back then.
I am a creative soul and I am here to give my gifts back to the world.
This is who I am.
A woman with big dreams and an open blissful heart.
I open myself up to serve.
I open myself up for the grace to flow through me as a channel for Divine Light and Love.
I am a vehicle for this healing energy so that the women I serve receive the higher gifts of wisdom that they need for their own evolution along their own personal growth paths.
We are all here to support each other along this journey.
I am just so blessed that I get to be a part of healing humanity as a whole.
This is who I am.
Hello, world. Thank you for letting me share and witnessing my story as I continue to evolve.
I love you.