“A Much Needed Holiday Break!”

I’m back! I took time off, from writing, to be fully present during the holiday. Spending time with family is very important to me. I enjoyed hours of, uninterrupted, fun with my husband and kids. We played games, watched holiday movies and decorated the house! On Thanksgiving, I was blessed to share a table with my entire immediate family. Black Friday…. brought me back.

During my teenage years, my Grandma, Great Aunt, cousin and I shopped till we dropped. Halfway through the day, we would grab a bite to eat, drink and be merry. These moments, I hold so dear. This year, my sister and I, now grown with children, joined my Great Aunt and cousin. Sadly, my Grandma passed a few years ago, but we made damn sure, to cheers to her remembrance. Miss you, Grandma! Following our shopping extravaganza, we made our way to a small-town corner bar, where the drinks are good, but the company is better. With our extended family taking up half the place, we shared stories, laughed a lot and made memories.

Saturday morning, my husband, kids and I awoke feeling unwell. By day’s end, the entire house had succumbed to the stomach flu. The weekend agenda… R&R and LOTS of Gatorade. Thankfully, a couple days passed and we were all feeling better. I’m so grateful for this week of love and laughter, but it didn’t come without challenges. Unfortunately, OCD, Anorexia, Bipolar and Panic Disorder don’t take holidays.

Intrusive thoughts, challenging foods, and uncomfortable diet culture talk, all wrapped up with a panic attack bow. Wow! What a gift? Ummm… No, thank you! I resisted compulsions, ate the food and redirected the conversation. It was exhausting, at times, but doable. At one point, my eating disorder was rearing its ugly head, so I wrote a letter.


Dear Brooke,

Although your post-stomach flu body may seem glamorous, the dehydrated tone and flat stomach, don’t be fooled! You’ve been down this road, many times, before. It may seem enticing, but it’s full of pain and suffering. Remind yourself what it took from you and don’t let it take ever again. Follow your meal plan, lean on your support system and listen to your body.



So, I did just that. Days have passed and I continue to push back. I hear the voices, “Ooooh, your stomach is so flat.”, “It wouldn’t take much to get you back in shape.”, “Don’t you want the control?”, “Just eat a little bit less, no one will notice.” Hey, ED… you can stop talking, because I’m not listening anymore. Happy Holidays!


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