Why I Walk for NEDA

Luke 12:48 “…When someone has been given much, much will be required in return: and when someone has been entrusted with much even more will be required.

Eating disorders suck and suck the life out of you and all of those that you love and love you. So, this is why I walk for NEDA (National Eating Disorders Association) and volunteer with the TSEDRT ( Tri-State Eating Disorders Resource Team.)

Anorexia/purging disorder has tried to suck the life out of me and suck me out of my life for the past 5 years as I relapsed. Currently I live in what I have come to think of as a sort of a remission, but not quite a full recovery.

As I wandered the grounds of Glenwood Gardens setting up booths for local treatment programs, food tables (yes we want people to eat), water stations, and finally working on the memorial wall of lives lost to an eating disorder, I began to have second thoughts about placing my own book Eating by Faith…on display. Who am I, Lisabeth Kaeser from Terrace Park, Ohio to think that my journey is worth reading about? Who am I to think that I am a writer?

I find a quiet place to pray. God gives me Luke 12:48. He reminds me that I walk because as a survivor I have been given much. I have been given a second chance. I glance at the memorial wall, looking through a veil of tears at each beautiful life lost and know that my book Eating by Faith is important and my story is important even if it saves just one more life from appearing on the TSEDRT memorial wall. My book is a leap of faith; an answer to the call of giving much in return.

My continued work with the TSEDRT is important. I walk, volunteer and share my story to honor those who did not survive. I walk for those battling to survive, and for their loved one to survive. I also walk for those, who like myself have survived, but often fear we are living on borrowed time. I walk in hopes that we will see more and more of those afflicted by eating disorders not only survive, but also thrive.

I have been given much more than a second chance. I have been given the opportunity to receive treatment both in-patient 28 years ago and today as outpatient as I press on into God and recovery. I have been blessed with the financial means to pay for the treatment my insurance won’t cover. Many patients are not as fortunate. This grieves me.

I turn to my friends and family to financially sponsor my walk.  I am humbled and honored by each dollar donated.  Because of you, I walk.  Because of you, research on this deadly illness proceeds, and because of you scholarships are awarded to those in need.

We have learned so much about eating disorders since Karen Carpenter’s tragic death turned a spotlight onto this illness. We know more about causes, treatment and prevention. I am hopeful for all of you that are  embarking on recovery, because your chance of being one of those that can achieve full recovery has increased significantly. NEDA reports that 60% of those seeking treatment will make a full recovery. Yet the best treatments mean nothing if we can’t access them or pay for them.

Paula Brunner founded the TSEDRT and partnered with NEDA after her daughter Katie died from her eating disorder. At the time she felt lost in the maze of treatment options or lack there of, and the red tape of paying for what treatment she could access. She couldn’t bare others suffering the way Katie and their family had. In effort to help patients and their families to find hope she formed the TSEDRT.

Our Mission: Tri-State Eating Disorder Resource Team is a group of Tri-State Area (Greater Cincinnati, South East Indiana and Northern Kentucky) volunteers dedicated to promote healthy body image and positive self-esteem in our community, and beyond. Our hope is to eliminate common misconceptions about eating disorders and serve as a source of support and guidance for eating disorder treatment options. Eating disorders are serious problems in our culture today. It’s time to talk about it…

I have been given much; I have been given a second chance that many have not. I have been given a gift of words. I am required to give in return. So it is by faith and obedience that I give the gift of my words even when it feels scary, vulnerable and sets me up for possible rejection. I give to you Eating by Faith because I have received greatly.

September is Suicide Awareness month.  People with Anorexia are 57 times more likely to die from suicide than their peers.  Now that I have walked… I will run.  I will run The Warrior Run/Race for Life, http://cincywarriorrun.org/ and then you can find me at the TSEDRT Booth to answer your  questions, gather freebies, resource materials or buy your  signed copy of Eating By Faith for $20.00.  Join me in a great evening of family fun and a 5k run.

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#eatingdisorders #mentalhealthawarenessmonth #NEDAWalkCincinnati #TheWarriorRun

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