One Year Anniversary

When you stand and share your story in an empowering way, your story will heal you and your story will heal somebody else.
— Iyanla Vanzant

One year and 40 blog posts later, and here we are. One year of sharing my heart with the world, one year of immersing myself in something bigger than myself, one year of healing my mind (and others, I hope) one word at a time. Exactly one year ago today, I published my first blog post, “The Truth,” after weeks of internally debating whether or not I should so blatantly reveal my vulnerability to my family & friends. Exactly one year ago today, I began a beautiful, hard, frustrating, yet entirely rewarding journey. Exactly one year ago today, I created my own reason for having faced what I had for so long endured—that is, to become an advocate for all those suffering from eating disorders. To use my voice, loud & proud, to make people hear the melody of recovery, with its sad, anguish-stricken notes, with its upbeat, future-forward rhythms, and most of all, with its infinite, unceasing length.

The thing with having experienced anorexia at such a young age is that it essentially became my whole life. I only vaguely remember the time before being diagnosed, for I was so young then. But now, as I continue to grow up, as I continue to move further and further away from that darkness, even the days spent constantly obsessing over food and in treatment are becoming but distant blotches of black in an ever-expanding canvas. So, in a way, I guess I’m writing to remember. I’m writing before I forget. I’m writing to document my life, with its twists & turns, with its ups & downs, before it is too late. It may seem strange that I would want to remember dark times, where my will to live was at a minimum. But I think of it like this—it is far more frightful to become oblivious to all the devastation my disorder has caused me. For, I want to be able to see how much better my life is now that I have embraced recovery. Remembering all those nights spent crying doesn’t mean I am stuck in the past—it means that I am using my past to fuel a better, brighter, anorexia-free future.

Starting Numbers Don’t Define Us has truly changed my life. I’m not ashamed anymore. I’m not ashamed of who I was, where I went, or what I did. For the first time in my life, I haven’t let my emotions, my feelings, or my thoughts, rot inside of me. I have expressed my sadness, my happiness, my pain, and it is wholeheartedly freeing. I feel a settling serenity resting inside my core, instead of a thousand words unspoken. I feel a vast calmness circulating inside of me, instead of feelings unacknowledged. I feel a fullness instead of an emptiness. I feel centered, in tune with myself, enlightened.

I expected my motivation for maintaining this site to run out. I thought that maybe I would post three times and then decide the effort was useless. I never imagined I would invest myself in Numbers Don’t Define Us for one month, let alone one year. But, I also never expected to feel such pride. I never expected to feel such a renewed sense of purpose. I never expected to be happy with who I was instead of who I thought I should be. But, fortunately, I was pleasantly surprised.

Today marks the one year anniversary of not only the day I started Numbers Don’t Define Us, but of the day I found my fullness, my purpose, and my contentment. And I thank each and every one of you earnestly for experiencing this journey with me….for the many smiles that have naturally illuminated my face after reading heartfelt comments, for the many instances of wholeness that have washed over me after being told that my words were valued.

Simran Bansal2 Comments