This past Saturday, I volunteered at my local food pantry. Interacting with the people who shop for food for their families is truly heartwarming.

It’s been a few weeks since my last eating disorder update, but I have nothing but good things to say. Great news: I haven’t binged at all! Yay! This is really a step forward in my health and wellness. I’ve been eating nutritious foods and craving the not-so-healthy ones less.

I’d also like to add that I’ve been incorporating little treats here and there so I don’t deprive myself of the sugary and salty goodness that I like to eat occasionally. When my family and I went shopping at the mall, I allowed myself a cup of frozen yogurt. Before dropping my younger sister off at camp, we ate hand-scooped Velvet ice cream at the local factory in Utica, Ohio. For several of my post-work out meals, I’ll have a serving of wheat crackers (a tempting food for me) with my eggs and fresh fruit.

My first time eating a Larabar! Yum!

Most recently, I picked up a “Cashew Cookie” Larabar from the grocery store on my way home from the food pantry. It was a little piece of Heaven in my mouth and definitely hit the spot! Larabars are my new obsession.

I saw my counselor Katie last Thursday and the session was great. She weighed me at 123.2 pounds. My heaviest this past summer was 129.2 pounds. So, even though my patience is constantly tested with this natural weight loss process, it’s an unbelievable feeling that I’ve hardly done anything to become 6 pounds lighter. I am eating more (1800 calories vs. 1200 calories), exercising less (45 minutes/day vs. 1.5 hours/day), and intuitively listening to my body’s hunger cues.

I am also happier as a person. I tell you, it’s draining to constantly look at yourself in the mirror and think that you aren’t good enough. No, I’m not where I’d like to be physically, but I’m getting there! There’s so much more to my life than weight. As Katie has been telling me, numbers on the scale should not label who I am. I haven’t fully accepted this fact, but I’m beginning to tolerate and respect it.

With that being said, I have stopped weighing myself on the scale – not by my own will, though. I know, however, it’s best that I don’t weigh myself frequently in the event that my self esteem plummets. I get to see Katie one last time before starting my junior year of college, which is slightly terrifying me. I feel like I’m the baby bird leaving the nest but haven’t fully learned how to fly on my own. I may never know how to fly safely all the time. But, that won’t stop me from trying.

I don’t have to burn 1000 calories on the treadmill, eat rabbit food, or weigh myself constantly anymore…I don’t feel that anorexic desire I had a year ago. It’s incredibly freeing. On the other end of the spectrum, I don’t feel the need to eat 2 bowls of chips or 8 cookies.

I no longer feel trapped in my own addiction and affliction. I’m proud of how far I’ve come so far!

Keep pushing forward,

Julia

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