*NOTE as of March 4, 2019- First, as I read back through these posts, I am appalled by my horrendous writing! Second, almost immediately after posting these two years ago, God dropped the gospel on my head like a ton of bricks. When I read these posts today, I see so much cockiness and ignorance. Still, they are good in that they share the incredibly rocky road of life riddled with anxiety, depression, and disordered eating. I know there are so many others struggling with these things, and these posts still express what I want them to express. You are not alone and there is help and hope.
Here is the third and final installment in my Discipline Training Series! If you haven’t read Parts 1 and 1 of 2, here they are!
This time segment is the darkest part of my life and I am sharing only because there are so many lessons to be learned from it. So many.
Discipline Training – Part 2 (Of 2)
When I was 20, I met the man who would become my first husband. He was not charming, he was not a nice guy, he was not even my type. But he also did not appear to be impressed with me at all… so of course that’s the one I go for.
First let me make it clear that I am not writing this as a victim. Everything that happened I could have at any point made the decision to not have happen, but I didn’t do that and that is why I suffered these consequences.
So in this Discipline Training series, I have shared how I gained some discipline out of sheer fear in high school and then I gained some discipline as well as work ethic at Waffle House. Now, I will share something that is very hard to share.
I was 25 in this picture. It is much different than the others. And it could not be more deceiving.
First of all, I look amazing. Second, I look very happy. And third, I appear to be the picture of health. Not too skinny, not too heavy.
Well my friends, let me just set the record straight in this land of smoke and mirrors. I never once saw myself as this amazingly beautiful person, and what you don’t see is a picture of me with my head in the toilet everyday.
Fact: Most bulimics appear to be perfectly healthy. It really is true that it’s what is on the inside that counts!
I have never looked back at this time and thought to myself that I was a victim because I know I was not. Everything was laid plainly before me and I simply chose what I knew was the wrong choice, but it was the choice I wanted. Although I had gotten to a somewhat happy place, I still had disorder burning inside me. When I met my ex-husband, I knew he didn’t like me or care about me, but I had something he wanted and he had something I wanted, so the partnership began. To keep peace, I am only sharing my consequences that occurred as a result of me making decisions that I know tons of us are faced with . I am hoping that some of you in these situations heed my warning! When you finally grasp what you are wanting to obtain, there is no reward.
As you know, it was a rough road to 20. I had learned some things but I was still irresponsible, erratic, and far from disciplined with anything other than just going to work and coming home. The weight pendulum had swung yet again and I was binge eating all the time. I smoked, ate terribly, and never exercised. I just couldn’t seem to get it together and break out of my rut. He had all these things that I did not have. He was extremely fit and extremely disciplined in everything in his life. I knew better, but I wanted his life for myself, so I fulfilled my end of the bargain. My end was being in agreement to the fact that whatever I did was fine as long as it was acceptable to him. Brown hair was not acceptable. Being overweight was not acceptable. Going certain places was not acceptable. Keeping certain friends was not acceptable.
This is what I am ashamed of the most. I have done many things that are blatantly shocking to the average ear. Not only am I not sharing those things out of respect for my family, but the things that I look back on with the most painful regret and deep, deep sorrow are the people that I chose my own selfish desires over. Because of my own selfishness, this time I was the jerk. I chose my own wants over my friends and even my family. And I am crying as I write this because my best laid plans failed miserably and I will never get that time back. But I am sharing because I know that I am not the only one. I know there is a 20 year old girl out there who is in pain and who is thinking she is doing something good for herself when in fact she is pushing her loved ones aside to step into a fire.
After a year and half the fire came. I was stunned when he asked me to marry him. I said yes. And people, I said yes only because I was too afraid to say no. I knew better. I am no victim, I chose to walk into this fire simply because I was afraid to say no.
There are so many of you about to walk into the fire simply because you are afraid.
We had a beautiful wedding. I had relatives fly in for it. I was a wreck. I will never forget the last night that I spent in my apartment. I thought my chest was going to cave in.
Then we were married, and I became a prisoner. Look, this marriage was a three ring circus, but the important thing to know is that my life was not mine own anymore. Aside from the house, I could go to work, the grocery store, and to the gym. I had no money that I didn’t have to ask to get, I could no longer make any decisions for myself. Again, there was no forcefield keeping me held up like a prisoner, but I know I am not alone in the brainwashing that occurs in these types of relationships. And that is why I am sharing. I had this fear of leaving. As horrible as life was inside those walls, I believed that if I left that I would not be able to make it on my own. That I would go back to being irresponsible, erratic, and undisciplined. And here lies the lie. The things that I thought I was ridding my life of were only magnified! After a while, I went completely off the deep end, I was getting up at midnight to workout before work then throwing up my food literally all day long after work. I even missed work sometimes due to bulimia. I felt like I’d been hit by a Mack truck all the time! The eating disorder that had always been there was now running rampant in the chaos.
After a few years of life in this marriage, and executing miserable day after miserable day, I got exactly what I set out to get. I was disciplined. I no longer had a spending habit. I was disciplined in my workouts, and with my eating disorder raging I had the “perfect body”. I have never in my life received so much praise from others and questions on how I obtained my look. And here lies the lie the we believe in this world of smoke and mirrors.
This never got better. Things never changed for the better. I finally got to the point that I was just sick of not making my own decisions and left with nothing and continued to fall off of the deep end even for years afterward.
And then finally one day, God lifted the veil from my eyes.
This story doesn’t end with zero to hero. I am not now this wise woman dealing out my advice to you all, and I am definitely still not “successful” as it is usually defined. But God has blessed me with a second chance when I did not deserve one. A good guy, two beautiful kids to take care of and watch grow, and many many lessons learned.
This is certainly the rich life. And I wish it for all of you.