I have shared a lot of personal things with you guys. I’ve shared things that a lot of people have told me they wouldn’t be able to admit to an internet full of strangers. While I agree, the reason it seems so easy for me to share is because most of that is in the past. Years have gone on, seasons have changed and so those things don’t bother me. They are things I have learned from and grow because of.
One thing I am currently dealing with that terrifies me to admit is…my weight! Just the feeling of me typing these words is bothering me to my core! Since 2017 I have gained well over 60lbs which may not seem like a lot but the majority of that weight was gained within the last two years. The worst part of that for me is I don’t hate the way I look anymore. Yes, there was a time period, were I hated my body just like everyone but for me right now in this season, I don’t hate my body. I hate the effects the weight has had on my life. The shortness of breath, the snoring, not being able to carry singing notes the way I used to. And to add insult to injury…now my once flawless smooth skin is breaking out and the only culprit is….my diet.
In 2018, I lived through my very first addiction. Before then, I was always careful to avoid addictive products and habits. I’ve never smoked weed or done drugs. I didn’t have any alcohol until I was 21. I don’t even drink coffee because I see people everyday break their necks and bank account to get it. My addiction was working out. I was living to work out and I was working out to live! And yes we all need a healthy lifestyle, however mine was only healthy on the surface. I was working out twice a day EVERYDAY for at least an hour. I was successful in the eyes of culture but a failure to who my parents raised me to be. It was shameful. I knew I was only posting the wins online but hiding the unhealthy habits that was causing my hair to fall out. I chalked up my excuse into the ‘Dead Mom’ category and blamed my addiction on her death.
In a few short months I saw results…
But I still wasn’t happy so I supplemented my unhappiness with food. Tons of it. I had five figures in my bank account so I spent my time consuming whatever food suited my fancy. I began to realize that food was only temporary happiness and I needed something else. But what? I stopped working out and my body quickly returned to its former state until I could no longer see the championship cheerleader body I was used to. I was just disgusted.
So, I turned to sex because surely if men still found me attractive I could still be considered beautiful.
…we all know this story didn’t end well. So, here I was at the end of my rope mentally and physically. Making a decision to be pure before God and consecrating myself to maintain a pure lifestyle. I stopped having sex and with the power of the Lord I started to feel better. I began going to counseling and grief group. I got involved in my church and began serving my leaders.
I did all those things to heal and they did help tremendously. In the last year, I’ve healed from hurts and scars that have been there for decades. But I was still eating. I knew food had become an addiction because there was a shame attached to what I ate. I found myself waiting until after I left the drive thru to answer phone calls. I was throwing away food bags at gas stations instead of at home so my roommates wouldn’t know what I was eating. I would meet the delivery guy in the drive way so the door bell wouldn’t go off. I would stash trash from fast food places in my trunk so I didn’t have to look at them. It was bad. But all this happened…last week!
Now, I had never dealt with an addiction like this before. Not one that is so unhealthy for me mentally and physically. So I lied to myself and said I could fix it without anyone knowing. Then I remembered one of my favorite Bible verses and the foundational verse for all my friendships:
James 5:16 “Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.”
It was then I knew that I had to tell my friends and worse of all…my boyfriend. I knew from experience in living out that particular verse that if I want to be successful in defeating this addiction and coming out on the other side stronger (and thinner) then I have to be honest with the people I do life with. I need their prayers and the only way to get it was to tell them.
1. So they can hold me accountable
2. So they can know how to pray for me
3. So I can keep the devils favorite lie (shame) from creeping in
4. So I can have people to celebrate with me when I make it
So many times we put together these goals and plans of action. Sometimes we even pray and ask God to help us but we fail to follow the help He already gave us. Throughout the Bible, a common theme is community. Jesus had community with the disciples. So why do we feel that we can do life without it? Now, I’m not saying go run and tell everyone your business. However, there should be a couple of people you trust that you can share fears and insecurities with. The reason most of us cannot achieve goals that have been on our resolution list for years or trials that have plagued us since childhood is simply because we do not share them with people who care. We hold it in until we get to our pillows at night. We ignore it. Or we wish it away with our prayers as if we haven’t already been given tools to defeat it.
It doesn’t matter what you’re going through. After prayer, your first resort should be your community. If you are someone who doesn’t have community right now. FIND IT! When you go to events smile, invite conversation in. If you’re on social media. Private message the person who is always liking your posts and ask if they want to hang out. Ask God to reveal who in your life is trustworthy. Your community may be your parents, coworkers, church volunteers, or your siblings. Find people who want to know you who want to do life with you and are heading in the same direction.
I know for me in this new fitness journey I will need my support system now more than anything because instead of turning to food, I will now be turning to them. But first I had to be honest with myself about what it is I am doing wring, how it effects me, & how I feel about it. After being honest with myself, I made a plan. I wrote down a few things that I think will help me and I sent the list to my boyfriend (who happens to be a personal trainer) and together we came up with something that works for me. I told myself I would give myself 60 days of dedication to my plan. The worst thing that can happen is I stay exactly the same but at least I won’t have shame attached to my weight because I tried. My goal is not necessarily to lose weight or eat perfectly…its to TRY!
I really feel like God is telling me to just go! I know that He loves me enough to honor the effort I am putting in. The only way I can let Him down is to stop. One foot in front of the other. Just one step everyday. If it takes me a lifetime to reach my old high school weight then so be it. The journey will be worth it!
k, good talk