National Eating Disorder Awareness Week
Good morning everyone!
I hope you had a refreshing weekend! I had a busy weekend preparing to go to Florida this week, volunteering for the House of Friendship’s Potato Blitz and running my first race of the season! (Recap will be up here soon).
Although I am looking forward to heading into a week of sunshine and runs free of ice, slush and wind, this week is tinged with a bit of sadness for me. It is National Eating Disorder Awareness Week and if you are a long time reader, you will know that my youngest sister has been fighting anorexia for almost a decade.
This is an illness that breaks my heart. There is nothing that makes me feel more helpless, more angry and more passionate about. It is something that I would do anything to stop and that my family and I have done everything in our power to fight against, raise awareness for and come alongside others who are dealing with the same horrible situation.
This year’s NEDAwareness Week theme is I Had No Idea to raise awareness towards the significant impact eating disorders have on individuals, families, and communities across the nation. The more people who learn about these life-threatening illnesses, the more lives we can save.
To help remove the stigma and to give you a BIT of an idea of what it is like, I am interrupting my regular blogging schedule and I have created a video series that I will be releasing throughout the week. I interviewed my sister who has struggled with anorexia for most of her life, my mother who is her primary caretaker, my father who has sacrificed physically, financially, emotionally and almost every other way to help make his daughter well again, my siblings who have watched the disease from the inside. It will also give you an intimate look into our family’s lives over the past decade as we have banded to gather to try and save our sister and daughter.
This is a disease that has broken my heart and I want it to break yours. There are so many things that we can do differently such as removing the stigma of eating disorders, talking about them and seeking help when we know we need to.
Thank you for being so supportive and thank you for joining this journey. If you are struggling with an eating disorder, have questions or need advice on helping someone you think may be suffering, please contact me at email@example.com. I have contact information for experts in the field and if nothing else, I have been there. After almost 10 years, you tend to learn a thing or two!
Check back Wednesday to watch a candid interview with my sister Jolene as she tells her story, shares what it is like to live in the trenches of anorexia and share her thoughts on what the next steps are.
Papa John says
Thanks for being so courageous and telling this story about one we love, so much that has cost us much and cost her even so much more.
And thank you for all you have done. You have been such an unreal support to me and the rest of the family.
Love you Jess and love your family! Thanks for being brave and sharing you are a rare person!
Thanks Samantha for being such a supportive cousin. It has been amazing to have such a strong, vibrant role model to look up to! xo
I actually just stumbled upon your blog a couple weeks ago via Instagram. As a survivor of disordered eating, this week is a really big deal to me. I’m actually having a celebration party on Friday night with a bunch of my friends to celebrate 10 years of “remission” from my battle against ED.
Angela, I hope you partied HARD! I am so so proud of you for winning the battle against ED. (The fact that you know the acronym shows me you have been in the trenches..)
Thank you for reading the blog and please take time to celebrate yourself this week. I am so proud of you.
Thank you for sharing your sister’s story! I know it must not have been easy for your family to deal with this disease, but it’s amazing that you are using it to create awareness and help others.
Thank you so much, Stacie. I appreciate the support!
Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat says
Thank you so much for sharing this Jess! I know you’ve seen it all when it comes to dealing with a family member with an ED, and I also know you’ve put so much work into this series. Looking forward to the rest!
Thanks Angela. Thank you for being my sounding board both now and in the past. xo
Your family has always been an incredible testimony of love and strength…might not always feel that way but that’s how I see you all!
Thanks Kaitlyn. You have been such an amazing support over the past decade.
Krysten Siba Bishop (@darwinianfail) says
This is such a POWERFUL message. I had no idea you and your family were dealing with this. Thank you for your honesty! I can’t wait to follow along and watch the rest of this series. It is such and important issue! HUGS and Body LOVE to you all!
Thanks Krysten. I know you have been through an incredible journey yourself and it is always amazing to have other people who understand what it is like to adapt to a new normal of sorts.
Thanks for the encouragement!
What an absolutely powerful post and topic. Thank you for sharing your family’s story with us, and I hope that it helps others.
Thank you so much for your support, Lindsay!