child of God, wife, mother, recovering anorexic who longs to see the beauty in herself that she sees in the world around her

Sunday, May 16, 2010


I'm not eager to be at this point in my blog.  This is another one that I have agonized over for days before posting.  This is another one that makes me squirm and makes me feel like I could throw up all at the same time, so be patient with me please!

When I was 19 my parents had been through some counseling with a very dear woman.  My mom one day told me to take her appointment to share something that she felt was important knowledge to this woman.  I agreed and a wonderful counseling relationship began.  I loved (and still do, very much!) this woman.  She validated me.  She explained me to myself when I couldn't understand why I behaved the way I did.  She started and ended each session with prayer.  I dreaded and looked forward to my weekly sessions with her so much that I was a pile of nerves each day I had an appointment.

At some point in our sessions, near the time of "accountability" and "my cry for help"  we started discussing my intense aversion to all things food.  I was suddenly unbelievably uncomfortable talking about food.  I cannot even express how uncomfortable I was but it was more so than any other thing we had talked about.  She helped me to this realization that I really did NOT like.

When I was younger, during the abuse years, I, like most people, had physical symptoms of emotional hurts.  Not only did I feel afraid and dirty, I always had a stomach ache afterward.  I always felt, for the lack of a better word, full.  Not just full, but- like you ate at a smorgasbord and couldn't consume one more bite or you would surely explode- kind of full.  Simply put, that was the only way in my young brain I could physically describe the yuckiness that I felt.

Now fast forward several years to the 19 yr old me.  I DESPISED feeling full and could never understand why until this day.  I just thought it was because for years I had not eaten properly and was not used to feeling full.  I cried for the rest of the day.  I was supposed to lead one of the break off groups at our Bible Study that night.  I couldn't pull myself together enough to do it.  I cried.  I cried some more.  I wept.  I sobbed.  I couldn't talk, I couldn't eat, I couldn't even drink.  All I could do was cry and ache.  I sat with my knees pulled tightly into my chest and I didn't say a  word.  People asked if I was ok, I couldn't answer.  I wasn't and I didn't know how to make it ok.  I didn't know if I'd ever feel ok again in my life at that point.

I was certain, with this newly realized pain, that I could never eat and feel full ever again.  It would just hurt too much.  As I thought about food and how I felt when I ate, I was bombarded with very graphic and painful memories.  I knew that I could never be whole, that I could never feel full without hurting, that I would never be able to run far enough away from those nightmares.  I knew that for my entire life I would remain slave to the thing I thought that moving far away from had saved me from.  I was forever broken and could not be mended. 

I was wrong. God somehow carried me through that night and through the next several days at work where I was simply going through the motions and in a huge depression. I wasn't eating and I knew why I wasn't eating and I didn't want to feel it.  I tried to be numb again, it had once been easy but now was nearly impossible.  I didn't attempt to kill myself again at this point but I dreamed of the relief that death would bring. I dwelled on thoughts of ending my pain but for some reason, this time it was only a dream not an attempted reality. Once again I was so consumed with hurt that I could barely breathe. 

God so graciously carried me through.  I don't even pretend to know how.  I went through the motions for some time.  Work, church, Bible Study, out to eat after Bible Study and then back to work at one of my 3 jobs.  I functioned, kind of, but I didn't live. I truly didn't think I could ever eat enough to be full without severe emotional whiplash.  The next months were less than pretty as I struggled to find worth, to find healing, and to (unsuccessfully) forget the extreme memories that now plagued not only my sleep but my waking hours as well.

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