Creating Space

I didn’t want to be sick,

I didn’t sign up for tears and self-hatred.

 

I didn’t choose this real-life nightmare,

I didn’t dream of sleepless nights and empty days.

 

I didn’t try to hurt my family,

I didn’t intend to isolate, hide, or pull away.

 

But,

I did get sick.

I did hurt those that I love.

I did some serious damage,

to myself and to others.

 

Then one day,

I did ask for help.

I did go to treatment.

I did tell my story.

I did begin to heal.

 

I started to understand the battle I was fighting,

as I tried to love, I had only been practicing hate.

Every inch of me had become a war zone,

victory brought destruction, and failure fueled fear.

 

Before,

I was too much

but never enough.

I was losing control

as I tightened my grip.

 

I didn’t willingly hand over years of my life to sickness and struggle.

 

I did choose to pour myself into recovery and healing.

 

Recovery is a tricky thing, though.

My recovery now, looks very different than it once did.

 

Now,

Hard days aren’t as scary.

Triggers are better managed.

Coping comes more naturally.

Routine is less rigid.

 

Eating disorders come in all shapes and sizes.

So too, do the pieces of recovery.

The answer isn’t black or white,

it’s the grayest gray I’ve ever seen.

In recovery,

Emotions are dealt with, not always effectively.

Boundaries are set, at times with little grace.

Victory can be defined as: working a job, cooking a meal, or embracing confidence.

It can also be defined as: getting out of bed, wearing a pair of jeans, or acknowledging pain.

 

I can only imagine,

from the outside, this must be confusing.

For those standing by, aching to lend a helping hand,

those who would take the pain away if they could.

 

On the inside though,

I must say, it’s not too much clearer.

The ups and the downs,

I often don’t understand my own inconsistencies.

 

Recovery means,

Functioning.

Thriving.

It doesn’t always include extraordinary breakthroughs.

Recovery means living.

 

If we are going to get to the other side of eating disorders,

Something’s Gotta Give.

 

If we are going to get to the other side of eating disorders,

A safe space to navigate recovery needs to be created for each individual.

 

If we are going to get to the other side of eating disorders,

The space created needs to be flexible and patient, even if not understood.

 

If we are going to get to the other side of eating disorders,

The gift of space needs to be held without expectations, boundaries or timelines.

 

Recovery is no longer the focus of my life,

but I am living my life in recovery.

Eating disorders aren’t for life,

recovery is.

 

If we are going to get to the other side of eating disorders,

The space created to fall, rise, breathe, cry, learn, need, give, laugh, be, break, heal, rest, and live…

 

It needs to be created.

 

~ Jenna Spowart

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