Monday, June 10, 2013
A picture is worth a thousand words.
In 2008, I was at the height of depression. I had just dropped out of college, unable to cope with my life and my emotions. I had just left an abusive relationship and moved back in with my mom. I was addicted to fast/frozen food. I was afraid to leave the house to walk in public. I played video games, read books, and made art all day, every day... anything to escape reality. I had no idea where my life was going, or whether it was going to continue from one day to the next.
I've pulled myself out of that place. It wasn't easy--indeed, I still struggle a great deal with anxiety, but it is SO MUCH BETTER now. I've sought out support... I've developed coping mechanisms... I've cultivated self-worth and self-esteem... I've learned to accept and even love my body, despite its flaws.... I've discovered and eliminated a dietary intolerance to gluten (which was probably the reason I was so red in the before picture)... I've completely changed my attitude towards food, and my exercise habits.
Over the past five years, I've moved back out on my own, gotten a part-time job for my friend's software company, gotten engaged to the most wonderful man who is supportive of my health goals, and I've re-enrolled to finish my bachelor's degree.
It takes time. If you are struggling, be patient; things don't change overnight, but be assured that they /can/ change if you don't give up :)
I have a long way to go in my journey, but it is not daunting as it once was--it's more like an adventure. I know I can do it. I am grateful for all that I have been given and all that I've been able to achieve... as well as for those who have helped me along the way. Sometimes, I just have to stop and look at pictures like this to appreciate how far I've really come. . .