Kimberly's Blog











Blurred vision, internal tremors, freezing cold, debilitating muscle weakness. By the sound of things, you might think this person was struggling with a drug habit, or maybe even stranded out in the wilderness unable to find their way back to civilization. In my case, either scenario wouldn’t be far from the truth. Only the addiction wasn’t drug related, but a habitual eating disorder. And the wilderness wasn’t Mt. Everest or the Mojave, but the deepest part of myself.

Now, it was time to face what I had spent a lifetime running from. Nineteen years of dodging my own demons; of trips to the emergency room—dehydrated and potassium deficient—shaking, fainting, afraid. Nineteen years of looking in the mirror to find the same enormous girl staring back at me begging me not to eat anything. The thousands of meals I missed were a sacrifice of love—the love of control and the power I felt exercising it. Yet this unique strength managed to carry me toward one extraordinary moment when I could no longer walk the length of a room without gasping for air. I couldn’t straighten up or take a deep breath. At times I could scarcely lift my arms to wash my hair. In the end, all the power I felt couldn’t out-muscle the decision I was finally forced to make.

It was time to choose: to live or to die.

It was a tough choice and one that took careful consideration. All I wanted was for the pain to go away. If I quit eating completely, how many days will it take for my heart to stop beating? My heart—that slow, labored pounding—hurt inside my chest to the point where I thought about ending my life. I just wanted it to stop… to be over. Death would be so much easier than living this way.

For those of you struggling with anorexia, I understand that the thought of putting food in your mouth is the scariest thing you can think of, and you would do almost anything to avoid it. I get it. Not because I’ve read a lot of books on the subject. It’s because I’ve stood on the very edge just where you are standing now; the cliff where your future hangs by a thread.

Right about now, you probably don’t want to hear that you’re out of control because we both know that’s the reason you’re not eating. It’s all about control. You enjoy the tremendous self-discipline and restraint it takes not to eat. The hollow sensation in your stomach hugs you with both arms until it feels like a friend. The piercing headache and cold extremities keep you company day and night. Even your heartbeat flutters a love sonnet. And you’re thinking this must be the best thing you’ve ever found. But starving yourself isn’t as “in control” as you may think. Will power may drive you forward for a few months or even years, but devotion to this sort of dysfunctional affair will only leave you broken and begging for more. No amount of self-control will fill you with security or stability—not now, not ever.

The fulfillment you’re looking for is going to take more than skinny legs and sunken cheekbones. It’s about climbing off the ledge—the ritualistic eating and self-loathing that has been imprisoning the real you. It’s about grabbing hold of God’s hand and letting Him walk you out of this hell that keeps you from putting food in your mouth. It’s about stepping into the life He is calling you to live. He has the plan. Not your friends, not your parents, not the Victoria’s Secret girls. And if you’re neglecting (dare I use the word abusing) your own body, neither do you.

There are so many people touched by eating disorders: those caught in the turbulent waves and those helplessly watching from shore. Maybe you have a daughter (or son), a sister, friend, or coworker drowning in a sea of starvation. The main objective of this blog is to supply a raft—a lifeline—to that person, and help them to solid ground. If you happen to be the one treading water and you’re growing more exhausted by the day, I can relate. I starved myself for nearly twenty years, and by the end of that downward spiral, I realized that no amount of stamina or determination would keep me afloat. That the illusive “perfect body” I wanted so badly would always be out of reach.

I hope that by reading this blog you’ll learn the same thing, and, ideally, take hold of the lifeline that could prevent you from being pulled under. For those of you who are anxiously watching without the slightest idea of what to do, I’m sure you have a few questions.

If you’re a parent of a child with anorexia, you’re wondering if you’ve failed as a mother or a father. Is there something you did or didn’t do that could have made the difference? If you’re a sibling, you want to know how you didn’t see this coming and what triggered it. And, if it’s your friend or coworker who is suffering, you may be trying to figure out how to approach the subject without risking the relationship. But no matter who you are or how you fit in, there’s one thing you should know.

Although each anorexic has a different reason for their disorder, there is a common denominator that binds them all together—trauma. For one person it could be the result of excessive peer pressure; for another, a sexual assault; for someone else the death of a loved one, or perhaps their parents’ divorce. But whatever the reason, you can bet it is the product of a critical circumstance. Something so emotionally devastating, the only desire left in them is to fade away. There is simply no answer to their troubles, which compels them to take action toward an end. It’s a slow suicide, but one they can find comfort in—no one else can control it. The disorder belongs solely to them. And though they may deny that they’re suicidal, it is still a desperate cry for help.

For those of you crying silently hoping to be heard, I’m not going to tell you that recovery is easy. In truth it was the most difficult thing I’ve ever done: talking about the past, dealing with the anger, facing the fear, disengaging habits that had become a deep and personal part of me. Sadly, with numerous books on the market on how a person struggling with an eating disorder feels, there are few that provide the practical tools to help them find a way out. If you are serious about getting well, or if you are a person who has a loved one battling this dreadful disease, I think this is the blog is what you’ve been looking for. It’s been nearly eight years since I stood at the top of that cliff staring down at the water and said, “No, that’s not where I’m going. I’m not giving up. I want to live.” Today I’m standing on the shore safe and sound in the center of God’s plan. It’s better this way… away from the edge… away from that thin line. And, I want this for you too.



Rhea says:

Thank you for this blog. I found you through a link from a link from a Proverbs 31 Devotional.

I also suffer from an eating disorder of another kind–the one on the other end of the spectrum–Compulsive overeating.

I am one of those disgusting fat people, who eats for emotional reasons. Hunger isn’t the driving factor. Food is my drug. Food is my comfort. Food has been my alternative to drinking, smoking, or any other entrapment I could engage in.

I realize as a child of God, that this is as wrong as abusing alcohol, tobacco, or any other drug. It is a detriment to my body.

My body image is one of disbelief. I see my reflection in the mirror, and am shocked at how disgustingly fat I have become (225 pounds on a mere 5 foot frame!) It is shocking and repulsive to me.

Paradoxically, being overweight has also become a refuge–a barrier to unwanted perverse attention from the opposite sex. I have a history of being sexually abused as a child. Even now, I cringe at any sort of attention given to my body by others. I just want to be invisible. (Unfortunately, being fat doesn’t make me invisible either–I am subjected to snide remarks from others about my weight).

Four years ago, I found the Atkins lifestyle approach, and started eating healthier than I had ever eaten in my life. I also was able to defeat the intense sugar/carb cravings that I had become a slave to. I had salad with almost every meal, lots of nourishing protein, and none of the harmful refined sugars, that I am so easily addicted to. I got down to a size 8/10, and felt great about how I looked. Clothes shopping was fun again, and I had a confidence that I didn’t have before.

However, that confidence was shaken, with a comment from a pervert. A patient at the clinic where I worked asked me, “Are you being a good girl, because you don’t look like it.” My clothing was a little bit curve-hugging, but not immodest. All the violated feelings flooded over me, and I hated it. I loved being thiner, but hated the perverts out there that spoiled that for me.

When I restarted birth control pills, my weight loss plateaued, and I used anger at that as an unconscious excuse to abandon my healthy eating approach. With my first taste of the delicious desserts that I had been abstaining from, I felt an amazing euphoria. It was an incredible high, and I didn’t want to stop feeling that.

It took 2 years to gain back the weight I lost, and have since then added another 40 pounds on top of that! I am now the largest I have ever been in my entire life, and am repulsed by the sight of myself in the mirror.

I thank you for your blog. I know that your problems are different than mine, but there are some common threads between you and me. You mention reaching out to God as a source of comfort, refuge, help. I realize that I have been hiding from God in shame, rather than reaching out to Him.

Due to life stressors, and the rise in stress hormones that accompany that, I have battled with exhaustion, and with it, the lack of perspective about even smaller problems. I have come to a point of hopelessness, even to the point of thinking about what I would put in my suicide note. I was going to plead for my husband, an unbeliver, to promise to take the kids to church for me, because they would be better off without a mother who is unable to be a consistent example of someone who is a follower of Christ.

It has felt like I am spending my days trying to walk in wet concrete, up to my knees. Someone prayed for me at church on Sunday, giving me this word-picture of what God revealed to her as what I’m going through. This wet concrete that I am slogging through is my destructive thought patterns, feelings of worthlessness, hopelessness, despair.

I too am standing at the edge of the cliff–any closer could mean a fall to my death. However, I realize I don’t want to die. I want to live a life that is pleasing to my Heavenly Father. I want to be victorious over the dark thoughts that plague my mind. I want to be healthy–mind, body and spirit. I want to show my children that they don’t have to be perfect, and that they can be victorious over the things in life that can hold so many people in bondage.

I still battle with daily exhaustion. I still have times when I feel like I could cry at the drop of a hat, sometimes for no apparent reason. I see a Doctor for Depression, and am on medications, (and know that some of these meds need re-evaluated for effectiveness). I used to see a Counselor, but have suspended that, due to financial barriers. (My husband has been unemployed for the last 6 months–He lost his job when the company he worked for closed down).

I am not sure why I am sharing so much, and why I am writing this lengthy comment, except to humbly ask for your prayers, as I do the things that I need to do to reclaim life, and to find the Joy of the Lord, that is so essential for the strength that I need every day.

Please pray for me. Please keep doing what you are doing to reach out to the countless women who are struggling in silence, and often in shame. God bless you.

-R



Kimberly says:

Oh my dear Rhea…

Please know that I understand those thoughts of self-hate and worthlessness. There were times when my struggle was so great, I would sit at my desk at work–with the noon hour approaching–and cry as I debated what to put in my mouth for lunch: a turkey sandwich or a 9 mil. meter. The thought of living one more day was more than I could cope with.

But as I fought my own demons of early sexual abuse, God’s Word (and those people closest to me) lifted me up and out of the mire of my eating disorder. And it’s a conscious decision to believe God’s promises over the enemy’s lies. I chose to believe in the Plan God himself designed for my life, and refused to listen to all the lies of the devil–in all its various forms (perverts included).

You are right… we are very much alike, you and I. Our food intake is the only thing we can control in what can be a world out of control. Rhea, I’m going to challenge you to set new goals for yourself. You did it once before and you can and will do it again. This is for you… not anyone else. God never gives us more than we can handle, and I believe you have what it takes to regain your life.

Here’s your new list:

Toss the Scales. You don’t need them.

Journal Your Journey. Pour out your heart to God and allow him to move on your behalf.

It’s Time to Eat. Begin to only eat foods you would feed someone you loved and respected.

‘Easy Food’ Works. Create a list of low-fat, high-energy snacks to lean on when you’re faltering.

Toss the Taboo List. Your taboo food—sugar, fat, and starches—will be replaced with protein and vegetables. And don’t forget those yummy summer fruits.

Fatty in the Mirror. NOT EVEN! If you call that girl “fat” you’ve already sealing her fate. Be nice!

Expand Your Repertoire of menu items. Break out and get creative.

Stumble and MOVE ON! Everyone falls; it’s human. It’s how you recover that sets the tone for your future.

Stretch Your Comfort Zone. Get out, meet people, enjoy life… and tell the enemy to take a flying leap!

Reevaluate Your Value. God does not create trash. Everything he makes is beautiful.

Bigger Really is Better… bigger self-esteem equals better health, better happiness, better Christian walk. Think big as in dream your wildest dream and go after it.

Table for Two… it’s you and Jesus, girl. And He’s all you need to succeed.

Please keep in touch, Rhea, and let me know how you’re doing. I think there will be so many other women who read about your struggle and identify with it. You’re speaking for many others… I hope you will take the lead and be an inspiration to all of them.

Kimberly xx



Sharon says:

Rhea
I just read your story and I want to share a bit with you. I too have been on diets and then gained back what I lost. I did this for thirty years
recently I prayed to God and asked him to find me a diet that I could do and stick too. That being said I ran into a friend at my church and she told me about this study she wanted to try but she was looking for an accountability partner, I told her how I had been praying for God to send me a diet that I could stick to. I told her I was interested in doing this and she just happened to have purchased two book studies when she ordered hers, she offered me to come and get it look it over and tell her what I though, even before I picked up the study I made a committment to her, because I felt that God had put me in her path that day for a very good reason he was answering my prayer. The study is called The Lords Table by Mike Cleveland and you can find it online at http://www.settingcaptivesfree.com
Please just go to the site and look it over I believe you will find your answer here. If we do it for God’s Glory and not our selfish reasons we will be successful. here is a quote I have put on my frig and in my car, “NO FOOD WILL SATISFY MY HEART NOR FILL THE EMPTINESS IN MY SOUL. THAT IS WHAT JESUS CHRIST IS FOR. HE IS “REAL MEAT” AND TEH “BREAD OF LIFE” AND I AM TO FEED ON HIM.”
I hope this will be inspirational to you.
God’s Blessings to you
Shar



Barb says:

Hi Kimberly:
I’m facinated by your story and may God bless you. I also found it through the Proverbs 31 link. I have weight issues but on the other end of the scale such as Rhea. I’m a mother of four and seemed to have packed on pounds every year. I’m overweight, not obese, but would love to get back into shape. Eating right is a struggle for me too. Many women find comfort in food and my best friend, who’s legally blind, has a harder time than I do. We try to walk regularly, but seem to always have things come up to prevent it. I pray for her to seek God for comfort and try to keep her motivated, because she tends to eat at her parent’s home a lot and forgoes our evening walks. We use phrases like “comfort food” and wonder why so many people have eating disorders. We all need to be reminded that God is our COMFORT and ever-present help. No outside person or substance can replace Him. Many people try to fill the void in themselves with things other than the only ONE who can fill us from the inside out. May His peace, comfort, and healing virtue continue to grace your body and mind to free you from the terrible addiction that an eating disorder is. God bless all who struggle with addictions – food or otherwise. In Jesus name, AMEN



Kimberly says:

Barb… you are right.

There’s so many women who suffer with eating disorders, whether at one end of the spectrum or the other. I think the thing we all have to agree on is that no matter what a woman’s weight–if she’s 98 lbs. or 298 lbs.–there is an underlying reason that causes her to use food as a weapon against herself.

I’m so glad that this blog is being used as an avenue for us girls to encourage one another. I believe we can all reconcile our self-worth within the Love of Jesus if we just stay alert in our daily decisions, and not allow the enemy to continue to pull us down. Satan knows our personal weaknesses, and takes full advantage every chance he gets. DON’T LISTEN TO HIM!

Let’s continue to pray for each other as we heal and head towards better health day by day.
k xx



Barb says:

Thanks Kimberly. Yes, let’s pray for each other -that’s the only way these battles are won! The enemy DOES take full advantage of our weaknesses every chance he gets. Quite often I forget that, so he brings me down. And our culture seeks to do the same by glorifying thinness as the only acceptable way women should be. We have to embrace how God made us, eat to live – not live to eat, and stop trying to be something else!

I’m divorced after an abusive 20 year marriage and was in a recent relationship with a guy who made subtle cracks about my weight. After two and a half years with him, he suddenly dumped me for a woman who is smaller than me, but also has a bigger paycheck and property. I found him on his couch with her 4 days after they met. He moved in with her two months later. I’m still reeling from it. And the enemy has had a field day with my emotions and my mind as a result – making me feel suicidal from a broken heart and yet another betrayal.

Tom loves money so I shouldn’t be surprised at what he did to me. I’ve never been around anyone who talks endlessly about work and money. He needs prayer too, because he would say to me, “I don’t know about all this GOD stuff.” The enemy has blinded his eyes. He quickly took up with this woman being an “opportunist” of the lowest caliber. If he’s using her to get her property, I pray she wakes up before it’s too late! Her husband had only been gone a few months and she sought Tom out because his garage is beside her house. Neither one of them had any respect for the fact that we were in a relationship for almost three years. I have strong feelings for him and he threw them away for someone “safer” financially.

Please help me pray through this battle, because I’ve also suffered from depression most of my life. The medication caused me to gain weight too. It seems like it’s a no-win, I take medication to lift my depression, gain weight from it, then feel worse as a result. I just want to feel joy again and be at peace with myself. Self-esteem is something that can be confusing. You don’t want to be puffed up with pride, but you want to embrace yourself with self-love that only God can give because you have to see yourself through His eyes.

God bless you and may he keep you healthy and use your blog as a place of hope and healing for many others. I enjoyed your testimony how the Lord delivered you from the occult and put you on the path to a healthier future. Psychic practices can be so intriguing that many people have no clue that they are playing on dangerous spiritual ground. Even Astrology, which seems harmless, is occultic. Tom reads his horoscope every day like it’s his Bible. People can believe anything they want to make themselves feel better or try to predict the future. God is the only ONE we should seek for our purpose and only He knows the future. NO PSYCHIC or ASTROLOGICAL chart can! AMEN!

Take care and stay healthy!
Barb 🙂



Kimberly says:

Amen, sista!



Chris says:

Kimberly, Heard you’ll be representing Roland Mann’s, “The Gifted”… I got to know Roland when he was the Editor for our local paper… great guy and I’m looking forward to buying a copy of, “The Gifted” when it comes out. Also, I like your blog. I work with Children & Family services and deal with a lot of young ladies that need this kind of encouragement. God bless!



Kimberly says:

Hi Chris,

Yes, I’m very excited to be working with the exceptionally talented Roland. I think our timing is perfect to shop this a Young Adult novel.

And thank you for your encouraging words regarding the blogsite.
I hope it is helping those who struggle with food as well as poor self-esteem issues.

Kimberly 🙂



kamini devan says:

H

LOVELY PROGRAM FOR US WOMEN GOD BLESS YOU ABUNDUNTLY KEEP ON LIKE THIS

I I AM KAMINI AND VERY HAPPY WITH YOUR ENCOURAGEMENT FOR OUR HEALTH



Kimberly says:

Thank you for your kind words, Kamini!
Be blessed in your body, mind, and spirit,

Kimberly xx



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

et cetera