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Recovery Really Is Worth It

The road to recovery has definitely not been an easy one. I did not believe that the right things would happen in my life. I gave up hope. I lost myself. Therapists, staff, and fellow patients continued to tell me recovery was worth it. I didn’t know what recovery looked like. I didn’t know if I wanted recovery. All I knew is I wanted a miracle.

I knew I was slowly killing myself, but I didn’t know why. I didn’t want to go back to UNC. I wanted to go far. I wanted to get away from my family and the man I was dating. Ultimately, I chose Rosewood. I learned more about myself at that time than I did in my whole life. I made the leap to partial, followed by A New Journey.

In 2009, I was on a flight back to Rosewood. This time, I paid for it all on my own. I had no one help me. I wanted to get better for me. I wanted to do this for me. I learned more about me this time that previously at Rosewood. It was an awakening. I knew what I wanted, but didn’t think I could get it. Getting pregnant was something that I wanted so badly, but thought I had done too much damage to my body. Obtaining a career was something I desired, not just a job. After Rosewood in Arizona and Santa Monica, after learning what was holding me back, I returned home.

Treatment taught me about who I am as a person and how to be more assertive, confident, brave, and how to overcome one’s eating disorder (among many other aspects). Grad school taught me how I was with the world around me. It taught me where my beliefs and values came from. It taught me how to be a counselor. I couldn’t be a good one if I couldn’t work on my own issues to help others.

Then, I met my current boyfriend. For the past year and a half, my life has significantly and radically changed. While in grad school, I solidified a job at an Eating Disorder Treatment Center in Durham, NC. And then I graduated with a Master’s Degree in Clinical Mental Health in December 2016. I have wanted nothing more than to become a counselor in mental health and addictions, something I am obtaining and waiting for the boards to receive all the paperwork now to become official. I guess you could say that my life has turned around, and done a 180. Ironically enough, I just got a job where I was interning, which the practice name is One-Eighty Counseling. To work in a treatment center and a private practice is something I have dreamed about. These are just two miracles. The miracle of meeting someone who challenges my eating disorder and myself is something to note as well

September 2016, I received the most shocking, surprising, and glorious news. I had this “gut feeling.” Around 10:30 AM on September 26, I found out I was pregnant. It was confirmed by an ultrasound two weeks later. I have passed the first trimester and currently the doctors hear a strong heartbeat. This is one miracle that I never dreamed would happen. I never thought I would have the ability to carry a child. I never thought I would know what it would be like to have the ability to create life inside me. Getting pregnant has challenged me. I have had a ravenous appetite since before finding out, which I believe is a sign from my body to nourish myself to give my baby the best chance it can have. The father, my boyfriend, is thrilled for us, as am I. I am starting a chapter in my life that now can turn a dream into a reality.

Recovery has many gifts. Recovery has many opportunities. Recovery itself IS a miracle. Thinking about what recovery means to me brings tears to my eyes. The once hopeless soul who wanted to end things. Now, I have the opportunity to carry life and have new beginnings. And that’s just what recovery is. New gifts. New opportunities. New beginnings. No matter what, recovery really IS worth it.

About the author

Emily

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