I hope you’re having a superb Tuesday, my dear friends!
Today I would like to share with you a little more about myself. I know I know—you know me pretty well by now. You’ve already seen my tall, white, and handsome husband in these parts and even witnessed our marvelous wedding last year.
You’ve also witnessed the milestones that little Selah has been accomplishing for the past 3 months. And yes, you even read about my birth story and just how excruciating beautiful of an experience it was although it was a bit TMI! As if sharing all of those things wasn’t enough for you guys, here I am opening up about myself just a little bit more…I’m hoping that after you’ve read this post you will be encouraged and strengthened instead of feeling down in your spirit.
I rarely talk about my ED (eating disorder) days here on the blog, and all this time I felt like I had a good reason not to, because pretty much 75% of the healthy living/food blog world is made up of people who have struggled with it one way or another. What contributed to that reasoning even more is the fact that I never believed that it would be “life changing” to anyone, nor did I think that it was “extreme” enough to be worth the mention in this very space. After all, there are tons and tons of women who’ve been hospitalized for starving themselves to nothingness, which is such a sad reality in our world today.
Thankfully, God spared me from ever going down that road even further and stopped me before who knows what could have happened.
It seems that something inside of me just clicked this week—as if God convicted me to be more open about my past struggles with you and let Him do whatever He wants with it. So please let me fill you in my story with a rather brief post. Does that sound good? Okay, let’s do this.
Most of you are aware that I was born and raised in my beloved land known as Buenos Aires, Argentina. That is where my lack of self-love began to take deep roots, and you can read about it more here.
You see, by the grace of God I had the life changing opportunity to receive Christ into my life at the young, innocent age of four. Despite my lack of confidence all around I always had the love of God living in me, and although it was a very slow progress of learning what my true identity was, I knew that He was fashioning me into the person that I am today—and still am becoming—as my life unfolds. And like I just mentioned, regardless of my lack of confidence I was a happy go lucky kid most of the time, until one day while I was walking through my high school campus something clicked in my head, telling me that I should completely change myself and the way I look. This all happened in the middle of my senior year in high school, and imagine this young and innocent spirit turning into a darker, less than alive girl, falling into an abyss of confusion and almost hopelessness.
As most of those who struggle with ED, I too began to restrict my calories to a measly 300 for the rest of my senior year. Since I didn’t feel like that was good enough and my weight loss had come to a big fat halt, I took matters into my own hands and started to take pills that actually worked. I felt as though my whole world had changed! It was like finding a miracle drug that gave me the power to do anything that I set my mind to. And nothing could stop me. Naturally, the pounds kept shedding off of me and although that would have been enough for an individual with a straight mindset, my way of thinking was so skewed that there were days when I ended up taking several pills within one day. That was just plain foolish of me because not only is that damaging to the body, but it can also be fatal.
During this time I began to hear about all these celebrities who were overdosing on weight loss drugs. One example? Anna Nicole Smith. I had no idea who this woman was until I heard the breaking news. The reality of her death struck me as sad, depressing, and so utterly final. And although I was playing around with the idea of putting an end to all this madness, it was like I had already given the enemy all the foothold he needed from me.
Thank the Lord that as I transitioned into the beginning of my freshman year in college, I met the most amazing small group at the new church I was attending. The accountability and brokenness among all the sisters was so powerful! So powerful that one of them just happened to open up to me and lo and behold, she struggled with the same exact sin I was in and did the very same things I did, although she actually had reached the point of anorexia and relapsed several times. She shared with me that her multiple overdosing episodes and times of hospitalization truly took a toll on her body. The worst part about it was, however, the toll it took on her relationship with God and her loved ones.
All of this struck a loud, resonating cord in the deepest parts of my heart.
I didn’t want to live like this anymore. I wanted to feel normal. I wanted to have something beautiful to offer Him on that faithful day when I meet Him. I wanted to continue to live my life of innocence with the sole desire to glorify God. But how could I be used by Him when I was so unscrupulously selfish and entrenched in this deep mire, and all I could see was the mud covering my eyes? Then I realized that all the sin and self-affliction was not worth my health and circle of relationships I’d been hurting.
One morning I just prayed asking Him to take away the desire to take those pills. The second I did that, I made my way out the door and tossed all the bottles in the dumpster…never to see those things again.
So…was that whole process an easy one?
Absolutely not! Was it liberating to my soul? Oh man oh man, was it freeing! It was as if a burden lifted off of me and I could see clearly once again!
I have to be honest though. There are days when I just don’t feel all that great about myself. I mean, we all have those every now and then, do we not? And as much of a copout answer as it may sound, I can assure you that even when I do have my “moments”, that does not mean that I’m the same as I was back then. I am a firm eliever that although we may come out victoriously through our struggles and addictions, most of us will have our moments when a certain habit sounds appealing. The key to it is to not act upon it and leave those thoughts behind. For example, someone who was once addicted to nicotine will most likely crave a cigarette at the split second he smells it wafting through the air. In that very same token, those who have struggled with ED or anything else for that matter, can have moments when certain memories or habits might start to resurface. But like I said, not giving in to that temptation is what makes the difference!
If you were to ask me if I wish none of that would have happened, I would tell you that yes…I do wish that I would have done things differently back then, but at least now I can relate to other women (and men) and empathize with them in this regard. In addition, my past struggle is what led me to adopt a healthier lifestyle. I realized that I needed to reset my health through eating wholesome foods (with a balance of indulgence of course, hehe) and regular exercise. I think that this kind of lifestyle is amazing for optimal health and being able to be there for others because we are healthy, or at least we try to be.
Let me remind you though that there is nothing wrong with wanting to feel good, look good, or even drop a few pounds! But we should all be wise in our choices and know our limits as well.
I hope that by now you know a little bit more about me, and that whatever struggle you may be facing you will conquer it! Even though it can be scary to be vulnerable with others, and even your best friend sometimes, remember that sharing it will help you in the process. Not only will you be healed, but you will also be a great instrument of encouragement to those around you.
No story is too small to share, and yours is just as valuable as anyone else’s.
Have a blessed day, and thank you so much for reading!
Props to you if you’ve made it this far by the way.
Do you find that thoughts or habits are harder to get rid of?
-I think that thoughts are for me because that’s where everything starts! I need to “take every thought captive to be obedient to Jesus”. –2 Corinthians 10:5
When you’ve opened up to others, did you find that it was like a chain reaction of healing and more opening up?