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  • Danie van Kay

Are you ACTUALLY recovered?

I always decide to write a blogpost either when I'm hungover, extremely tired or when I'm in pain. Right now I'm a combination of all the above. I went out to a silent disco party last night, already started day drinking when my boyfriend came and continued until 2AM.

I'm such a responsible human being. Lol. Love it though. I've been the responsible "goody two shoes" for way too many years and I'm done being responsible. I just want to do whatever my heart desires and if that means eating chips and drinking wine everyday that's FINE.

Society and diet culture always tries to make us feel guilty for eating or drinking "too much" and not exersizing. Come on, it's not like you're doing crack in a back alley or robbing someone.

I always tell my clients that in the grand scheme of things it's not the worst thing in the world if you had a couple of "bingeing" episodes in the last week or went out, drank and ate more than what you're comfortable with.


Can you imagine you will look back on your life in a couple of years time and think to yourself: "man, I wish I didn't eat that extra donut or roll of cookies on March 2nd 2015". Nope, you won't. You'll probably think. "I wish I could get those years back of obsessing over food, body and exercise. What a waste of time."

Of course I know a lot of people who are chronic yo yo dieters and/or have disordered eating behaviours and the majority have issues with their body size. If doesn't matter if you're thin or fat (I'm using the word "fat" as a "fat positive" person. Meaning it's just a descriptor. Just like someone who's short, tall or has brown hair)


It's really sad to admit, but I noticed I'm doing the EXACT thing myself I'm telling my clients not to do.

I tend to freak out after a couple of days of eating everything under the sun and make the promise to myself to eat "better" less "emotional" and more "intuitive".

Fun fact: I barf on those words and yet my sick mind is STILL telling me what I should do. This just give me a good indicator of the work I still need to do myself. This is where constant neural rewiring is SO crucial and you can't be complacent in recovery.

You have put in the work Every. Single. Day. in order to move forward.

People ask me all the time "As an eating disorder coach; are you actually recovered yourself?"

9/10 times my answer is: yes, I am recovered physically, but mentally I still have some lifelong work to do. Recovery isn't a straight forward process. My thoughts will go up and down depending on my mood, emotions, pain, etc. It's my weak spot and it will always be, but I barely listen to any eating disorder thoughts anymore.

To give an example; If you don't know my story yet, I have lyme disease which means I live with chronic muscle pain. So whenever I make plans to party and go out, I need to consciously save my legs and energy. That means not even walking a few meters.

It sucks, but at the same time I'm doing so much fun stuff. On those days I usually struggle mentally, because I still need to eat the same amount and not compensate.

I won't ever do that again, but the thoughts are still somewhat there. (not always though)

Yesterday was a day of not moving until the party started, drinking LOTS of alcohol, eating pizza, an undefined egg wrap, chocolate, chips, bread with peanut butter and so much more. I was ravenous for some reason and that meant eating a few extra slices of bread before going out.

There's also this comparison trap thing where my boyfriend didn't eat anyting else but the pizza and my fucked up mind keeps telling me: "are you kidding me?! You're eating more than your 6 ft 4 boyfriend. Gurrrrlll, you're a crazy fat lazy human being."

I still ate the bread, even though those thoughts were running through my mind. Two years ago I would never have done that. So there you go. The thoughts are still sometimes there, but I don't act upon them.

I'm 100% confident that at some point the thoughts and mental struggles will barely be there. I'm aiming for background noise that pops up once in a while, just like any other annoying thought.

After browsing through social media just a few minutes ago, I felt like I need to say the following:

If you're caught up in the clean eating/vegan/raw/no processed foods/etc. cycle and work your butt of in the gym every day or have an obsessive relationship with moving your body and eating food at certain times.... YET you still have a "healthy" weight: please seek help.

I see this pattern all the time. Anorexic/bulimic - orthorexic - obessive exerciser

Surround yourself with body positive people, eat intuitively (pizza, sweets and wine included) and LIVE.

Don't let your mind bully your body.

#recovery #lyme #anorexia #edcoach #bodypositive #weightneutral

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