Photo 1: 34 years old and happier internally than I ever been. I highly dislike the word #bestlife because for me, I need to make a conscious decision every day to feel OK. And ok, is great for me. Most or all of you will never know this about me and most days are fantastic. But some days, I give in to feeling the thoughts that physically manifested Photo #2: 13 years old, bulimic and anorexic, depressed and anxious, highly perfectionistic, shy, not always wanting to go on, but inside my heart, I had dreams and faith that I would get better. That by the grace if God, I would get healthy, I would look better, I would follow my dreams and I would feel “normal.” (But really, what is normal anyway?) lol. Psychological services weren’t as prevalent then and it was a scary thought to have to go to someone to get therapy and medication. I only went on my own volition years later and even then, sporadically. I felt ashamed, I felt like a fraud, I felt like I can really, truly help people. But I had a hard time helping myself. I didn’t want to be judged. I cared what people thought of me.
That shame and secrecy are what feed the insecurities, the lack of worth, the addictions. I didn’t choose alcohol or drugs as my way to cope, although people close to me did. I chose eating disorders and over-achieving. But ironically, my drive to get better (the hardest battle of my life), has made me a warrior in many other aspects of my life. But I have learned to let go of the constant fighter in me and let people in. I have learned to be more vulnerable. I am so much happier now in my work and relationships.
But there is no magic cure. It is working to get help, it is a daily conscious effort and it is relapses at times and being angry or sad at stepping backward. But whatever you or a loved one is facing, it will get exponentially better. Know that not everyone will understand or care. But the ones that do, they are your tribe! And having faith in God. Always.