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I made a New Year’s resolution last night.
It came in a fit of guilt and resolve. It felt so good at first. I was taking a positive step in my life. I was going to stand up to the biggest challenge I’d ever faced. I… was going to beat my eating disorder.
There…I said it. And then the thought of dispelling this monster that’s controlled my mind and body for too many years and too many endless days and nights, began to fade. Like a dream you hope that will never end, yet disappears at the first break of daylight. Gone. Vanished—like a leaf in the wind.
Resolutions are made to be broken, I said to myself. Resolutions are hollow and hopeless. Why bother? I’ll make it only to see it forgotten; filed somewhere in the back of my mind. But wait…what if I was to make a promise to myself? Not a resolution but a promise. A promise is something you keep. Something you commit yourself to and do everything you can to fulfill it. I was suddenly encouraged. I felt renewed.
I began to put this promise into words, to write it down on a piece of paper. Then I would copy and post it where I could see it and read this commitment to reassure myself that I was on the road to recovery. I knew there would be roadblocks and detours, stops and starts along the way but now I had a blueprint, a destination I would eventually reach. This… is my promise.
I promise that I will take better care of myself. I promise to listen to my healthy voice. I promise to work on overcoming my guilt and regret, and that endless sense of conflict. I promise to deal with my anxiety and seek help if I find I can’t. I promise to stay positive and balanced. And above all, I promise to connect with my higher power.
I sat back in my chair for a moment. Took a deep breath and quietly read through my promise to make sure I was happy with each and every word. Then, I copied and posted it in strategic places so it would always be there to remind me of my commitment.
If you’re struggling with an eating disorder, why not make a new year’s promise to yourself? Not a resolution, but a promise that you will do your best to keep. And maybe, just maybe, that promise will turn into a lifelong change.
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