The following story was submitted by an incredible lady from America who would like to remain anonymous. When she contacted me to share her inspirational story I knew I had to share it with all of you here on the blog, as it demonstrates that recovery is possible for all of us, however dark or difficult things become. Her feelings of self-hatred and that all-consuming feeling of worthlessness really resonated with me, and I know a lot of people reading this will feel the same too. I’m not a religious personal at all but I am very spiritual, and it’s so interesting to see that this lady kept her faith even when times were difficult.
I hope this motivates and inspires anyone who feels like there is no way out (THERE IS!!) – and for those of you who are in the later stages of recovery I hope it makes you realise just how far you’ve come 🙂
“Learning to love myself unconditionally after a near death experience” – Anonymous
“It is selfish to only think about yourself.”
“You will never amount to anything good in life.”
“What is the purpose of life, to suffer and die?”
These used to be the thoughts I had in my head growing up. I grew up in a not so loving household and have dealt with all kinds of abuse at a young age.
I used to stifle all my feelings as a way to cope with everything. I didn’t realize that in time this manifested into self-hatred and a full blown eating disorder by the time I was 13.
All I saw when I looked at my reflection was someone that is worthless and not worth loving or living. This is what I deserve. I couldn’t see what my purpose was. I didn’t see the reason for living another day.
I had a spiritual near death experience (NDE) when I was 24 years old after battling on and off with anorexia for 11 years.
Near death experience
I had become severely depressed at the time before my NDE. I had gotten into a car accident a year ago and suffered short term memory loss. My neck and back was also under a lot of pain and my left eye would twitch at times.
I was asking God why another setback, another trauma? Family life was unbearable, dealing with school, mom’s chronic illness, dad’s neglect and gambling addiction, and brother’s focus on himself. My sanity and patience started to dwindle.
My moods were up and down. The only way I knew how to cope with all the stresses in my life was through starving myself. I began to eat less and less and los t a lot of weight. My stomach was always in pain and I had no energy to do anything. I was very fatigued and hanging on by a thread.
I began to see many doctors: a cardiologist that diagnosed me with heart arrhythmia, a gastroenterologist that only diagnosed me with IBS, a psychologist that diagnosed me with depression but all the medicines they gave me seem to make me feel worse.
As the days go by, my will to live began to fade. What’s the point of living if I were to continue to suffer like this, haven’t I been through enough?
The night of my NDE, my heart palpitations were getting worse but I just brushed it off as another symptom. I had no appetite and my vision became blurry. I cried for a few hours and collapsed on my bed.
Laying on my bed, I asked in my head ‘Why am I suffering so much, how is there a creator, a benign God that would allow all this to happen to me?’ I closed my eyes with tears on my face, but when I started to fell asleep, I felt like my breathing was slowing down and I began to gasp for air after asking that question.
What happened next was the strangest feeling. I saw myself, my soul, lift out of my navel/belly button. I was looking down at my own body and I was perplexed. I went what the heck, I can still exist out of my body? My essence traveled through an umbilical cord/tunnel that was white and grayish with wave like patterns. I was so distraught, I didn’t know what to do.
Was I dying? My spirit was traveling super fast like the speed of light. On my way to this never-ending tunnel, I yelled at God to save me. I was so scared that I yelled out at God to help me. I was desperate because I didn’t know where I was heading. I said I would miss my family and my two cats.
The tunnel then reached to this luminous white dome-shaped room that didn’t blind my eyes. But before I could go further, my spirit quickly traveled back down the tunnel and fell back into my body. When I woke up I felt instantly refreshed. I had a sense of peace and happiness than I ever felt in my life.
I also had healing from my anorexia. I had a lot more appetite and gained weight. I had more energy and was genuinely grateful and happy. Things that used to bother me did not bother me anymore.
I have more compassion and tolerance to everyone. I used to be judgmental and materialistic. Now I don’t buy as much and like to help others more. I felt as if we are all ONE.
If I’m in pain the other person absorbs my pain, If I’m love, the other person receives my love. I began to be more spiritual, more praying and meditation. I felt connected with source energy and felt protection and love for me.
What I know now is that we should love each other and everyone’s flaws, we are all here to learn, to make mistakes, to grow. We should serve humanity, be less selfish and self absorbed, and do more acts of kindness without asking anything in return.
What I have learned
Growing up I didn’t understand what love really is. It seems that love meant giving up on yourself to take care of everyone else.
Now I realized that almost everyone we come across is a wounded child at heart. And that in order for us to change our reality we must heal our internal wounds that has been there since childhood.
What if I told you the most i mportant thing you can do in life is to fully love yourself, imperfections and all.
And that it is not possible to love another unless we take care of ourselves.
I’m sure most of us who have battled an eating disorder know how hard it is to find hope in midst of struggling to survive.
But I’m here to tell you that it is possible and that brighter days are ahead of you. All it takes is that first step.
Music was really healing for me. Here are some songs that helped me through my experience: