This is my farewell to the girl I knew. I knew you so well, I watched you grow up. I watched you transition throughout all the stages of your life, and then one day I watched hit the newest stage of your life. Then began watching that stage start to destroy the happy little girl you were. I noticed something in you…a feeling that I am sure many of us in this room today have felt — the feeling of not being enough. But unlike many people in this room you couldn't shake this feeling, so it slowly took over who you were.
Day in and day out, I watched you never be enough for yourself. You were sick.
You were so sick you lost who you were. Just like a match loses its spark, you lost yours. The spark that made you the happy, the go-getter you were. As the spark dimmed I noticed other changes in you. You slowly started eating less and started running to bathrooms quicker after every meal you would eat.
Though many people called you beautiful, I knew you never believed them.
I watched on the sidelines as you'd shame yourself for the calories you would consume. Watched you rapidly drop weight at a concerning rate, 5 lbs., 10lbs, 30lbs. I worried about you constantly questioning "Was this really how you wanted to continue in life? Would you one day become so weak you wouldn't get back up? Will losing 10 more pounds bring you the happiness you were thinking it'd bring you?"
No. The answer was no, to all those questions.
No, you didn't want to continue this way.
No, you didn't want to become so weak you wouldn't find the will to get back up.
No, losing 10 more pounds would not bring that everlasting happiness, and body confidence you were yearning for.
Yet, the saddest part is that even with all the "no's" checked, you'd neglect to acknowledge them. You'd continue to ignore them day in and day out for two and a half years. Battling yourself, battling hunger, battling the voices that consumed your every waking thought, and losing all those battles to the ugly truth that you still were not enough.
By Merriam Webster dictionary an eating disorder is defined as, "Psychological disorders characterized by serious disturbances of eating" in which case you suffered severely with both anorexia and bulimia.
So, this has to be my final farewell to you — the stage of my life where an eating disorder was in charge.
I have been completely recovered from being that girl I knew. Today, I strive to change the world and not allow the world to change me. I step on stages bigger than life, and step on these stages confidently, to show all that there is no shame in being who you are and doing what you love. But though it is time to say goodbye, I must lastly say thank you.
I thank you to end our goodbye because without you I wouldn't be the athlete I am today. I would've never discovered my love for training, or passion for nutrition. Without you I wouldn't have learned to change my perspective, that a challenge is not a challenge but simply an opportunity to get better. Without you I would've never gained the ability to inspire others through my journey.
Taken from an interview with those you follow my Instagram, the Instagram in which I've completely devoted to sharing my journey. I asked, "How has my page inspired you?" to highlight a few responses I got back like, "You helped me see that I don't have to be ashamed of starting somewhere even if it's small," or "You show me I don't have to be embarrassed about wanting to make myself better, thank you" and lastly "You taught me how to go out and be yourself."
So, on that note let me say, farewell to my eating disorder. May we never meet again!