On & Off the Ice

The Winter Olympics have been ruined for me.

No, not because a squirrel got hit during the snowboarding slalom race.

daniela-ulbing-squirrel-twitter_806x605_51519540346

Nor because a curler was caught doping. I mean, who knew that ice-shuffleboard was so physically taxing…

Juuuust kidding.

No, I’m talking about ice skating, sadly.

Little known fact, when I was growing up, I went through a phase where I wanted to be a figure skater. And I did for a little while. But didn’t like the hours of practice I had to be on the ice alone.

fullsizeoutput_5286
bahahah

 

Anywho…

During my stay at inpatient for anorexia, there were actually several girls there who were former figure skaters — who had developed their ED during their time skating. It was apparently “rampant” — their words — in the sport.

And so since then, I have never really looked at skating the same. The poise and beauty I was seeing on the ice was now tainted with the knowledge of what those young girls were potentially enduring off the ice.

So this year, when last Olympic’s ice skating gold medalist – a fifteen-year-old phenom from Russia – didn’t return this year, in the prime of her career, my antenna went up, and my nose smelled a red flag. ((Let’s try to get one more mixed idiom in there))

Doing a little digging, and tipped off by an article one of my wonderful readers sent me, it turns out that this Russian skater: Yulia Lipnitskaya had to hang up her skates due to health complications from anorexia. ((And I’m not outing her here, she is very public about her battle.))

And that is the same storyline for Gracie Gold — another Olympic darling and defending bronze medalist – who didn’t skate this year due to complications from an eating disorder.

It is sadly a skating narrative that is all too familiar.

And my heart goes out to those brave girls, and I’m praying for them and their recoveries.

But how fitting, that the women’s final skate fell on the eve on National Eating Disorder Awareness Week.

IMG_2389
Shop this look!

Last week, I said I would answer your questions to help foster an understanding. But I must preface by stating, that I am not a doctor, therapist, dietician or health professional — I’m just a girl, sharing my experience. And if you think you or a loved one has an eating disorder, please seek professional help. Truly.

So okay, thank you for sending in your questions. Let’s get to them!

IMG_1288

I’ve been told that once nutritional intake is improved/regulated that the eating disorder voice diminishes … did you find this to be the case or did you find you had more resolve?

There’s 100% truth to the notion of a “brain fog” when you’re hungry. During my anorexia, my body was so depleted that the fat pads in my brain had deteriorated, so I was not thinking clearly, at all. And so this made the ED voice incredibly loud, and my decision making skills incredibly impressionable. But once I started nourishing myself, and those fat pads in my brain began to grow back, my cognitive thinking radically improved. And it was then that I realized, wow, I could have died. I’m playing with fire. And it was then that I started truly attacking recovery and fighting back against the voice of ED. The ED voice, during my initial recovery, was always in the background, but resisting it is a muscle, and the more you resist and the stronger your recovery, the quieter it gets.

img_2435

Do you have any tips for fighting apathy or ambivalence towards recovery?

Yes! Ok, this is going to sound crazy, but go with me here. I got angry. I thought about all the things that I used to love to do – like play sports, sing, be goofy, hang out with my friends, etc. – seriously write them on a paper and make a list. Then I thought about how ED stole those things from me. And it got me so angry. ED is a liar and a thief. I then decided to reclaim my life and fight for the life that ED stole from me. So every bite I took was a way to reclaim those items on my list, and give a big “F-You!” to ED. I would imagine the Rocky theme music playing in the background, and it became personal. I was angry. What’s the saying….Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned? Well…there you go.

Also — go to different restaurants or buffets — like a Chinese buffet or something — to help you fall in love with food again. Buffets especially, because you can try little bits of lots of different things. Go with a trusted friend or supportive parent.

img_1464

What would be an appropriate, kind comment to make to someone who has recovered or is in recovery? Is there something that would be well received? Or should we just not mention anything about it at all?

Great question. Because many well meaning comments — i.e.: “You look so healthy!” or “You look great!” — can be very triggering. Because all she hears is “You look fat.” So I would just stay away from the image comments all together. Perhaps something along the lines of, “I’m so happy to see you!” or “I’m so glad you’re home! I can’t wait to spend time with you!” The topic can be addressed, but maybe not as the first thing you say. Maybe in a quiet moment over coffee, you could mention how grateful you are that she made the courageous decision to get help/embrace recovery. And then, mention that you think she looks radiant, or that there’s a light behind her eyes that is beautiful. Something that is not pinpointed on how her body looks.

img_0402-4

At what point does obsessive turn into an eating disorder?

This is a very tough question. Because it is different for everyone. I think, ultimately, one would need to look at the obsessive behaviors — because that is usually a red flag right there that there is some sort of underlying issue, eating disorder or not. An eating disorder in itself is an obsessive disease. But an obsessive condition is not always an eating disorder.

But food rituals are definitely a sign of an eating disorder, and those can become obsessive – i.e.: eating in specific order, chewing a certain number of times, insisting on eating at a specific time, etc.

An obsessive preoccupation with weight or calories or body image – definitely a sign.

But there are true physical signs of an eating disorder: loss of period, anemia, difficulty sleeping, abnormal blood vitals, etc.

Are eating disorders genetic or learned?

Both. There can be biological predispositions, but also, environmental factors are very influential, too.

img_4145-2

Do you have to binge or purge to have an eating disorder?

No. There are many different types of eating disorders: Anorexia, Bulimia, Binge Eating Disorder, Orthorexia, Compulsive Exercise, OSFED (Other Specified Feeding or Eating Disorder) This is a very informative link about the different types from NEDA.

With an eating disorder, do you see yourself in the mirror different than what others see you?

Yes, this is called Body Dysmorphia. And it can temporarily linger even after you’re in recovery or weight restored. Basically, it is the stereotypical image we see of the skin-and-bones girl looking in the mirror and seeing an overweight reflection of herself. That is truly what it is like.

In my case, yes, the physical reflection was something I struggled with, but after recovery, I would see a hideous image of myself, as I was projecting all the shame and guilt I felt from my disease onto my reflection.

This is precisely why mirrors are so harmful during the weight restoration period, and why inpatient facilities don’t have them. In fact, to this day, I do not own a full length mirror. It just is too…I just can’t.

img_3489

How do you talk/approach someone that clearly has an eating disorder?

With gentleness and kindness. Without judgement or criticism. With concern and honesty. In privacy and a one-on-one setting. Without presumption or accusation. With patience and a willingness to listen. With knowledge that she is probably going to lash out in anger or hurt. With love and compassion. With resources for professional help. With an offer of support and confidentiality.

img_9813-1

Did you ever feel like you were just going through the motions of recovery for everyone else rather than just yourself? What was your motivation to recover? 

Oh this one is a doosey. I have to be honest, and yes – there was definitely a season where I was just going through the motions. And that’s when I relapsed. Because I wasn’t truly recovering for myself. I was doing it for everyone else — and no one can want your recovery more than you.

But my motivation to recover, is honestly Jesus. He is my recovery. Without Him and His strength I couldn’t do it. I had to realize that I had worth because of His death. He took away all the guilt and shame I was carrying around from the ED, and truly renewed my spirit. He forgave me, and helped me forgive myself. I want to live a recovered life because I want to live it in praise and worship of Him. I know that sounds super cheesy, but honestly, all the other mumbo jumbo about, “body positivity” and “loving yourself” and “mindfulness” — yes that can be really great. But frankly, those feelings are just that — feelings. And they can fade. And during a really hard day, no “body positivity” quote is going to carry you through those tough moments. Only Jesus and His love that saved me from the grip of death.

For more insight on my recovery, as well as what specifically helped me embrace a new life, you can get my book, Bloom.

img_9186-2

Thank you for reading. Recovery is a day in, day out, decision. And every day, remind yourself that you are worth it! 

img_8286-2

***THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO HAS ORDERED MY BOOKS, BLOOM: A JOURNAL BY BEAUTYBEYONDBONES AND “MY BLOGGING TIPS“***

CLICK HERE TO ORDER YOUR COPY!

IMG_2739________________________________________________________________
STAY CONNECTED!

@beauty.beyond.bones – Instagram

Facebook

Twitter

YouTube

A big thank you to my sponsor, BetterHelp Online Therapy.  Speak with an online therapist. Or check out content about eating disorders from BetterHelp.

Next time you’re shopping on Amazon, be sure to stop by my link, amazon.com/shop/beautybeyondbones first! Doing so is absolutely FREE for you, and a great way to support this blog! (When you stop by my link first, whatever you get on Amazon will give this blog a little kickback :))

My favorite item someone purchased last week was a Three-Toed Sloth Stuffed Animal! So if that was you…THANK YOU! 🙂

patreon

For Podcast versions of my posts, please check out Patreon! You make this blog possible 🙂

***NEW!! For outfit details, you can check out my LIKE.TO.KNOW.IT page or follow me in the Liketoknow.it App!

Glitter Wallpaper

Published by

beautybeyondbones

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

135 thoughts on “On & Off the Ice

  1. Fat pads worsening the problem. It reminds me of the many ways in which struggles and sins entrench themselves, create self-feedback loops, cut off escape routes, defend their positions at all costs. Thank goodness for Christ and his strength to redeem!

    Great encouraging word, C.

    1. Thank you Brandon. That’s so true – ED definitely does everything it can to keep a foothold in ones life. Amen to that! He redeems! Hugs and love xox

  2. Wow. This was pretty eye opening, thank you for sharing! Along with Christ saving us, we should also look to the people that He puts into our lives to help us recover and understand ourselves.
    Beautiful💕!

    1. Thank you so much Karen. That’s so SO true – God has given us a support system. And it’s up to us to let them in. 🙂 thanks for reading. Hugs and love xox

    1. thank you so much for taking the time to read. it really is a sad secret about the sport. glad you stopped by! Hugs and love xox

  3. Man…I didn’t get to watch much of the Winter Olympics, but I am definitely prayimg for those ice skaters (and athletes/performers in general). Public figures are under such unimaginable pressure to perform and please. It so often results in self-destructive paths for those simply trying to cope and make it through the madness of trying to live up to unrealistic, unfair, and often unattainable expectations…not just of others, but our own. Praise God for Jesus, in whom we are beloved and accepted by our loving Heavenly Father…and whose love we don’t have to work to earn. We simply need to receive it by faith. Though it’s a process with ups and downs…So freeing! So healing! Sorry…didn’t mean to ramble/preach. As always, your writing blesses me so much and is so universal for anyone recovering from…anything. I’m in love with your words. Real talk. Carry on, Souljah. 😘❤💪👊

    1. Yeah I will definitely join you in that prayer. So true. Thanks for your compassion and support! No need to apologize! I appreciate hearing your thoughts! Sending big hugs xox

  4. I am just here to congratulate you on a healthy , strong,, informative and enertaining blog. I may have done this already at some point.

    I am old and do not suffer from an eating disorder, but freqently stop to read your blogs when they come to my busy i box just because they are so refreshing, honest, and inspiring.

    1. Thank you so much 🙂 what a kind thing to say. I’m so glad that you have been enjoying my blog! Big hugs to you and thanks for stopping by! Xox

  5. One thing I have been pondering this: I am 62 w/ two heart failures w/ depression and Bi-Polar, it makes you feel vulnerable.You do feel as life has passed you by. Aging and issues corresponding to that. I need some validation and a cyber hug.

    Oh, your family is beautiful and GOD bless them. You are very sweet.

    1. Oh I am sending you such a big hugs. I’m sorry that you’ve been feeling vulnerable. Hang in there. Your strength is inspiring. Hugs and love xox

  6. I just want to say that I enjoy your blog so much. Your honesty, your perspective, your transparency. And thank you for opening this discussion, and for giving us and inside perspective on this. God bless!

    1. Oh gosh thank you so much. What a kind thing to say. I am truly touched by that. Big hugs to you xox

    1. Thank you so much friend. I appreciate your affirming words. God is good and I praise Him for His healing in my life. Hugs and love xox

  7. Always sending beautiful hugs your way. Yes, buffets are great. It seems like here in the northeast, the Chinese ones are the best. It seems like, up here, so many places that either are/were buffet restaurant chains, or ones that had buffets, have either moved out or gone belly up (Ponderosa, Big Boy, Old Country), slimmed down the number of locations in the northeast from when they were first around (CiCi’s, Golden Corral) or many of the locations have gotten rid of their buffet (Pizza Hut lunch buffet). Now to go back to my generation as a teenager, the 1980s, another thing that has totally gone by the wayside is how many restaurants still have a weekly Sunday Brunch. That used to be a HUGE war between the “nice” independent restaurants. The big place for buffet’s?? THE SOUTH!! A chain called Shoney’s has them. Believe it or not, the last time we took a southern trip for spring break (3 years ago; we’re actually doing one this April) we noticed Ponderosa had actually popped up in states we NEVER saw them before (like Virginia etc..). It’ll be interesting to see this time around if that’s even grown. Now they had some chains down there that have come and gone such as Quincy’s and Western Sizzlin. They may be in other parts of the south but not in SC the way they once were. But chains aside, the BEST are the independently run BBQ buffets. Most are only open say Wednesday through Sunday. The BIG tradition for many of the southern protestants, is to go to Sunday morning service, which on the average goes from like 10/10:30 til noon or so, then they get out, and go to BBQ where they spend the next hour at least. Then they go back for their Sunday late afternoon/evening service. There’s one in Scranton SC, called The Schoolhouse that we LOVED when we lived down there, that luckily, this time around we get to go to because the day we start back WON’T BE GOOD FRIDAY because our break isn’t with Easter this time LOL!! Yes, the best northern buffets tend to be the Chinese ones. Wow, that is sad about the Russian skater. I remember her and we were commenting about that. Overall this was not the US’s Olympics. Team USA has been used to being in either the #1 or #2 spot for medal count, and I think they have been overall in bother winters and summers going all the way back to 84 summer in LA. They have never been so off the medal pace since way back then. Norway aside, the team that really made its mark on this Olympics was Canada. I have NEVER seen Canada (or Norway for that matter) win so many medals. They have been more meager winners while we were all over the map. This Olympics it was vice-verse. I send you all my love and prayers for good things this Lent. xoxoxoxoxoxoxo

    1. Thank you so much Migueltio. You’re always such a positive source of encouragement and kindness. I agree! Gosh – I remember going to ponderosa as a kid! That soft serve ice cream machine 😂 sounds like you are quite the buffet aficionado. I salute you! Thanks for your prayers and friendship! Big hugs xox

      1. Hugs You!! You are always so amazing with what you have been through and what you come into light with, and share that light, from it. Yeah, I guess I am. My mom loved the old Sunday Brunch. I mean you see it today at places, for like Easter, Mom’s Day, Dad’s Day etc.. but not “every Sunday” the way it was when I was a kid. Big Boy pulled into my hometown when I was a teenager with their “biggest, best salad buffet”. Then of course Ponderosa adapted their restaurants to compete. I remember when I was quite young and Ponderosa was more “cafeteria style”. You went through the line and “chose things” like your meal, a salad of you wanted, sides of you wanted, drink, dessert if you wanted. Your main entree came on a big plate and all the sides/salad/desserts came on little plates/bowls with wrap over it. Then you (my mom LOL) paid at the end of the line based on what was on your tray. It was when I became a “tween” that they started their salad bar that evolved into their buffet. Yeah, 6 years in the south gave me my most extensive “buffet experience” LOL!!. I think up here the H1N1 year messed up alot. You had many restaurants that had just “salad bars”, that got rid of them after that. Yeah, the one Ponderosa that we know of still around in NY (Geneva, NY) has an icecream machine! I guess there is still one in my old college town (Potsdam) but every time we go through there we always manage to choose where else?? THE CHINESE BUFFET PLACE LOLOLOL!! They NEVER had that there when I was up there in school!! More big hugs! xox

  8. Your post was absolutely lovely. And I love your notion of focusing on something other than appearance when trying to brighten up someone with an ED. For so long we’ve focused on raising daughters to be hyper focused on their appearance. Beauty comes in so many different shades, and yet we perpetually try to mold young girls into some standard that fails to include their uniqueness and what make them who they are, effectively negating their own light which highlights their individual splendor.

    1. Thank you so much Leon, I really appreciate you taking the time to read it! Yes! We are so much more than or bodies and appearance. Thanks for your thoughts! Hugs and love xox

    1. Thank you Christopher! Yeah it was a really eye opening article. Very sad reality for those athletes. Hugs and love xox

  9. This is SO GOOD. Thank you!! Also–I was wondering about the ice skaters and ED this year. Some of them in particular made me worry when I saw them. It’s sort of good to have that confirmed… but also really, really sad. 🙁 Thank you for looking into it and putting a spotlight on it for us.

    Finally–*fistbump* for Jesus, girl! So well said. Your relationship with him inspires me to dig deeper into mine. <3

    1. Oh gosh thank you 🙂 yeah it’s really really sad. yes! Fist bump for Jesus indeed! So glad you stopped by! Hugs and love xox

  10. I just got done listening to you on Patreon. You really are at your best when you are talking about ED, giving away his secrets to help other sufferers! Very proud of you!!! More at Patreon…

    1. Aw thank you Jeff! And thank you for listening!! Looking forward to reading your thoughts! Hugs and love xox

  11. Bless you! Thank you for sharing so honestly. Your heart-felt words touch my heart and give me such a welcomed insight into this complex subject.

    1. Thank you Jan! I really appreciate you seeking to understand. It really means so much. We need more people like you! You are awesome! Hugs and love xox

  12. “But my motivation to recover, is honestly Jesus. He is my recovery. Without Him and His strength I couldn’t do it. I had to realize that I had worth because of His death. He took away all the guilt and shame I was carrying around from the ED, and truly renewed my spirit. He forgave me, and helped me forgive myself. I want to live a recovered life because I want to live it in praise and worship of Him. I know that sounds super cheesy, but honestly, all the other mumbo jumbo about, “body positivity” and “loving yourself” and “mindfulness” — yes that can be really great. But frankly, those feelings are just that — feelings. And they can fade. And during a really hard day, no “body positivity” quote is going to carry you through those tough moments. Only Jesus and His love that saved me from the grip of death.”
    —————————–
    Amen! There it is. Jesus is the key in all types of recovery, including alcohol and drugs. His Name was the main focus I used in my relating to the wellspring of strength I had used, when telling those I counseled and coached who were going through what I had been through, and how I remained steadfast in my goals to get through it and stay stubbornly fixed for the long haul. And He remains my Anchor to this day, and to my last day. Bountiful Blessings Caralyn

    1. Thank you so much. Yes! He saved me and continues to sustain me every single day. So glad you know this too! Big hugs to you xox

  13. I am so pleased you found My Coastal World through my Finding beauty and hope after Harvey blog post.I found your last few posts compelling and complement your ability to communicate your information in such an easy to understand manner. I was not aware of this week’s importance to the ED community-strugglers, survivors and professionals. I look forward to continue following your blog site.

    1. Thank you so much. I really appreciate you taking the time to read. Yeah it’s a big week for the community. Hugs and love xox

  14. Thank you for taking on the tough questions you did. While I, myself have not struggled with an eating disorder, my work as a hospital chaplain puts me on the front lines with our mental health workers who see it. There are a few young girls who have been in after numerous relapses lately and your points on how to talk to them will be taken.
    Thanks for all of your wonderful insights.

    Love and Blessings,
    Jim

    1. Hi Jim, thank you so much. Wow what an important fob you have, working with people in need. I’m sorry to hear about those girls. I will definitely keep them in my prayers. Hugs and love xox

  15. My dear friend,

    First of all: thumbs up! during your eating disorder you had an enormous fight – it is as you have to programme in yourself a new programme and overcome an existing habit that used to be as strong as iron. With courage and and utmost self-discipline, even when needed many attempts to stand up again, to fight against that nearly insurmountable inner iron barrier, you did not get up and you could see what this ED did with you. You were a slave of it and now you are a very good example for those who are still in the clutches of this giant thief. Just bravo, my friend! Although I myself have never had anything to do wtih it, I can feel this enormous struggle and fight you had to go through. It reminds me on our own mind: also our mind is a kind of giant thief and steals our attention to the very important things of life, it directs our attention to ourselves, to our ego and it controls our soul. Our mind is bad master but it can be a good servant of the soul. And here we have a similar life-long fight against this inner thief, that lets have hate against others, lets us get lusty, lets us get egoistic, lets us get greedy and so forth – this also requires much much courage and self-realization to give a turn to this iron pattern, to untie that Gordian knot.

    Thanks for sharing my friend – I consider it very positive that you share your experience with your own fight agains ED, because this may be of a good help for others who are themselves prisoners in this kind of disease.

    All good wishes
    May God bless you and yours
    Didi

    1. Hi Didi, wow I am so touched by this beautiful and heartfelt response. Thank you. I love that – a servant of the soul – what a powerful image. You’re right – the disease creates prisoners. I long to help people become free. Thank you for the affirming words. Hugs and love xox

      1. Hugs and love, dear sister and go on with your helping job – it is a wonderful help for many others suffering from the same disease.

        All good wishes for your soul
        Didi

  16. In high school. I ran an ice rink and drove the Zamboni. There were a few skaters there. I would chat on my coffee breaks until their moms shooed me away. Standards of performance shadow everything. Even who they hang out with well, not like I’m a huge catch. But still. I didn’t have much and I felt bad for them. Like. Caged birds.

    1. The Zamboni, huh?? Now THAT is a cool after school job. Dang. Caged birds – yeah that sounds sadly accurate. Thanks for stopping by Kenzie. Hope you have a great night! Hugs and love xox

      1. Yeah. I had a friend, she has ED but also went to rehab for sex. They were linked for her. The isolation of high end modeling made any attention, “good.” I guess. Women, have these complex social rites to determine beauty. Men, just buy things. Its sad, that athletic performance for women also includes that layer of scrutiny over physical attractiveness. When I did the triathlons. The sponsors were pretty honest that because I didn’t have that California look I wasn’t going to get far. A lot of the televised races and even the press isolates contestants to those restraints, blond hair, blue eyes, suburban background.

  17. What a helpful article, even for those who look on and are not involved in this tragic disability. It will make me more sensitive in future to people with life challenges, and there are many. And your conclusion, though obvious to me and you is not obvious to 95% of society these days. We can’t overcome any kind of disorder whether it be the experience you’ve gone through or any kind of OCD without first getting a reality check from Jesus. That’s because for those who believe its this life and then oblivion, or an endless cycle of suffering through reincarnation there is no point in making a change. Life sucks, and unless there is hope of a better world we can enter after it then what’s the point? So Jesus gives us not only the gift of experiencing heaven with Him someday, but gives us a purpose for living a complete quality driven lifestyle. I guess we need to share the joy of that belief with others so that those living in hopeless circumstances can catch a glimpse of what it means to live a happier life here, and eventually beyond.

    1. Thanks so much Ian. That is so so true – Jesus is needed for that complete healing and strength. Everything else simply falls short. Amen – gotta cling to that hope. Hugs and love xox

  18. Triple B,

    You may not be a health care professional, but you are a strong and unique voice to whom young women can look up to.
    You scored a gold medal where it counts most.

    Peace

    1. Gosh thank you for that kind note. I really appreciate the encouraging words. A gold medal – hah I like that 🙂 Hugs and love xox

    1. Thank you for sharing your story. And also for sharing that link. Yeah, ED doesn’t discriminate between male or female. Keep fighting friend. Sending hugs and love xox

  19. First, omg I went through a skating phase as a child, too! Except for me it was ice dancing not figure skating. But yeah, gave up after like a year 😂
    Second, thanks for sharing about the struggles of skaters. As an actor myself, I know it’s also a HUGE problem in our industry as well, and something I struggled with when I was in acting school. I even had a teacher tell me I was the best female student at our conservatory but I really needed to do something about my “flabby thighs.” 😡 So thank you for sharing. The more we talk about this stuff, the more we can hopefully save girls going through it in all industries!

    1. Yeah I think every little one wants to soar across the ice in a beautiful outfit! Haha oh Gosh, I’m sorry you received that comment. That’s just awful 🙁 and amen – that’s my deepest prayer! So glad you stopped by 🙂 Hugs and love xox

  20. xo loved your post 🙂 I’m deliberately working on my body image this time around and whenever I see myself in a mirror I say ‘Jesus’ to ask Jesus to come into my heart, into my seeing and to protect me from the ED thoughts. So far it is working better than anything else has! Calling on the loving power of Jesus is such a great source of relief!
    In terms of figure skating and anorexia you might be interested in Nancy Kerrigan’s documentary ‘Why Don’t You Lose 5 Pounds’ – I’m following her on twitter and I think she is doing great work to bring awareness and healing to the issue xo info about the film is here https://www.whydontyoulose5pounds.com/aboutthefilm/ xo

    1. Thank you Em! And wow I love your Jesus mantra in front of the mirror! Absolutely love it. I’m going to adopt that into my own life. How powerful!! Thanks for the doc recco. I’ll watch it on the plane tomorrow! Hugs and love xox

  21. Thank you for answering my questions. I am going to write a blog post about diabetes and our issues with food and weight. I want to learn more about it as I don’t think medical personnel address it as an issue but it obviously is. Hope you read it! <3

    1. You’re so welcome! I look forward to reading your post! Thanks for seeking to understand, that means so so much 🙂 Hugs and love xox

  22. Eccl. 2:24 “…There is nothing better for a man, than that he should eat and drink, and that he should make his soul enjoy good in his labour. This also I saw, that it was from the hand of God..”

    Societal norms set the tone or value of what others consider acceptable.

    God’s wisdom says for us to enjoy the fruit of our labor, to eat and drink.

    Our society says, “Oh no, not this or that, you’ll look fat and ugly.”

    God says enjoy nonetheless.

    Burlesque use to be considered beautiful a hundred yrs ago, now its skin and bones.

    Hoping you keep on helping others find their beauty beyond bones.

    God Bless.

    1. Thanks for this! Yeah God wanted us to live abundantly. Glad you stopped by. Hugs and love xox

  23. I have a question… how do you deal with rumination? or do you find rumination a problem? I suffered from anorexia from around 2011-2016, and this was never formally diagnosed (no, I’m not seeking attention or making up a diagnosis, I was, and in some ways mentally still am, anorexic) although threats of inpatient treatment were made, and so i undertook weight restoration by myself… but I find rumination the hardest, most difficult facet of recovery to deal with. if i had spoken out and sought treatment would things have turned out differently, would i have concurrently developed bulimia in 2017? would I feel the same way about my body or better? would the awful mess still have progressed as long as it did, and made me increasingly suicidal?
    In case you can’t tell, I ruminate a lot about treatment / not seeking treatment sooner. But I also ruminate about the body and behaviours I left behind… which is kind of sick right? Is this kind of rumination something you experience, and how do you deal with it?

    1. Thank you for sharing your story, and for your question, Rosie. So in terms of rumination, that is not something I personally deal with, but I know A LOT of others do. Are there still days that I wish I could change things about my body? Yes. But I just remember the pain my ED put my family and loved ones through, and also how I nearly lost my life. Again, not to sound cheesy but Jesus really helped me through that and through those times where my mind was vulnerable. Because without focusing on His love and clinging to the hope and grace in His goodness, my mind *would* go to dark places. You definitely ask a lot of really powerful questions and I think honestly, the best thing to do is to talk to someone about it. Because those are deep seeded questions that you have every right to ask. And I think until one gets to the bottom of them, they’ll keep wondering and thinking about the different possible answers. Either way, your story is important. *You* are important. And what you went through matters. And I’ve found that talking about what I went through, and letting someone in – is incredibly freeing. Sending so much love xox

      1. thanks so much. i find the darker place i’m in, and the more i need Jesus, the more difficult it is to reach out to Him… I’m getting better at trusting in my faith but it’s so hard. much love x

      2. I can definitely relate. What helps me is to just remember how much He Kong’s for us to reach out and say, Papa!

  24. The title of your blog says it all, seeking the beauty beyond the bones, beyond the surface, beyond what we see with our physical eyes to seeing with the eyes of our heart. When in love with our Jesus the eyes of our heart look with compassion. You are so in love with Jesus that you are able to be vulnerable in a way that invites, encourages, consoles. <3

    1. Thank you Teri. Gosh what a kind thing to say. That’s so true – Jesus is transformative. His love heal, transforms, brings peace. It is amazing. Thank you for your support, friend. You are a blessing to me! Hugs and love xox

  25. You hit a home run with this post, girl! Your transparency is refreshing. I especially admire your honesty and openness about your faith being the key to your recovery. If only more professed believers were so open. I think the key take-away was this statement: “I had to realize that I had worth because of His death.” Well said.

    1. Thank you so much!! Gosh what a kind thing to say. Yes – That truth – our redemption through the Cross what literally what saved my life. And cheesy or not, I feel such a strong obligation to share that. I so appreciate your support. Big hugs xox

  26. I can only imagine the pressure to perform for any of these athletes must be brutal and thanks for sharing your well-informed views.

    When you talked about your antenna, I immediately thought of the early 1960s TV show “My Favorite Martian” starring Ray Walston and Bill Bixby. Here’s a photo (I promise, the link only goes to Wikipedia) of “Uncle Martin” and his antenna: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/My_Favorite_Martian#/media/File:My_Favorite_Martian_Ray_Walston_1963.JPG

  27. I am afraid that in almost all professional sports the young athlete becomes objectified as a tool for realization of the ambitions of adults. In men, the syndrome is to build strength that eventually results in metabolic and tissue breakdown, and disabling injury.

    The challenge is always to overcome that possession, and allow yourself to be seen for the purpose that God has in all of us: to manifest in our individuality a possibility of relation that no other can manifest. When I go through Creation and Revelation, I point out that it wasn’t “Let there be light!” and then “Oh, well, today was fun, what should we do tomorrow?” It was three billion years later before God was able to come down to give the capacity to love to Adam and Eve.

    Three billion years, and then this miraculous opportunity for love to live and walk as us in the world. I mean, the Crucifixion was a dramatic event, and people identify with drama, but this slow steady, determined persistence just blows my mind, and makes me aware of how precious EVERY person is. It was that, during my own dark era of the heart, that caused me to wake up every morning determined to do JUST ONE GOOD THING each day.

    So I’ve pretty much stopped watching sports at all. I’d rather ride the train and watch a father console his overstressed infant after a long day at the zoo…

    1. That’s a sad but very true point brian. You’re so right – do one good thing. Hugs and love xox

  28. Beautifully written. Thank you for being brave enough to answer some difficult questions. I am amazed at how much your recovery parallels that found in recovery from addiction.
    I’m curious, is there a point in ED recovery at which one is considered to be “cured?”

    1. Thank you Kent. I really appreciate it. I guess “cured” — it’s kind of like alcoholism… when is one considered “cured” of that? I think being weight restored, free of all ED behaviors and thoughts, and without any of the physical symptoms. Just a thought

  29. Thank you for posting this article. It was amazing. I had no idea what the truth was behind the figure skating ladies. I will add some prayers for them now. Thanks for sharing these personal details with us. It will surely enable others to recognize symptoms in themselves and others. You will save some well-meaning people from accidentally blundering comments. 🙂

    1. Gosh thank you so much for your kind words and prayers. I will join you in those! Hugs and love xox

  30. Wow! Thank you so much for sharing this and for being real about recovery! I hope those that got an answer to their question, has been encouraged! God bless you and keep you! Xxoo 😇✨💕

    1. Hi Tammy, thank you so much for your kind words. I hope that too!! Have a great afternoon! Hugs and love xox

  31. Your transparency blows me away. You are so open, honest, and truthful. I suspected the ED / figure skating connection for years, but seeing your words solidified it for me. I saw it growing up, too, in gymnastics, soccer, and softball. I wanted to be a skater, too – I did a third-grade report on Michelle Kwan, and I loved Tara Lipinski, etc. However, I’m lucky if I stay on my feet on the rink, haha. You’re wonderful – Thanks for sharing your Q&A!

    1. gosh thank you Laura Beth. Yeah, it really is so sad what many of those girls go through off the ice. yeah – so much pressure. thanks for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  32. Hi BBB, thank you so much for bringing up the stories about the figure skaters. Eating disorder among athletes really deserve more attention than it is getting. When I opened up to my track coach earlier this year about going through treatment for eating disorder, he reassured me that I could focus on my health and get support from him because I was “not the first person, not even close,” to go through it. It really affects so many people but is talked about so little.

    1. thank you so much for your thoughtful response. yeah, it really does need more attention for sure. Sounds like you’ve got a great coach there. Congrats on claiming your recovery – that is so courageous!! Hugs and love xox

      1. Thanks! I just decided to launch my blog recently, and I would love to get some advice from you because you have been a huge inspiration for me. Is it possible for me to connect with you via email?

      2. Sure! You can def email me. I also made an ebook called “My Blogging Tips” which you can get on my side bar or at the end of my post! Hugs and love xox

  33. I loved this post and strongly believe it may save lives. It was a shock to me to realise that a friend of one of my children had likely died as a result of an eating disorder. I provided a link to your blog as I believe this post is so great.

    1. thank you so much friend – I am humbled by your kind words. Gosh – that is so scary about your friend. I will definitely keep them in my prayers. thanks for passing this along. Hugs and love xox

  34. another excellent post. You continue to churn out interesting and fresh content that is true to the vision and focus of the blog. Great job. Also, I found myself fascinated by the skaters this Olympics. I’ve never had interest before. I guess I’m getting older and changing. But I really enjoyed some of the athletes and admired their artistry and commitment. This article added another layer to my reflection. Thank you.

    1. Thank you David. Yeah their artistry is just mesmerizing. And then add on those jumps! Wow. JV

  35. Got to catch up. Not sure how I found you to follow but love that I did. I can add that the dance world when I was growing up was inundated with this. It’s where things began for me that, I’m sure like you, struggle with daily. I am not surprised by the skating world having this either given some of the similarities with ballet. Loved the Q&A. Hope you have a fabulous day! 💖

    1. Thank you so much! Yeah that is definitely another field with those pressures. Thanks for sharing your story! Glad you stopped by! Hugs and love xox

  36. I’m sorry that ice skating got tainted for you and that ice skaters have gotten sick from the messages that can go with it 🙁 I think you mentioned skiing in another post and am glad that you have other things that you still like to do.

    1. Yeah it’s really sad. Thanks friend. Yeah there are lots of things that are joyful 🙂 big hugs xox

  37. When I was at the height of my waterskiing career I was working at seaworld. It was my dream job. To be at the top of the pyramid you could not be over 105lbs. To be at the top of the pyramid was my favorite place to be and it paid the most money the more events/tricks you could perform. It was very difficult to have the muscle needed to backwards barefoot and trick ski and also be bare bones enough to be 105lbs and be on top of the pyramid without straight up starvation. It was known and accepted and pushed upon all of us. It did not help that the men would often hit us on the butt and tell us to “tighten it up” and this was also accepted (22 years ago when I had that job). Most people did not consider me anorexic because I was an athlete and they thought athletes were supposed to be that thin. I got down to 99lbs to be on that pyramid. Slim fast drinks. No one ever knew until now in my late 40’s as I have begun to discuss the damage that was done.
    I appreciate this blog post as it highlights an area of sports that are glamorized and the truth is not shown. The abuse, the starvation, is not apparent to most viewers. You noticed it because you know. I noticed it because I know. I couldnt finish watching the female skating because of this.
    I consider anorexia an “in remission” kind of thing. I know everyone has opinions on this but in my own story as an individual it is always and will always be there. I will always be aware and always take self care to not let it take over again. 22 years later I am still very aware of the power of it. 22 years later I am still overcoming it.

    1. Thank you for sharing your story Bethany. I’m sorry that this hits so close to home. Gosh that breaks my heart that you had to go through that. Thanks for raising awareness. Hugs and love xox

  38. First, thank you for being willing to share you’re story. Recovery from ANY disorder is difficult at best, and impossible at worst. The only way is by being honest and holding tight to JESUS. Second, I watch my great-niece ice skating, and pray she doesn’t get caught up in an ED…. Encouraging words. From one addict in recovery to another, may GOD place many Blessings in your life!

Join the Conversation!