Topic Tuesday: Uncertainty
“Uncertainty” (By: Peggy Miller)
If you’re like me, you like to have a plan and know what’s happening – I think that even more spontaneous people want this to some extent. An eating disorder can promise a sense of security when life feels out of control, and taking that security away in recovery can feel incredibly scary and create a lot of anxiety.
I’ve found for me that the uncertainty that recovery brings is very uncomfortable. I have to learn to eat and trust that my body knows what to do with food and that I do not need to count it or have it perfectly under control for life to be okay. I have to trust the truth that my treatment team is telling me more than all the other rules that have brought me to where I am now.
Beyond just anxiety around food and my body, recovery has also brought uncertainty to my sense of who I am and what I want in life. It has also brought uncertainty to my relationships as I have changed from who I have been in the past.
Controlling and using food can feel a lot more comfortable than living life in a world that we really do not have much control over. Never having a voice and always pleasing people can feel a lot more comfortable than speaking up and risking making someone upset. Controlling your weight and size can feel a lot more comfortable than not being sure who you are, what you are good at, or what your future holds.
But, the truth is, life is about a lot more than control.
Some of the sweetest moments of my life have happened in situations I have had no control over. And that’s so okay. Uncertainty is uncomfortable, vulnerable, and imperfect. But it’s not bad.
One of the most beautiful parts of recovery is learning that I have a choice in so many things, and oftentimes there is not a good or a bad choice, but instead just a direction that I get to choose. I get to choose what rhythm of life feels good to me. I get to choose who I let influence me. I get to choose what sounds good for my snack. I get to choose the kind of person that I want to become.
I don’t have perfect control over anything in my life, and that’s okay. Really, my eating disorder did not give me control, rather, it was in control. Life is uncertain, and it’s messy, but that’s okay. You and I don’t have to have everything figured out to start pursuing something we think we might like. You and I don’t have to be totally recovered to start speaking about our stories. You and I don’t have to know what is going to happen in the next year to have a beautiful year.
Lean in to uncertainty, and embrace the uncertainty of recovery for the beautiful thing that it is.
About the Author
Peggy is a college student in Nashville, Tennessee, and hopes to one day become a therapist for eating disorders. She has struggled with some kind of mental illness for most of her life, and has struggled with anorexia for several years before choosing life and recovery by deciding to get treatment. She is passionate about recovery, and hopes to one day get to help a client find the freedom and hope that her treatment professionals helped her find. Peggy absolutely loves people, deep conversations, coffee, and most of all, Jesus. She aspires to show each and every person she meets that they are loved and worth immeasurably more than they can imagine.