I am so excited to be here, counting down the days to a very special Eating Recovery Day on May 7, 2019. Next Tuesday will be a day dedicated to fighting stigma, raising awareness and inspiring hope for recovery.
If you know me, you know that I love to write — and I love to write about recovery. What better way to get Eating Recovery Day started than to dive deep and gather new insights on recovery from those who know the journey so well?
This year, I am thrilled to virtually hang out with seven of my recovery sheroes and heroes. Each of these amazing individuals has a powerful, profound message to share with all of you.
In the coming week, as we approach Eating Recovery Day on May 7th, I’ll be sharing a new blog each day that will reflect on this year’s theme: #myrecoveryletter. We'll be highlighting these bloggers on our social media pages daily and providing you with links to their blog posts.
Check out the hope, strength and recovery inspiration coming your way!
Here's the lineup:
Day 1 - May 1
When I’m looking for real, raw honesty and stunning words, I read Lindsey Hall
. Her blog, ”I Haven't Shaved in Six Weeks
,” humanizes the stigmas of eating disorders and treatment and makes me feel a heck of a lot less alone. Through her published writing, Lindsey has had the privilege of speaking around the world on nuanced topics such as Body Dysmorphic Disorder, Drunkorexia, Exercise Addiction, Orthorexia and other eating disorder behaviors. Please visit her website
or follow her on Instagram at lindseyhallwrites
. I promise you will be amazed!
Follow Lindsey Hall on:
Day 2 - May 2
I’m so grateful to call Ana Agarrat a friend of mine. To put it simply: she lights up a room, she lights up a community, she lights up the world. As a Recovery Ambassador for Insight Behavioral Health Center and Eating Recovery Center, she inspires me to live life with less shame and more courage. Ana is passionate about sharing her story to provide hope, reduce stigma, and spread awareness of mood disorders. Always encouraged by the power of community, Ana enjoys spending time with family and friends experiencing the natural beauty of nature.
Follow Ana Agarrat on:
Day 3 - May 3
It doesn’t get much braver than Gina Susanna, a writer, blogger, and powerhouse NEDA ambassador
, whose work integrates mental health and eating disorders on the axes of body politics and self-acceptance. Currently she runs the Instagram account @nourishandeat
, providing inspirational and thought-challenging content, along with sharing her own personal journey. She is the creator of the hashtag #embracethesquish, a movement driven by the idea that our bodies in every form are worthy of love and respect. Gina is also currently enrolled in graduate study to receive her Masters in Clinical Mental Health!
Follow Gina Susanna on:
Day 4 - May 4
Sam Dylan Finch
is a hero of mine and a leading advocate in the LGBTQ+ mental health space. He’s gained international recognition for his blog Let’s Queer Things Up!
which destigmatizes mental illness and promotes body acceptance. As a journalist and media strategist, Sam has published extensively on topics like mental health, transgender identity, disability, politics and law, and much more. Bringing his combined expertise in public health and digital media, Sam currently works as social editor at Healthline. He’s also obsessed with animals (particularly cats), so be sure to check Sam (and Pancake and Cannoli) on social media
Follow Sam Dylan Finch on:
Day 5 - May 5
Of all the hearts in the world, Don Blackwell’s just might be one of the biggest. He is the author of “Dear Ashley . . .” – A Father’s Letters and Reflections to His Daughter on Life, Love and Hope
and a frequent speaker on issues relating to dads and daughters at national, regional, and local eating disorder conferences, webinars, teleconferences, and community awareness events. In addition, Don writes for and moderates his own blog Don Blackwell
and is active on both Twitter
, where he works to inspire, encourage, and offer hope to those facing life’s many challenges.
Follow Don Blackwell on:
Day 6 - May 6
Kara Richardson Whitely
has inspired millions of people like me not to let their eating disorders hold them back from their dreams. She is a dear friend, a plus-size author and a warrior adventurer who took on Mount Kilimanjaro three times! Kara is the award-winning author of Gorge and Weight of Being
. She has been featured on the Today Show, Good Morning America, The New York Times, Backpacker and in many other publications. Kara’s books are heartfelt page turners reminding us all that there is nothing the human spirit can’t overcome. Whenever I feel scared of what’s next (which is often), I read Kara’s poignant, wise, brave words. She guides me (and so many of us) out of the dark and into the light.
Follow Kara Richardson Whitely on:
Day 7 - May 7
McCall Dempsey — full of courage, heart, and humor — is a shero you truly can’t miss! Founder of Southern Smash
, McCall is an eating disorder survivor and passionate recovery advocate. After a 15-year battle, she sought treatment in December 2010. Since then she has made eating disorder awareness and prevention her life’s work and passion. McCall travels the country, sharing her story of hope and healing with audiences everywhere. She also writes the popular blog, Loving Imperfection
. McCall been featured on various national television, print and online publications, including The Today Show
, Women’s Health Online and HuffPostLive.com.
Follow Southern Smash on:
We are here for you, too!
Feel free to bookmark our pages for inspiration in the next week and beyond. See you online, friends!
Eating Recovery Center Online Support:
Shannon Kopp, an Eating Recovery Center National Recovery Advocate, is the best-selling author of Pound for Pound: A Story of One Woman’s Recovery and the Shelter Dogs Who Loved Her Back to Life (HarperCollins). After battling depression and a debilitating eating disorder, Shannon found hope in the unlikeliest of places: at her local animal shelter. Shannon’s poignant memoir is a story of hope, resilience, and the spiritual healing animals bring to our lives. Shannon holds an MFA in Nonfiction Writing from Pacific University. She has written for CNN, Maria Shriver, FOX, The Huffington Post, Good Housekeeping, Salon, and more. Shannon is the founder of SoulPaws Recovery Project, a 501(C)(3) nonprofit offering free animal-assisted therapy to people impacted by eating disorders. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, son, and wildly adorable rescue dog, Bella.