"I Quit Dieting, Quit Changing My Body…Instead, I'm Changing My Life." A Story of Hope From a Reader in Slovenia

Wow. I got this incredibly inspiring note from a 24-year-old HealthyGirl.org reader in Slovenia and just had to share it with you guys. Polona has slowly but surely started to change her life and get sane about food over the past year. Proof it’s possible to grow away from obsession and into happiness and health. Enjoy, and feel free to share about anything her story brings up for you. xo…Sunny

Like Polona found out, food and body sanity goes so far beyond the mirror.

Hey Sunny,
It’s been a year since I discovered your blog and found out I have a deep, emotionally exhausting problem: bingeing and other food & body issues. At that time your blog was like a little, but very believable, voice in my head that said “You are not the only one, you are ok, you are going to be ok.”

What I did in the past was dieting or bingeing. Nothing else. I remember I was 10 when I first found out I don’t like myself. I wanted to change so much. I hated my body and I hated myself for having that kind of body. People around me started to comment my weight, like my coach, telling me that I would be some much better and faster at sport, if i lose some weight.  So I enterd the world of diets. And my disorderd eating patterns started.

For that next 13 years I fought with myself. I dieted, I binged, I compulsively exercised, I starved, I worked hard at school, I work hard at sport … well, I wanted to be perfect, I wanted to be thin.

But since I discoverd your blog, since I admitted to myself I have a problem, educate myself and started with my recovery, I found out that I never really wanted to be thin; I wanted to be accepted by my parents, family and my friends (the way I am). I think we all know it’s not about food, it’s about trying to fill ourselves when something is missing. I guess, when love is missing. Food accepted me the way I was. Food accepted me when I felt like nobody else did.

When I was losing weight, people started to change and I was convinced that this is the way to be accepted—to lose weight. So I thought that this is something that will bring me a new, happy life. But I was so wrong, becouse nothing ever really changed. I became even more obssesed and I hated myself even more. And I still didn’t get that loving and caring feeling of acceptence. So I statred to binge again.

It’s been a year since I started my own journey to free myself from this world of constant and vicious cycle od diets. I feel like I made some huge steps forward. I almost don’t binge anymore. I’m happy with myself (not all the time, but most of the time). I cry a lot. I smile a lot. I quit dieting and I’m not afraid of food anymore. I quit changing myself, but I change my life, slowly, but surely.

I moved and become independent, found job I like, found some friends that fill me up with feelings of love, started with a sport that taught me how capable and strong my body really is, educate myself about eating disorders, talk about it … and, well becouse of you and inspiration you are givnig through this blog, I started my own blog about life and ED. I’m from the other side of the ocean (Slovenia, Europe) and people here don’t really talk about ED. I would like to thank you for this beautiful filing of understanding and love you giving to us, readers of HealthyGirl.

I didn’t change my body. I stoped changeing myself in order to please everyone else. But I did slowely changed my life to please no one els but myself and filled it with people, things and activities that make me feel accepted and enriched. I think it’s the first time in my life that i truly feel like a healthy girl.

Thank you, Polona  (from Slovenia, Europe)

Wow. Thank YOU Polona. You have made my day—no, my week!—and I know that your experience will help inspire other girls and women to look a little deeper, past body and weight, and down to what food really has meant in their lives up till now.

Now, to the rest of the HealthyGirl.org community: For Polona, food seemed to mean love and acceptance. For me, it meant rebellion, escape and comfort. What did/does food mean to you? What emotions or deeper needs have you been using it for?

11 Responses to "I Quit Dieting, Quit Changing My Body…Instead, I'm Changing My Life." A Story of Hope From a Reader in Slovenia

  1. Nina says:

    Congratulations on your recovery Polina! This is a beautiful story and very similar to mine. I quit dieting, faced the world and all of its challenges. It is tough but so rewarding. Never ever give up!

  2. Polona says:

    Thx Nina :) You really just have to belive in yourself (and not in everyone else).

    “I quit dieting, faced the world and all of its challenges´´ – strong words. :)

  3. Tjasa says:

    I have the privilege to know Polona in person. She’s the sweetest girl who really copes well with the common problem of today’s developed world: we have our a**es full of everything and by that we don’t see what really matters. That people around us only need our time and love – and for sure not the stuff we can buy by working overtime. Especially when this “people” are children – which we all were and carry that hurt feelings with us.

  4. Ashley says:

    Polona,

    I have your same story, I was told by coaches to lose weight. I am not where you are and want to be. Why do we think our weight and the way our body looks are indicators of our worth as a person? Why is it easier to think “if I was skinnier I would be happy?” and then turn to food to numb the pain? I hope I can be where you are one day….I am very happy for you and grateful for your post…

  5. Katie says:

    Thank you for your honesty and bravery, Polona!

  6. Gaye says:

    I resort to food when I feel lonely, which is almost all the time. I’m lacking something, which I cannot identify on the conscious level. I either eat or call upon my ex-boyfriends, both of which are extremely self-degrading in my perspective; the latter even more so than the former, so that I end up bingeing when I get those feelings of loneliness…

    Why can I not be happy on my own? How can one reach self satisfaction?

  7. Polona says:

    Ashley,
    it is so much easier to blame & focus on our bodies than to face with the real issues and problems we have. For me dealing with the real problem (my family) is so painful that I need to numb my feelings with food or find hope with “motivational´´ thoughts like “if I was skinnier I would be happy”. But once you let go of this belief (which happens very gradually) you notice how hard you tried in the past to please everyone else instead of yourself.

    Gaye,
    when i felt loneliness i was lacking love.

    Thx Katie & Tjasa <3

  8. Trish says:

    I LOVE this story. I totally identify with Polona — the need for acceptance. Sometimes I still find myself thinking in those old ways — when I fight with my boyfriend, I say to myself, “I wish I had something that loved me no matter what”…like a dog, and sometimes (still) food. You are right — food doesn’t judge, food accepts you as you are. But I just keep telling myself that the food doesn’t control me, I control me. The food is just there to help me get along with my life, happily.

    Isn’t it amazing how things fall into place once you start taking control and stop hating yourself? Congrats on making such huge steps, and keep up the good work!!

  9. Polona says:

    Thank you Trish :) Yes, it` s amazing … life-changing. :)

  10. [...] Kar je vsaj zame izredno pomembno pri srkanju informacij. Sunny je med drugim gostila tudi mojo zgodbo. Zdaj sem si pa zaželela sprehod v dežju. Aloha.p.  test Filed under book club, odsev, [...]

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