My entire life I’ve been Christian. Even more so, I was a Christian who grew up in an overwhelmingly religious environment. The rules were:
- No saying “Oh my God”
- No secular music or Christian music that belonged to the rock or rap genre
- No hair dying, nail coloring, or makeup wearing
- No having short hair
- No women preaching in church
- No skipping church
- No refusing to wear a head-covering for times of prayer
and so forth… I guess you could say I belonged to an orthodox culture.
I spent my years of 18-23 out on the mission field serving others full-time. I’ve written before about the religious organization I served with at the time. (More posts related to my religious experiences can be found on my other blog: annavasilenko111.wordpress.com) Anyway, it was during those years that I developed an ugly eating disorder.
Let me get to my main point now: When I chose to recover, I chose to do what I felt God wanted me to do. I knew I’d be in for tears, people’s comments, and the dreaded weight gain. Somewhere inside, I hoped that because I was choosing to give my ED to God, He’d have “mercy” on me and I wouldn’t gain too much weight. Yet, a few months into recovery I was still gaining weight. I was terrified. Some of you know how that goes! I thought it would never stop. I had to buy new clothes over and over again. I went FIVE sizes up. I was almost at my pre-ED weight. (I don’t weigh myself, but I had a general idea.)
And that’s when… I got angry.
You see, before I chose recovery, I put on the show of a saint. I cried hours before God and prayed for miraculous interventions where I was the one who should have done something different. I never expressed negative emotions because I didn’t want to seem like a “bad Christian.” I tried to hide my hurt feelings and cry them all out during prayers. But the reality is that God created me to be ultra sensitive, and everything I was trying to internalize ultimately showed itself in anorexia.
Anger was a rare thing for me, but here I am, recovering, being more honest with myself and others than ever before, and I feel angry. One evening I was hysterical and my sister (my ED savior) came into my room to try and rationalize with me. She asked me why I felt angry and at who. For the first time in my life I spit out, “I’M ANGRY AT GOD!!!”
As soon as I spit those words out, I expected God to smite me. For at least another day I was shocked with myself. How could I have ever said that?!
As I look back at that moment now, I don’t regret it at all. Because you know what? We ALL feel bitter sometimes. We ALL realize life doesn’t turn out the way we expect. We ALL come to moments in our life where we just don’t understand why things turn out as they do.
And God knows that! He knows when we get frustrated at even Him! And instead of
pretending we don’t, we might as well be honest and get that dirt out. And you know what? He’s great. He’s always great. He’ll patch you right back up and you’ll go on stronger than before.
He’s always kind.
During those months, I had no idea God wanted to give me something (or someone) so much better in life. In fact, God knew that perhaps this guy would like a girl who looks like a real woman & not a skeleton. He allowed me to gain weight for MY own good!
And now I can eat meals like this!