Day 174 of 182
Monday 27th July
I’ve been thinking about gratitude lately, it’s completely natural to me now to scribble down on my lists- and I will often take a few seconds to be still, look around and feel gratitude and love for my life.
Also loving the beautiful daily gratitude meditations with Deepak Chopra & Oprah Winfrey. Whether you are new to meditation or not they are a great way to spend 20 minutes each day. Register at https://chopracentermeditation.com/
When you start practicing “an attitude of gratitude” it can be difficult to feel grateful for seemingly negative situations- this comes in time and from my experience it’s best to be patient with yourself- as you fill each day with more gratitude and good feelings. Situations past and present have less of a negative effect than they would before as you can always find something in the now that makes you feel good or see how something from the past led you to a positive.
For me 174 days in I can now say with complete sincerity that I am grateful deeply grateful for every single event in my life up until now. All those months last year when I struggled to see any light, when I was filled with panic and each day seemed so dark I am so grateful for every single one of them. Because here where I am right now is a place I couldn’t have got to without them and it’s paradise.
This week I was interviewed as part of a study on bulimia which made me of course think more about those days. The interview went well and it made me realise how far I’ve come. For a while I had stopped talking about that part of my life as it seemed negative but now it’s fantastic to have reached a place where I actually see it as a positive time in my life and again proof that this amazing experiment has worked.
When you decide that you want to change a negative behaviour, an addiction (and that is how I see my eating disorder back then – it was my addiction) it is terrifying. Not only because it means you have to tell people about something that you are often deeply ashamed of but detrimental as it may be, you are going to be trying to stop doing the one thing that although damaging has also been your sense of security.
And “recovery” is so often painted as such a bleak and grim path. A path full of setbacks and fear, where you will have to do battle every day in order to try rid yourself of this. A gruesome daily battle that you might not even win. I was chatting to my Dad about it the other day and said it’s like asking a small child to sleep outside without their security blanket so they stop wetting the bed- they’d rather wet the bed than face that fear. Petrifying and often easier to stick with “the devil you know”.
But this, my experience of recovery wasn’t a bit like that. Yes I’ve had some hard days but the truth is the life I was living was much harder. Because I didn’t go into this trying to fight all the negative I went the opposite way and focused up on filling up with good and from day one my life was better and it all snowballed. Like the legend about the good and bad wolf in my last blog feeding all the positive feelings and behaviours meant there was no big bloody battle the negative behaviours grew weaker and faded without me even noticing until one day they were gone.
It has been a beautiful adventure filled with more love and laughter than I ever imagined- that is what I want to share- the road to a better life starts whenever you are ready and it doesn’t have to be scary and lonely. Since discovering that the Universe wants to help me I have never felt less alone or more comforted.
And my desire to share this in the hope it may inspire others to take that first step onto a new path I wrote this blog for The Huffington Post