I feel it change.
I feel my body getting heavier, and for the first time in years, I am not disgusted.
I see my arms being bigger, legs bigger, stomach bigger, but I’m not restricting or killing myself at the gym.
I see my body lose it’s tone, yet I’m not eating air for lunch and salad for dinner.
For the first time in years, I think I am actually getting better.
Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t like, hey I’m going to go and be 100% comfortable with my body however it is and eat all things under the sun.
I think that’s a process.
But what I feel now which is so significant, so groundbreaking, so earth shattering, is an acceptance of my body being heavier, bigger and not as lean and toned as I have been.
Admittedly, this is new – so you can easily trace back a few weeks ago and say to me – Olivia, really? You’re still a stick.
But see, I started this journey – my euro trip – with a quick pit stop to Costa Rica, where I did ayahausca for 7 days.
Extremely healing for me mentally, but physically, I barely ate for a week – between the nausea of the days and the purging of the night, I was pretty physically depleted.
And, when I finished this, after barely moving for a week, I was SUPER keen to get into the gym.
So – two weeks of not much food meant I landed in Europe an even leaner version of myself, which to be fair, I actually liked.
But, then Mykonos hit and I started to go out, eat, celebrate, party, and interestingly, binge.
Like, some nights I would come home after being out, and in a non conscious state eat everything.
And, the only reason I knew I did so is because I found packages of food that I had gorged on, and I woke up feeling pretty sick.
This happened about 3 times.
Outside of that though, my days in Mykonos were filled with cocktails, long lunches and chips, and the evenings were filled with more cocktails, big dinners and kebabs.
After coming from Australia, where some days I had the appetite of a sparrow and probably ate one decent meal, this was a significant shift.
And, after 24 days of this party island, I was left significantly heavier than when I arrived.
Usually when this happens, I punish myself at the gym for hours, I cut out alcohol and eat super clean – detox. We all do it.
And while I have done that to a degree, it’s far from what I used to do.
Particularly with food – I am not willing to deprive myself anymore.
If I’m hungry, I want to eat.
If there is gelato there, I want to taste.
If there is pasta there, I want to enjoy.
It’s interesting, because despite feeling puffy, bloated and not in my best shape, I am not making my food decisions based on what is going to bring me back to my leanest state.
Rather, I’m basing my food decisions on what is going to bring me the most joy.
And most of the time, this contributes and continues the heavier body that I’m now carrying.
Dolci con te per colazione (sweets with tea for breakfast), o aperitivo con spritz e pasta per pranzo (snacks and spritz with pasta for dinner) – I mean, this isn’t really clean eating.
But I know it, and I do not care.
I keep coming back to the same thing: I’M IN ITALY.
Italian food experience :
Which, translated, means: “I’m in a country where food is an experience, a pastime, a celebration. After years of restricting myself, I am not prepared to deny myself the sheer pleasure of being part of Italy’s national icon: eating.”
And sure, I could eat healthier – absolutely.
But I do not want to.
I want the sweets, the gelato, the pasta, the olives, the cheese.
And if it makes my body bigger, puffier, not so lean…. Then maybe that’s what should happen?
Like, why do I want to be so lean anyway?
Recently deciding to move to Italy indefinitely (…! Seriously), I feel like I am becoming a new woman – an ITALIAN woman.
And, italian women are not skinny.
They like pasta too much.
Ok, so some are skinny, but they’re definitely not a bag of bones as I have been.
They have curves, rolls, FAT.
And I’m like, ok, if I am becoming an italian woman, then maybe my body should reflect that?
It’s early days yet, but I must say – there has never been a time for about the past 10 years where I’ve been comfortable feeling fuller.
Even if I physically was fuller, I was secretly saying to myself: must detox, train, convert fat to muscle, get leaner. All fucking day long. It was fucked.
But now, I am saying to myself: yeah, I’m fuller, but so what. I’m an italian woman, and I’m here living my life. I am not prepared to deny myself life – which in italy, means food – anymore.
I’m not prepared to miss out on pasta, cheese, spritz – what I crave.
I’m not prepared to deny my hunger and go without all day long. Like, that really sucked.
There would be days I was SO hungry but I had this absolute fear of satisfying my hunger – even with healthy food like an apple or salad – that it literally sent me insane.
The only thing I could do was walk around and aim to reduce the tension in my body from the sense of starvation I was feeling.
I became anxious, miserable, depressed – all I wanted to do some days was eat something, but there was this deep fear, deep angst and deep resistance to do so which had a strong hold over me.
Now, ok, I still feel that – to an extent. But it’s limited.
It’s like – ok, I’ve been super hungry now for a few hours, let’s feast. And lets feast on the good stuff.
Like I said, I’m in the early stages.
Like most of us, I like to feel hungry to eat, and it’s highly likely that I sit with that feeling longer than most.
But the thing is that it’s shifting.
Before, I may have waited 10 hours.
Now, It’s like 3.
And with respect to my body – this is the biggest shift.
In the past, when I’ve gained 1% body fat, I was always disgusted, and it traumatised my entire existence until I lost that 1%.
Being bigger or having actual fat on my body – the feeling – told my brain that I was a bad person, deserved nothing, should go to hell, a failure, deserved to be punished, deserved to be tortured, should be tortured, should hide away in a cave because I had failed at life, should go into a cave and die and never to be seen again.
I’m not even kidding – these were the exact thoughts in my head anytime I felt heavier.
No wonder I liked to feel light.
But now… while there is resonance of this, it’s not the same.
It’s like – ok, you’re bigger….. but…. Maybe that’s good?
Maybe that’s what you’re here to be.
In every sense of the word.
Living life in a bigger way.
Expanding and touching more people – in a bigger way.
Enjoying one of the pleasures of life – food – in a bigger way.
Enjoying feeling ok to not go to the gym every single day – in a bigger way.
Maybe that’s why I am here?
Maybe, but regardless, maybe It’s ok to be bigger?
Italian culture food :
I mean, I am Italian after all – it would be un-italian to be super skinny, as this would mean I was probably not eating enough, and this would mean I am not part of the society or culture – because the culture IS food.
So, maybe my bigger body is a reflection of me coming home – coming home to myself and growing into a new identity (yes, by the way, you did read that I’m now calling Italy home), growing into a bigger life – one filled with more rest (vs excessive exercise), one filled with more food (because fuck food is good), one filled with less punishment (endless hunger, no thank you), one filled with a greater sense of ME.
Maybe that’s what I’m here for.
If it is, I am SO down for this next chapter.
Excited to see what unfolds, but I’m pretty sure I know what’s going to happen.
I’m going to continue on my healing journey, physically, mentally, become a higher version of myself, share my story and how I’ve FINALLY overcome anorexia, and inspire others to do the same, and touch so many people with my journey because I’ve been struggling for so long, and I’ve been in the public eye that entire time.
So many people have seen me and thought to themselves – or shared with me – “you are so thin – please get help”. And I’ve always resisted, saying I was fine.
Which I was – in that version of myself.
I was fine torturing myself, being miserable, being anxious, punishing myself.
I had accepted it and to say that I was fine with it was completely accurate – I was in a place of acceptance that this was my life.
That’s not fine for me.
Punish myself for days on end, restrict the best food in the world, torture myself with thoughts of disgust because I am not as thin as a rake? Fuck no.
There’s this thing called life and I’m just starting to live it – fully, freely and without fear.
And fuck it feels good.
So…. Bring on the pasta, pizza, spritz and all the cheese.
PER FAVORE (Please).
I’ll be at the table waiting, ready to dive in – with more passion and purpose than ever before.
Are you ready?
Let’s go – let’s do it together.
You’ve seen me suffer, now see – and come with me – and live.
We all deserve to live this life in it’s richness – you, me and everyone reading this included.
Sending so much love to anyone this touches – we’re in this together, and all I ask is that you, like me, choose life over death, and move towards your best self.
You need to do it for you, and the universe is asking you to do it too.
Step up – the world is waiting for you, and when you allow it to unfold as it should, it’s a magical, magical place.