My story part 5 – Winning the battle after 20 years of addiction

42

18. September 2014 by swissfitchick

If you missed the earlier parts of my story, you can find them here: Part 1, Part 2Part 3Part 4.

I remember so well the day when I got diagnosed with Eating Disorders. It was only in 2006, during this huge relapse, when I actually went to a psychological institute to make tests about my behavior of bingeing. My compensation behavior to my binges were the drugs, excessive exercising and fasting – purging was just the ’emergency’ solution. So I thought I wasn’t bulimic. But I was.

‘You have bulimia. And you switched from Anorexia to it, which is very common.’ – I was in complete shock. I knew that I was anorexic in my past, but bulimic? I had no idea.

Lucie

It was a shock, but also a relief. Finally I knew what was wrong with me. My behavior had a name. Yet, this was also the mark that I carried on my forehead from that day on. ‘I am bulimic. I am sick.’ This mark put a negative impact on my recovery – in terms of that I took this diagnosis as an excuse to do what I did. Does that make sense? It gave me the legitimation to keep up with my disorder, to eat disordered and to have relapses. ‘I am sick, I am disordered, it is ‘normal’ that I behave like this. It’s part of the disease.’ I hid behind the words of the psychiatrist and lived in self-pity, committed to my Eating Disorder. I was listening to people and statistics, saying that an Eating Disorder is extremely aggressive and stubborn and very very difficult to get out of or to leave behind. It was said, that I would never be able to fully recover. Especially not after so many years. I started to resign and accepting that I will be sick for the rest of my life. I thought, if I can just decrease the intensity of the binges, then I would be able to live with it.

Lucie

But then I remembered the words of my former personal trainer Markus, who once said:’ It’s your decision if you want to change something or not. You can recover now. Or now. Or now. Or now. Every new moment is a new chance to recover and to get healthy. But YOU have to do it.’

Now get this. My diagnosis was in 2006. In March 2012 I realized that I can change something and started recovering. It took me SIX bloody damn years to understand that I have to ACT – and not wait, think and whine. So – I remember exactly when I was out for a walk or a run at the lake in Zurich, on one of my unemployed days in March 2012. The scales fell from my eyes and I thought:’ WHO says that I am bulimic? WHO the FUCK decides that I am disordered?? A doctor? Society? I decide to NOT being sick anymore from today on.’ And yes, that’s right – no one ever forced me to go out, buy shit tons of junk food and stuff my face until I am lying around like a sick whale. No one forced pills into my mouth and no one told me that being skinny is the only way to be happy. It was ALL MY CHOICE. 

Lucie

So, I knew if I choose to act disordered, I can also choose the opposite. I knew I wouldn’t be able to change everything from one day to the other, but I knew I had to make a start. And believe me, I had NO FREAKING IDEA as to HOW the hell I even want to do that.

Between this day in 2012 and December 2013, I had many relapses. I was still focusing on being skinny. I still took the drugs and I still did too much cardio. It all started to change in my mind. As I said before  you need to change your mindset – the actions and behaviors follow naturally.

So first, I started meditating DAILY. I still do that, every day since back then. 15 minutes, every morning.  I am pretty sure, this saved my life. I was able to stop my negative talk after binges. I gave my best to forget what I ate, to forget what I did and instead of beating myself up, I tried to face the problem BEHIND the binge. I knew, bingeing was a cover up for a struggle, so I tried to focus on that. (Here’s a VLOG I did about reasons why binges happen). I tried to take care of myself instead of punishing myself. Bingeing is a sign of need, a scream for help. And I tried to give myself just that – love and support.

Bena

I did have a meal plan that included carbs and fats for the first time. I was scared to death that I would gain tons of weight, so I still worked out a lot. But with the proper food I ate, I started to see my body leaning out, getting stronger and looking fit. It was amazing to see and I started to be able to drop the anxiety of food. I slowly increased calories and very, very slowly decreased cardio time. I was in PANIC, but cause I took it so slow my body AND my mind were able to accommodate and adapt to this new routine. The time slots between my binges elongated and the binges turned into ‘slips’ – means, I wasn’t able to eat huge piles of junk food anymore, I just binged for example on a LOT of chocolate, or just overate on cookies at night. Everything started to lose its intensity, I recovered a lot quicker from the binges and was able to walk forward instead of looking back and drown in regrets and self-pity. This was all the strength I built up in my mind. Believe me, it ALL happened in my head. My thoughts around everything that happened had to change. With being able to change my thoughts, I was able to change my actions. And as for building up mental strength – you can look at it like if you want to build muscle. It takes time, patience and consistency. You will get the results you wish for if you don’t give up and stick with it. No matter how long it takes. It is the success that will last in a long term if you change your mindset in tiny steps day by day. No one can build beautiful lean muscle mass in one day – and it works exactly the same way with your mindset. But you have to start one day AND you HAVE to keep on going forward and never doubt it or yourself. It will pay off eventually, this I promise.

Gif

In Summer 2013 I decided to ditch all my drugs. And no, this decision didn’t happen just like that, I mean, I was fighting with the addiction for YEARS and a THOUSAND times I thought about giving it up, but I was always too scared. But I knew, I have to do it, so I decided to go cold turkey and bear all the consequences that come along with it. When I dropped the diuretics and the laxatives, I retained water like crazy. The only thing I was able to wear were leggings and skirts, my eyes were puffy, my fingers swollen and my legs hurt. I ignored the scale, as I knew I would be a lot heavier than usually and it would only make me freak out. It wasn’t fun, but I knew I have to go through that. And I did. 2-3 weeks later, my body started to regulate the water balance on its own again and I felt so much better. My skin started to glow, my cellulite disappeared, my muscles started to show and I felt energized, cause my body was FINALLY able to absorb the nutrients I fed it. It was a gift for the endurance I proved to keep up by sticking with the detox.

My digestion took a little longer to acclimate, but after about 4-6 months, it was back to normal – which I never thought was possible.

LucieThe progress continued. My thoughts kept on changing, I was able to develop a positive mindset towards myself and life. I was always a positive person and full of life, but I lived with so many self-doubts, negative body image and insecurity. I learned to like myself, slowly, but steadily. It was hard, so hard at times. I practised positive self-talk DAILY, even if I didn’t believe a single damn word I said to myself. I believed it one day, and that is all that counts. I fought binges, and I relapsed. These were the most difficult and strenuous 22 months of my life so far. I put all my daily effort, dedication and determination into my recovery. There was nothing I wanted so bad as to be healthy and free from this accursed addiction. I hated this Eating Disorder monster so much, cause it was SO strong and dictated my life for so, SO long. Way too long. I wanted to be stronger. I wanted victory. And believe me, I felt like a failure so many times. I thought it is all for nothing. But giving up wasn’t an option, it just wasn’t. And with the tiny progress I made each day, I encouraged myself to stick with what I was doing. I felt that I was on the right track – and I stopped caring about how long it takes. I only wanted to reach my goal – whenever that may be.

Lucie

Fact is, you have to WANT it. You have to be willing to let go that ‘faithful’ friend called Eating Disorder. I was shit scared to death as to what would be left when my Eating Disorder was gone. WHO am I, if not a bulimic, anorexic, disordered girl? My Eating Disorder defined me for so many years, what was behind all that shit? Me. And that’s enough. Absolutely enough.

Quote

I am bingefree since December 2013. I never skip meals in order to adjust my weight and I eat regular meals made of real, whole foods. I don’t take any drugs no more. I don’t do massive amounts of cardio in order to burn calories. I train to get better and not to lose weight. My thoughts are not circling around food 24/7. I can eat guilt free 90% of the time. I like myself and I have a desire to take care of myself and my body. I am still very self-critical and I still have self-doubts. Sometimes I am insecure or frustrated by my training performance, a bad day at work or a poor eating day. It’s part of being human. It’s ok.

I was at my therapists a few months ago and she told me that I am recovered. After TWENTY years of battling this damn addiction and working my ass off, I finally set myself free. It is a feeling that I can not describe in words. It is a second life I gave to myself and I soak up every single minute of it. My body is thanking me by showing me how strong it is, capable of so many things I never ever dared to believe it would be. It glows. It looks and feels the best it ever did, and all the little successes I experience in training are my little rewards for all the work I put into recovery.

Lucie

Lucie

I have new goals. I want to become a better writer and I want to become a good CrossFitter. I want to keep up a healthy lifestyle and I will continue living life to the fullest. I want to see even more of this world. I want to keep up blogging and increase the awareness of Eating Disorders. I want to spread the message that recovery is possible and strive to inspire as many people as possible out there. And maybe…..maybe I will write a book.

Never stop believing in yourself. Have self trust, and take actions and work your ass off. What you really want – you will make it happen. Dream big, work hard, stay focused and surround yourself with good people.

Quote

My special thanks for unconditional support and love through all these times goes out to my family, my friends, my coaches, my readers, the blogging community and the CrossFit community. Thank you for your loyality, for never stop believing in me and for making me a better person. You made it possible for me to be where I am today. You give me strength and confidence daily and bring out the best in me.

crossfit

Girls

xxx

Lucie

42 thoughts on “My story part 5 – Winning the battle after 20 years of addiction

  1. No words……XOXOXOXOXOXOXO You Are So Beautiful, Strong, And Wonderful!🙂

  2. You are fabulous, fabulous, fabulous. I wouldn’t change a damn thing about you or your experience. Now will you add Cleveland to your USA itinerary already or what?!

  3. You are a beautiful, amazing, and strong woman, and I loved reading this series. Thank you for sharing!!

  4. YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU and I need to get our MACK ONNNN WITH SOME FISHIES!!!

  5. Echoing the ladies above, Lucie- you are incredible! I feel so proud reading your journey and I can only imagine that you will continue to inspire so many others. I love the bit about it being a choice! I really think that applies to all areas of life, no matter low a point we hit….we ALWAYS have a choice to pull ourselves together and get through it- you’re just proof of that!

  6. This post brought tears to my eyes, Lucie! Thank you for sharing your story, and for being so authentic, raw, and real. You’re a testament to the fact that recovery IS possible, and that as rough as the journey is, perseverance pays off. Your strength and beauty truly radiates from the inside out! Love you!❤

  7. Again thank you for sharing your story and being brutally honest. We defintiely have choice and no matter how long it takes if we want it we can do it.
    I’d love to read your book if you take the plunge!😉

  8. Emily Hawkes says:

    So powerful.
    And i totally get what you say about your diagnosis. I was the same with my ED, as soon as I got the diagnosis, it justified my actions and I felt I had to fit into that box, those perameters.
    Congratulations on being recovered! x

  9. ” took this diagnosis as an excuse to do what I did. Does that make sense? It gave me the legitimation to keep up with my disorder, to eat disordered and to have relapses. ‘I am sick, I am disordered, it is ‘normal’ that I behave like this. ”

    This. This is the power it had over you, and at the same time, you subconsciously used it as a veil to cover up the option to recover. but you did.

    You. are. incredible. The day your book gets published, I’ll be first in line to buy it. With an omelette up my ass.

    • I will sign it for you and top it with some eggs&chicken🙂

      Thank you so much my dear Aussie-Friend. It is true – I totally used the diagnosis to justify my actions. So glad I realized this and changed it.

  10. Amazing. Reading that part where your therapist said, “you are recovered..” ohhhh my goodness it gave me goose bumps! I love you for sharing your story and looking at yourself and sharing all of your wounds. It’s so hard to admit our skeletons. You are inspiring me to confront my skeletons once and for all – I would love to hear those words one day: you are recovered… tears in my eyes now, and not wearing waterproof mascara. Shit!!!😉
    xoxoxo

    • Oh girl, you make me laugh with your mascara🙂 it sucks!!🙂
      I know you will hear those words too. Keep on going, you can do it. Take all the bumps and ALWAYS visualize your healthy self!! It works, I promise!!

      • Visualize, yes!!! I forgot that one, thank you. I am dancing with joy now.. visualize my healthy self. I can do that :))
        Oh girl I have to tell you, I make you proud of me with my trip to Amsterdam! I drank ALL the beers and ate ALL the foods, and no pills :))) joy joy joy, thank you Lucie for inspiring me, and kicking me mentally in my ass

  11. Ann says:

    Wow, Lucie. This is the single most powerful post I have ever read. You are so inspiring to me, an ED follower for 20 years such as yourself. I read your posts and look at your amazing pictures of your strong self and I am just in awe of you, Lucie. I hope to be just as strong as you some day. I am so sick of ED ruling my life. Thank you for sharing your life with all of us, Lucie…you are amazing.

    • Ann – thank you so so much for your words. I am so sorry to hear that the ED is dictating your life for so long too. Please don’t lose trust and don’t give up. Recovery is possible. It is hard work, but this all pays off, I promise!

  12. Tim says:

    Done Baby, ist done🙂

  13. cottercrunch says:

    i love what your previous trainer said, so simple yet you are the one that decided NOW! amazing friend.

  14. You are amazing love! It’s so nice seeing a success story like yours. It is absolutely possible to fully recover and leave ED behind forever, so it’s awesome to read your story and see where you are. Thank you for sharing!!❤

  15. You are such a rockstar. I’m so proud to call you a friend.🙂

  16. […] Winning the Battle After 20 Years of Addiction via Fit Swiss Chick. An amazing story about the very real possibility of recovering from an eating disorder. […]

  17. You almost made me cry! Your story is absolutely beautiful, love, and it’s been so great to be able to follow your journey over these past couple of years and see you really take your life back. You’re amazing, and I’m so, SO happy for you❤

  18. sarah says:

    Thank you. There is so much I want to say but I think gratitude sums it all up. You are an inspiration!🙂

  19. […] Recovery IS possible (this woman recovers from an ED after 20 long years of battling it!) […]

  20. Thank you so much for this. At 25 and after struggling with bulimia the past 10+ years (and fighting it a good portion of that time), I often feel like I’m the ONE who cannot recover. I am the ONE who cannot live without bingeing and purging my life away. Beautiful stories like yours are not only really inspirational and hopeful but also have a way of bringing me back to reality. Thank you so much for all that you do. This truly is an addiction–such an awful one–and I hope so badly that I can someday get where you are with recovery. Have a beautiful day and keep treating yourself well.🙂

  21. […] And how important it is to keep up the vision of your goal. I still remember my vision of myself in all these years of recovery. EXACTLY. Me, smiling and relaxed. That was all, I just wanted to be me again without a fake smile […]

  22. Beautiful, Lucie. Congratulations on your hard-earned recovery. I like the photo of you holding the plate of treats and smiling, it must have taken a lot of work to get to that point of balance.

  23. […] My story part 5 – winning the battle after 20 years of addiction – finally finding recovery and peace with my body. […]

  24. […] I opened up to the world by going down the memory lane and digging out all my black secrets, it was even more terrifying. But the feedback was amazing and […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 2,014 other followers

Follow me on Instagram!

Best nights out are the ones with the Bestie. #basel #trouble #nightout #opening #centralstation #larrysbar #blondesout #baselbynight #nightlife #friendstime #switzerland @sylviagysin

Follow me on Pinterest

%d bloggers like this: