An eating disorder survivor has taken to Instagram to courageously bare her stomach rolls, as part of her commitment toward recovery and self-love. Clare, known as Becoming Body Positive on Instagram, has posted a slew of revealing belly snaps to her account since joining in December 2016.
After living her entire life “hating” her body, the 25-year-old lost more than 100 pounds in 2013. According to Clare, if you were to look at her before and after picture, you’d be conditioned to believe that her transformation tells the story of how willpower, persistence and determination pay off.
But in reality, her extreme weight loss doesn’t tell the story of success.
“It tells the story of disorder. It tells the story of sickness, of suffering, of starving, of binging, of purging, of the psychological torment over finding out the carb count in the cherry lozenges she ate to fight off hunger spells,” the blogger wrote.
Even as her body got smaller, bonier, sicker, Clare says that no matter how much food she restricted, or how many hours she spent in the gym, she couldn’t escape the harsh realities of excess skin, stretching, and sagging that comes with massive weight loss.
“On the outside, fully clothed and carefully covered, I was the elusive success story – proof that anyone who “worked hard enough” could win the lottery of thin privilege. But when stripped down, all I saw was shame. I felt defeated, devastated, betrayed, and furious,” she noted.
Eventually, Clare discovered the life-altering body positivity movement spreading across social media and she let her life be transformed by the “radical brilliance of warrior princesses,” such as @omgkenzieee and @bodyposipandaI.
“I am so f–king done with being ashamed, with hiding, with self-hate, with feeling like my body is an apology – even after putting her through so much pain to fit in,” she stated in a post. “I will do everything I can to win her back, to show her I love her, to help her realize how beautiful she is, no matter what the shape of her stomach or the size of her clothes.”
Recovery isn’t easy; Clare describes it as a “full-time, lifelong job,” as there are days where she allows anxiety get the best of her. In a recent post, she admitted that her daily walks to work even got tangled up in the web of her eating disorder.
“I came to this realization on my walk this morning, when I got unexpectedly caught in the rain without an umbrella. It took way more of a mental fight than I’d like to admit to put myself in a cab and “give up the extra steps,” she wrote. “Before I could catch myself, anxieties surrounding what “I could now have for breakfast” (as if because I missed out on exercise, I was no longer deserving of what I usually have !!!!!) and how I could shift around my schedule to get an extra long walk in at lunch (as if I had to “offset” my lack of movement this morning by compensating for it later !!!!!) started swirling in my brain.”
“Thankfully, I was able to reunite recovery with rationality and tell ED (eating disorder) to shut the f–k up by the time I got to work.”
The blogger confirms that while we can’t always stop our brains from backsliding into disordered thoughts, we can stop disordered thoughts from turning into disordered action — and it’s messages such as these that resonate with her 25,000 plus followers who can recognize and relate to her experiences.
“You inspire me so much!” one user wrote. “Sometimes I feel like you’re inside my brain reading my thoughts! Thank you for being a voice when so many of us are trying to find a way to speak!”
“Such well-articulated feelings, it’s still a process and you’re so brave and inspiring for sharing this with us!!” Another woman wrote.
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