When I was a kid, I was “husky”. As I grew and transitioned into my teenage years I slimmed down, but I still was “big-boned” or “muscular” or “thick”…. pick your poison, I hated them all. I remember kids in high school asking me if I took steroids and other kids(boys) asking me “Why can’t you look more like your sister?” I remember having a few boy friends in middle school that actually dated me because they liked my sister. Yeah, I’m not kidding. Some people laugh about it now and joke about it. I still can feel that sharp pain, that nausea spot, the one that makes me want to crawl in a hole when it’s brought up……. Why do I care what others say?
Do not be conformed to the world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Romans 12:2
Stress…. stress has been something I have struggled with, how to cope with stress?… Food was my “cope” and still can be. It’s embarrassing to be addicted to food for comfort. After I got married and had my second child, my stress level went beyond anything I had experienced. Postpartum was awful and antidepressants for the next 7 years, plus stress eating, certainly didn’t help my weight issue. I ballooned from pre-pregnancy weight of 150 to post baby 195 after my second child. 5 foot 6 3/4 inches and 195 lbs. I was miserable and I was about a size 16. I’m not saying 16 is a bad size, God designed each and every one of us individually. Some bigger, some smaller, some shorter, some taller, some thin and some thicker. I was not happy at 195, size 16. I felt awful about myself. I didn’t want to do anything. I had no energy, I had no desire to cook, clean, work, run errands, and especially EXERCISE. I was depressed and miserable and how did I cope? More food please! The sweeter the better…. or saltier…. depending on the day. I don’t know if hormones spiraled everything out of control or if it was just so much change, so much insecurity, so much tension in the house. I also lost my dad around this time, so throw in a “side order of grief” and what a combo I had…….
After child number 3 was around 5-years-old (and I had no excuse for “baby weight” anymore) and the fact that my oldest was going to be in middle school athletics, I believe that an inner desire finally clicked. I little flickering flame was lit. It was little, but at least it was something. I had a hard time explaining athletics to my kid and expecting him to listen when I looked like a blob…. I didn’t do anything, how can I expect him to do anything…….
I was an example for my kid…… DEEP SWALLOW! GULP! I needed to make some changes, NOW! So I started exercising and I started caring about how much food was going in my mouth and the quality of the food (AKA, less processed). I started running, everything in me wanted to give up, but that little flicker of a flame that was going within me just wouldn’t go out. I kept at it and kept at it, 5 years later… I’m still at it, it’s become a lifestyle change.
Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40: 30,31
I still fight those insecurities though. I still fight that stupid demon scale and those negative thoughts. I still don’t like my cellulite on my butt and legs and I have this roll around my middle that will NOT go away. I don’t like my legs, I never have. They are “tree trunks” I believe the kids use to say. Thunder thighs. I bet if that scale said 115 lbs I’d still hate my legs. I shouldn’t, I know. When I insult myself, I’m insulting God’s creation. It’s still hard. We look at magazines and billboards of perfect 18-20 year old bodies that have been Photoshopped into perfection. I’m pushing on 40…. knocking at that door….. How do you become comfortable in your own skin when it starts to sag???
And then I think of my daughters…….
If I’m obsessing about my weight, that demon scale…. if I’m putting myself down, what am I teaching my 13-year-old and 9-year-old daughters?
I AM AN EXAMPLE……..
WE ALL ARE EXAMPLES……..
AM I PASSING MY INSECURITIES TO THEM?????
This negative talk, this cutting myself down…… has to stop. They see it, they hear it, they learn it. My eating habits, they see, they learn. I should know this, I should do better with this…. Why is it so hard????? WHY?
Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ. Galatians 1:10
How do you stop the vicious cycle? How do you stop the negative talk in your head? How do you restart and not give up when life gets stressful?
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. Gal 5:22-23
That last one in there….. self-control…… self-control is from the Spirit. I need to call on God to help me, strengthen me, and rid myself of bitterness, anger, judgment, frustrations…. with MYSELF! Allow your mind, heart, soul, spirit to be filled with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and SELF-CONTROL. If the bible states that self-control is from the Spirit, friends we can’t do it on our own! We need God to make the change, not a diet, not a weight loss plan, not a trainer, we need self-control and obedience.
Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. 1 Cor 10:31
Offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship. Romans 12:1
I’m writing this as a reminder to myself, as I’ve struggle this past month and have been juggling an overly busy schedule, a demon scale that tells me, “You’re getting fat again!”, and the insecurities that come with age. I am reminded that I am more than this body, I am more than a number on a scale. I am a child of God. I am loved just as I am and I need to quit beating myself up. I’m not that chubby kid anymore…..
Take a deep breath………… and breathe thanks for the many things we have to be grateful for. There are things in life that are MUCH more important than what that demon scale says…..
Let’s remember….. we are examples
Let’s be thankful, let’s work on self-control….. let’s stop the negative…..
Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Psalm 51:10