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The 4 Words That Helped Save My Life

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“Are you worth it?”

The four words that helped save my life and set me on the road to my recovery journey.

“Are you worth it?”

That is what my friend said after I revealed my depression, anxiety and eating disorder struggles to him.

It was the first time I completely opened up to anybody and took off my “mask.”

“Are you worth it?”

He said it again as I sat there feeling hopeless, scared and lost.

The words took me by surprise, but thinking back, it was the best response I could have gotten.

Am I worth it? I never really thought about it before, and I didn’t know how to answer.

“Are you worth it?”

Repeated again, I couldn’t respond. I so wanted to say, “Yes I am,” but the words just wouldn’t come out of my mouth.

But that phrase echoed inside my head…

“Are you worth it?”

Maybe it wasn’t only the words that made a difference, but the way they were said. They were said with kindness, understanding and compassion. They were said to encourage me to look inside myself and realize what others see that I can’t, because I’m so stuck inside my head. Often pain consumes my mind and I forget that others don’t see what I feel.

I took a risk and expressed what I feel and what I’ve kept hidden for years, and he didn’t look at me as if I were “crazy” or a “bad” person.

He looked at me as if I was still a friend — as if I were still “me.”

So maybe he thought I was worth it? And maybe others thought I was worth it too?

It was up to me to find my inner-worth and to start to love myself and to take care of me. His reaction to my truth was the catalyst for me to seek help for my mental illness.

Sure, there are still days when my depression covers me like a cloud… or my anxiety incapacitates me with a panic attack… or my eating disorder voices tell me I am less than…

But then I hear it…

“Are you worth it?”

Yes… I am!

If you or someone you know is struggling with an eating disorder, you can call the National Eating Disorders Association Helpline at 1-800-931-2237.

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Thinkstock photo via Alexander Panov.

Originally published: June 15, 2017
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