What I’ve Learned in Recovery


I promised myself that I wasn’t going to make a Thanksgiving post.


Because honestly, scanning the blogosphere, if I see another post about “Pumpkin Pie,” “What I’m Grateful For,” or my favorite…”How Not to Gain Weight During the Holidays”…I’m going to hurl.


Dramatic much?




But seriously, it’s undeniable. The interwebs are positively saturated with such Thanksgiving-esq topics. What could I possibly have to say that’s even remotely worth reading for 3 minutes.


And maybe it’s the fact that Delta is already playing Christmas music, but, as I’m sitting here at the airport, waiting to go home to visit family, I’ve decided to shed some light on my recovery. What it is that I’m truly grateful for … because to be 100% honest, when I was entrenched in my anorexia, I did not even know what a life in recovery would look like. What freedom would actually feel like. I was so enslaved to my anorexia that I couldn’t even imagine a life without it. Truly.




So, for the beautiful warriors out there who are facing this food-centered holiday with paralyzing fear and anxiety (trust me, I’ve been there)…this is for you.


I’m grateful that I can be truly present with my family.


Especially around the holidays, there was always stress, always tension about food and my health and how it was tearing my family apart. I’m grateful that I can have fun with them, drink alcohol, share hearts and have the focus of our time be on each other, and not on ED.



I’m grateful that I can wear clothing and have it fit.


I know I’ve mentioned it before, but celebrating my healthy body is something that is not only liberating, but also fun. Dressing up in lovely clothing and actually filling it out is an amazing thing. It was literally an agonizing thought during my disease, but wearing clothes that fit and — dare I say it — look good on my figure — is something worth celebrating. And spoiler alert: weight restored does not mean fat.



I’m grateful to have my body temperature back to normal.


Always being cold is not fun, or attractive, or something to be proud of. It is a sign that your circulatory system is shutting down: read: your heart muscle is weak.



I’m grateful that my bones have rebuilt themselves.


Again, being osteopenic with post-menopausal hormone levels as an 18-year-old is a grave side effect of eating disorders. Not something to be glamorized or joked about. Period.




I’m grateful for friends, and for having opportunities to socialize.


I spent years – literally years – during my anorexia saying no. Not answering the phone, not returning calls – in isolation with my one “true” companion: ED. I’m grateful for the friendships in my life and all the fun I’m having! I work hard all week and live for the weekends. Friday night. Saturday night. Sunday brunch. (Followed by Sunday church) 😛 But seriously, I am so grateful that I’m finally allowing myself to be loved. Allowing myself to receive love. It is still a journey I am on, but I’m making great strides and that is something to be grateful for.



I’m grateful for the lessons I had to learn the hard way.


Not that I’m grateful for the anorexia I endured, but I am grateful for the lessons I learned and the growth obtained from it. My anorexia shattered my pride. It is an ugly, disgusting, thing, but I was very prideful, very self-focused, making my body and my “social status” an idol in my mind. And I’ll tell you what, looking in the mirror at rehab, having destroyed (temporarily, thank God) the relationships in my life, having missed my high school graduation, skeletal, having my hair fallen out, grey/blue skin with peach-fuzz all over from the absence of nutrients, without passions, faith, hopelifeless in every sense of the word – that pride was completely annihilated. Nonexistent. I was no longer the “golden girl.” I was the girl needing saving.



Which leads to my last thing I’m grateful for.


I’m grateful for being saved.


When I was at that bottom of rock bottom, I couldn’t get out by myself. I was unable to save myself. I did not want recovery. I wanted to cling to ED. My anorexia was all I had left. But Jesus came in. Jesus loved me through that pain, that shame, that brokenness. And it was only because of His doing that I was able to leave that pit of ED hell. So I am grateful for that.


Lastly, I am grateful for you.
Which is insanely cheesy, I know. But I have so loved and appreciated getting to know each and every one of you through this blog. Sharing my heart with you, and having it be received with warmth and love is a gift that you have given me, that you will never know the impact that has had on me and my recovery. I pray for all of you every night, and I want you to know that I am grateful for your friendship.


I hope you all have a beautiful Thanksgiving. Whether you find yourself with family or friends, know that you are loved. And there is so much to be grateful for. And a life in recovery will be one of the greatest gifts you will ever give yourself in this life.


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BBB: Because we're all recovering from something. // For speaking/business inquiries: beautybeyondbones@yahoo.com

205 thoughts on “What I’ve Learned in Recovery

  1. Hey girl!!
    its your friend… who had a page before than cancelled it, but i want to tell you i started a new one, cause i really like writing it makes me happy. do check it out!


  2. Hey girl
    i dont know what happened but i thought i left a comment on your blog but its me your friend i created a blog long ago called itsmemy3 but i took it down, well i started a new one cause i really felt the need to do so if you want check it out : stories870.wordpress.com


  3. What a lovely style of writing you have! It’s like I can hear you through your words. What us Thanksgiving? We don’t celebrate it here in Australia and New Zealand. I’ve heard that it’s got something to do with a massacre, where men, woman and children were tortured, raped and murdered. I don’t know who by. Forgive me my ignorance. Thank you for liking my post/blog. Jx


    1. Hi Jodine! Thank you for stopping by! Thanksgiving celebrates when the pilgrims came over to America from England on the Mayflower. They were escaping from persecution, and such was the birth of America! The first thanksgiving celebrated the fact that we had food and shelter and religious freedom in a new land. So today, it’s just a time to reflect on all the things we have to be grateful for in life. ☺️

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh Ok, they must have been doing those things to the native Indians. That’s what happened back then unfortunately. Thanks for filling me in. I’ve always wondered why America celebrated Thanksgiving hugely then straight into Christmas. Our white ‘founder’, for want if a better word, was Captain Cook. He ‘discovered’ New Zealand and Australia. ..and ended up getting eaten by the natives in Cooktown, about 4 hours North from me in Cairns lol. Karma is a wonderful thing. Jx


      2. Well, he messed with the wrong natives that’s for sure! I’m looking forward to Christmas & family. I LOVE presents! Giving AND receiving. It’s been a long year for me. I’m spending the day in the garden tomorrow trying to revive my tomatoes. ..sigh! I keep forgetting to water them…lol. I’m off to sleep now. It’s 1.45am, Wednesday morning, 2nd Dec. 😪


  4. Sounds like you have over come a lot. That is awesome! Way to go. You have your whole life ahead of you, emphasis on life. 🙂


  5. The start of your post made me laugh and say oh @#$%. I did that on my blog, but hey I kept it short… lol. On a more serious note, I always enjoy the strength that shines through your posts and admire your courage to share your story and cheer your recovery to wellness!


  6. Wow. I admire the courage it takes for you to share your journey. When I was single I dated a girl that was bulimic, so I learned a lot from that experience. I have taken the recovery journey myself for things so I am interested in blogs like yours. Your friend in recovery.


  7. Praises for you in being in recovery. Praises to God for showing you the way through! Thanks for stopping by and having a read at justencourage.com. So glad I came on over to read about your victory! Blessings!


  8. I am so impressed and inspired by your writing. Aside from being a quadriplegic, I am a recovered alcoholic. When I collapsed in my kitchen over two years ago, I was completely sober. I had been in recovery almost 3 years. The timing seemed quite odd – and yet we know that Jesus has a greater plan than what we can imagine. Thank you for sharing your heart and being so vulnerable so as to help the rest of us overcome our own obstacles.


    1. Thank you so much! Wow thank you for sharing your story. Yes, Jesus absolutely has a plan for all of us. One that is good and one that uses everything for good. Blessings and love to you on your journey! Hugs, friend!


  9. Good to know that you overcame anorexia. Even i had suffered a lot from anorexia in the past. My friends used to call me mute, because i didn’t like to talk to anyone. But by GOD’s grace, HE helped me to overcome it. Like to read more of your articles on how you overcame anorexia.


    1. So sorry that I am only now getting back to you! somehow I missed your comment way back when! Thank you for sharing a bit of your story. I’m so glad you’ve overcome that. Yes, God is GOOD and praise Him for rescuing the both of us:) sending big hugs xox

      Liked by 1 person

      1. O my goodness!!! Long time no see!!
        Even I’m sorry for giving a late response, I got really busy with my job so I couldn’t get time for blogging….
        Hey congratulations for having 18,000 followers, which is certainly not an easy task but you achieved it. Hats off….
        If I’m not wrong, it was my first comment on your site BBB.
        Thank for checking out.


  10. Crazy God moment that you liked my post, because I used to struggle badly from anorexia and have recently been thinking about blogging it to help others. This was the sign I needed 🙂


    1. Hi Ruby! Oh, I’m so glad this was the encouragement that you need! I’d definitely love to read your story and will cheer you on if you decide to take the plunge and share:) sending so much love and hugs to you. So glad you’ve found freedom and have kicked ed to the curb! xoxox

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Still running a surplus, Beauty. Look at all of the responses you get from people who get a lift from you. Look at all of the affirmation you get from them. How many lives have you made better by showing the buried the light at the exit? When they never even thought there was one. When I taught, I had some memorable successes with people. You are doing he same here, but on a much more critical scale. Again, thanks for putting yourself out in the open, thanks for your support to me. You are refreshing!


    1. Gosh, thank you so much Jeffrey. Seriously. Thank you for such affirming words. I have been simply astounded by the outpouring of support and encouragement on here. I am simply humbled and grateful. I started this blog with the hope that maybe – just maybe – One person might find hope in the struggle. All I can say is that God is good. God is so so good and will use all things for His glory. I can’t take credit for any of this-the writing-nothing. I literally sit down at the computer and say, “okay god what do you want me to write.” I am just the broken mouthpiece. And I have to say how incredibly encouraged and affirmed you have made me feel, with your continuous reflections and insight. That is a true gift you have given me. So thank you with all my heart. You are a blessing ☺️

      Liked by 1 person

      1. This will sound like a non-sequitor, but the book Killing Christians by Tom Doyle is something of a parallel to your mission. It’s about Muslims who have chosen Jesus in the Middle East where the risk of martyrdom is very real. The book tells the stories of several who became Christians. Some still live, others have been killed. But, like you, they are all about how, with God, “Been there. Defeated that.” VERY inspiring!


  12. I just wanted to stop by and let you know I admire you and your strength in recovery. Thank you for spreading awareness about the disease, but for also highlighting the joys of recovery. Journey on, recovery sister.


  13. Hi im very new to wordpress and i love your blog
    I think its a good way to express ourselves and i think you are extremely brave. Im still starting up but could you follow me back? Stay strong hun xxx


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