Since I was sixteen years old, I have felt betrayed by my body. Most of the battles I have fought with my body have been underneath my own skin. Potent diagnoses, mostly invisible to strangers, acquaintances, and loved ones alike.
Over thirteen years ago, symptoms for rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia began to emerge. It’s an autoimmune disease that I deemed “was only for old people” and stepping into a life of chronic pain, joint inflammation, muscle tension, exhaustion, and weakness felt overwhelming. I hated asking for help, hated not being able to do simple things on my own, and hated that there would now be many circumstances where my body would prevent me from earning my worth by how hard I worked. I resented my body for failing me.
Eighteen months later, another battle began. After ending an abusive relationship during my first semester of college, I started starving myself. Unbeknownst to me, the perfect storm had already been brewing and this was the catalyst that sprung anorexia into my life. I had already believed that my worth resided in being the smallest girl in the room, that I gaining “the freshman 15” was unacceptable, that I wasn’t really that pretty anyways and being thin was the only thing I had going for me in the looks department.
Thankfully, I had some incredible interventions and people in my life who helped me sort through those lies. It took months and months (really years and years if we’re looking at the big picture) to create new rhythms for myself, where self-deprecating comments weren’t a regular part of my thought life.
And then… the big one. The most daunting battle I’ve yet faced. Read More…