Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Walking in Obedience Opens the Door to Freedom

A few months ago, I felt in my heart that God had wanted me to give up the scale, to completely rely on Him to maintain my health and figure (which the latter is honestly what I was more worried about)
But I couldn't do it. I didn't feel strong enough.
Then of course that turned into me obsessing over the number, relapsing, and now me pulling myself out of the hole that I had dug for myself.
I haven't been able to go longer than 2 weeks without binging ever since all of this eating disorder non-sense started 4 years ago.
Now I see that was largely due to my fear of losing control of so many things, but one thing mostly being my weight and all of the complex things that an increased weight could signify, like if I were heavier the whole world would see me as incompetent, lazy, unattractive, and disgusting... pretty much everything I felt like I truly was on the inside.
I've been hiding every essence of who I am behind the scale and my eating disorder.
Not anymore.
A few weeks ago I had binged (once again), and the next day went to my boyfriend crying about it (once again) wondering why I couldn't break free after so long of trying, of going to several support groups, therapists, nutritionists, doctors, doing hours upon hours of research online on recovery tips, after leaving everything I knew and loved behind for 5 months to go into in-patient treatment...

And then I discovered this song:

"Monster" by Paramore

You were my conscience

So solid, now you're like water
And we started drowning
Not like we'd sink any further
But I let my heart go
It's somewhere down at the bottom
But I'll get a new one
And come back for the hope that you've stolen

I'll stop the whole world,

I'll stop the whole world
From turning into a monster,
Eating us alive
Don't you ever wonder how we survive?
Well now that you're gone, the world is ours

I'm only human,

I've got a skeleton in me
But I'm not the villan,
Despite what you're always preaching
And call me a traitor,
I'm just collecting your victims
They're getting stronger,
I hear them calling, they're calling

I'll stop the whole world,

I'll stop the whole world
From turning into a monster,
Eating us alive
Don't you ever wonder how we survive?
Well now that you're gone, the world is ours 

And while I am almost 100% sure this song has nothing to do with eating disorders, it has effected my recovery immensely.
I am fighting this with everything that I have, and that means taking huge leaps of faith that scare the crap out of me.
I've been repeating this song over and over on my ipod, my passion growing more with each play.
Something had hit me like someone had punched me in the face... What in the hell does my weight have to do with anything? And why did I give something so insignificant so much power over me?
I knew right then that the scale was the major contributor to keeping me in bondage.
This whole battle started with a comment on my flabby arms, and I began to diet.
I saw the number on the scale, and decided it wasn't enough. I had a number in my head though, the number that would cure everything wrong within me.
It was the number that I was when I was a freshman in high school, when I had initially lost all of my weight from middle school.
It's the first time I remember being accepted by my peers. Boys finally thought I was hot. Girls wanted to be my friend. I wasn't the fat, nerdy, Jesus freak anymore. I was cool, fun, and of course, in control.
So I became a number that symbolized everything I wanted to be and felt simaltaneously that I could never be: desireable, funny, beautiful, worthy.
My identity was tied to becoming a certain number. But of course I reached that number pretty rapidly, and I still wasn't whole. So of course, that meant I had to be less to be more.
And this has been my battle. Major events of my life, what I remember most is 1) what I weighed and 2) what I ate (or avoided eating)
Decisions of what to eat or not eat were always based on that magical number. If it was what I desired or lower, I justified binge-eating, treating it like it was a glorious reward for all of the hard work I had done.
If the number was higher, I would restrict my intake, work out harder and longer, take laxatives, diuretics, diet pills, whatever it took to meet that magical number.
And either way, I was left feeling empty, hopeless, depressed, unfulfilled because I was chasing something I could never really attain.
Not anymore.

I've given up the scale, and even though the desire is still there to know what that stupid machine says about me, I've resisted.
And that's only because I have tapped into the strength that God has given me to obey Him.
Just in the past few weeks, I have experienced so much more freedom than I ever thought I could.
The urges to binge have decreased significantly; I have made it 1 week so far and am going strong :)
And I actually like my body rather than just accepting it.
I love eating. And not in the obsessive way. I love eating foods that taste good, that nourish my body, that give me energy.
I can actually listen to my body because I am not basing what I do on a number. I can eat when I'm hungry, stop when I'm satisfied, and not feel like a fatty because the scale might be higher the next day.
I can work out the way I actually want to because I'm not concerned with how many calories I'm burning or how much I'm sweating to lose water weight.
I can instead do what feels good to my body, gives me energy, and makes me stronger, faster, and healthier.
Even my boyfriend says he can see the light in me again.
I can visit him and really focus on being with him rather than obsessing over what to eat or not eat, about if he's watching me or thinking I am insane, or when I can get away to go exercise
I can go out to eat with him on the weekends and trust that I can order what I really want rather than what has the fewest calories or fat
Because I'm not a slave to the scale anymore. Without the number defining me, I'm free to be myself.
Or rather, who God created me to be.
Instead of chasing the pursuits of this world, the unattainable standard of perfection, I am chasing after Him, after enjoying the life He gave me, after blessing the people He has put into my life.

Finally, I'm starting to understand how to take my eyes off of me and onto Him :)


  1. That was beautiful. You are beautiful & I love you so much & can tell the difference in you, see HIM inside of you, it's awesome!