Faith is a hard concept to hold on to when someone is in the throes of an eating disorder. It can feel impossible to look on the bright side when you feel stuck in the dark. But faith is a pre-requisite for recovery. Faith is the foundation for the work that is the path to recovery. You must believe that something better is on the other side or you’ll never cross the bridge.
It’s funny, though, because the “grass is always greener” mentality doesn’t seem to apply to eating disorders. People struggling with eating disorders are perfectly content to stay on their itchy, dead plot of grass. But this is because they can’t see the greener pasture of recovery. It’s like a mirage, something talked about in metaphor but that doesn’t exist in reality. Or it might feel like a foreign land that is impossible to get to, and they don’t speak the language. The greenness can even feel like astro turf - too good to be true. And at least, the familiarity of the current grass provides a sense of safety and security. The confines of a single familiar blade feels safer, more doable than a whole yard of grass. And sometimes, the person feels like they don’t deserve a pasture. They feel like they are only allotted a little and can’t imagine having a lot.
So, part of my job as a recovered therapist is to be the travel agent and tour guide for recovery. I have to use my experience of crossing the bridge, of knowing what it’s like not to just visit but to live in the land of recovery. I stand as a model of possibility, of hope of finding a net after taking a leap of faith. …… teaching clients that they deserve the greener pasture……teaching them that they’re invited to join the club of recovery. There is no magic password. Just faith and hard work.
As someone trying to recover, you have to make the choice to take the leap or to stand on the precipice forever. Recovery can’t be something you dip your toe into. For it to be fully felt and completely comprehended, you have to immerse yourself.
- Carolyn Costin
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About The Movement:
My name is Daniell, and I am the creator of the Internal Acceptance Movement (I. A.M.)
Need support? Have a question?
The Internal Acceptance Movement is an online space that advocates self-acceptance, healthy body image, recovery from self-destructive behaviors and addictions, and the acceptance of all people, regardless of what they look like, who they identify as, what they have been through, and where they come from. I. A.M. is a space that offers support to those battling their inner demons and strength to continue fighting when all hope seems to be gone.
I. A.M. represents the idea that as human beings, we aren't defined by anything external, such as our weight, appearance, body shape, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, clothing choices, income, occupation, or background. But that instead, it's our internal qualities--our character and attitude, our passions and dreams, our soul and spirit, our heart and capacity to love, our goals and morals, and the way in which we treat others--that are truly self defining.
Whether you're battling an eating disorder, self-harm, alcoholism, drug addiction, depression, PTSD, low self-esteem, anxiety, self-hating thoughts, poor body image, or any other mental health condition or self-destructive behavior, I. A.M. exists to remind you that you are NOT alone in how you feel or what you're going through; that it's okay to not be okay, and that you don't have to face this pain alone; that things can and will get better; that healing and recovery are possible; that there is nothing wrong with who you are; the who you are is enough; and that you are deserving of happiness, love, and acceptance, always.
I'm here if you need me: whether it's support, someone to vent to, a question, or you just want to say hi--know that this is a safe place and that you aren't alone. If I don't respond immediately, know that I'm not ignoring you. I will message you back at my earliest convenience. If you have an emergency or feel that you want to hurt yourself, please, please call 911. I'm not a therapist or a mental health professional of any kind. If you're in danger, you need to ask for help from people who can adequately support you. Sending you love: Daniell