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January 23, 2021

Who Am I Now? Life After an Eating Disorder

I’m new at this,
Really,
I am.

Not using labels,
Stories,
Timelines,
Frame of reference points….

It’s all a bit foreign to me,
To not label or identify myself
As someone who struggles
With an Eating Disorder.

For most of my life,
This was my identity,
Whether active in it,
Or hovering somewhere
In the background
Just waiting to
Have its time
On center stage again.

For ten long,
Brutal years,
I fed this title
As if feeding
It kept some part
Of me alive,
Some long
Lost,
Yet to be grieved
Part of myself.

I would begin my
Grieving years later,
Heavy into plant
Medicine ceremony,
I finally broke
Down,
The walls,
The limitations
Between my head
And my heart.

Not to say,
Those walls
Have totally
Vanished,
But they’ve softened,
The edges now made
A more graham cracker
Crust,
No longer iced over
Cinder block.

I’ve been softening
These last three years
Of recovery
From an Eating Disorder
Of many flavors
And shades,
But mostly the shade
Of self-abandonment.

Anorexia at 12,
Then orthorexia,
And here comes
Bulimia at 17
To save the day,
Binge eating,
Exercise addiction.

Round and round,
We went,
Cycle after perpetual cycle.

A carousal I never
Thought I could get off,
Victim to my own
Trauma-made identity.

I tried many things,
Therapy of all types,
You name it,
I tried it.

Shamans,
Healers,
I saw them all.

Until, I realized
I was the healer,
That I had the medicine
Within to heal.

That this love
Was a choice,
An active,
Pro-active
Daily, moment-by-moment
Choice.

A re-parenting of self,
To learn how to say
“Yes” to life
Again,
And “no” to self-harm
In the name of self-neglect.

Three years I stand,
A warrior
Of my own making,
And choosing,
A seeker of
Healing and
Wholeness within.

1095 days
Of being recovered,
Of saying “no”
To the most destructive
Behavior to date…
Bulimia,
My most brutal
Companion.

I’ve told this story
Many times,
So forgive me
If now
I want to tell
A different one.

A one where
Maybe I’m not defined
By my past,
But more set free
By who I am becoming,
Who I’ve always been,
Just needed permission
Of self to be.

Healing is never linear.
It is ongoing.
This I know.
But, it doesn’t mean
We need to stop
Living,
Stop seeking
Out other facets
Of life,
Other unexplored territories
Yet to be discovered.

That maybe,
Just maybe,
The past will always
Reveal more,
But maybe,
The future
Is where we can look
To now.

To stop punishing
The one for
The choices the soul
Made for us,
The lesson we had to
Learn to evolve.
That when we realize
Our journey was the exact
One we needed to take
To be where we are now.

Holy
Recognition
Of
Self.

Eyes seeing
Wholeness now,
Where brokenness
Used to define us.

Wholer self,
Inner radiance
Outward shining
Now.

How beautifully-made
This journey was,
For us,
By us.

I celebrate my journey,
I never really will
Ever stop celebrating
My own liberation,
And my own healing,
Each time I choose
Love over fear.

That journey
Never ends…

And I know the healing
Continues,
Deepens,
Expands,
Widens,
Softens.

For now,
I am a human,
Healed and healing,
As we all are.

And,
Maybe in that,
We need no
More safety
In identifying
With who
We once were,
Because each day,
We’re always
Changing.

But, the Love
That Heals
And Calls us Home
Remains
Our
True
Compass.

No matter
Where we’ve
Been,
And where
We go,
There we’ll be.

Never late,
Always on time,
A coming home
To the self
Beneath
All labels,
All identities,
All past forms,
All future forms.

Untouchable,
Touched only
By those who dare
Venture deeper
Into the Soul.

Heart as guide,
Soul as home…

We will always
Return to,
When we are ready,
And not a moment
Before.

To read more of Anna’ healing journey from an Eating Disorder or to read more of her poetry, check out the links for her books below, available on Amazon.
https://www.amazon.com/coming-hOMe-Healing-Disorder-Imperfection/dp/B08GTL727W/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=

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