A reader named Jackie sent me some photos of herself eating ice cream, along with this note. I asked her if I could publish it, because I wanted to share her story.
As a long-time lurker of Eat the Damn Cake, I’ve always admired the women who sent in pictures of themselves eating that cake. They looked so happy and carefree. There was once a time when I never thought I’d feel that way about cake–I had an eating disorder for nine long years. It came and went in terms of intensity and form, but it was always there. Big family events were always punctuated by trips to the bathroom or serious food gymnastics to avoid the calories. I wasted a sad amount of time during my teenage years hating myself and being scared and anxious.
But this is me, eating ice cream, exactly two years after the last time I purged. I look happy and carefree. I don’t feel that way all the time, but today, I definitely do. And I feel proud. I’ve got that recovery swagger now, and it makes eating cake no longer daunting. For anyone out there struggling—recovery is totally possible (for me, it took admitting myself into treatment)! And it will happen, if you’re ready for it and you deeply want it. Eat the damn (metaphorical and literal) cake and work for what you want.
Jackie is a sometimes feminist/sex/body image blogger at a sadly now private blog (or else she would give you the link), but mostly, she teaches high school history at an alternative school in Camden, NJ, and lives in Philly. She is a recent graduate of Smith College (’11!), and loves all things feminist, puppies, and writing. And ice cream.
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Jackie’s Unroast: Today, I love my shoulders. They’re kinda big for my petite frame, but they look strong.
P.S. Kate here– check out my piece about one special Valentine’s Day, over at the Frisky