Finding My Feet in Recovery
Our latest personal recovery insight story, comes courtesy of Sophie, who is keen to share how things are going for her, and what she feels is aiding progress:
English was never my strong point, and when coupled with writing about something I find it hard to put into words is a challenge. But I like a challenge, and I like to help and care for people, so I thought I would write something which may help people and encourage them in their recovery. So I am going to provide some insight on what has helped me and what might help you too.
I don’t know where this journey of recovery is going, but I know it has got to be better than the rest of my life with an eating disorder. Even if I am in recovery for the rest of my life it is better than living a lonely, miserable life with an eating disorder.
To me recovery means not being bound by rules, not living my day by routines. Recovery means connection with others and being able to do what I want to do, not what the eating disorder does or finds safe. Small steps forward are at least steps, and I will keep going until the eating disorder does not rule my life.
What’s really helping me at the moment -
- Hearing and believing that other people have recovered. I love podcasts and follow real recovery accounts on social media. Hearing peoples stories on them is so beneficial (note - social media can be positive, but make sure they are the right accounts and not triggering).
- Accepting it is my responsibility to change. It does not matter if I’m inpatient, outpatient, or have the best treatment team in the world; at the end of the day it’s me who has to make changes and sit through the discomfort. No one can fix me except me, and it is only me getting in my own way.
- Doing therapy work which actually feels like I’m working on something, rather than just going to a session for the therapist to say, “so tell me how you feel”, or “what do you want to bring today”. For example, it might involve working through a workbook, using a concept such as a behaviour chain analysis (look it up!), or making goals to challenge behaviours/thoughts. I find this more helpful as often I don’t know what I’m thinking so need someone to take the lead!
Recovery doesn’t have to be perfect, just start. Because trust me, tiny steps really do add up and the steps become wider.
So just do what you can, keep going, and never give up. I’ve fallen down more times than I can count but every time I get back up, because getting back up and trying again is better than staying stuck.
So, on finding my feet in recovery this time round, it’s the most effort I’ve ever put in and the most I’ve wanted and committed to it. Let’s hope I don’t, nor you, fall down again. Seeing others who have recovered makes me think well why not me? If these people have recovered then so can I, and so can you.
To parents, carers, friends, anyone who cares about someone with an eating disorder; hold that hope for them no matter what, and let them know it as much as possible. Because that hope is lifesaving and will carry the sufferer until they can see a way out themselves.
- May 2022