Letter to a Younger Self: A Project HEAL Series

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To my favorite little girl in the whole wide world,

I have wanted to write you this letter for a long time because my heart is so full of love for you. Buddy, I just really want you to know that this crazy, amazing, special world is all at your fingertips and you can be and do anything you want to me.

I want you to also know you are a blessing. Not just from God but also for me. You are a blessing because your smile and laughter and tushy light up a world. You are a blessing because when you sing happy birthday, you always think it is for you.

Kiddo you were created in God’s image and that is one of the many reasons why you are so beautiful. I want you to hold onto your beauty, not because you have to, but because it is a part of you.

Your beauty is something you share, without knowing you are sharing it. Ah buddy, I will never forget the first time I held you and how you completely touched my soul, my heart and every bone in my body.

You have a spirit in you that is so full of happiness. I don’t want you to ever feel like you must be anything less than your authentic self.

You being you is the best thing in the world. Keep wearing color, loving snack time, and wearing pigtails – don’t let anyone take those things away from you.

Thank you for touching my life and giving me a reason to love being alive. You make me want to keep fighting, even when I have so little left in me, because I always want to be there for you.

You are growing up with different parents then me and in a world that is so different from me. You are growing up with a mom and a dad that love you more than you will ever know. They wanted to bring you into this world buddy because this world needed someone like you. You parents love you so much and they well never stop loving you.

You name means whole, complete, and perfect, but all you need to be is you. You are whole. You are complete. You are perfect.

Never forget that I am always here for you, always rooting for you, and always thinking about you. Keep holding on kid because the world is so much better now that you are here. Go get em!

 

All the love in the world,

Your Aunty


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Project HEAL’s new peer-based support program, Communities of HEALing, will include an evidence-based eating disorder prevention and body acceptance program known as the Body Project. The Body Project is an intervention that was developed by renowned researchers Eric Stice, Ph.D and Carolyn Becker, Ph.D and is backed by two decades of research at Stanford University, the University of Texas at Austin, and the Oregon Research Institute. This program has been delivered to over one million young women around the world and is the only program that has repeatedly demonstrated reductions of body dissatisfaction, negative mood, unhealthy dieting and disordered eating. Further evidence indicates that the Body Project intervention reduces the risk of future onset of eating disorders and obesity.
 
Recently, Project HEAL held its first facilitator training of the Body Project with some of our volunteers from NYC and PA, all of whom are in recovery from an eating disorder. One of the activities that all volunteers completed as part of the Body Project program was to write a letter to a younger version of themselves using the information they learned from other sessions of the intervention and advise their younger selves on how to avoid developing body image concerns. The letters shared were truly powerful and we are thrilled to have some of our new facilitators share their letters with you!

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