A Special Guest Post – My Battle With Anorexia
The following post is written by the talented Author and Speaker Eryn Lynum.
Eryn has contributed the following powerful posts on her journey with an eating disorder.
You can view the whole series here.
- My Battle With Anorexia, Part 1 ~ A Disease That Thrives On Secrets
- My Battle With Anorexia, Part 2 ~ Relinquishing My Secret
- My Battle With Anorexia, Part 3 ~ Moving From Fear To Passion
Eryn has recently given birth to her first daughter (she has 3 young boys) and this is an open letter to her daughter.
It is so beautifully written. Thank you, Eryn, for your powerful words! ~ Halle
If you’d like to read more of Eryn’s work, I highly recommend her new book, 936 Pennies ~ Discovering the Joy of Intentional Parenting
Dear Daughter, I Traded My Eating Disorder For You!
I never knew if I would write this letter to you. Yet here I am, swaying back and forth before this screen, you strapped tightly to me, nuzzled against my chest as I listen to your soft breathing.
And out come these words I have held within me for so long, never knowing if they would find space to be expressed. With your arrival, I knew their time had come.
You see, I never knew if you would be.
Not only because of your three brothers that came before you, and my doubt that I would ever hear those words, “It’s a girl”, after so many swaddles of blue.
And not only because of those words from the doctor, when I was fourteen years old and diagnosed with a rare disease, and they were uncertain of how it would affect my ability to have children.
There was another reason that I never knew if I would know you. It was because I nearly ruined my chance at you.
You see my girl, there was a time when I almost gave you up. Day after day I made a choice, and those choices nearly took you from me.
Every meal I skipped nudged me one step farther from ever knowing your name.
I knew, at a certain point, that I had a decision to make. Something within urged me to research what I was doing, how my behavior was affecting my body, and that’s when I read it.
I realized that, should I continue down this road of disordered eating, my body may never be able to create you, grow you, hold you, deliver you.
I had a choice. It was my skewed perception of beauty, or you. And now, your little chest rising and falling in tandem with my heartbeat, I know what true beauty is.
I chose you. And I will continue to choose you every single day.
Although I made my decision over a decade ago, there are still days when my mind plays tricks on me, when I begin to compare.
Our minds turn beauty into a fickle thing, little lady. And I’m coming to see how my choices today will affect your choices tomorrow.
Over a decade ago I traded my eating disorder for you. And because of that journey I took, I know with unsettling depth the challenges that lay before you.
And so, my sweet daughter, I have more choices to make.
I choose to see you for who you are, and assure you of the beauty deep within.
I choose to teach your brothers that one of the greatest ways they can protect you is to tell you how beautiful you are.
I choose to teach you how food was created to make our bodies strong and healthy, to work for us, not against us.
I choose to battle against society, and raise you to see what true beauty looks like, the beauty of a still confidence, a generous heart, a kind word, and life lived with intention and grace.
I choose to pray hard for the man you may marry one day, that he will have eyes only for you, and that he will endow you with incredible confidence. I pray he will be a man like your Daddy.
And my girl, this one may be the most difficult choice I make, but…
I choose to look in the mirror every day and see not my flaws, but the beautiful body that made and carried you, that delivered you into my arms.
I choose to look in the mirror and see beauty. Because I need you to look in your own mirror ten years from now. Twenty. Thirty. And to see beauty also.
I need you to exhibit such confidence and value because society did not have its way with your worth.
I need you to know that the mirror, the scale, and social media do not have the final say.
You are beautiful. And I beg God that you will know that deeply because you grew up seeing your mother living confidently in her own beauty.
Dear daughter, I chose you years ago. And I choose every day to do everything within my power to help you make the same choice for your own story.
Choose life and true beauty, my gorgeous girl.
936 Pennies, Discovering the Joy of Intentional Parenting
You can read more from Eryn with her new book 936 Pennies ~ Discovering the Joy of Intentional Parenting