Most people in my life don’t even know about my illness, I spent so long ashamed of myself and scared that my experience wasn’t serious or valid enough to talk about, to get help for.
My illness took over every part of my life; I distanced myself from friends, stopped attending my classes, and worked as much as I could. I lived alone with my boyfriend at the time, and I never quite felt like enough – of anything – for him; not pretty enough, skinny enough, good enough. I told myself every day that the issues in our relationship were caused solely by the size of my body, that once I reach a newly set, impossible to maintain, unhealthy goal weight, that everything would work out. I would be ok.
Eating always seemed to be accompanied by a sense of guilt, and an endless stream of voices in my head. I didn’t recognise the voices as my own, but they were in my head so who else could it have been? I seemed to be screaming at myself.
I knew I needed to change something; I’d fallen into a toxic mentality of telling myself that I needed to change myself in order to be loved. I realised that happiness won’t come from changing my body, I needed to change my MIND about my body. The same body that I had malnourished and abused was all the while trying to protect me.
In honesty, the recovery of my body was almost accidental to begin with. I would find myself eating when I was hungry, rather than welcoming the hunger pains like an old friend or a sign of victory. After realising I was gaining weight, I didn’t know how to respond. Part of me felt – and still sometimes feels – like a failure. Like I had lost control of myself, as if I no longer took pride in my appearance. I was worried that I’d walk down the street and be the subject of people’s whispers about how I’d let myself go. Gaining weight seemed like the end of the world.
Until the first time I heard the Blend Kitchen Mantra ‘Good Food Does Good’.
For the first time since becoming unwell, I felt myself surrounded by pure positive energy.
On a weekly basis I now witness food, once the enemy, change peoples’ lives for the better. Through seeing the beauty of someone with confidence as low as mine has been achieving such incredible things, I see the beauty of food. Food brings people together when I would starve myself, I would feel isolated and alone. Now I enjoy lunch with friends and family dinners with a great big smile on my face.
Of course, I sometimes still hear a little whisper of a voice in my head, but the more time I spend in a food-related workplace that puts such good out into the world, the quieter that whisper becomes.
Good food REALLY does good.
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