Name: Mary L.
Location: California, USA
Student at Boston university, competitive synchronized swimmer
How has Beating Eating Disorders helped you?
Beating Eating Disorders has provided positive recovery minded posts to fill up my newsfeed. It always seems to have an article that applies or quote that I need to hear. It has also been helpful to share articles and help my friends and family understand what I am going through.
Where are you in your recovery journey?
I have been out of treatment for 6 months and am in the gray area between being in my eating disorder and being recovered. Being in this “in recovery” phase is so hard because it’s difficult for me to honor and validate myself where I am at. However, it’s also teaching me how to live in the gray and accept myself the way I am.
What are your future recovery orientated goals?
My goal is to advocate and use my story to decrease the stigma related to mental health and eating disorders. It’s something that affects so many people and it needs to be addressed, accepted, and supported by the community. Eating disorders are a disease and just like cancer patients need treatment and care, healing from an eating disorder requires treatment and care. You would never tell a cancer patient that their disease is fake or they don’t need treatment so why do people have that stigma with eating disorders?
What is the most helpful thing someone has said to you? What has been the most harmful?
Most harmful is “you don’t look like you have an eating disorder.” Most helpful is a Winnie the Poo quote my mom always said when I was struggling, “you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think”.
Share some of your recovery insight:
I think the quote that sums up my recovery process is “the wound is where the light shines through”. Recovery is the hardest thing I will ever do. Recovering from an eating disorder was hard but making the active choice to stay in recovery every single day is even harder. However, it’s also the most fulfilling and the most worth it choice I’ve ever made. I want my life back and with ED I’m never going to have that. So I say that ED is no longer welcome in my life and I want to live.
Is there anything else you would like to add that you want people to know? Any advice to give to fellow sufferers?
My favorite song quote: “future gardens from all this rain, future flowers from present pain”.