Thursday, January 8, 2015

Healing With The New Year

Happy New Year! Goodness, what a year 2014 was. Last year I restarted a habit that my family used to have every year. We'd all sit down at the kitchen table, take turns saying what our New Year resolution was for the year and we'd also write down accomplishments that the previous year had brought. Then each year you got to read through and hear what all you did and/or didn’t do. So last year a couple of my goals were: Get down to 200 pounds (was at 297 pounds), Run a half marathon, Graduate from NMHU with honors, Don’t give up on myself or become discouraged, and use my words and communicate my feelings instead of eating them. Well my weigh in on Monday left me short of my first goal by 2 pounds. Monday (12/29) I was still at 202 and this Monday (1/5) I weighed in at 201.6 and honestly I could be disappointed or I could just see how far I have come and be proud of that and realize my weight loss journey is far from over. October 19, 2014 I ran the Duke City Half Marathon with my lovely family and December 27, 2014 I ran 15 miles with Erika! I graduated from NMHU with my BSN with a GPA of 3.81 (Darn summer semester left me with two B’s!), which means I graduate “magna cum laude”…still honors! I haven’t given up on myself, even though there have been times where I would have rough days/weeks where I didn’t think I was ever going to get back on track…but I did. I’m still working on communicating my feelings instead of eating them, but I have greatly improved on my communication skills in comparison to last year. What else happened in 2014? I got promoted to charge nurse and started working day shift. I found an amazing church; Journey Fellowship, for any of you out there “church-shopping” ;) My entire family came together (even if it was for less than 48 hours) to support me as I ran my first half marathon. Some really great things happened but some other crummy things happened.

Favorite part of 2014...EVERYONE TOGETHER!! <3

I don’t necessarily want to share how my year ended because, to be honest, it’s embarrassing. But more than being embarrassed I want to be free and I want to let others know that they are not alone.  I want to be empowered and empower others. I want to take back what was taken from me. With that being said I will share with you what I have been struggling with lately and what has been driving my emotional binge eating. It’s a new year and I want to be able to move on and start fresh. I want to heal. I want to continue to improve and encourage others. Only a few of my family members and a few friends know this so what I say is truly to help me heal and to bring healing to others. November 16, 2014 I was raped. After it happened I told myself that A) it didn’t really happen B) I hadn’t really been raped C) that I had somehow mislead him and that my “NO” wasn’t clear enough. I know all too well now that it really did happen, I was raped, and I had clearly told him “NO” and yet he continued to force himself on me.

Several things have been so crazy to me as I have been riding the waves of this wake. The first is how I tried to justify my rapist’s actions. I tried to say that it wasn’t exactly like he had raped me, I mean I hadn’t been beaten/bruised, even though I said “No” maybe I somehow did something to make him think it was okay (even though I know it was not my fault at all). Secondly, November 16 was a Sunday. Monday is the day I went on my run and pooped my pants…yeah you remember that story. Monday evening I became so sick. I had diarrhea, I was throwing up…and I had to call out to work that Tuesday and Wednesday. I developed an awful urinary tract infection and ended up having to take two courses of antibiotics to clear it up completely. It’s truly astounds me how much of not only an emotional toll it took on my body but a physical toll as well. Thirdly, I was surprised that after being raped I quickly found myself having consensual sex with someone else for the first time in my life.  It was almost as if I was trying to erase the rape with an act that I allowed to happen with someone who had always previously respected my "no".  As if sleeping with this person that actually "cared" about me would somehow make the wrong of the rape right. But it didn't. I just felt worse.  It makes me wonder how much of the promiscuity of our world is due to the fact that so many people have been sexually abused? According to , “1 out of every 6 American women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime.” That number is astounding to me and literally breaks my heart. This article has been really eye opening and given me a lot of hope with everything I have been dealing with:

I have spent the last couple months being angry and eating my anger. I’m now ready to let that anger go. I was hurt. I was raped. I was abused. I tried to fix things on my own. I tried to find healing by sleeping with someone else and came up empty handed and more desperate to find healing. Where I should’ve looked for comfort, healing, and strength is to Christ. This world leaves us so empty but thankfully I have a Savior who has come to give me, and everyone else, life. According to John 10:10, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I (Jesus) came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” The thief has tried to rob me of my joy, faith, and hope…but thank God he is greater than this world! This world is full of sinners in need of a Savior. I have a desperate need to be forgiven but the hardest thing is that in order for me to be forgiven I too need to give forgiveness. Matthew 6:14-15 says, “If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.” Oh, forgiveness. That word has been eating me alive this past week. I haven’t wanted to forgive this man…because it seems that if I forgive him then that means I’m okay with what happened. What I’m realizing is that forgiveness doesn’t mean I am excusing his actions, rather, it means I am ceasing to feel resentment, anger, and bitterness towards my abuser. According to merriam-webster forgiveness is defined as, “to stop feeling anger toward (someone who has done something wrong).” I’m beyond ready to cease this anger from eating me alive (literally)… so, to the man who raped me: I forgive you and I pray you find forgiveness from my Lord and Savior because, “We must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil” (2 Corinthians 5:10). 

I’m sorry if you came here to read about weight loss and got a sermon instead…but this is how I am healing. This is the only way I know to truly heal. The world has and always will leave me empty, angry, alone, and longing for something deeper. “But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.” (Isaiah 40:31). I’m finding new strength. My value does not come from this world but my value lies in Jesus and knowing that he says, “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11).

So this year I’m praying that I continue to heal and help others along the way. I will get below 200 pounds. I will run more half marathons. I’m sure I have other goals for this year…I just can’t think of them at this time. For those of you who may have been raped I pray for your healing. I pray you can forgive your abuser and find hope and strength that you didn’t know you had. I know that my God is greater than all of this. I know I will continue to have days where I just want to eat my emotions and I just want to lay in bed and do the opposite of going for my runs…but I am going to do what I’ve always done on this journey, take it moment by moment, one step at a time, one day at a time.

This is my prayer for all of you for the year 2015:

“‘“The Lord bless you
  and keep you;
the Lord make his face shine on you
 and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn his face toward you
  and give you peace.”’
-       Numbers 6:24-26

*I’d appreciate if you kept your comments to yourself on this post... As Thumper’s mom would say, “If you can’t say nothing nice, don’t say nothing at all!” Thank you.

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