Be More Real

I literally can’t believe that it’s National Eating Disorder Awareness Week again. I feel like it was just last week that I was ordering the 2016 Aerie NEDA shirt and thinking about what I wanted to do to honor myself and my journey.

It’s been four years for me. Four freaking years.  Four years of being active in NEDA week, four years of celebrating NEDA week and four years of loving NEDA week. That’s 1,460+ days of solid recovery and 1,460 days of learning to love myself a little more, one moment at a time.

I’ve come along way. We’ve come along way.

2014 NEDA post.
2015 NEDA Post. In 2016 I took a slight break from ATBE, so that year is missing.

To be completely honest, I totally forgot THIS week was NEDA week. My heart actually dropped when I put two and two together. What was I going to do? What was I going to post? I’ve done some fun stuff in the past – like in 2015 when I rounded up  my college eating disorder  group and past TakeOver Tuesday bloggers for this post.

Anyway, I’ve continued listening to that podcast I mentioned last time. It’s really freaking good. I put it on for the last five miles of my long run last Friday and oh my heavens, I can only imagine what I looked like. There were times I was nodding my head, clapping, laughing, tearing up, even saying YES!” out loud. Sorry runners of Boston, bear with me.

I put it back on during my run tonight and one of the episodes was about social media. Kelly talked about how social media is really just curated perfection – our best moments from a picture standpoint. Between cropping, filters and whatever else you can do with images these days, we can basically make ourselves look perfect. We rarely post images of our daily grind, what we look like when we wake up in the morning, or what we look like after a nine hour work day.

I am 100% guilty of this. I use filters, I re-take photos 10 times until I get one I think I look “good” in, I take pictures when I’m all dolled up vs. what I probably actually look like on the regular.

And for what reason? What’s the point? Who actually cares?

Kelly talked about this idea of being more real on social media (check out her insta, she’s killing it). As soon as I heard that, I knew what I had to do for NEDA week.

And I really didn’t want to.  But, I forced myself and  posted this on Instagram:

With this caption:

For me, this was a big step. A needed step. It still took about fifteen tries (thanks, babe!) and it still has a slight filter (THE LIGHTING WAS BAD!)

I’m not perfect and so much of me doesn’t want to need to be. But I’m also human –  I still have the urge to “show off” on social.  I won’t be shy about saying that. HOWEVER, from now on I’m now challenging myself to Be More Real (credit to Kelly Roberts &  the “Run, Selfie, Repeat” podcast for this idea, she said it first!)

Because the above picture is actually me. It’s me after waking up at 6am, getting to work by  7:30, staying until 6pm and then running 6 effing miles (chill pill with the 666, Emily).

It’s me not wanting to throw in the towel multiple times throughout the day and continuing to keep going anyway. It’s me almost jumping into the Charles River in the hopes that the current would deliver me to my door step, instead of running that additional 30 minutes to get home. It’s me living and breathing and loving and pushing.

It’s me being me. And I’d like to share more of that moving forward.

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