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Recovery blog

Give Permission for Imperfection

By: Nikki Iwule, MS, NCC, Primary Therapist and Alumni Representative at The Renfrew Center of Orlando

Posted on November 23, 2020

11.23 headerWith the holidays quickly approaching, we might all be feeling a bit under pressure. We all might have thoughts of "How do you do a socially distanced Thanksgiving?" or "What does this mean for holiday travel?" Add in recovering from an eating disorder and those thoughts start to be accompanied by "Am I going to be able to eat what my family is eating?" or "What if people notice the change in my eating habits?" The mental chatter could go on and on…

I want to give you permission to have those thoughts, because you are a human being doing the best you can to figure it all out. Then I am going to ask you to take a deep breath and invite in the possibility this holiday season could provide you with an opportunity to better learn about yourself and your needs, if you let it.

This means allowing your recovery to not be perfect. This means asking for help when you need it. This means allowing for reflection when you have struggled. This also means celebrating your successes, no matter how big or small! This season can be hard, but you can do hard things. You have everything you need already inside of you to recover. Trust that. Be open to what this season brings. And trust you are more capable than you can even conceive.

I think my friend and colleague summed this up beautifully in a poem she wrote:

"One day I hope you find
There's beauty in the unrefined
And to accept yourself for who you are
And not who you think you should be
And to not only accept, but to cherish
The totality of life
And to learn in every moment
How to LIVE, not just survive"

- Mikaela Coel, MPH, RD, LDN, CPHM

Nikki Iwule, MS, NCC started working as counselor at The Renfrew Center of Florida in July 2019, and in 2020 transitioned into the role of Primary Therapist and Alumni Representative at The Renfrew Center of Orlando. Prior to joining Renfrew, Nikki completed a yearlong internship working in the field of eating disorder treatment at the partial and intensive outpatient levels of care. Nikki received both her Bachelor's degree and later her Master's degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Mercer University. Nikki is a passionate advocate for recovery, and hopes to help people see how deeply capable and worthy they are in a way that fosters long lasting self-acceptance, self-connection, and recovery.
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