I had a light bulb moment several years back while reading a book, The Body Keeps the Score, about healing the brain, mind, and body of trauma. I realized I had gone most of my life being disembodied, fragmented, numb, and functioning on autopilot, all of which explained my poor recollection of my past. I had disembodied early in my childhood as a survival mechanism from sexual and emotional abuse. A full-on and completely aware experience of my outer world (people and situations) would have been too much to handle.
Moving into adulthood in an unhealed state of being, I made choices based out of fear, and a lack of confidence and self-love. I chose a partner where addiction, codependency, dysfunction and inadequate parenting played out over and over. We did love each other and still do, but as neither of us were whole entering the relationship, our marriage struggled and eventually came to its demise.
Having been raised on the typical western diet when junk food marketing was hitting the masses, I had developed unhealthy food choices and eating habits. Cereal, cookies, chips, soda, and fast food were daily choices. I carried these habits into adulthood. This significantly contributed to developing my health problems such as appendiceal cancer, interstitial cystitis, hives, eczema, thyroiditis, candida, acne, etc.… My gut health was completely compromised.
All the above led to problematic eating such as food addiction, emotional eating, overeating, and all related issues. To compound that, I constantly stressed, hated, and judged myself because I couldn’t get a grip on my struggles with food and eating. I have always been thin, so my eating problems, health challenges, and internal struggles were easily concealed. I tried different diets and styles of eating. I competed in bodybuilding, but even in my best physical shape, I still felt shame and hate about my body. Anyone who has been sexually abused knows that shame is tough to overcome. In our society, it’s a problem all on its own without our issues being thrown in the mix, especially for women.
Appendiceal cancer scared me enough to begin cleaning up my diet. I started by overcoming my soda addiction and took baby steps from there. As I began eating healthier, I was relieved to see improvements in health, but problematic eating stubbornly persisted. I realized that addressing my diet was only part of the equation. Equally damaging was my poor relationship with myself and my body, discontent in my career, an unhealthy marriage, and unhealed trauma, which all played a part in my relationship with food. I felt desperately stuck and paralyzed in these areas of life. I was held captive in a victim paradigm. A resulting deep-seated anger had kept me from moving forward. Everything I experienced was interconnected. My relationship with food ran parallel to it all. I also realized unhealthy food choices and overeating was a form of self-abuse. I didn’t feel I deserved better.
I was exhausted, lost, stuck, and confused. I couldn’t stand for another minute to feel that way or to continue that path. I had to make changes.
I took steps for change. One of the most important changes I made was to connect spiritually to what resonated with me. With this, I realized that my experiences were all meant to be. They were opportunities to learn, grow and heal. These experiences didn’t happen to me, but for me. This was a transformational shift for me.
I quit watching TV, started praying and meditating every morning, and spent more time alone. I thirsted for knowledge and studied multiple topics. For months, I searched for the perfect school to study to become a holistic nutrition coach, signed up, and devoured it. After earning that certification, I then became a certified yoga teacher. I found and did things that fed my soul, things that helped me feel good and excited about my life. I began to rid myself of toxic people and situations. I worked on shedding limiting beliefs about myself, such as believing I wasn’t worthy, and layer-by-layer I shed the victim mentality. I learned to give myself some of the things I had been seeking externally.
I have been lost and I know the deep pain of being stuck, angry, and victimized. Through my journey, I have begun to heal my heart, mind, and body. Most importantly, I have found my value and soul purpose. My purpose is to help others who struggle as I have, to help them back to their essence, to discover their truth, and to heal their relationship with food through self-discovery. Working with clients is a win-win for both of us. I am blessed in seeing beautiful transformations in them, and it absolutely feeds my soul. Now that I see my purpose, I am honored to live it every day.
Who I am is always changing. I am always open to growth and transformation, and my purpose is to help your breakthrough, too. If you are ready for change, let me help you step into your power and your greatness. You are worth it. Fulfill what you came here to do and to be.
- Jaqueline Grace