I cannot remember a time in my life when how I looked was not a source of stress for me. I was never really “skinny” as a child so I idolized the ideals that society calls the “perfect woman”. I laugh now because I know that there is no such thing and it is heart-breaking how we believe the lies that are constantly being fed to us. It was not until I was around 16 or 17 that I realized that I was struggling with this inner turmoil. I remember around the age of 14 that I had gained a noticeable amount of weight. So that summer I dedicated my time to dieting (eating 1 meal a day) and exercising excessively. My family, my friends, and I noticed a lot of weight loss. The praise and recognition acted as positive reinforcement for me so I continued to skip meals frequently, and exercising “too much” was normal for me. I was then exposed to “clean eating” which I now realize was just gravely cutting down my carbohydrate intake. Carbs were the enemy… So I ate a lot of vegetables and fruits that were extremely low in calories, proteins, some dairy, and a lot of healthy fats. I lost a significant amount of weight that year to the point where I began to feel sick but the fear of getting “fat” trumped my body’s warning signs. I remember a time when I had met up with a couple of my friends at a coffee shop. One of them offered me a donut, I cannot begin to tell you the anxiety that I felt. After denying it several times and them insisting that I have it, I ate the donut feeling extremely guilty and disappointed in myself, so much so that the moment I got home I started running stairs to burn off the calories that I had just so rebelliously consumed. My weight constantly controlled how I lived my life: I had to brush my teeth X amount of times or I would get fat, I had to stay standing for this long or I would get fat, I had to do such and such or I would get fat. It soon affected my social relationships as I would not want to go out to eat with friends due to the fear that I would have to eat something remotely unhealthy. I was trapped. So when I became ill, I went to the doctor with my mom and the doctor had told me that “it was okay to eat everything”. Some of my family members, including my father, spoke to me and told me I was “beautiful” something I had not heard myself say for a long time… I then began to seek healthier ways to maintain my weight, well, let’s just say I ended up eating waaay too much and I wasn’t enjoying my life ( which is what I feel like food is supposed to be about). So I was on this roller coaster and it wasn’t until university that I was able to achieve some sort of balance. And I feel like God had a lot to do with that.
For those who don’t know, I am a Christian so yes I go to church, yes, I read my bible, but most importantly, I have a relationship with God. I don’t believe that it was a coincidence that once I got closer to Him my stress and anxiety around food, the belief that I was not beautiful, the belief that I was not good enough began to diminish. I had a healthier relationship surrounding food, it was more about community, enjoying what God has given me, and nourishing my bodies (and soul). In Genesis 1:27 it says: “God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” I knew that the bible said that but it wasn’t until after I had to fight my inner demons that this piece of scripture became a sword for me. If I have never been exposed to that truth I don’t know where I would have been today possibly deeply unsatisfied, self-destructive, and envious. As I am writing this post I am listening to the song “No Longer Slaves” by I Am They on repeat, the lyrics speak the deep truth and sums up the journey I have gone through which are: “I’m no longer a slave to fear, I am a child of God.” My identity does not lie in my weight, it does not lie in my appearance, it lies in my identity in Christ, and because of that, the chains that I was bound in by my fear of my weight were broken.
I am not saying that all of my anxiety around food has completely vanished. I am still human, I am still stained, and I am still growing. But I have no doubt that God will be there for me to fall back on when I need it, in my highs, and in my lows, He will be there. I share this story rarely and I chose to share it now and on this platform, because it is a huge testament to my faith, it reveals God’s goodness and not only my but YOUR worth.
Where I am Now
So over the years, I developed a deep passion for cooking nutritious, delicious, and sometimes not so healthy treats (for the soul😉 ). I exercise regularly (but not excessively) to maintain my physical and mental health. I pick up my bible daily to remind me of the truth about myself and the world. I pick up some interesting books here and there to deepen my knowledge and unwind. I am in the process of finding that “balance” in my life hence, the name of this blog. If I find something interesting or if I have anything I feel the need to share I’ll be updating you here!
I honestly don’t know if I was meant to start a blog but I want to pursue this blog with a purpose. I hope you all enjoy it and spread the love.
“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb” -psalm 139:13