This is the best piece of advice I could ever give:
Don’t leave before the miracle happens and never stop trying.
If you would have told me 6 years ago that I would be in recovery now, I would never have believed you. I thought I was a hopeless case that they talk about in the book. I thought I would die by the age of 25. Every single day I thought about killing myself. Today, I have 6 years sober, and I’m coming up on 3 years in recovery from an eating disorder.
I have gone to treatment centers and psychiatric hospitals at least 20 times. I was homeless, severely underweight, my skin was gray, and I had attempted suicide many times. Many of my stays were in sobriety. I was also sober during suicide attempts. I suffered in silence and I would smile to the world, but I would go home and cry myself to sleep. I went to Turning Point of Tampa three times. Two of the times I was sober.
Living with an eating disorder in sobriety is miserable. Everyone is happy and all you want to do is crawl out of your own skin. I knew I couldn’t drink again so I thought I might as well just die. I was trying to drown out years of trauma and abuse. I couldn’t take the flashbacks and emotional pain anymore. I was so ashamed of myself. I was such a fraud. I put on a happy face at meetings while I was dying inside. I started having severe physical consequences as well. I was having seizures all the time, sometimes during AA meetings. Then I started isolating, and I could no longer hold down a job. How could I be sober and so insane?
In 2017 I found myself walking into traffic on Bayshore Blvd. I was just hoping that someone would finally take me out of my misery. A friend of mine picked me up off the side of the road that night. My higher power got in my ear and told me that my time was not up. Despite wanting to die, I got help. I decided to go back to treatment at 3 years sober. Turning Point really was just the beginning, but it was exactly where I needed to be.
I listened to the suggestions begrudgingly. I didn’t want to go to treatment and there was no way in hell I was going back to a halfway house at 3 years sober. On my last day of treatment I decided to take Turning Point’s suggestion and go to the Opal House. I’m so happy I didn’t give up.
I’m not perfect and I can still be really stubborn. My life is the best it has ever been. My first three years of sobriety were probably almost as bad as when I was drinking because I was suffering with an eating disorder. Don’t ever feel ashamed to get help is my piece of advice. I almost died in sobriety. Life is good today and I owe it to my program, my higher power, the fellowship, my sponsor, Turning Point of Tampa, and the Opal House.
Don’t leave and wait for the miracle to happen. If I can recover, you can recover. I am a work in progress, but I promise somehow, some way, it gets better. I used to cringe when people told me that. My God loves you and believes in you!