By Sophie Balisky, Silver Linings volunteer
You are reading this blog post for a reason.
You may be lonely right now. You may be cold. You may feel trapped and scared in a dark, hopeless place, your eyesight accustomed to the darkness. You may doubt that you’ll ever resurface into the light of your life as it was before your eating disorder.
I know how hard it’s been for you because I’ve been there too. I’m writing this because I want to give you something…
First, I’m going to throw you a rope. This rope is permission. Permission to reach out. Permission to not take this on alone. Permission to ask for help.
It’s okay if this scares you. Entering back into daylight terrified me too and stirred up a flurry of questions:
If I’m lifted out of hiding what will people see? What will people think? What if my problems are too heavy and I fall back down? What will happen when I surrender the control that has given me a sense of safety for so long? Will I know who I am if I’m lifted away from this illness? What if life without an eating disorder isn’t possible for me?
Now I can’t force you to grab on to this rope, but I can try to convince you to. Why?
Reaching out for help and holding on tight will be the best thing you ever do for yourself.
What awaits you at the top is better than you dare to imagine.
You will find peace with your body exactly as it is (yes, this is possible). You will find space for new and beautiful things. You will find the energy to focus on what really matters to you. You will have the time to cultivate friendships, projects and goals. Smiling will no longer feel foreign and laughing will happen often and with ease. You will truly learn to live again, free from all the constraints of your eating disorder’s rules. You will gain back what you lost in SO many ways. You will gain back YOU.
Reaching out for help will take courage. It will take trust. It will take perseverance to keep holding on when you want to let go.
But I promise you this, no matter how daunting reaching out for help may feel, it’s so worth it! And when you reach out for support, you also take a huge step on the path to recovery.
Go forth. I’m rooting for you.
To learn about Silver Linings’ Adult and Adolescent Support Groups, please check out this link, https://www.silverliningsfoundation.ca/help/adult