By Mia Findlay - Butterfly Foundation Ambassador
The below piece explores how Mia's relationship with her body has changed during recovery and what 'loving your body' means to her. This is based of her most recent youtube video: https://youtu.be/XwPuZcav-OM
Loving your body is achievable. It depends on what that definition is for you. After five years in recovery, the definition of loving my body is accepting and respecting it to the extent that is possible. I no longer hold unreasonable expectations, not only of my body, but of my attitude towards my body. I allow myself to sit in, and feel, the moments when I am not loving what I look like or loving how I feel about myself. And maybe being more aware of what that discomfort or dissatisfaction is actually about. What I have learned through my recovery is that I hated my surface because I hated what was underneath. The surface was just easier to deal with.
I accept and respect my body by allowing it to be at the weight that it wants to be; the weight at which I can live a healthy, purposeful and happy life.
I accept and respect my body by feeding it what it wants, in the amount that it wants without judgement.
I respect and accept my body by letting it move in a way which contributes to my physical and mental wellbeing, without pursuing aesthetics.
I respect and accept my body by being grateful for all the incredible things that it allows me to do. My body makes it possible to put my arms around my Mum or hold the hand of somebody lovely or to climb a mountain, get on a plane or walk around the streets of a new city. My body is going to allow me to sit around a table on Friday and celebrate my five-year recovery anniversary with some of the people who mean the most to me in the world and made getting to that five-year mark possible.
Loving my body has been staying in that five-year recovery for the last few years and for making a commitment to being recovered for the rest of my life. Hopefully I will be able to continue helping others do the same thing.
The best life that you could live does not exist in a size or a shape or a look.
This week, try and reflect - think of one thing that you are appreciative of with your body. If not something you can love or respect, then one thing that your body allows you to do which you are grateful for.
Take a pledge to change the way we talk about our bodies and appearance: www.thebutterflyfoundation.org.au/love-your-body-week
Join Butterfly and myself on social media to help #CHANGETHECONVO this #LOVEYOURBODYWEEK.
HELP AND SUPPORT
If you, or anyone you know is experiencing an eating disorder or body image concerns, you can call the Butterfly Foundation National Helpline on 1800 33 4673 (ED HOPE) or email email@example.com or jump on our website to chat www.thebutterflyfoundation.org.au
The holiday period can be a tough time if you’re experiencing an eating disorder. Post-Christmas and New Years can be even more challenging. As you move past this holiday season, your inner critic may be louder than usual and expectations at an all-time high.
'My name is Giulia, I am 20 years old and have one year left of my Early Childhood Education and Care degree. I have suffered with anorexia nervosa for about five or six years. After listening to an episode of The Recovery Warrior Show podcast, and knowing firsthand how difficult it can be to communicate about an eating disorder with loved ones, I was inspired to create this list of ten things that I wish my family and friends understood about my eating disorder.'
The holiday season can be a time of love, and togetherness, but it can also be pretty stressful if you have an eating disorder. It can also be an opportunity to take the focus off your illness and enjoy yourself. To get through the holiday period, it’s useful to put in place some self-care strategies. Here’s some tips our Helpline counsellors have suggested: