When I start to post I get lied to a lot. It's the Enemy, I know it is. Things like: this isn't important, why would you want to share this? People are going to know this about you and then they are going to see you differently. Weight struggles make you look stupid... lies like that.
The truth is that these struggles represent a very deep issue. It's one in my heart. My heart is self-conscious and afraid of what others will think of me. My body is physically, psychologically drawn to food as a sedative for my emotions, pain, depression, anger, you name it. The truth is that only God can heal me in these places. So, it is important and I will post about it. If only to share my journey, and if it's only for one other person, then so be it.
I always struggled with clothes. Especially being overweight. Nothing ever fit quite right. Part of it was my denial that I was the size I was, part of it is just that bigger clothes ... well, their just harder to find, harder to look cute in, are cut boxier, I don't know. You who have struggled with this know exactly what I'm talking about.
For a while I never wore jeans. I just wore these workout pants. All the time. I remember once wearing a pair of jeans and a girl commenting that she had never seen me wear jeans before, and she saw me a lot. I just responded in some vague answer that "yeah, I'm not a very fashionable person." ... I also wore these scrub pants a lot. I look back and think, that was so ridiculous. I must have looked so stupid. Even as I speak about it, embarrassment comes flooding in. I hate that. I hate looking back in regret.
But I never wanted to buy new clothes because I was always going to lose the weight, and then what would I do? So I kept wearing my uniform of t-shirts, workout pants and scrubs.
I hated shopping for this body I was in. My stomach was always too big (I tend to gain weight in my midsection), the love handles, I could name off every imperfect part of my body. I won't because I don't think it is honoring to the Lord. He created me and made me just as I am. For a while I decided I messed up this perfect creation of His and so I decided I was unacceptable. But then, one day in my quiet time God said, "Jody, I love you just the way you are right now. I created you to be this way. I even put the fat cells in your body perfectly so that if you were to consume too much you would have someplace to store it, if you are ever starving and need it, you will have it. I think you are beautiful, because I created you JUST AS YOU ARE." ... I had to come to the conclusion at that point to step out of my shame and self-pity and walk in the fact that God loves me and created my body at any size that it is. If I abused it, I'm sure he is saddened but it does not lessen his love for me.
Still, the shopping trips would end in pain, depression or just plain tears. Swimsuit shopping was the worst. But God was always faithful in that I was always clothed. Those few shopping trips that I had the presence of mind to pray and ask Him to clothe me ended up a lot better. And even if I didn't find anything in those trips, there was still a sense of peace and security that only His Spirit could bring.
Eventually I learned to just embrace the size that I was and buy things that said "extra large" and just accept it. I think that was healthier than trying to fit into the smaller size and my clothes never really fitting.
Even though it's become easier to clothe my body I am still praying for wisdom in this area. I don't want clothing to become an idol in my life. It totally could right now, so I just want to trust God to clothe me. I painted the scripture about how He clothes the lilies of the valley and how much more will He clothe me. I want to really trust Him and to walk day by day. Clothing isn't important, food isn't important, it is the heart that is important.