Winter seemed so long. The suffocating feel of the cold weather. The inability to see past the dreary, rainy, snowy, world that had been engulfed by the death of the trees and flowers made any struggle seem more intense.
I was walking, on this first week of spring. Alone. I took a deep breath. And I noticed all of the smells that were making my eyes water and my nose itchy. My eyes followed the smells to the most beautiful hope of new life. Budding dogwood trees, tulip buds that were tall and green waiting to burst with color, and puppies running around in fresh, bright green, grass. I couldn’t help but feel a little bit of release. A little bit of the hope that comes with spring.
God knew what He was doing when he gifted us with such a perfect pop of beautiful in this season of spring after a sad long winter.
On that walk I thought about what life would bring this season. Change (ick), allergies (double ick), summer clothes (triple ick). And after a brief pity party I realized what wonderful things could come of this season!
I have made the decision to stop running 1/2 marathons. This love of my life has become a source of pain and struggle as I reinjure my poor feet and ankles after years of surgeries. And also it is kind of like the last part of my eating disorder that I cling to. The false belief that ONLY running would make me skinny. Running has been a love/hate part of my life for more than half of my life. But it’s also been a source of control, a source of feeding me lies, and false expectations.
As spring (the best running season) approaches I have already been faced with tears, thoughts of failure, and moments where all I want to do is run. But I realize that so much joy and excitement could come from another form of exercise I am passionate about – I just have to discover it. So I am embarking on a challenge of stepping out of my comfort zone, letting go of my need to control a run, and I am trying new classes… balletone, spinning, perhaps you’ll even catch me in a Zumba class (don’t tell anyone please!). And this has already been such a struggle for me. But with the promises of spring comes the encouragement of new beginnings.
It’s time to let go of that old stuff that holds us back and embrace the brand new world in front of us. A world that brings new fear and old annoyances but also a world that reminds us of the hope of a new season.
Eating disorders like to slip in during these uncertain times of change. But, I’m prepared. And my hope is that this change of seasons brings you the encouragement you need to seek or accept treatment, I hope that this promise of new life encourages you to remember your worth and your beauty are not determined by a scale. And my hope is that you take each new day for what it is… a chance to breathe, try new things, let go of the ick that holds you back from freedom, from life, from love.
Say No to Spring Break Diets (Blog post)
Changing Seasons in My Recovery (Blog post)
The Exercise Balance (Book)