Today’s guest post shares a compelling testimony of a woman who struggled with anorexia and bulimia. She answers the question, “Can you really find freedom from anorexia And bulimia?” I love the power of our testimonies! I hope Katie’s story encourages you with the hope of Christ.
In middle school, I was never the popular girl. By the time dad left for another woman, mom
became deathly ill and high school reared its head, things started to change. To relieve
stress, I exercised excessively and ate less. By fall 2007, I lost over twenty pounds and was
unrecognizable at school. I started making friends, snagged a sporty boy and ran with the
On the outside, everything looked great. Not many of my friends knew why but as the year
trekked on I started attending fewer social events. The truth was, I didn’t have the energy to keep the facade up around people. Instead, I would sit at home, eat globs of peanut butter
and stare at the drab walls of my basement dwelling, my mind dulled by pain and lack of
nourishment. I was starving the pain out, unconsciously hoping the war on my body would heal my heart. It didn’t.
In the eleventh grade, I ended up in the Foothills hospital with low potassium and high risk of heart attack. By the end of grade eleven, all my friends and acquaintances stopped visiting me. Just like when both my parents left my life, I felt completely alone. It was only when I realized how dangerously close to death I was that I reached out for help. Unfortunately, doctors, psychotherapists and counsellors couldn’t heal the massive wound in my heart. Things were hopeless. I was stuck.
I distinctly remember sitting in that sterile clinic, my fragile body cloaked in a gown as white as my skin, my bony back exposed to the elements. Tears were streaming down my face as I cried to God. “If you are real, You are going to save me. If not, I’m dead.” He was my last
chance at life.
Looking back at that moment, I see Him tenderly wipe away the tears before wrapping His massive arms around my tiny frame. He drew me close and whispered with that resonant
voice of His. “Katie, I am your Healer.” He was there. I could feel Him. He protected me.
As the years progressed, the Lord kept His promise. He taught me a lot about the healing
that needed to take place in my heart. He showed me who He is as Father and who I am as His girl.
I want to share some of the lessons He taught me and some of the practices that played a
huge role in my freedom from anorexia and bulimia.
7 Ways to Find Freedom from Anorexia and Bulimia
- Make your decision a declaration. Even when you don’t believe it, say it! “I want to be free. I will be free! This thing doesn’t have the power to hold me down!” If you were to stare off the road while driving, you would end up in the ditch, in a lake, you get the picture. Set yourself up for the proper course by declaring where you are going.
- Focus on truth. When we repeat lies over ourselves, we are prone to believe them. Repetition creates habit. When you look in the mirror and start to scrutinize yourself, stop and say, “I am the King’s daughter and am not held to society’s definition of beauty.” Do not entertain thoughts that tear you down. I guarantee they are not from the Lord. Instead of “I am ugly. My appearance is unacceptable.” Try, “I am more than my waistline. The King has purposes and plans for me. I am accepted. I am loved by Him.” These are the truths that withstand any trial. These are the truths that will set you free.
- Mind your acquaintances and friendships. I have spent time with people who were fixated on appearance. If someone is fixated on their appearance and you spend lots of time with them, your mind is being trained to think like them. Choose to be around people who uplift and encourage you, not bring you to think lowly of yourself.
- Be patient. Some days I would spend hours sitting on my bed, writing out my thoughts to God. Some days I needed to spend with only my Heavenly Father, away from distractions and the world’s noise. Some of the most peaceful, powerful times came from my time alone with Jesus. I would ask Him how He saw me and He would respond. I cherish those times with Him more than any other.
- Refuse guilt and shame. We all stumble on our way to recovery. Know that no matter how hard you fall, Christ is waiting there with abounding grace. He doesn’t look down on you for your struggle. He wants to sling your arm around His broad shoulders and carry you home.
- Find a support system. Try your hardest to reach out to people who have already gone through what you’re going through. I can’t stress enough the importance of an understanding community. I am happily available if you need to talk to someone.
- Read. I strongly suggest “Do You Think I’m Beautiful” by Angela Thomas and “You Are Not What You Weigh” by Lisa Bevere.
All that being said, there’s no one size fits all to an eating disorder recovery. Everyone has
different ways to heal, mine was through writing. Yours might be through nature, music or the arts. There are times when medication is appropriate. God knows exactly what we need, we must only ask and wait for the Voice that comes in many forms. He may answer through
prayer time, journalling or other people. No matter which way He chooses, He will be faithful to answer, just keep pursuing healing.
So, beautiful daughter of the Father of fathers, there is so much hope. If God can raise
someone like me from the uttermost depths of depravity, He can do anything. You are a
treasure, valuable in your Dad’s eyes. Your life was bought at a steep price. You are free.
Grasp onto truth and accept His love, woven tightly around you like a shield. Remember,
His affirmation leads to freedom that is worth more than all the approving stares and
Instagram likes this world could offer. Trust me, I would know.
Yours in His abundant love,