Please note that this is an Archived article and may contain content that is out of date. The use of she/her/hers pronouns in some articles is not intended to be exclusionary. Eating disorders can affect people of all genders, ages, races, religions, ethnicities, sexual orientations, body shapes, and weights.

Author: Rachel

It’s been a long road. A long, bumpy, torn up road, but I’ve made it. I have made it through the darkness and through the tunnel of despair. I am now ready to step out into the sunlight where I can see others, and most importantly, where I can see me. I can’t say that it hasn’t been hard, or that I haven’t stumbled countless times. I’ve found myself in many ditches that seemed impossible to get out of, but they weren’t. It just took the a helping hand to pull me out, something I wouldn’t have accepted before. I have learned so much here at the Center for Change. I have learned more about love and life and dreams than I ever thought possible.

For a long time, I carried an extra load of baggage behind me on my road to recovery. It held me back for quite some time, but soon enough, I started to unhook that baggage, and leave it in the past where it belongs. Without that extra load, I have been able to travel so much faster, and efficiently. I have learned to accept myself for what I am now, and to accept what the past has made me while moving on.

I cannot possibly explain the joy that I feel in life. Coming from the depths of despair into the light is more glorious than can possibly be explained in words. When I came to the Center for Change, I believed that I wanted to recover, but that it was ultimately impossible. I had been submerged in my eating disorder for too long. I couldn’t possibly escape, even though I wanted it so desperately. Over time though, I have realized that it is indeed possible to escape. The impossible has happened. So I guess it was never impossible after all. I just believed that it was.

All I can say to women who are struggling with this is that it is not impossible. Granted, it is a long, hard road, but the blessings that come from traveling it are far better than the traps that we fall into on the road of an eating disorder. It is nearly impossible to travel this road alone. By accepting the help of others, however, the road seems to flatten out and becomes easy to travel.

I wish that I could turn back time, and spend more time with the people that I love doing things that I have always dreamed of doing. I don’t wish that I could take back my eating disorder. The lessons that I have learned from it, and the blessings that have come from my pain are priceless. I would not give back a second of the hell that I endured for over three years of my life. It has taught me about love, life, and about all that I can do and endure in this life. I realize now that my eating disorder was a crucial part of my life. It has played a part in who I am today, and in what I want to become.

I know that in the middle of the darkness, it is difficult to see the light, the hope. It is there. Life is possible. Just remember that there is a reason for everything that happens in our lives, good and bad. If I continue to attempt to block out the bad, I will also miss out on the good things that life has to offer.

I am constantly astounded by people thinking that I have done so much, when I feel I have barely begun. I believe that I am capable of so much more. I believe now that I can take on anything. I guess that it is mostly because of my spiritual beliefs that I know I am not doing it alone. This lightens the load, and allows me to release some of the pressures and allow others to carry them for awhile while I decide what to do with it. I have realized now that in order to change myself, I need to be open to my mistakes, and accept them as part of me. I am now ready to change and grow even when it begins to feel uncomfortable.

I have completed a piece of the road, but there is much yet to come. Now I feel confident that I can take it on, and continue to progress on the road. The road is still full of bumps, and opportunities to stumble. I can choose to stay down or to get back up and try again, for now.