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How I Overcame Disordered Eating

If you struggle with obsessive thoughts about food and the scale, let me share something with you that you might not know about me.

Food had always been a struggle for me. I had been at war with my body for as long as I can remember…. The first time I ever decided to go on a diet I was 8 years old 😔

On the outside looking in, I was a super competitive, slender, and very athletic kid who’d never struggled with my weight. (At that point in time)

But no one knew how little I thought of myself. I didn’t see the Melissa that everyone else saw. In my eyes, I was never skinny enough, which equated to never good enough. Unlovable

Conveniently, this all started in the midst of my parents messy divorce, where my sister and I were often used as pawns in this game of “who can hurt the other more”, and my dad’s behaviour consistently affirmed my belief that I was unlovable.

My food behaviour would return to normal as each storm passed, but as soon there was rumblings of an approaching natural disaster, like another court battle, my eating behaviour would become chaotic again.

The dark, self-deprecating thoughts that I had about myself, would stoke the fires of my disordered eating behaviours and my Dad’s behaviour would continue to confirm the thoughts and beliefs that I had about myself and provide endless fuel to my chaos within.

All the while, I kept hiding behind the idea that I was engaging in under-eating and overexercising to lose weight. I really did believe that once I was skinny I would be happy.

Outsiders saw me working hard or “succeeding”.

I was working full time, going to college, working for free at a clinic in the evenings after work to obtain my practicum hours, and going to the gym. Inside I was dying. And sometimes I wanted to, because I just couldn’t see life getting better and wondered what the point was in continuing to exist.

In one of my darkest moments, I called a bikini competition coach and hired him on the spot. I couldn’t live the way I was living for another moment. I thought that once I looked like a competitor, all of life’s problems would disappear, and confidence would ooze off of me.

I believed that this was the ticket to self-love.

Young Melissa was so naive.

Competing only expanding on my feelings of worthlessness, except it was no longer my Dad deciding my value, it was a panel of judges and instagram followers leaving encouraging comments.

If competing didn’t fix it, what did?

How in the hell I got out of this dark hole?

I’ll tell you how…

I had to unfollow every fitness person on instagram.

I had to unfollow all the trust fund babies that I graduated with that were travelling the world on mom & dads money.

I had to leave the diet world behind. I muted every person that posted “what I eat in a day”, and “no excuses”, pictures on their newsfeeds. I had to challenge every believe and rule that I had around food and my body.

I started feeding myself adequately and consistently.

And once those bases were covered, I started doing deeper work to address the emotional wounds that fuelled my binge eating episodes, and work on surrendering my need to control everything, including my food.

You see, our issues with food, having nothing to do with food. Our food behaviours are just a side affect of what’s really going on. I share this with you today, to show you that it is possible.

I am evidence that you can heal.

And I wish this for you.

Healing your relationship with food can feel overwhelming. Maybe you're wondering where to start.

In Ditch the Diet, I walk you through the process step-by-step, taking things one week at a time 🙏🏻

If you want to heal, but feel stuck, you can access the program here 👇🏻

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