“For the person that needs to see this today: Your heart will heal, your tears will dry, your season will change. Rest tonight knowing the storm will end.” ~Unknown
In my fifteenth year, I started to take part in the diet movement. In my teenage years, when I wanted to be accepted, fit in, and look good, I believed that food would help me. Food—or the lack of it—would be the solution to all my problems. All this thinking did was make things worse.
Every other year I visited Europe to see my family as a child. I found the culture and outspokenness of people in Europe, who were often family members or friends, to be soul crushing. I understood the language, so I knew that when I would meet someone, they would inevitably say, (not in these exact words, but pretty bluntly, if I do say so myself), “She’s chubby.”
I would be frightened. I would hide. I would want cry.
But instead, I just smiled and pretended I didn’t understand. It was much easier to just smile at them and not show how I felt, which was horrible.
Disgusted. Embarrassed. Ugly.
Now, thirty years on, I regret my youthful mistakes. I took the criticism of these unknown people, and directed it inward.
I took it in. I believed it to be true. How could I be anything else? The following are some of the most common questions that people ask. chubby?
And if I was chubby, and that was the first thing people noticed about me (other than my blue eyes), wasn’t that the most important thing?
It didn’t matter that I was kind, creative, or sensitive. It didn’t matter that I was kind, creative or sensitive. It was my theme, once I became conscious of it.
As I got older, I started to limit my food intake. It felt like I had finally found my willpower. I felt in control.
The chaos began for me. I lost forty pounds in just a few weeks and developed some health problems. But I felt skinny! I felt pretty.
Over time I gained weight and fell into a relationship with a girl from high school. I don’t remember too many of the details after this point, but I remember that when that relationship failed, I reverted right back to bad habits with food.
Throughout college, my eating disorder reemerged. I mostly kept it to myself. I kept my problems to myself, embarrassed to talk to anyone.
It caused another flare-up of my health, which finally made me seek the help I required. I knew that I had to make a change. I knew that the life I was leading was no longer good for me.
I wanted to move forward and find peace. I wanted to make a change in my life and go forward. I really worked hard to change my mindset, push myself to be uncomfortable and heal myself from the inside.
Reiki is a form of energy healing that helped me to focus my energies on something positive. Instead of worrying about my diet, I focused instead on filling my entire body with positive energy.
I began to think about my own thoughts. I changed my negative thoughts into slightly positive ones. As I gained experience, my slightly positive thoughts became actual positive ones.
I began to heal my thoughts by changing the way I thought, focusing on health, and choosing choices that would please my body, my mind, and my spirit. It wasn’t easy, but it was worth it.
In retrospect, I am proud to see who I have become, who I once was, and what I have achieved. It was a long, ten-year journey of self-punishment but it helped me become the person I am today.
It taught me to be more empathetic. It taught me coping techniques. It helped me learn that it’s okay to feel my feelings (and share them with others!).
It could have destroyed me. It could have ruined me physically, mentally and emotionally. Instead, I took it as a lesson in strength and used it to my advantage.
I learned how to put my health first. I learned to prioritize my own health. I learned to stand up for my rights. I learned to work hard. You can’t get around it.
It is impossible to get everything right in life. If something comes easily to us, I believe it’s easy to forget it. It almost loses its worth.
The things we must work on are also the things which will bring us the most growth. Right? That’s the value. That’s growth.
This story reminds me, and anyone else who may need to hear it, you can do hard things. You’re not stuck. Change and growth are always possible.
Make yourself happy if you’re not satisfied with your life or yourself right now. Speak to someone you can trust. Find a mentor, a therapist or both. Practice self-care.
Immerse yourself into something that boosts your energy. Read a book on self-help. Get your body moving. Exercise can help to release stagnant energies.
You can empower yourself to make changes. Imagine the life you desire, and take action to make that vision a reality.
Baby steps are still baby steps. Slow growth is still a growth. Continue moving forward. Continue to grow.
When the life you had is not good for you anymore, do something—anything—to change it. You don’t need to remain stuck or unhappy.
As soon as you start to care for yourself, you will find a whole world of possibilities.
Self-compassion, self love, and self growth are all around you. In a world where you can Then, You can love parts of yourself you never thought worthy of being loved. You are beautiful just as you are.
Oh, what an amazing new world!
About Stefanie Ruth
Stefanie Ruth has been a best-selling book author for the past decade. Your Sacred Journey: The Ultimate Guidebook to Align Your Mind, Body, & Spirit. She is an intuitive Reiki Master Teacher, Karuna Reiki® Master, spiritual life coach, tarot reader, and Akashic Records Reader. Stefanie provides a wide range of healing classes and sessions to people around the world. She has appeared in ReikiRays Magazine Spirituality+Health Magazine Medium Magazine and Authority Magazine. To learn more, visit her website at https://liveandbreathereiki.com.
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