After following Mia Violet for a while on Twitter, I eagerly awaited the arrival of her book in the mail. Published about a year ago, it wasn’t necessarily brand new. Just new to me.

The opening to the book felt like a flower blooming, petals folding back like arms spread wide to embrace. I felt (as I often do when reading books written by, about, and for diverse/marginalized bodies) a sharp pang of longing mingled with expansive delight — a wish that there had been a book like this when I was younger and learning about how the world works.


Impression of: If My Body Could Speak by Blythe Baird.

I read this book at a restaurant while eating my first meal of the day.

I am recovered and recovering still, learning new ways to love myself that I never knew could exist. Even as I grow, I sometimes struggle to remember how many times a day I require filling, how much fuel it takes to make it through.

Lately, I have been re-negotiating the terms of this remembering.

I may not always remember to eat, but that is only an excuse until I remember it.

So I was standing…


The dive into recovery from an eating disorder takes a lot of courage. For many, it isn’t an all-at-once venture. It takes preparation, small efforts, and many “failures” or, as I like to call them, learning opportunities.

When recovering from an eating disorder, oftentimes individuals are concerned about gaining weight. In this article, I’m going to talk about the reality of weight gain during recovery, what it might look like, and some ideas on how to cope with it.

I’ll also be addressing some of the other things that you’ll gain during recovery. …


In light of this week being National Eating Disorder Awareness Week, I thought I would write about one of the most harmful internet and marketing fads: before/after photos.

I have little doubt in my mind that you’ve seen one of these before; a side-by-side image, one of the past-self and one of the “now” self, transformed and proud and glowing.

My earliest memory of before/after comparisons was on diet and exercise infomercials. I remember an individual standing in a leg of their old pair of pants, looking overjoyed with their smaller self. …


Some days just suck. There. I said it.

My clients are the most badass people in the world (as are most people who spend their hard-earned money and precious time committing to healing and growth). My job, when we work together, is to provide a container for them to experience the wholeness and complexity of their being.

I offer technical tools and practical skills, sure, but I also offer a relationship that is dedicated to their well-being. I bring humor, accountability, creativity, and a whole lotta unconditional love.

Two of the myths I hear about therapy are:

  1. Only broken people…

During my recovery, and later in my subsequent studies as a Somatic Psychotherapist and Eating Disorder Recovery Coach, I returned again and again to some of the key moments of my journey that I hold close. Snapshots of turning points that allowed me to shift perspective, take courageous steps towards wholeness, and step into an identity as a healer, artist, and advocate in the mental health field.

One of the things that I return to are the promises that I made to myself. Particularly, the ones that were difficult that I prioritized and kept.

Some of these promises, I commemorated…


Ah, the new year. A time of new beginnings, staying up past your bedtime, and making promises to yourself. Also, a time when the beast of capitalism gorges itself on the insecurities we’ve gathered over the year.

Not surprisingly, January is a profitable month for gyms and health clubs.

I too have vowed to work out at least three times a week, to lose 10 pounds, to quit eating sugar, to quit eating meat, to eat more vegetables, to pack my own lunches, to fit into a smaller size pants. . . you see where I’m going with this, right?


This Friday, the 21st of December, marks the darkest day of the year (at least in the northern hemisphere where I reside): winter solstice. Solstice is not a religious holiday, although it is a special day in many Pagan and earth-based spiritual traditions.

Solstice, although it may often pass unacknowledged, marks one of the four seasonal transitions in the wheel of the year. Just as there are four seasons, so too are there four endings and four beginnings, two equinoxes and two solstices.

This time of year marks a contemplative shift for me, when I begin to ponder what has…


Shoot for the moon . . . even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.

This phrase, and sayings like it, are printed on journals, planners, t-shirts, and carefully spray-painted rustic pieces of expensive shabby-chic driftwood for you to hang at your summer beach house. They’re overflowing from the magazine shelves and self-help sections of book stores.

Everywhere we go, we are constantly bombarded with encouraging strategies to increase productivity, excel in life, and sustain our success. Against all odds.

These growth-oriented sentiments may be couched in positive, encouraging, and inspiring messages, but the underlying theme is that you…


Thanksgiving can often be a burden for more than just the turkeys.

For those of us who operate on school-year schedules, this 3–5 day vacation is a stressful sandwich between midterms and finals, often filled with grading, papers, and examination preparation. Additionally, many people are weighing financial decisions, emotional health, work, and time obligations in their decision about where and with whom to spend this holiday.

If that is not enough, Thanksgiving also marks the day before one of the largest consumerist days of the year, meaning that many folks are not able to travel to see family if they…

Sara Zelda Schultz

Sara Zelda is a therapist & coach. She is passionate about body justice, mental health, art, and animals. Find out more at: www.dreambeyondshame.com

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