my turning point

Do you ever have an experience where things just…click? Where you all of a sudden take the blindfold off and see what is truly in front of you, rather than only seeing what you want to see. I think this happens a lot with eating disorders. People with ED’s walk around not seeing what they are doing themselves and the repercussions that come along with it. Sometimes they need a kick in the butt for them to truly see the truth.

I don’t remember the exact day when I had my turning point, but I remember where I was. It was almost a year ago today I had recently graduated high school and was now working on the upcoming college season of basketball. The coach had sent out a workout plan which included 3 days of weights and 3 days of track work. But of course I needed to do more so in addition to the weight days, I would do some cardio. And in addition to the track work, I ran a few more laps than necessary.

I was constantly hungry which is no shocker considering the amount I worked out. One night, I was still hungry after dinner so I snacked on some fruit and yogurt. But I was still hungry. I didn’t want to eat though because I already broke my rule of eating after dinner. When I told my mom I was still hungry, I was practically frustrated about it. That’s when she stopped what she was doing and looked me straight in the eye and said, “Yeah, it’s because you’re working out. Your body needs fuel for what your doing and you can’t keep running off of fruits and vegetables. With the amount of time you’re working out, you need to add more fats and protein into your meals throughout the day.” It’s like a light when off.

Of course she said it all in a motherly tone, but it all made so much sense to me. I need to eat. At this point, the thought of eating even a tiny bit of peanut butter scared me. Heck, any sort of fat scared the living day lights out of me! So after that conversation, I had a bowl of oatmeal with flax seeds in it. Flax seeds = fat. Yeah, it was scary, but something weird happen…I was full afterwards.

I still struggled with eating fats for a little while after that, but I still did it. Little by little it became less of a struggle. My body was reacting well to the addition of fat into my body. It was as if it was saying, “Thank You!”

That turning point was basically crucial for me at that point in my life. I can’t even begin to imagine how the rest of my training would have been on that same eating plan. My transition definitely didn’t happen overnight. Yeah, my mom talked to me and I was able to eat some fat but that didn’t take away the fear. And I most definitely wasn’t able to jump head first into a jar of peanut butter the next day. But over time, it got better. Now I make sure to have some sort of fat at every meal. Slowly but surely I will completely let go of my ED thoughts. But for now, I’ll eat my peanut butter and be happy with where I am.

What was your turning point? It doesn’t have to be ED related! 

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25 thoughts on “my turning point

  1. Haley,I so want to give you a big hug right now. I am SO proud of you for the progress you’ve made; for your strength & honesty; for never giving up although there have been lots of hard days lately.
    It’s amazing how far you’ve come already by now,and I am so,so happy you’re determined to let your Eating Disorder go,even if it may take some more time. I am absolutely convinced that one day,you’ll be free. You deserve it,really,you deserve it so much! ❤

    My tunring point was the moment I realized what I am truly passionate about and what I want to do in my life: Helping others; becoming a nurse. It gave me a reason to fight for and a whole new perspective,which I really really needed as I was about to let my Eating Disorder take the upper hand AGAIN… But now,I am ready to fight. 🙂

  2. Good for you girl! Glad you were able to overcome some of your fears and work through your troubles. You are a strong person.

  3. Thank you for writing this Haley! It was really touching to read and I’m so so glad that your mum was there for you and that you are so much better than you were. You should be really really proud of yourself lovely! 🙂

    The turning point I want to share is when I realised that my health and happiness were more important than which university I studied at and whether or not I lived the life of a normal teenager and student. It’s what helped me make the decision to transfer and I’m so happy that I did!

  4. AMAZING!!! I love this post so much and am so happy you had that realization with the help of your mom 🙂 You’re an awesome gal and he world wouldn’t be the same without you! ❤

  5. This post is something that I think anyone who has ever struggled needs to write. A person’s turning point is unique but monumental in what makes them realize recovery is worth it and possible. I had two moments, one that made me realize I had a disorder and one that made me realize I needed my life back,both involve my sister. The first one was when I returned to the hospital after being in there my second time a year later than the first time. I was heading to a day program for the first time but so mad i had to. I had attended the day program the past summer and knew how to easily get through it without actually recovering. Sad but true. I still at this point one year later did not think I had a problem. Then I found a journal that my sister and her friends passed around and wrote notes to each other. There was one that was my sister explaining how she didn’t know what was what going on with me, why this once happy carefree sister all of sudden didn’t see her beauty and was killing herself. My sister is two years younger yet at that moment I felt immature, I felt all of a sudden shocked at how maddening my disorder was. The moment I knew I wanted to truly recover was two weeks into inpatient treatment. My sister visited alone. I give her credit I knew she didn’t want to and she felt uncomfortable. Seeing her look at all the girls I was with and sit in the house I could see her discomfort, sadness and pain. I knew at that point I wanted to recover for our relationship, to get the Alex back she loved and didn’t have to worry about.

    whoa, so your post hit me hard today. Thank you.

  6. Great post Haley! You’ve come such a long way, I respect you so much! Thanks for sharing, girl. 🙂

  7. Wonderful post. That’s great your mom was able to help you and you have come such a long way since then! Thanks for sharing!

  8. Thanks for sharing your realization! It truly is amazing how powerful inspiration can be. I can;t say i have a specific turning point, but definitely not having any energy, fun or life within me was a great motivation.

  9. aah thank you for sharing this Haley!! and it’s good you made it clear that turning point isn’t a cure….it’s just that necessary step in the right direction, or something that really makes you commit. Mine came after I graduated from college last year – all of my friends were talking about how sad they were to graduate, how he past four years had been the best of their lives, they were going to miss college….and I realized that I hadn’t really enjoyed college. I was miserable through most of it, struggling to work out a ton, eat as little as possible, and hide it from everyone/act normal. After graduating, I didn’t feel sad, I just felt…tired. like exhausted from that effort. And that made me mad, I realized I’d wasted all of college with my preoccupation with weight….and I think that’s when I realized I didn’t want to waste any more of my life that way either.

  10. I loved this post Haley! I can’t remember my exact turning point either. But when I realized how much my ED was damaging me – hormonal problems, hair falling out, no energy, etc – I knew it was time to change. It was gradual for me too, but looking back, it’s amazing how far we’ve both come. I’m so proud of you girl!

  11. Haley, this was an amazing post. I can’t completely relate to the sports part of it, seeing as though I was never a “sporty” girl, but I can definitely relate to that “clicking moment”! I think it’s so crucial in recovery, and without it you never fully get it or are able to grasp ahold of the situation and get your life back!

    I’m so happy that you were able to do so for yourself! You are definitely an inspiration to me, truly!

  12. My turning point was an accident a few years ago. I thought I was dying, it was horrible… But I understood something was wrong, reallly wrong with me because I kinda hoped to die…. My family was with me in the emergency room and they saw it, and heard it…. And then everything changed in my life, like everything. I studied abroad, went to therapy, fought my “demons” and depression, started working out and taking care of my body, made my own choices, found a lot of amazing people (who understand me and love me for who I really am)
    My life is so beautiful now. This made me grow up and now I’m so much in touch with my true self, I have dreams, expectations, amazing people in my life…

  13. This was just such a …. inspiring, admirable post Hayley and I really appreciate you sharing it! Everyone does have their own personal turning points… something that is realized, said or done that allows them to think, “huh, maybe this is just not okay to be doing.” It’s unique to yourself of course and this is what works for you. It is a turning point but that does not mean you are 100% better and I don’t like when people think that or just assume that everything will be fine once you do THIS or realize THAT. Getting better from this is a slow-ass process that is for sure… oh and a terribly hard one! My turning point(s?) have been when I have thought about my future, my athleticism, my want to have children one day and to escape all of this.

  14. Yes! I totally know what you mean about having a moment where it just “clicks” and everything changes from that point on. I love those moments!

    I’m so glad you’re in a better place now! Your mom was so right and that was so good of you to eat that oatmeal with that healthy fat. SO proud of you!

  15. Hey Haley, love this post! I’ve never really had a specific turning point. There have definitely been moments that served as wake-up calls – getting bone density results, EKG results, my dad crying over how sick I’d gotten, my parents pulling me out of school, getting hospitalized, etc – but no singular one that made me think “I need to change NOW.” My recovery has been about gradually changing my thinking and challenging my anorexic tendencies. It’s still one day at a time for me, but I’m really glad your mom was able to help you turn things around. Aren’t moms the best?? I’m sure you’re giving her an awesome Mother’s Day today 🙂

  16. This was an amazing post! I used to avoid fat for all cost, and now I embrace it. I have gained a few pounds, and it is an emotional struggle. BUT I know it is good for my body!

  17. This is wonderful Haley! I can’t say I ever had a specific turning point, just a bunch of things added together to where I looked back and said “hey, I guess I’m recovering now!”
    Congrats to you for being strong enough to get back in the game & recover. I hope you continue to do well!

  18. I don’t know WHEN it happened, but sometime, after reading all these blogs, and seeing so many different diets, I realized that it IS different for everyone! It’s such a relief to NOT have to constantly try to be/act/eat like someone else!

  19. I LOVE THIS. And I love that you added that a turning point can happen but things do NOT have to happen overnight from there. There’s this whole in between stage. I think I had a turning point last month when I realized that I DESERVE TO BE HAPPY and I started to tell myself every day that “I deserve all the good in the world.” It’s in my phone and comes up as a reminder (text and email twice a day). It’s posted around my apartment on sticky notes. I want it tattooed on my leg or something ;)! JK But serioulsy–it’s working. I still sometimes set myself up for being not so happy (there’s a lot of undoing that old habit of self sabotage and giving myself a reason to be unhappy/down) but I am getting so much better at taking care of myself like I know I deserve to be taken care of.

  20. Congraulations I am so proud of you! And the fact that it just clicked makes it even better because it wasn’t someone else forcing you to see the truth, you kind of just stumbled on it (after some mom advice).
    I didn’t have an eating disorder but I definitly got addicted to working out hte past summer to the point where I worked out 3+ times a day everyday. And finally one day, I got a stress fracture. And it showed me that I can’t keep pushing my body too hard so constantly without there being consequences. So now when I start thinking that the workout wasn’t hard enough and I gotta go do a few more I tell myself to relax and that I can go a little harder or longer the next day.

  21. Pingback: Say Something | The Run Within

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