This post is one of the more difficult ones that I have written and shared. I am sharing this now for any other women out there who may be struggling like I am. When struggling in my life, it feels many times like I am all alone in my thoughts and feelings. But, I have found that ‘aloneness’ is just part of what the devil wants us to believe. The reality is that we aren’t alone at all. So, this is for anyone out there feeling alone in their fears. Know that you aren’t alone at all.
Many people who have connected with me on facebook already know, but in the last year, I have lost a lot of weight. In fact, 63 pounds to date. I started a diet program with my doctor last year on Easter Sunday. It has been successful in many ways as the weight loss has also brought a relief in not just the pressure on my joints/body, but also through the diet we have stabilized my insulin levels, blood pressure and acid reflux disease. So, in all, it has been a positive effect on my life.
As I have lost the weight, a few people have noticed and commented. But, most of the comments have come more recently. I guess I just reached a point where it became obvious and so it wasn’t as politically incorrect to say something to me about it. 🙂 But, as the weight has gone, so has my cover. I have always known that many of my weight issues went much deeper than just eating too much and being lazy. That was the actual ’cause’ of the weight gain, but the psychological causes were the driving force behind the food and laziness.
As my ‘cover’ has been removed, I have found myself feeling very vulnerable. Not a feeling I enjoy at all! I know it is good that I have lost the weight and I REALLY don’t want to gain it all back again, but boy is Satan having a field day with me over this! Between feeling embarrassed by the hanging skin (and no I will not consider surgery to remove it), the realities of the foods I won’t enjoy regularly again, and the psychological ‘scars’ from earlier in my life, it is a battle not to just give in some days and drown my sorrows in a big bag of Dove dark chocolate, a bag of doritos, a bag of Chips Ahoy chocolate chip cookies and a 2 liter of coke. (Yep — you now know my poisons of choice when I am at my weakest.)
My weight was my shroud. It was my cover. It protected me from leering eyes and kept others from wanting to use me. No one really wanted to grope or use a 230+ pound whale after all! You see after being groped by a neighbor when I was just beginning to go through puberty and then being used and abused by my high school boyfriend, I found the ‘cover’ that the weight provided me very protective. The heavier I got, the safer I felt. When I got married, I felt safe again and lost most of the weight. But, then after being groped by one of the volunteer’s in my youth ministry program, I found it easier to hide behind the weight and so I carefully added the layers again. After 5 babies, the layers kept layering on thicker and thicker. Until finally, my health was suffering. And that brings us to last Easter. *sigh*
I don’t think most men understand how women can feel used by a man’s looks, whistles, facial expressions etc. Most guys think they are just ‘appreciating’ a woman’s beauty by doing that. The reality is that a woman wants to be loved for WHO she is, not what she looks like. Her looks and appearance are important to her as they are part of who she is and is what makes her unique in many ways (hence the primping all women like to do once in a while). But, it isn’t until a man is allowed to see into her soul and her goodness on the inside that he can truly determine her beauty. I know most of us are like I am… no one really sees that side of me… except for my husband. The reality is that a woman WANTS a man to see her as a total entity — body and soul. And it is very obvious to a woman when a man isn’t looking at her like that. The saddest part is that our culture is training men to look at a woman exactly how she DOESN”T want him to look at her. And it is teaching the women that she needs to play this part to ‘get’ the man.
So, as I adjust to this new reality in my life, if I seem a bit unsettled, please bear with me. Through the grace of God I am battling the demons of my past and WILL come to terms with this new vulnerability. But, in the meantime, my baggy sweatshirts are still handy for those days that are shakier than others.