There is no such thing as fat.
These are terms brought to us by a world infected with faulty thinking that body size, large or small, has bearing on our personal value. Simply speaking, “thin” means beautiful–if one is beautiful then one is marketable, reliable, noticeable–valid for beauty and business. (I have noticed, however, that no one can seem to agree on what “acceptably thin” is.)
On the contrary, if one lives in a larger body, then one is “fat,” which means one is not valid for beauty and business. Fat has become a negative term associated with unacceptable, inappropriate, shameful, unhealthy, ugly and unworthy. Generally speaking, of course, we don’t use these terms to people’s faces because that would be hurtful and rude. The message comes across clearly and deeply enough through the 965 diets everyone should be on, national headlines that tout 965 ways to look slimmer, lists of foods that will help you lose belly fat, and my personal favorite, articles that teach you how to become an exercise addict.
No you look totally fine just as you are–but you should try the slim green diet where you only eat green stuff and only at the times of day that start with “s.” And wear this new organic miracle spandex to squish in your belly, and replace your desk chair with an exercise ball so you can lose that pooch and not have to wear the spandex (it’s better to be natural). Then you can concentrate your efforts on increasing your hate for the gym by going 12 times a week, 6 of those being core-training classes so you can turn your slimmed tummy into a 6-pack. Because then you will able to wear a bikini and you will look sexy and not gross to all the beach combers who will definitely be looking at you and judging you.
If you want. I mean you’re totally fine now, but if you want to be better, which you should so you aren’t seen as lazy, then do those things.
I have fallen ill by playing into society’s definition of fat and expectations of thin and the skin-surface value placed upon what this world thinks of me at either size.
I have anorexia. I have lived with this disease for at least 13 years, maybe longer. On November 3, 2014 I went into “official” rehabilitation for anorexia and learned just how big and ingrained this disease has become in my brain and my life. It had become so much bigger than me… an addiction grown so out of control that it looked completely “normal.” I didn’t know how sick I was. The disease had become a lifestyle, and not just for me but also for my husband and children. This disease has infected every area of my life to the point where I can’t even recognize when the eating disorder is leading my thoughts, behaviors and decisions.
Today marks 64 days in rehab. I have gained healthy weight (I didn’t even have to put on my belt today–which will be a topic of discussion in therapy tomorrow); my metabolism has healed to the point that it tells me when I am hungry for real; I am eating regularly with little to no thought; I am experimenting with food in my kitchen; and I went out to breakfast yesterday with no sign of a panic attack. All great news!
But I still have anorexia.
Because anorexia is not about food.
On December 6th, God healed my fear of “fat,” opening my eyes to the truth that the world places value on “fat” and “thin.” God places value, however, on the condition of the heart–and these of which terms I have worked 13 years to adhere and over which I nearly killed myself, don’t even exist in His kingdom. They aren’t in His dictionary. At all.
Not only had I become physically ill over faulty worldly beliefs, but I confess my heart had become infected with personal judgement toward people (including my own family) in larger bodies, generally believing they lived unhappy and unfulfilling lives. It was a horrid and humbling moment to have this truth revealed to me–it made me sick to my stomach. I fell to my knees in repentance. I even called my parents to confess and apologize.
But God revealed it so he could heal it, because following the ugly truth came a most joyous and healing truth:
My physical body matters merely to carry out discipleship of/for Jesus, to live in a way that brings holy Love to this physical world that has become very brokenhearted–to share the good news about a Kingdom of Love led by the most adoring Father. As long as I am able to do this well (whatever “well” means between me and Jesus), then the size of my body had no bearing or matter on anything.
The core of my disease–the heart of my dis-ease has been healed.
But I still have anorexia.
Because anorexia is a disease of the mind. My heart is healed, but my brain is still very much broken. This was proven by my therapy appointment last Friday wherein I was SO excited about a new pizza recipe I am going to try, and after relaying my excitement and thoughts, my (amazing) therapist pointed out where the idea was tainted with disorder–controlling and fretting about what to put on it and how to prepare it so I wouldn’t get sick (because I also still have celiac disease which gives me another kind of fear of food-yeah, I’m kind of an mess. 🙂 )
Anorexia is a BIG disease… bigger than I could have ever handled on my own, (which I obviously couldn’t seeing as they nearly hospitalized me). I am making progress by leaps and bounds with the help of a God who is bigger than both me and my disease. With over 13 years of well-worn pathways in my brain and only eight weeks of rehab under my belt, I have a long way to go, but just as night fades into daylight, I see anorexia beginning to slowly fade, leaving me to live in the dawn of a heavenly new life.