Thank you for stumbling onto my website…
I am Helen aka Recovering Nomad and I developed an eating disorder when I was 27. Up until that age, I had no history of dieting, body issues, over exercise or anything else that could have predicted my fate.
Then, after a (what turned out to be) misguided decision to join a gym to ‘tone up’ for my upcoming wedding, I allowed my body to spiral into a negative energy balance, triggered genes I did not know I had and ended up lost and confused with a powerful eating disorder.
For over 12 years I lived with the illness.
I went in and out of inpatient treatment (in the UK), always desperately wanting to recover but never reaching a recovered state that was physically or mentally sufficient or that gave me the tools to keep going once I was back home.
My marriage failed.
I became more and more isolated with each passing year as the illness grew stronger.
I maintained a career (outside spells in treatment) but that was all I had.
After a decade of this, I had truly come to believe that I had met my destiny. I started to wonder if the ‘experts’ were right and that I was a chronic case and could only hope to maintain a quality of life within a miserable and destructive illness.
When my 40th birthday came around, it hit me hard. I could not fathom living like this for the rest of my life.
I made the decision that I had to do everything, try anything and just find out what was possible for me to recover.
Moving back in with my parents as an adult and asking for support was the hardest and most painful but also the best decision I made.
Over a period of less than six months there were a lot of ups, downs, tears and tantrums. Those short months were the hardest of my life but I would not change them as there were also times that were magical, in which I learnt just what was possible.
Without professional help, I took steps that deep down, I knew were right. I finally truly understood that recovery had to come from me – no one could do this for me. And so I started to heal.
My body grew and my mind slowly learnt that I was safe, despite unlimited food and rest.
I soon came further into recovery than I ever had or even believed I could.
As I moved out and back into my own apartment and returned to employment, my life grew in incredible ways.
In May 2019 (at the beginning of my recovery journey) I started an Instagram account to document my recovery, largely for myself (@Recovering_Nomad – now dormant).
This website and blog became an extension of that.
Here I have shared my original Instagram posts from those earlier days in recovery and more recent blog posts, which I still write form time to time, now that I am no longer facing those daunting and intense early weeks and months.
Since the early days of my recovery, I have achieved more than ever before and more than I could allow myself to believe possible for all those years of being so ill.
Because I have lived with an eating disorder, I will never take for granted the small things in life and I am grateful everyday for more mental freedom than I have known for too many years.
All I wish for is that others who are still suffering find their way to recovery and to freedom, despite living in a diet obsessed world which at times can feel as though it is doing everything to make our healing much harder.
If you do have any questions for me or want me to write about anything in particular then please get in touch:
And if you do want to read even more of my story – please do so in this post:
“You are off to great places…
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting,
….So get on your way!“
(as stolen from Dr SEUSS)