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Shades of Hope Alumni: Camie Garvey

I want to share something with you all that I think a lot of you know but I have met several new friends since being in Abilene. I moved out to Buffalo Gap, Tx from Plano in ’98 to Shades of Hope. I was struggling with obesity, anorexia, suicidal thoughts and depression.
I didn’t want to go and my family therapists thought it was best because they were at a loss as to how to help me come out of the spiral that consumed most of my thoughts. When can I eat, what can I eat, how much can I eat afterward, I am scum for what I just consumed, I don’t deserve to be here, I am so fat, I am unlovable. 
Shades of Hope opened my mind’s eye to a world of unveiling, revealing, recognition, attuning and nature. It was not easy! I fought it and fought it hard because I had become really comfortable with resolve and habits. They were comfortable and I was numb. 

During the process, I experienced so many stages of grief but also the gifts of grief. One main gift I see today is that I am tangible, I love serving ones that need help, I also serve myself a big platter of awareness and Grace. Not all days are good…. In fact the last few years have been a challenge. The biggest challenge I experience these days is validation. I get a lot of feel good from teaching yoga and not many are seeing it as a modality of healing as I see it. I struggle with taking it personally but from the tools I learned at Shades of Hope, yoga sutras, my faith is that I am enough, I am allowed to stay in the shadows or dark spot in life for a bit as long as I use my tools… tools of movement, tools, of affirmations, tools of prayer/meditation, tools of seeing and hearing nature and that there are still a lot of good things going on in this world. I have had to not delve into Tik Tok as much, so tools of awareness and what feeds my dis-ease. I realize every day I have a choice and ask myself is this choice for my well being? And sometimes staying on the sofa, turning the AC down and pretending it’s snowing outside is for my well being. Sometimes canceling a yoga class because I feel I have nothing to offer is for my well being, sometimes asking for help when I really struggle with it is for my well being. 
At many parts of the day, I realize I really am remarkable and God is using me as a conduit. A Conduit of light, love, experience, growth, share-ability and sometimes I need to swim in the shit show to realize the stink and flush it and move on! To quote Tennie… that is stinkin thinkin… and what would it be like if you realized you have a choice. If you struggle with life these days…. There are so many on the path too that have found tools to help them. Reach out and let us be a conduit and share what got us out of the muck.
There are so many that have been an intricate part of my path that I know I need to thank and know that you are in my heartspace. – Camie Garvey