Life after recovery. I have spent a great amount of time on the podcast talking about recovery, bad body image days, struggles with anxiety around food, hypothalamic amenorrhea, and yet I want to encourage you that there is life and HOPE after the initial really tough stages of recovery. It doesn’t mean that there aren’t still days when you don’t struggle with hard thoughts in front of the mirror. IT doesn’t mean that you won’t have fears about certain foods, but it’s a safe space where you don’t want to go back to where you used to be; you won’t restrict because you remember the misery it caused.
That’s why I’m bringing my beautiful friend, Shannon, back onto the podcast. Shannon first shared her story on the podcast (Freedom from Laxatives and Secrets), and now she’s in such a beautiful place right now with her recovery.
She shares much of her recovery/her relationship with food now on her Instagram, and I reached out to my friend for an interview all about life, mental health after recovery.
In this podcast we talked about:
– Why Shannon can do running now after recovery
– What a restored relationship looks like with exercise (taking every thought captive and asking, ‘Why am I exercising?’
– Does Shannon have food fears anymore?
– How Shannon approached the ‘Daniel Fast’ that she did
– Why fasting might not be for everyone
– Accountability being important for Shannon making the decision about doing the Daniel Fast
– Doing life without over-thinking about food
– What it looks like to enjoy food without obsessing over it
– Why the hardest part of recovery often leads to the greatest victories
– Why prayer is essential in recovery because it reminds us that we are dependent on the Lord (not ourselves)
Proverbs 3:5-8, ‘Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil. It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.’
– Keeping yourself accountable so as to not slip back into old behaviors
– What intuitive exercise looks like now for her
– Shannon’s verse that keeps her focused on the Lord (Psalm 118:24)
I thought I would share two verses from Psalm 118 that seem to dovetail SOOO well with focusing on God’s goodness and not on obsession over food or calories or body image.
‘This is the Lord‘s doing; it is marvellous in our eyes. This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.’
Life after recovery is so freeing; it’s fun to sit down and eat snacks without the fear. Recovery is not a ‘breeze’, but it’s worth the hard work.
I still have to continually ask the Lord to help me focus on Him and His goodness, His gifts of food, and His gifts of movement and food. But I don’t want to focus on them, so I eat a meal and strive by God’s strength to move forward and not sit there thinking about what I ate/didn’t eat or the exercise I did/didn’t do.
I hope this interview will make you smile, will encourage you to keep going if you’re in the middle of recovery. Life after recovery is very beautiful even though it’s messy and ugly sometimes; I love that my girls on Instagram:
always remind me of this when I have a hard day. The freedom that comes with recovery is a GIFT from God, a gift to serve Him, to press forward to Jesus.
If you’ve gone through recovery, what does life look like for you?
What kind of freedom do you have now with food and exercise after the hardest parts of recovery?