Friday, May 23, 2014

I'm an addict

Hello, my name is Ashley, & I'm an addict.

My drug of choice is food. I'm an over-eater. Sometimes I get in such a "trance" from food I don't even realize exactly how much I've eaten til it's all gone or I'm so stuffed I'm nauseated. Then after the nausea is the guilt, shame, & self-condemnation that "I did it again!" Ugh! It's a sick cycle & most people don't understand it. In their minds they think, "Why don't you just stop?" But you see, I'm an addict & addicts can't simply stop. We struggle with self-control knowing that we should stop & the high our drug gives us in that moment.

This stupid addiction drives me mad! Through The Lord I've been delivered from many things. He has healed me & set me free from mounds of bondage, yet I continue to struggle with addiction. I'm the happiest I've ever been in my life! My husband not only tells me I'm beautiful, but he also makes me feel beautiful. Other areas of my life are good if not great, but this is weighing me down like never before. I often wonder if this is my "thorn."

2 Corinthians 12:7 ...Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me.Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But He said to me, 
“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 

There are hundreds, if not thousands of ways to lose weight & I'm certain I've tried at least 3/4 of them. Whether it's a certain type of workout, pills, supplements, shakes, drinks, meal plans,   counting points or calories, eating paleo, whole 30, clean, THM, low carb... It doesn't matter. As long as you stick to whatever weight loss path you choose, you will see the pounds start to drop. However, for people like me who are addicted to food, if we can't fight off that craving to keep eating none of those will work because we sabotage the plan for a momentary food high.

Losing weight is definitely something I want to do, but in my attempts to do so losing weight became my idol. I become legalistic in what I can & cannot eat & I can become prideful in my successes with workouts. Then somewhere in the mix I lose my focus ( body being the temple of the Holy Spirit), the temptation of food creeps in, & instead of having just a little I justify it somehow & overindulge. And if this happens in the day time...I feel guilty, like I blew it anyway I might as well eat whatever I want the rest of the day, & many times it leads to a bad binge.

Not binge & purging like bulimia, just straight up bingeing, over eating compulsively without the ability to truly stop myself, gorging on food when I'm not hungry becoming completely crapulous. If I had to wear a scarlet letter to confess my secret sin it would be a big fat letter G for gluttony.

Ezekiel 16:49 Sodom's sins were pride, gluttony, and laziness, while the poor and needy suffered outside her door.

Yep know the place God destroyed along with Gomorrah? My pastor did a sermon a while back on the sin of gluttony & shared this verse & like a dart between my eyes I realized I was Sodom. Not that I ignore the needy & poor, but I certainly have pride, gluttony, & laziness when this issue overtakes me.

When we think of addicts we tend to think of drugs like pills, crack, cocaine, alcohol, maybe even sex addicts & porn come to mind, but rarely do we think of food as a drug. After all we need it to survive. I can't just quit eating like when I had to quit drinking alcohol to overcome that addiction. And yes I could take some magic pill, shake, or drink to make me feel full, but I don't need to feel full, I need to feel that sensation that a good binge gives me. It's learning how to not crave that.

And yes, I have read Made To Crave more times than I can count & am even currently doing the devotion on YouVersion for the zillionth time now! I'm confessing this not for anyone to tell me how to "fix" it, but to be honest, to keep myself humble, to share my struggle with others who fight the same battle, & for those who don't understand how hard it is for some of us.

I've had horrendous anxiety attacks about not being able to control my eating & not losing weight that they've kept me up all hours of the night researching the next new thing to "help" me. Thankfully I finally hit my knees in surrender & our precious Lord pours out His mercy on me. 

Recently I hit a wall with this addiction. See, in my attempts to lose weight I was merely trying to treat the issue not the root. Let's say I lose weight, but not attack the root which is addiction, then I just become addicted to something else, maybe whatever pill, supplement, meal plan, etc I took to lose the weight, or I become addicted to not eating & develop anorexia, or I become addicted to working out, or things not even related to weight loss or food.  As long as that spirit of addiction is there it will manifest in some form or fashion & I will have a whole new stronghold to battle. 

So my game plan? Not sure except pursuing after Christ & leaning on Him like never before & becoming aware of my triggers. Letting Him help me with strengthening the spirit of self-control in me. 

The 1st step is admitting it right? There are others steps in the AA 12 step program I need to do. There's a girl from high school that I hurt by blabbing how much she weighed to others & other instances I mocked someone's appearance related to weight & I need to make an amends to them where applicable & for those I've never met, to make confession to God. 

No doubt this won't be easy, but it will be worth it! 

I pray you have a blessed weekend & that you will pray for me with this addiction.