A Letter to My Imperfections

My wonderful friends at Eating Recovery Center reached out to me last month, asking to feature me an Eating Recovery Day writer.

The task was simple: write a #myrecoveryletter. I was touched they thought of me and began to wonder who I would write my letter to. My initial ‘easy’ thoughts soon turned to writers block and, of course, procrastination.

I have countless people and moments deserving of a recovery letter. How do I just pick one? But when it boils down to it, my recovery journey began and continues on one solid foundation – embracing my imperfections.


To my beloved imperfections,

I first noticed you at ten years old. I went from being confident in my skin to seeing my stomach as ugly and imperfect. My hair was frizzy and I was weird and different.

A few years later, I began odd exercise routines to ‘fix’ my imperfections, running in my room and vowing to ‘cut back’ the bad food. I saw my grades as markers on my worth, never good enough, never smart enough.

Soon thereafter, the downward spiral into my eating disorder began. While the weight and imperfections fell off my body, happiness never came. Instead, my imperfections were replaced with secrets, lies and self-hatred. My beautiful and sensitive heart was numbed with my eating disorder. I felt nothing, but I had my eating disorder and all of its secrets to keep me company, reminding me that perfection was the only way to live.

Fifteen years later, my secrets were outed. My imperfections exposed into the light of day. It was too much. They were too ugly. All I wanted was to crawl back into the hole of my eating disorder.

My recovery journey is one that is marred with blood, sweat and tears. I fell over and over again in attempt to hide my imperfections, but then I kept getting back up. Again and again, each time seeing my imperfections for what they really were: beauty

I no longer starred in disgust at the rolls on my stomach, wishing to cut them off. I saw my stomach as a vehicle that helped me stand tall and a beautiful place that created and carried life.

I no longer viewed my thoughts as dumb or my writing as unworthy to sit on the page. Through practice, my thoughts became my words that I proudly put on the page and posted for all to see.

You, my beloved imperfections, were no longer something for me to hide, but something for me to be proud of because my imperfections make me human. You make me…ME.​​

My body and mind are just that now – MINE. And they are made up of you, my wonderful imperfections. You give me the ability to live free from the pressures of perfectionism.

Because of you, I know that life is not black or white and that there is no such thing as a perfect person or mother. I get to embrace my so called flaws, take chances in life, dare greatly and show my children that failure is not a bad word.

You will never be hidden again behind a mask of perfection. I wear you proudly and loudly and promise to love you always, my precious imperfections.

In love and light,


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  • Michele Van Cleave
    May 6, 2019 at 11:47 am

    You have always been the most incredible person. Loving, beautiful, kind, funny, smart and loyal. I am so proud of you.
    Much love,
    Michele Van Cleave