My name is Meredith. I recovered from anorexia and I recover each day of my life. I was enslaved to my eating disorder for over 25 years and came out the other side. Now, full of hope and serenity, I need to write about it. My main goals are to inspire hope for those suffering with eating disorders and to share concrete skills and tools that helped me to recover.
At an early age I started to feel uncomfortable in my own skin. I placed much of my focus on body, weight, and shape and I started to deal with my feelings in unhealthy ways. Through the years I suffered from anorexia, bulimia and exercise compulsion. I was always in my head. My mind was constantly racing. Inside I was completely empty. I was merely a shell of myself.
I would have these rare occasions where I would think “There has to be more. I want more. I deserve more.” I would have a brief surge of energy to conquer this disease and think that my whole life was going to change for the better and then seconds later I felt fat and disgusting and the anxiety within me was nearly impossible to tolerate. The disease would win.
At the age of 35 I entered into an Intensive Outpatient Program in New York City. This was my last shot. If I continued on my path of eating disordered behaviors death was likely. The program marks the start of my recovery. The program gave me the building blocks to recover-invaluable tools, and it was my responsibility to practice the skills and make them part of my everyday life.
Being thrust into the world without the bubble of my program protecting me was scary. Recovery is hard. My journey was difficult. Throughout it I suffered; I rejoiced; I had victories and breakdowns; I found healing and suffered. I wanted to give up and desperately wanted to move forward. I fell down again and again and I always got back up.
I am a survivor and I am also a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. I help others who struggle with eating disorders and other mental health issues. I have tremendous gratitude that my dark path can possibly lead others to the light.
Now recovered, I feel a joy so deep that I can feel it resonating all throughout my body. I use skills daily to accept my body, follow my meal plan, reframe my negative self-talk and expose myself to new situations to further my recovery. Recovery is always active. Recovery is a daily decision to fight and to live. I am here to inspire hope and share skills I use to live a life of recovery. Hope exists. Serenity Exists. Happiness Exists.