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Recovery Takes Time

When I’m reading a really good book, I can’t wait to get to the ending. Sometimes I have to stop myself from peeking.  I enjoy the whole book, but the end of the story is the satisfying part because whatever struggle and suffering the characters endured, things are finally resolved and they are going to be happy ever-after. (Insert wistful sigh here…)

Recovering from an eating disorder is like that. Recovery—the end of the story—is the awesome part. Recovery-in-process is a bit less glamorous, and we might want to hit the Fast Forward button.

Or maybe the Stop button…and give up entirely.

The thing about healing and recovering is that it’s not a linear path. It’s more like a spiral at times, marked by setbacks, doubt, confusion and of course, pain. And it’s usually slower progress than we want it to be. We want the mountain-top experience, but we only get there by climbing the mountain and that’s not a quick trip. Accustomed to an instant-everything society, we want fast fixes. This is especially true for perfectionists like me who think that we should do everything perfectly—including healing. “I should not still be struggling with this!” is our mantra. Sure, other people might take awhile to work through their issues, but we shouldn’t.

The truth is, deep change takes time. Just like it takes time for a serious physical wound to heal properly. You can get it stitched and do everything right to speed up the healing, and you can cuss and kick yourself for not being able to make your skin close back up faster, but none of that will make it happen overnight. Careful wound care is required, but time is also a necessary ingredient.

Our soul care is no different. You did not develop an eating disorder over a few weeks, so why would you be able to recover from one so quickly? Stop beating yourself up for how long it’s taking you to heal.

And whatever you do, DON’T GIVE UP.

Remember that you may not be where you want to be, but you’re not where you were. Progress, not perfection, dear one.

Take some time to acknowledge how important some of the steps you’ve taken recently to recover, heal, or grow are, and how much courage and strength they took. Celebrate that by journaling or talking with someone supportive.


Much love,
Cherie Signature


I’m Cherie Miller, MS, LPC-S, founder of Nourished Soul Center for Healing and @foodfreedomtherapist on Instagram. We offer therapy and nutrition counseling for chronic dieting as well eating disorders like Anorexia, Bulimia, Binge Eating Disorder, Orthorexia, ARFID, and other food issues. As anti-diet professionals, we are passionate about intuitive eating and Health at Every Size philosophies. Contact us here to schedule a therapy or nutrition appointment.


  1. I am very new to WordPress and I am glad I found your blog. I began the horrible journey of bulimia in December of 2012.. To this day I am still fighting. I started a blog on hopes it helps me and hopefully others.

    1. Tiffany, how courageous of you to admit your struggles and to be working to overcome them! I struggled with bulimia too, and know what a grip it can have on your life. I also know it’s possible to be free from it! Keep fighting for yourself…you are worth it and deserve better than what you eating disorder offers you! XOXO.

      1. Thank you! I can see the freedom at the end of a long tunnel.. I take 2 steps forward and 5 steps back, but I can’t give up.. The motivation I have is that I do not want to die.. If death weren’t an affect of bulimia I’d be fine lol

      2. Yes, my mama has a saying about it being like a frog trying to get out of a well…for every two feet he jumps, he slides back one 🙂 Good news is that he’s still gonna make it out! The amazing thing is that when you reach fully recovery, you will not only have saved yourself from death…you’ll discover real life! I’m glad we’re on this crazy journey together and don’t have to do it all alone! XOXO.

      3. Love that saying! I know it will be a journey to recover; I wish it were instant and that it was gone, but it doesn’t work like that unfortunately. I am super glad to have people who know what I go through and understand! I am hoping to find some people near me and meet with them, I wanna meet current bulimics.. Not sure if that makes sense but I do.

      4. I will do that! My therapist is going to be looking too 🙂 I’m not ready to start one but once I gain a balance and get myself to a place, I may look I to starting one.

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