Photo C/O Sarah Noltner
cw: this article references eating disorders/disordered eating
Body Brave Canada is a charitable organization that provides resources and support for individuals struggling with eating disorders/disordered eating. On Nov. 10, they will be holding a Book Swap at The Spice Factory (121 Hughson St. North) in order to being the community together and raise awareness about their work. There will be a reading by local author Anne Bokma for her new book, “My Year of Living Spiritually: From Woo-Woo to Wonderful” and a pop-up shop for the body-positive clothing brand Mettamade.
Julie Shea, the chair of Body Brave’s Board of Directors, says that she hopes the event will help people realize how important it is to have adequate resources for eating disorders/disordered eating.
“Eating disorders are sometimes not given the validation that they need to have. They’re a very serious mental health disorder and I don’t think enough people realize how serious and prevalent they are, and that they have a 10% mortality rate. This is in our community. There are people dying in our community, there are people suffering in our community, and there are no resources,” said Shea.
Body Brave Canada seeks to fill the gap left by traditional health care. They offer a number of accessible options and resources, both in-person and online.
Mettamade is a manifestation of the good work Body Brave has done for the community. It was created by mother-daughter duo Carol Davies and Morgan MacDonald, both of whom have worked with Body Brave in the past. They create clothing that is more forgiving for people who struggle to shop and find clothes that fit. They have designed a sizing system based around gemstones instead of numbers. Rather than a size eight or a medium, you might be a topaz. The fabric is bamboo-spandex, making it both comfortable and sustainable.
“When you wear them it’s like giving yourself self-compassion,” said Davies.
Mettamade frequently collaborates with Body Brave and donates a portion of their sales to the organization. For the Book Swap, 50 per cent of the proceeds will be donated to Body Brave.
“We’re giving back to a group that was instrumental in my daughter’s recovery,” said Davies.
Mettamade was in part created to make more forgiving clothes for MacDonald while she was struggling with an eating disorder. It was during that time that she and Davies started to work with Body Brave. MacDonald wasn’t able to find resources elsewhere, but Body Brave helped her.
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Recovery is hard. It is messy and challenging and tiring and boring and hard. Sometimes it feels as though it would be easier to just ignore recovery, ignore working on ourselves, just putting our heads down and getting through the day. And for a bit, that might work. But when we work to numb those messy parts of our lives, it limits our abilities to enjoy the magical parts, the adventurous parts, the joyful parts. We have the privilege of feeling all these things, sometimes all at once. Because recovery is messy and challenging and magical and joyful. . . . . . #bodybrave #wearebodybrave #nourishyourself #nourishtoflourish #mentalhealthawareness #mentalhealth #selfcompassion #selfcare #empowerment #eatingdisorderrecovery #eatingdisordersupport #authenticity #youareenough #youarenotalone #reclaimyourpower #recovery #allbodiesareworthybodies #bodypositive #anorexianervosarecovery #bulimiarecovery #bingeeatingdisorderrecovery
The Book Swap takes place this Sunday Nov. 10 from 2 p.m.-5 p.m. at The Spice Factory. Tickets are $20 each. Bring five books with you and take five away. If you are interested in supporting Mettamade, they have a few pop-up shops coming up this month and a brick-and-mortar store in Westdale.
“We need people to know we’re here, and to support the cause,” said Shea.
To find out more about Body Brave Canada, you can take a look at their website or drop by the Book Swap. If you or someone that you care about is struggling with disordered eating and are not sure where to turn, reach out.