I didn’t want to share this really. Sometimes I start feeling uneasy about sharing so much of my life. Sometimes I just want to be a little phony again, wear a mask, pretend I’m always doing great. But then I think of every lady out there who has to deal with an eating disorder in the real world, and I drop the mask…
A friend recently shared about going through a period of mourning. She said she felt a deep sadness for her body, and more specifically the fact that no one took care of it and made sure it stayed healthy. At the time I assured her that this type of sadness and mourning over “lost years” and “lost dreams” are normal when you’re breaking free from an eating disorder.
Little did I know that some of that “mourning” was coming my way…
It’s actually related to Thanksgiving so I thought today will be the perfect time to share this.
I recently became aware of the very familiar feeling of “spiraling down”. I still experience this from time to time especially during the holidays. I can go a couple of years with an average weight that leaves me comfortable in my own skin, and more importantly, causes me to have PEACE IN MY SOUL AND SPIRIT. However, just when I think “Man this is it, I have arrived” something goes wrong…
I’m sure many of you can relate: When you initially experience some real breakthrough in the area of food addiction life is TOTALLY DIFFERENT! You are so excited and so hopeful. You’re eating well, you’re making time for God, you get some exercise and you FEEL SO MUCH BETTER.
And then, somehow, someday out of the blue, it all changes and you start slipping and sliding and before you know it you’ve picked up all the weight you’ve lost and you’re right there begging God to help you! You keep telling yourself “This is not possible. I was doing so well. I have to get a grip. I will do better tomorrow” Only to find that day after day and week after week you keep spiraling down…
Fortunately I know by now how to get back up and I don’t stay long in that pit. I know and believe that SURRENDER IS THE ONLY WAY OUT OF THE PIT. (Please go read Week 12 of my program again if you need some tools on how to get back up and complete your journey or read this article How to get up when you fall)
However, what I wanted to know is WHY DOES IT STILL HAPPEN? Is it just God’s way of keeping me humble or is there something I’m still missing?
I’ve wanted to trace this back to the source for quite some time, but I haven’t been able to put my finger on the most important issue. However, this week something happened… I experienced an overwhelming sadness, just like my dear friend. I was crying about all the Thanksgivings and other special occasions when I worked my body into the ground, neglected my time with God, stopped exercising, and did everything in my power to PLEASE OTHER PEOPLE.
It is not just when I have people over to my house but also when I have an important meeting, have to see old friends, or have to go on a trip. I get consumed. I shop, I plan, I think about it all day long and I throw all my consistent efforts out the window.
For the first time this week the Holy Spirit put all these things in a row for me, to make it impossible to miss the underlying theme: PEOPLE PLEASING. I was so sad… I felt a deep sorrow for how I treated my body during those times. I felt an intense anger for the need to please people that run so deep in me that I would stop taking care of my health, my family and my relationship with God.
I was again reminded of the apostle Paul who told us in no uncertain terms that we can NOT be a servant of God if we’re still trying to please men.
I want to be a servant of God. So many of my dreams and desires are linked with serving God, and I if you think about the things you truly desire (deep under the desire to just be thin at all cost) you will find the same thing. I want to serve HIM with the talents and abilities that He gave me.
However I can’t seem to get away from the ever nagging “What will they think of me? Will I be good enough? Will I be totally humiliated? Will I be rejected?”
I realized today that it will take some more “praying and guarding” during these times, but also a deliberate effort on my side! So I put my feet up today, drank more water, refused the urge to overeat or “not eat anything so I can look good” and I cleaned only the most important areas in my house.
I plan on reading again Joyce Meyer’s book Approval Addiction this weekend.
I also started praying today for a deeper love for God, the ability to love Him with such an undivided heart that there will be no place for people pleasing.
SO AGAIN IT COMES DOWN TO SURRENDER!! IF I’M TOTALLY HONEST WITH MYSELF I KNOW THAT I AM STILL TOO FEARFUL TO TRULY SURRENDER THIS THING TO GOD. I WANT PEOPLE TO THINK WELL OF ME…
SO THERE, I’VE SAID IT, NOW IT’S YOUR TURN… WHAT DO YOU STILL CLUTCH IN YOUR HAND?
WHAT IS THE THING IN YOUR LIFE THAT YOU ARE SIMPLY TOO SCARED TO TURN OVER TO GOD? IT MIGHT BE DIRECTLY RELATED TO YOUR EATING DISORDER…
Please remember this holiday season to purposefully turn away from people pleasing.
IF YOU TRY TO CONTROL WHAT OTHERS THINK OF YOU, YOU FORFEIT YOUR SELF CONTROL!
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving my friends. Enjoy the good food that God made, but remember to enjoy Him more…
Here are some resources for you: