Kim stands in the middle of the Aritzia dressing room, hands planted defiantly on her hips. Today’s shopping trip was supposed to be the day things finally went her way. She had been eating like a rabbit and working out for the past month.
She had pushed herself to exhaustion, headaches and alligator tears. Still, despite all the pain, what she sees in the mirror is horrific. She twists her hips to catch a look at her profile. “My hips are huge.”
Her best friend, Fiona steps out of a curtained private room, tugging at her floral miniskirt. “Just stop. It’s my stump legs that need work.”
Kim doesn’t break her gaze from the mirror, her eyes watering. If she looks at Fiona she is going to lose it. The girl has everything going for her. Looks, an amazing job and devoted boyfriend. Plus, her legs are just fine.
Kim ignores Fiona, slips back into the closet of shame and pulls on her old clothes. The girl she saw in the mirror has huge bags under her dull eyes and an unceremoniously fat backside.
Ugly. Gross. She wants smash the glass and shatter reality into a million shards. Instead she rips her thoughts from the mirror, plasters on a smile and asks Fiona is she’s ready to leave.
“Sure. There’s nothing that fits me here.” Kim wants to scream at her. Everything in this store is her size! Instead, she smiles brightly as she hands her unwanted clothes to the attendant. “Yeah, I totally get it.”
Walking out of the store, Kim catches another glimpse of herself in the mirror. It takes everything in her to not break down in a fit of angry tears.
If I was thin like all the other girls I would be so happy. I wouldn’t feel this pain. I just need to keep fighting. I need to keep working for this. I can do this.
Even as she assures herself, she knows it isn’t true. She has tried everything. What could possibly bring relief to her heart? She looks up at the sky, feels a drop of rain on her skin and pulls her sweater closer to her skin.
How do I escape this? God help me.
Falling into a pattern of self-hatred is easy.
It’s even easier to stumble deeper into a pattern of comparison and self-hatred when we spend time with people who reflect those values…
In light of this, I have learned some ways to break that pattern of self-loathing and would love to share them with you:
- Spend time with truth-bearers. Just because other people are validating the idea that you must be thin to be pretty, doesn’t make it true AT ALL. It means they have bought into the same lie. Seek to connect with people who are life givers. God will provide exactly what you need. Just ask for those people because you are worth it.
- Focus on the truth. I say this A LOT and even then I don’t say it ENOUGH. Everything about you is beautiful to Christ. You have purpose in Christ. Your identity is set firmly with Christ. He wants to fill your heart with the REALITY of who you really are. His heart is filled with joy at the sound of your voice. He loves your smile, your hair, your legs. He knows your quirks. He longs to tell you how He sees you, who you really are: a delightful reflection of Him. And He is perfect. Ignore the world screaming in your ear. Instead, snuggle close to Him, focus on the truth of His word and be overwhelmed.
- Speak truth. Our words create worlds. The more we repeat things about ourselves, the more likely it is that we are going to believe them. I used to look at my shorter legs in horror but for the past year I have, whenever looking at my legs, said to myself “man, you’re strong. You’re perfect!” This simple practice has shifted how I see myself drastically!
You are stronger than you think with a life of extreme freedom and peace ahead of you. I am so excited to see how God will use the current darkness in your mind to shine overwhelmingly, powerful beams of life and truth on this desperate world.
You are more powerful and terrifying to the darkness than you know. Just keep falling into the embrace of your Savior.
You’re can be free! So free! Choose life, Beautiful One. Choose life and walk in it.
1 Corinthians 10:13
No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.
With much love,