It was the last day of the Conference today. And another wonderful day at that. How amazing is it to be amongst some of the most incredible people in the field and people in recovery and their family. I am so incredibly fortunate and grateful to have had this opportunity to learn and connect throughout the entire weekend and connect with these individuals and organizations. I am a better, stronger person for it.
I was especially moved today by the first general session of the day, which was a family panel. Each of the speakers discussed how an eating disorder has personally affected them whether it has been their eating disorder, their daughter’s, or their partner’s. It was so amazing to hear from a range of people and stories and know the likeness between them that connect us and the differences that are unique to everyone’s eating disorder experience that we can all learn from and grow from. It was moving to me to hear those aspects of similarity that I could relate to as well as reflect on the differences. It was also so helpful to hear the perspectives of a father and a significant other of a sufferer despite not knowing what it is to be either. I could find hope in knowing the continued love and support in their voices and talks.
It is such a weird feeling that the conference is over. It seems surreal as if the whole thing was a dream and that the conference will be on tomorrow, too. I wish it were true. I am, however, ready for next year or for the next conference I may attend.
This conference has made such an impact on my life. I have grown so much because of it. I am sincerely, incredibly, deeply grateful to NEDA for this opportunity to grow, learn, and connect. This was so much more than I could have ever imagined and hoped for.