♥ Childhood Experience ♥
Chapter Three – Skinny and Fatty
“Go back to the classroom! Your recess is over!” Very shy and quiet, I could only whisper, “I didn’t do it on purpose.” and hung my head down in silence. All I did was run in the elementary school courtyard like all the other first graders during recess. To my dismay, another girl and I collided by accident. Of course with my weight, size and velocity, the little girl went flying down to the cement. A teacher ran to the crying little girl. “She pushed me!” The teacher could only assess one girl standing, one on the ground crying…guilty as charged! I was sent back to the classroom as punishment for being too big. All through my younger years, little cute? chunky and chubby comments labeled me.
Past experiences easily fuel negative self-perceptions that cling to us for years. Loving and accepting our self may be foreign ground, however, it is possible to be free from past hurts that attempt to hold us back. Our hearts can be healed and restored to embrace the fact that we are precious, valuable women and treat ourselves in that same manner.
♥ Teenage Experience ♥
Chapter Five – Freedom to Forgive Yourself
My future husband held my hand as we walked into the clinic. “9-20-59, 9-20-59” repeated over and over in my head as I checked in. I was only sixteen and had to be seventeen to get an abortion without my parent’s consent. I lied about my age and luckily they did not ask for identification. When the nurse brought me into a room to consult with me before the procedure, I found out I was six weeks pregnant. The nurse showed me a poster with four sketches of “what the fetus looks like.” A bunch of cells dividing, there was no harm in that. Several years later, I found out a six-week old baby has a heartbeat and is developed much further than a bunch of dividing cells. I lied to them; they lied to me.
Past experiences can easily fuel a sense of condemnation and an “I’m bad mentality.” However, no act of stupidity, wrongful act, or things done in secret surprises our Heavenly Father. Nor are these things too great, too small, or so horrible that we cannot be forgiven because of the love God has for us. If God does not condemn us, we need to follow suit and forgive ourselves too. Condemnation is a burden we are not meant to carry.
♥ Adult Experience ♥
Chapter Nineteen – Food Won’t Love You Back
She sits quietly but anxiously at the kitchen table, ten-thirty at night, hoping no one will come back downstairs. The kids are asleep in their beds. Her husband is relaxing in the bedroom watching TV. It is now or never. No one better come down and interrupt her food rendezvous, otherwise anger bares its teeth.
A candle is lit in the center of the tiled table. She pulls out the candy bars secretly stashed away. Only one at a time, just in case someone interrupts. She proceeds to eat two full-size candy bars. Her sweet tooth is satisfied, but she does not feel any better. She thinks, maybe if I eat some chips and onion dip, that always tastes good. She associates onion dip with childhood picnics—comfort food. Crunch, crunch, crunch the anxiety away.
She loses the original robust flavor sensation from eating too many chips. I need something sweet now, as she pulls out the box of cream filled cookies. She proceeds going back and forth, eating sweet then salty, sweet then salty, trying to stimulate the pleasure senses, hoping it will make her feel better. It never does. The only thing she feels is sick and remorse.