Here I am back in NOLA, one of my favorite places, feeling alive, grateful and FREE. New Orleans plays a special role my story.
Not only is this decadent and vibrant city one of my favorite travel destinations, it’s where I first began my intuitive eating journey back in August 2017.
I remember that trip and that summer so clearly because it was a turning point for me.
After an intense doctor supervised cleanse to heal my leaky gut, I felt the Lord stirring my soul. He put on my heart this is the last diet you’ll ever do. I knew it was time to make a big change.
Big changes aren’t easy.
If I’m honest, I still had doubts and I was scared. Scared to fail. Scared I’d heard God wrong. Scared to succeed, even.
That inner critic hissed more fear at me and I remember thinking well this is just a vacation and I’d cut loose and eat whatever I want on vacation anyway because I can just buckle down when I get home.
But something felt different on this trip. For the first time I felt a sense of liberation about my body.
I was standing in front of the famous soul food restaurant Dooky Chase and I felt inspired to post this on Instagram:
“I interrupt this regularly scheduled health- focused broadcast to bring you this special report from New Orleans. Our reporter in the field has cleared her mind of punitive and obsessive thoughts about her eating and body perception. This clearing has made room for positive thinking, pleasure and GUILT FREE vacation.”
I can remember and see, in my own words, that glimmer of hope that this would be more than just a vacation from dieting, but, at the same time, the shadow of doubt that things would be the same when I returned home.
Now, a year and a half later, I can definitively say, that trip was not just a temporary reprieve from diet prison.
It was not merely a conjugal visit from pleasure, joy and peace.
That trip marked my release from diet prison.
It marked the end of my sentence. The prison walls came down.
Jesus set me free.