Topic Tuesday: Recovery

ecarr“What Does Recovery Mean to You?” (By: Emily Carr)

Recently I have been looking for more ways to spread eating disorder awareness on social media and on my university campus. I am a strong believer that education and prevention are some of the biggest tools that can be used to combat the onset of an eating disorder.  As one way to spread awareness on social media, many individuals who are in recovery/have recovered from an eating disorder are choosing to share what recovery means to them through the #Recoveryis hashtag. I honestly didn’t think there would be a day that I would have positives to share about recovery. Recovery is scary, difficult, painful (physically and psychologically), uncomfortable, and slow. It often means sacrificing time, education, your career money, your reputation, and some relationships with other people. There is nothing easy about recovery and there will never be anything easy about it.

Eating disorders can have a tricky way of convincing us that we are worthless, unworthy of love, incompetent, and without purpose. It’s easy to believe these lies when they are constantly repeated in the back of your mind. I must share this simple and profound truth with you today: You are worth recovery, and recovery is always worth it. You are worth more than a diet or workout routine. You are more than what you eat or do not eat, and you deserve to live a life free from bondage. 

Recovery, no matter how hard it is, is worth every ounce of blood, sweat, and tears because it gives you a change to come back to life. Here are a few things that recovery means to me:

#Recoveryis having enough energy to play with my dog outside.

#Recoveryis going to a restaurant and not being afraid to order what I actually want that day.

#Recoveryis believing the truth that I am made in the image of God.

#Recoveryis rediscovering my purpose and passions.

#Recoveryis being present and engaged with my friends and family.

#Recoveryis learning how to love myself, including my imperfections.

#Recoveryis growing in compassion and understanding.

#Recoveryis embracing the messiness of life & living in every moment.

#Recoveryis choosing to workout because I want to, not because I feel like I have to.

#Recoveryis sharing my story so that others may find hope and healing.

As we approach the new year, I want to encourage you to think about the positive things that are coming out of your recovery. How has recovery changed you for the better? Has it enhanced your relationships? Has it helped heal your body physically? Does it give you energy? Does it mature you? Has it grown you in compassion? Do you now have a different perspective on nutrition and health? Is it allowing you to connect with other people in a different way? What parts of your life has it enhanced?

As you progress in your journey, you will see more and more positive aspects of recovery and less of the negative. Recovery is freedom, recovery is a choice, recovery is hard-work, recovery is a new start, and recovery is always worth it.

About the Author

Emily Carr is currently a Nutrition and Dietetics student at Tennessee Technological University. She is a lover of Jesus, who believes her purpose in life is to love God and love people. She enjoys spending time with her friends and family, writing, hiking, learning, and playing with her dog Maddie. Upon graduation, she hopes to attain a dietetic internship in order to fulfill her goal of becoming a Registered Dietician. Her goal is to learn how to best take care of herself so that in the future she can help others find peace and healing in their relationship with food. She hopes that sharing her story will inspire others on their own journey, and encourage them not to give up.