Community Stories

Shelby: “Free from ED”

Share Your Story | Libero Magazine 17
Although my recovery is far from over, I feel confident that I will continue to progress and eventually get to the point where I am complete “ED” free. Recovery has ultimately shown me what life is all about, and that is choice.

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It started off as a simple diet and an oath to exercise daily. After being the slowest member on the cross country team, I finally decided that I no longer wanted to be the last one on the field, and that it was finally time to lose some of my “baby fat.” I made a pact that after the season ended, I would continue my running and diet and come back stronger then ever. In the beginning, the changes were positive. I had more energy, I reached a healthy, appropriate weight for my body, and I was feeling more confident then ever. Unfortunately, I flew right by the point where I should have stopped.

As I reached and passed an appropriate weight, my eating became stricter, cleaner, and less and less varied.

I spent my time refining my workouts, and Googling “clean eating blogs,” absorbing any information that I could to become more and more perfect. Along with my rigid eating and exercise patterns, I began to become very hard on myself.

Imperfection, failure, and disappointment were no longer an option in academics, extracurriculars, and life.

Year after year, the disease began to take its toll.

My relationships suffered, my weight suffered, my body suffered, and my happiness suffered. By the time I started my freshman year of college, I had developed so many food intolerances from years of restrictive eating,  a pelvic stress fracture from a bad mix of long distance running and weak bones.


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Essentially, my life was completely inflexible. Every decision I made was chosen based on whether or not I could continue my unhealthy lifestyle.

After about three and half years of this I finally hit my rock bottom. During my sophomore year of college I left school for a five-month internship out of state.

By the time the program was over and my mother came to pick me up I was in the worst shape of my life. I remember being so happy to finally see her after being gone so long, but the only thing I was greeted with was tears and heartache. I was completely unaware of the animal that I had become, or what mental and physical state I was in.

When I returned home my recovery journey began.

#VoicingFreedom Community Blog | Libero Magazine 23

After spending three weeks in the hospital, I started an FBT outpatient program. With persistence, hard work, and strength, I slowly gained back some

of my soul, health, happiness, and life. Since then, and many pounds later, I am the healthiest and happiest I have ever been. Now I exercise because I can and want to. My diet is varied and I can feel good about eating all sorts of food. Most of all, my relationships are rekindled because I now have love to give.

Although my recovery is far from over, I feel confident that I will continue to progress and eventually get to the point where I am complete “ED” free.

Recovery has ultimately shown me what life is all about, and that is choice.

The choice to be who you want, what you want to do, where you want to go, and who you want to be with. Choices that aren’t manipulated or decided out of fear, sickness, or obsession, but out of love for yourself and your future. Every day I will continue to believe in hope, for recovery has and will be completely worth it.

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Shelby is currently working on completing a double major in Psychology and English from Central Michigan University, and will graduate this spring. She recently applied to graduate school for doctoral programs in Clinical Psychology, and hopes to pursue a career in eating disorder treatment and yoga therapy. She is incredibly passionate about increasing advocacy and awareness for eating disorders, and has devoted her life towards providing support, guidance, and love for those inflicted by “ED.” She hopes she can use her experiences and writing to encourage victims towards recovery. In her spare time, Shelby enjoys running, yoga, and spending time in the great outdoors. She someday hopes to travel to Africa and help provide mental health services and yoga treatment to the African population as a part of the Africa Yoga project.

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The opinions and information shared in this article or any other Content on our site may not represent that of Libero Network Society. We hold no liability for any harm that may incur from reading content on our site. Please always consult your own medical professionals before making any changes to your medication, activities, or recovery process. Libero does not provide emergency support. If you are in crisis, please call 1-800-784-2433 or another helpline or 911.

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