Category Archives: shame

Overcoming Deep Dark Secrets….Life With An Eating Disorder

Hey y’all! Hope you guys have had a great week. I haven’t talked about this in a minute but I feel like it’s so important, not only for myself but for those suffering in silence. Some of you know I have struggled with an eating disorder for a good portion of my life, that maybe where you find yourself at today. But I want to offer hope to you, hope that you don’t have to stay in the same place as you are today. You don’t have to have the same struggles or battles, if your willing to allow God in and put the work in…..YOU CAN HAVE FREEDOM. It’s there for the taken!! While I’m still on the road to recovery, I’m getting stronger and more free every day, and you can to my friend.

So I want talk about what helped lead up to me even being willing to get help. I’m using the word willing for an important reason because if I said I was waiting on WHEN I FELT LIKE MAKING CHANGES I’d be waiting for an awfully long time. Because we can feel like every Monday we want to start over and TRY to get things right. But in my experience “WE TRY” “WE FEEL” and it hasn’t served me well.

Feelings are so fickle, they are one way one day and different the next. So waiting on your feeling to be what you want….well that day may never come. But if I make a conscious choice to say Lord I’M WILLING that’s different. I’m not giving my feelings a vote.

Our church has a small group/conference called Freedom and WOW it’s incredible! Well I went through it and right when it was time for conference in last December, I got so sick and I couldn’t go. I was so so upset, discouraged and didn’t understand at all. At the time I couldn’t see what God was doing behind the scenes and let me just say He is such a behind scenes kinda Guy.

So the 1st of January rolls around and 21 Days of Fasting And Prayer starts and prolly half way through God stuck His finger right on IT and said “Nicole now is the time, it’s time to deal with your eating disorder.”

“Excuse me Lord but I don’t have a problem.”

Now mind you I was weighing myself everyday sometimes 2-3 times a day. BUT I DON’T HAVE A PROBLEM. Denial!

I had been abusing diuretics and laxatives for years. I would fast and I could fast like nobody’s business but then I’d binge…..I was struggling with something, I didn’t know it had a name. It’s name was bulimia.

So it was at the moment I realized why I wasn’t able to go to the Freedom conference. God had something more He needed to deal with me on and bring healing to my soul.

Right then and there I went to my medicine cabinet and threw out all my diuretics and laxatives. Now I’d like to say it was easy from that point on and that I didn’t struggle but because my body was use to them and needed them to go to the bathroom. It was like crucifying the flesh…Ugghhh! There’s a healing period which I’m pretty sure I’m still in, I think it will take a while to heal my intestines, body, spirit, and emotions from all that trauma I put myself through.

It’s funny how we always think no one knows our deep dark secrets because we put on our mask every day and act like we gucci. But ya know what….I know…..God knows. And the pain of holding all of it in or keeping up the image will destroy you.

So after much prayer and seeking the Lord on what to do, the first thing I needed to do was to tell my husband. Oh how I dreaded that conversation, to the point it made me physically ill, like wanting to throw up.

So finally I went downstairs and said “Honey I need to talk to you about something and it’s going to be really hard for me to talk about. Of course I’m already crying and can hardly speak. I know the poor man is prolly thinking “Ohhhh I’m in the doghouse, she about to leave me! Or she’s having a affair!”

I could hardly get it out I was crying so hard but once I did you could see the relief on his face that it wasn’t one of the before mentioned items lol. I’m being so vulnerable baring my soul, and he’s relieved I’m not having an affair. Lol😂 We can look for humor in everything.

I told him how I had been struggling and abusing laxatives and diuretics, fasting and binging. He listened and said “Thank you honey for sharing that with me I know that was extremely hard for you. How can I help or what do you want to do?” Well I had already been looking for a counselors, I thought a nutritionist was a good idea as well. So I started there. I also shared with our 3 daughters, what was hidden in the dark had to come out, so it could hold no more power over me. It was a step toward freedom.

I reached out to a nutritionist who I really like but for me I have to say this is such a tricky part of having a eating disorder. They go over all your healthy issues, keeping in mind your eating disorder and then put you on a meal plan. Well for me what I had found is that I already had such a unhealthy relationship with food you telling me I can’t have a Dr. Pepper and I can only eat these things it wasn’t good for me. Because not realizing but all my life I had been putting certain foods in good categories and bad categories and if I ate from the good category I was good but if I ate or drank from the bad category “I was bad” I would heap so much shame and guilt onto myself which kept me spiraling. Not sure if that makes sense or not, so for a while I’ve been working on just my relationship WITH food. I know there are good and bad foods and our bodies NEED the good foods but your mind and heart still need to make that connection without condemnation and shame being in the picture. So if I ate a brownie or drank a Dr. Pepper I wasn’t a bad person like I fell like I was. It’s crazy what our mind can make us think about ourselves.

Having a eating disorder for me while it is obsessing over weight and food, I’ve also learned it goes sooooo much deeper than that. It went back to things from my childhood that led up to that.

I was raised in alcoholism, with that comes so much baggage. Enabling, people pleasing, codependency, fear, manipulation, people trying to control you, you feeling out of control, and not knowing what the day would hold. I think I learned to try not to rock the boat fairly early in life, that was a safe place….so I thought.

I love my mother and father dearly but they divorced before I was 2 and my father remarried and had 3 other daughters. He wasn’t there for me as much as I would have liked him to be or at the time needed him to be. Our relationship then wasn’t as strong as it is today. Thankful God brings restoration.

I lived with my mother who also remarried 4 times and that was very difficult for me in that I didn’t have a stable father figure. Let me say upfront I do not in any way blame her. She worked hard to raise me the best way she knew how and all she wanted was to be loved. She loved the way she knew how and so did my Dad. And can’t we all relate to that? We all want to be loved and accepted, we do what we know….right or wrong. It definitely hindered me in many ways but it also helped shape me into the woman I am today.

I was molested at a young age and back then that wasn’t something you talked about and they also threatened me about telling anyone. So that was yet another deep dark secret that got stuffed deep down.

Your life shapes you for the good or for the bad and at the moment for me it wasn’t good. Things were quickly building for the perfect storm in my life.

At a young age I quickly learned that when I expressed my feelings I got in trouble, or I was told I was wrong for feeling that way. I was also told on several occasions “If you do that you can’t come back home”. I felt rejected and like what I had to say or what I felt wasn’t important. So what did I do, I stuffed my emotions down further and further. That’s what we are doing with our eating disorders or any addiction for that matter.

By the time I had meet my husband and we married I had such low self esteem. I was constantly comparing myself to other women, and of course never measuring up. I literally hated myself. I would tear myself apart. It’s so sad to say these things but even watching TV was a struggle for me. If a beautiful woman came on tv I began comparing myself to her, telling myself how ugly I was. How my husband prolly would rather have her than me. It was AWFUL!!

The devil knows your weaknesses and he will use them against you. He will whisper lies in your ears and if you’re not careful you’ll believe them and they will hold you captive.

It wasn’t until I went to Al-Anon where I started getting help to deal with others in my life who had drinking problems that I was able to get free from some of that and I began loving myself.

I can remember one day texting my sponsor with tears in my eyes from a baton competition and telling her how much fun I was having and how in the past they were so difficult for me because of all the cute young girl running around in their little costumes. I was getting FREE little by little and it felt so good!!

All the things I’ve talked about cause frustration, confusion, distrust, guilt, rejection, fear of failure, shame, people pleasing and so much more. That’s what you begin to think, act, and do.

So fast forward to going to counseling, I felt like God lead me to this specific person. I mean for goodness sakes her name was Hope!

Hope means a confidant expectation of something good.

Hope was exactly what I had been looking for, for my whole life. Not the person although she’s has been such a blessing in my life but the HOPE God gives us in our time of need.

Hope was what I needed to overcome this disorder and other things in my life that have so enslaved me.

Hope for my future.

Hope for freedom.

Hope to have a voice.

Hope to share my feelings and not feel like I’m wrong for having them.

Just HOPE!

So while I’m still on the road to recovery, I’ll be honest I don’t do the laxatives or diuretics, but on a really bad day or week in my weakness I have turned to fasting and binging sometimes, but not as often as I use too PRAISE GOD!! That’s progress. God is so good and faithful and He will do it for you to precious one.

Today I can say I have HOPE for a better life. A life of freedom. I have good days and bad days but the thing I’m finding so valuable is my VOICE AND MY FEELINGS, whether their good or bad they are mine and it’s ok to have them and express them in a appropriate way. They no longer have to be stuffed!

Learning to not be lead by my feelings but to feel them and know they are real and they are mine and it’s not wrong to have them or express them.

My job is to allow God to bring healing to me, set healthy boundaries, and use my voice when needed and NOT STUFF IT! Stop stuffing things down just because someone may not like it or not want to hear something uncomfortable.

And my goodness stop taken ownership and fixing things that are others responsibilities. I have to stay on my side of the street in order to keep myself in a healthy place.

Precious one you gotta get the Word on inside of you if want to get to the other side of your problem where FREEDOM is. Meditate on it day and night. Pick one, stay on it till it’s deep in you and them move onto the next one.

Psalm 139:14 I will praise You because I have been remarkably and wonderfully made. Your works are wonderful, and I know this very well.

Song of Solomon 4:7 My darling, everything about you is beautiful, and there is nothing at all wrong with you.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 Don’t you know that your body is a temple that belongs to the Holy Spirit? The Holy Spirit, whom you received from God, lives in you. You don’t belong to yourselves. You were bought for a price. So bring glory to God in the way you use your body.

Zephaniah 3:17 For the LORD your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.

You are loved my friend! We all have our issues whether it’s an eating disorder or some other kind of addiction God wants you to turn to Him and let Him help you. He will take what the enemy meant to harm and destroy and use for your good. But it’s up to you to let Him. He calls you holy, righteous, beautiful, and His Trophy of Grace

Love and hugs,

Nicole 💗

Please click the link below and enjoy the song You’ll Come by Hillsong

https://youtu.be/2RmZFaruXhs

His Mercies Are New Every Morning

I did something I wasn’t proud of not to long ago, but what got me was how quickly shame, guilt and condemnation came rushing in. I don’t know about you but when when I do something I’m not proud of or something happens I’m not happy about, I can replay it over and over and over, and even get stuck there for days, weeks or months. Think about it, talk about it, think about it, talk about it. But this time was different. See God’s grace is a gift to each of us if we choose to receive it, it’s His free, unmerited favor for you and me.

Receive means to be given or presented with, or paid something. But what I also noticed was the synonyms of the word “receive” is to award and redeem and I love that! So for me I knew that day was going to be different. I was going choose to receive God’s grace, to be awarded and redeemed from what I had done. I didn’t have to dwell there for weeks or months all I had to do was say God forgive me and literally it was wiped clean in an instant and I didn’t wallow in the I guilt, shame and condemnation. It was like it was erased from my mind and normally I would have reminded myself of what I did, how I failed, and replayed it over and over. “See Nicole you haven’t changed at all, you’re no good, God doesn’t love you.” But those are lies straight from the pit of hell!

The faithful love of the Lord never ends. His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness, his mercies are new every morning.

Lamentations 3:22-23

So my challenge to you is wherever you find yourself today, if you’re in that pit I found myself in that day you don’t have to stay there. You can choose grace today! You can choose to be redeemed from whatever it was you did or was done to you. Great is His faithfulness and His mercies are new every morning. So choose grace today and walk in it my friend.

Remember YOU are a trophy of God’s grace and He loves you with an everlasting love and NOTHING you can do will ever change that or separate you from His love.

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

That Girl Was Me….

The story I’m about to share with you is about a girl I once knew. This girl was young and was full of shame for things another person had done to her when she was younger. She didn’t know it wasn’t her fault, she thought she deserved it. She had fear of rejection. She was raised in alcoholism. She felt she could never measure up. She was the perfect enabler and always sought approval from others. That girl was ME! There was a time in my life, a very dark time where I struggled with severe depression. The enemy would whisper in my ear and I believed the lies he said;

“Your not good enough.”

“No one will ever want you.”

“No one would miss me if I was gone.”

See at the time I was young and the things going on around me seemed unbearable and never ending. I was full of shame. I felt unloved, unwanted, that I could never measure up to what people wanted, and I felt not good enough. I was tired and just didn’t know what to do or how to handle it any more.

I was hanging with people that weren’t a good influence on me and not making good choices. I was staying with a friend, she was pregnant, unmarried, and we were just “having fun.” I was having problems with my boyfriend who by the way was awful to me but not having a stable father figure in my life I didn’t know any better.

I was also dealing with issues from my moms marriage, feeling overwhelmed to fix things that I couldn’t fix. Her husband would tell me awful things you should never say to anyone. Things like;

“You’re a slut.”

“You’ll never amount to anything.”

“No one would will ever want you.”

I loved him and I know in his own way he loved me but he was emotionally abusive and was an alcoholic. No one knew what was going on behind closed doors. We often put on the air that everything is perfect in our lives when in reality we are dying on the inside.

Let me just say that the devil is a liar!! He came to steal, kill, and destroy! He wants you to believe nothing will ever change, you’re to far gone, that you’ll never be able to measure up and that your better off dead. But thats not the case precious one. LIES! LIES! LIES! Do not be deceived by the whispers in your ear. God has great and mighty plan for your life, a hope and future but no one was speaking this over me or in my life.

One night I was all alone in my friends apartment, I felt as if my whole world was caving in on me. I felt unloved, full of shame, unwanted and not good enough. I was just tired. Not sure I truly wanted to die, all I knew was I couldn’t live this way anymore. I just wanted the pain to stop! I was listening to the lies being whispered in my ear and that night as I drank a couple of wine coolers I decided I would end the pain by taking a bottle of pills, and so I did. The pain would stop and I would be free.

Shorty after I took them I knew I had made a terrible mistake and I called my friend and told her what I had done and thankfully as God would have it she wasn’t far from home. She came and rushed me to the emergency room. They had to call my mom and she came as well. I never thought of the pain I would have caused her I just wanted my pain to stop.

I’m so thankful to God for that day! That was the day God pulled me out of the miry pit I was in. He said “NO, precious daughter! Not today! My life didn’t turn around dramatically but He set me on the course I was to be on. I still had not turned my life fully over to God, He was my Savior but I was still in the drivers seat. Now I was in the hospital getting the counseling I so deeply needed, I felt like I was there forever but it truly changed my life and the course it would take.

Not to long after that I met Sean and we got married and had 3 beautiful daughters. My life wasn’t perfect but I was now letting go and letting God.

I want to fast forward a bit to a night a few years ago when I was a girls high school youth leader. The night seemed like any other night but it wasn’t going to be. This would be where God takes our mess and He gives us a message. That night a young girl showed up and come to find out she had taken an overdose of medication and me and another leader rushed her to the hospital.

I hadn’t thought about what I had done in so many years and now all those thoughts and feelings came flooding back and I knew exactly where this beautiful young girl was at. I didn’t know her and yet I did. Just as God said to me in the darkest time of my life “Not today precious one.” He said the same thing to her. It wasn’t her time.

God so perfectly orchestrated the whole thing, for her to come there and for me to be there.

We waited and waited for what seemed like forever, I couldn’t leave and go home though. I had to talk to her and hug her. I had to share my experience, strength and hope with her.

See what the devil meant to harm and destroy in my life God worked for good and hers on that very night. God made our paths cross on purpose. He had a plan and it was a perfect plan.

Whatever lies the devil has whispered to you, I want you to know first off….the devil is a liar. And secondly YOU ARE LOVED! God loves you so much, his love for you is never ending but right now you may feel like I did when I was 18 or like the young girl who came that night…..you just can’t see beyond the pain. If no one else will, let me be the one to speak life over you and tell you what God is saying to you:

My beloved son or daughter,

Wherever you are you are NOT alone. I am with you always, in the good times and bad. Call on My name, I will never leave you nor forsake you. I created you on purpose and I have great and mighty plans for your life, ones you can’t even imagine or dream. What the enemy meant to harm and destroy I WILL WORK FOR YOUR GOOD. You may not see it right away but if you trust Me, it will come to pass. I am for you not against you, and My Word cannot return void. I am no respecter of persons, what I do for one I will do for another. I know it feels like it but your pain won’t last forever. You are a child of the Most high God. I call you beloved, chosen, beautiful, holy, set free, redeemed, overcomer, vicTOR not a victim. You are the apple of my eye, my wonderful masterpiece. That’s who I say you are! Don’t listen to the whispers of the enemy.

This pain, this guilt or shame you carry was not meant for you. The load is to heavy precious one, give it all to Me, for my yoke is easy and my burden is light. I want to heal you every where you hurt. I know your searching and thirsty but search and thirst no more, because if you believe in Me rivers of living water flow over you.

I have seen your heartache and pain, it didn’t escape Me, I caught each tear you’ve cried in a bottle. Give me your broken heart and just see what I can do. Let Me redeem what the enemy has stolen from you. Let Me bring healing and restoration to the broken places of your life. I know you think it’s impossible but NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE FOR ME! Trust and believe in Me, and expect Me to show up and show out. For I have loved you with everlasting love💗

Sincerely,

God

I know what it’s like to feel hopeless and alone, that’s why I think God has been helping me to be more vulnerable with the trials I’ve been threw. I never want my pain to be wasted, if I can just help 1 person than that makes it worth it all. Find someone you can share with and help you walk it out. What the enemy wants is for you to feel like you are all alone and no one knows where your coming from but I say that’s a lie straight from the pit of hell! You are NOT alone and as you find the strength to share your pain you’ll find others just like you. Now what was once hidden in the dark is now in the light and doesn’t have the same power as it once did.

Never give up precious one. God is with you always. He will never leave you nor forsake you. Keep pressing in trusting God to do a mighty work in your life. That pain you feel, that loss, that tragic thing that happened to you….God will use it for good in your life and you’ll be able to help someone else. You are a trophy of grace!

Be blessed and big hugs,

Nicole 💗

If you have thoughts of suicide call a friend, a pastor, a teacher, a doctor, find someone to talk to or call:

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

1-800-273-8255