Contributor: Kimberly, graduate from The BE Program
My name is Kimberly and I am a survivor. I am no longer a victim of ED and refuse to let him back into my life. My life has been controlled by my eating disorder (ED) for the past twenty years. It wasn’t until just recently that I started living again. I feel like my life has said “Welcome Back Kimberly!”
I have put in many years of hard work in individual therapy, group therapy, working with a nutritionist and even inpatient therapy. Nothing seemed to help me to overcome my struggles until I participated in the “BE Program.” I am not saying that therapy doesn’t work because I truly believe it does. It was my experience that this intensive online course helped me take it to the next level that I couldn’t do on my own. Leading up to this time, I spent many years in a black hole.
I would feel better by cutting myself. There were days that I could barely walk because I had destroyed the bottom of both my feet so badly. My legs are also covered with scars from cutting. It took me a long time to wear shorts because I was so ashamed of what I had done. I would also punish myself by throwing up after I ate anything or not eating at all. My family didn’t know that anything was wrong because to them I was like everyone else. Little did they know that I would go into the bathroom and throw up just to make myself feel better.
My Wake-Up Call
I remember not long ago, walking out of a restaurant with my husband and son. I started walking towards the highway traffic wanting to just end everything right then and there. The only thing I knew at the time was I had just eaten a full meal, felt uncomfortable from what I thought was over eating and was willing to let it all be thrown away. I wasn’t able to see that I had a husband that adored me and a son that loved his mommy. The only thing I knew (or thought) was that I was fat and nobody could or should love me. I would say that was my wake-up call.
I increased my therapy to three times a week and worked harder than ever. I was determined to not only stay alive, but to have a good life. After working on myself I was speaking to my therapist and she mentioned the online course again. I was so tired of going from therapy appointment to therapy appointment, but I was not willing to give up on myself. My entire family was supporting me and I wasn’t going to stop when I was almost there.
I was at a great place in my recovery at that point, but she assured me that the program would help me take it to the next level. I was willing to try anything so I agreed. I have to admit that I had my reservations about beginning yet another program, but I was going to give it my 100%.
I started the program and I knew right away because of my experience in individual therapy and inpatient therapy that this one was different. There were many components to the online program that worked for me. No matter your needs or personality, it would be very easy for you to connect. I think one of the things that made it so easy was that I was able to participate in the program from my own home. I did not have to leave my family.
I had a “Community” of women that knew exactly what I was going through and we were able to share our thoughts in a closed group on Facebook. The other pieces of the program were weekly meditations, weekly webinars with the therapists, daily reflection with reading/written activities and weekly webinar meal/snack support.
There was definitely something for everyone. I decided during that program that I would no longer say “I’ll try.” Instead I would replace those words with “I will!” It’s amazing how changing your vocabulary makes such a difference. Of course, it only works if you are willing!
It was very scary for me to see myself getting better because I didn’t know who I was without my eating disorder or without being depressed. I didn’t know if people would like me or if I would even like myself. Midway through this course I experienced two days of actual happiness. I was genuinely happy for the first time (medication free).
I reflected a lot and decided that I had every right to stay happy. I did not have to go back to my black hole. I decided to choose happiness over ED. That meant that I had to accept that my body was very different than it was in my teenage years and it was unrealistic for me to even try to look the way I did more than twenty years ago. I had to love myself the way I was. If my husband and son loved me the way I was, then why couldn’t I love myself?
I made the decision that I was taking back control and realized that I don’t need to be perfect every day. I just need to do the best I can.
Today, I am growing more accepting of my body. It may not look the way I would want it to, but it is the only one I’ve got. It is my oath to keep it healthy and to take care of it. Where I used to cut the bottoms of my feet and destroy them in order to punish myself, I now get pedicures. Where I used to hide my body behind baggy clothes and hoodies, I now where shorts and dresses. It can happen to you. The question is “Do you want it enough?” Excuses are easier than working for it. Make it happen!
THE BE PROGRAM will help you to transform your relationship with food and body. The BE Program is the first ONLINE program of its kind designed specifically by experts with over 28 years combined experience.
Their mission is to transform your food and body struggles, as an access to creating an extraordinary life. Therefore, they are not only committed to you resolving your struggle, but rather, they aim to have you deeply see how your struggle can be used to your benefit to help you further understand what it is you really want and need in your life.
About the Author:
Kimberly has worked in the education system for sixteen years. She has also worked for the Greater Miami Youth Symphony since 2006 and teaches beginning level music to students. Kimberly is happily married and is the mother of a wonderful son. She has been fighting for recovery since 1994 and can finally say in 2015 that she has accomplished her goal. She feels totally blessed for having such a wonderful support team around her through her recovery process.
The opinions and views of our guest contributors are shared to provide a broad perspective of eating disorders. These are not necessarily the views of Eating Disorder Hope, but an effort to offer discussion of various issues by different concerned individuals.
Last Updated & Reviewed By: Jacquelyn Ekern, MS, LPC on May 29th, 2015
Published on EatingDisorderHope.com