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This section is for writings from other people.  Currently I haven't received anything for this section of the site, but if you would like to contribute please e-mail me at irishamethyst41@hotmail.com, and also indicate whether you would like to put your name on it, or keep it anonymous.  Anything welcome - poetry, stories, experiences etc.  It is up to you!
 

Kim's Recovery Story

First of all let me start off by saying that recovery is possible. I have been in recovery for over 10 years now! And although I have good and bad days, whether that be with eating or body image, they DO NOT nearly last as long as it used to.

Early on in my recovery the resources I used to help me were journal writing - I wrote all the time about how I was feeling about anything. It felt so good to get down on paper what I was feeling and thinking and knowing that NO one would read it, it was just me and my thoughts. I also saw a therapist (for 5 years) and I strongly suggest to others that seeing a therapist goes hand in hand with recovery. With her help I was able to unwrap the layers of issues that were eating me inside and helping me to stay within the eating disorder. I also saw a nutrionist and my family doctor. This helped with my medical part of recovery.

I still love to write in my journal, although I don't do it as much now. I also enjoy creating silk flower arrangements, cross stitching, camping and spending time with my family.

I do work and I find it very enjoyable and I know if I was still in the "hole" with the eating disorder I could not do my job as it can be physical. I also couldn't enjoy life. I have long since realised that you need food in order to a) stay alive b) do the things you love. Food is fuel for our bodies, if we don't have it, we die.

If you truly want to get better then you will. Yes, it takes a tremendous amount of hard work, determination, strength and will power to do it, but it's possible. I am living proof!! I truly believe that anyone can be in recovery and have a life without an eating disorder. I am so much happier with my life now. I am in control, NOT the eating disorder and its the most wonderful feeling in the world.

Don't ever give up the fight for your life! You can do it, you have the strength, just find the resources that will help you with getting better.

We all deserve a happy, healthy, eating disorder free life!

E-mail: kvrat:shaw.ca Website: http://www.angelfire.com/oh3/anorexia

I received the story below by e-mail, and even though it is not based on an eating disorder, I felt that it was an inspiring story nonetheless, as it shows what the writer himself as learnet through the course of his life.

My Story by Rick Szczepanski

 Taking Care of Yourself First

What about Me?

Through the journey of life, I realized that to be really happy you need to take care of yourself first.  The balance needed to enjoy life has three components; peace of mind, spiritual needs and a healthy lifestyle of exercise.  I do not put any pressure on myself, a free spirit who does what needs to be done, does not care what others think or say, and reports to no one. I take care of myself first.  Always keeping in contact with friends, family and making new acquaintances keeps you in touch with your human side.  This need is vital to survival and by no means selfish. 

 

Keep in mind that if you are happy, you will treat others with respect and respect is earned not given.  Irritability creates treating others cruelly.  Disrespect by a peer or a student is never acceptable.  Zero Tolerance.  If you are feeling that you don’t trust people, you are insecure in your own world and need to balance things out again.  If you are worried about what everyone else is doing, you also need to even the scales as this shows a failure to do what you need to be doing at the time.

 

If you are married, you must be able to keep your identity, enjoy the things you love in life, take care of your needs emotionally and physically and just enjoy life.  If you have children, there is no reason why you cannot take care of yourself first.  Enjoy time as a family but step out, take a walk, take a class, have lunch with friends every week and this balances you as a person, a parent and a spouse.

 

Another secret to life is to give back from the heart through philanthropy, community work and efforts and definitely create your own project.

  

Giving Back

I was a year old when my mom was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis.  While growing up I realized what a generous, courageous and loving person my mom was, always putting her family first despite her pain and suffering.  I drew my energy off of every positive person I met and kept in touch with them.  My life was not covered up by these people but entertained, blessed and able to live my life as it was meant to be.  A longtime friend of mine with MS and I talk about everything which gives me the opportunity to talk openly.  She is very supportive, honest and a dear friend to this day.

 

My mom passed away in 1995 at the age of 75 from complications of MS.  In 1997, I decided to create a scholarship program to remember my mom’s “Never Give Up” attitude and get the word out on the high school and college campuses where MS was not talked about.  We now are in our seventh year at West Catholic, Catholic Central and Kenowa Hills High Schools and in our third year at Grand Valley State University. This dynamic program recognized as the most creative initiative for MS by students, teachers and businesses in Michigan is offered to all Michigan High Schools in September 2006.  I talk honestly about the connection of MS and depression, struggling to walk, spouses and the real life stories I have for the last fifty one years of experience.

 

Creating your own project is extremely rewarding, expresses your creativity and gives you support from so many people, a connection needed.

 

Interests Reap Rewards

Your activities and interests are a great spin-off to give back to others and creates a chance to stay active in the things you love.  For twenty years, I enjoyed the adrenaline rush of the sport of volleyball indoors and on the beach playing in leagues and tournaments.  As a way to give back to the sport, I created the Volleyball ‘Role Model” Award sponsored by Schelde North America at West Catholic High School of which I am a proud graduate.  A varsity player who shows that drive, spunk, determination and enthusiasm for the sport is honored with a plaque annually.  I am working on adding a scholarship to this prestigious honor.

 

As one of the top math elementary educators in the Grand Rapids and surrounding school systems, and passionate about the subject we as Americans are extremely weak in I wanted to give back to a student who shares the same love of math.  With the help of Sandra Golembiewski, the math director at West Catholic we created the Pythagorean Math Award.

 

I am also working on a scholarship program for West Catholic High School in West Philadelphia, PA, a Spelling Bee Contest at West Catholic with a sponsor and another new math award.

 

Roadblocks

Sometimes you will run into poor, inadequate, insecure and incompetent bosses who want you to jump through hoops. Stand your ground because you need to take care of yourself first and do the right thing.  Do whatever it takes to get the job done and if the boss is not happy, remember that a great employee works hard, does not try to impress others, and is very proud at the end of the day.  Never be afraid to say “No”.

 

Quality companies look for independent, self- starters who lead by example.

 

The best boss I ever had was Ken Stanton, Grounds Supervisor at GVSU.  Ken was honest, told it like it was, let me lead, let me do what I needed to do and always gave me support.  These are all signs of a great leader who leads other leaders.  Ken was the best at management skills, a friend today with integrity and total class.

 

There are many seminars available on how to manage difficult people, take stress out of your life and do what needs to be done.  If you do not take advantage of these opportunities from some of the best professionals in the area you are taking a step backwards.

 

Relationships

Friends are friends for life, supporting you through good times and your rough times.  If you find one who can’t match up to being a “True to the Heart Friend”, look further.  This friend becomes an acquaintance and will not be there for you when you need him or her.  Acquaintances are plenty, friends will back you up, not back stab, criticize, judge your decisions or second guess you. 

 

No Limits

There is a constant drive in my saying that I can do anything and I will not be influenced by the many who just follow us leaders.  There are many individuals who are simply jealous, actually lazy is the better term and are willing to steal your ideas and plant their name on them. This  is a real world issue so beware.

 

Take charge, spread your talents through out the community, lead don’t follow, give back to others who you don’t even know and take care of yourself first.