October 8th.

Today I woke up for work, looked at my clock and saw my calender. October 8th. What the hell happened on October 8th? I know this day. Who's birthday is it? What did I have to do today? DAMMIT WHAT AM I FORGETTING?

And then I remembered..

October 8th was a day I made one of the most important decisions of my life. October 8th, 2010 was the day I finally surrendered.

I wanted my life back.

I had no idea what I was in for. I made the phone calls, I packed my bag, and I was off. My dad drove me into the unknown. I spent 2 hours in the waiting room, hands trembling, body shivering. I was wearing this green knit poncho that was seriously the cutest thing ever but let's get back to the story. Finally I was called in it was my turn to be assessed. So many questions. "How often do you weigh yourself? Do you exercise? What is a normal meal for you? Do you still get your period?". I hated this. I wanted to leave but some force inside me made me stay. I needed to do this. I signed the papers, walked to the back of the building, and I was numb. Numb because I worked so hard to get my body to look a certain way and I was about to totally let myself go. But I took a deep breath, and I stayed.

The first few days were a blur. Getting woken up in the middle of the night so my vital signs could be checked, getting weighed before and after eating in the morning and holy shit I was eating so much fucking food. At least that's what I thought. About a week later I started to feel something. I was able to think again, I was able to smile, and I was able to speak up after holding so much in for so long. I ended up learning what was driving this wild behavior. I was depressed! And I was taking everything that was going on in my life and blaming it all on myself. I felt like I was an awful person, a waste of space, and I needed to change something. These thoughts led me to that one part of my being in which I thought I had full control over- my body. The lightbulb went on and that was the first step in regaining true control over my actions. The rest of my stay, I learned ways to release the obession over the way I looked and started focusing more on the way I felt inside.

2 months later.. I was finally back in the real world. It was strange at first because all I did for more than 60 days straight was eat, talk about feelings and play Wii sports.

But here's the best part- I never went back. The past 5 years have been filled with walking 1 step forward and 67 steps back but you know what? I made it. I survived. I no longer let my view on my physical body control the way I live my life.

I am in control. When I'm hungry, I eat. When I'm full, I stop (unless it's cookies because I love cookies so much they are gods gift to this earth..). I laugh, I cry, I smile, and I have the most amazing people in my life. Most importantly, I have my yoga practice. I have a sacred space I can return to any time- to pause and to breathe when things get hard. I am alive.

So today, I will measure my self not by how much I weigh but by how much I love. Today I am thankful. Today I will honor second chances and new beginnings. Today I can tell someone that they aren't alone.

Today, I share this story. Today, I celebrate. Cheers to 5 years ;)