Because of my long list of food allergies, I’ve been avoiding all grains, sugar, and a few other foods for the last 7 years. In high school (prior to my diagnosis), I weighed about 115 lbs, which is normal weight for my 5 foot, petite stature. When my diet changed, I began losing weight like crazy. I stopped having periods in December 2012. During PA school, I weighed my all time lowest weight– 84 pounds. While I think stress played a role in this weight loss, I do think having such a scheduled repetitive diet contributed to this. Looking back now, I was sickly skinny, but I felt like I looked great. I always received comments from friends and family “you’re so skinny” or “oh my gosh, I can’t believe how tiny you are”. I took these comments as compliments. Turns out, it was more concern than compliment.
For the last year, I’ve battled with binge-eating paleo treats and then regretting it immediately afterwards. My mind was bombarded with wondering when I can have my next treat, how flat my stomach is, when I will work out next. It’s constant. All I could think about was food and maintaining my weight. I wanted to stay “skinny” in my eyes because weighing more than 90 lbs would be awful. In all reality, I needed to gain weight, but I didn’t want to face it.
Now that I’m married, and baby talk is in the near future, I’ve reconsidered this whole situation. Three of my girlfriends have had issues getting pregnant secondary to low BMI. The last thing I want is to be unable to conceive because I’m too selfish to gain a few pounds. The past couple months, I’ve gained 10 lbs. I know it was much needed, still hard to cope with.
Why am I telling you this? Because I don’t want girls to struggle with these same issues. Because I don’t want any of you to idolize food or your weight. Because I want you to know God is looking at your heart. Does this mean it’s terrible to have a healthy goal weight, work out, or eat healthy? No, but it shouldn’t be your number one priority.
No matter what the situation is, it is ALWAYS hard to gain weight.. even if it is needed. I understand that. I lived it. In the end, I know God is looking at your heart, not your weight. He wants us to focus on our relationship with him, not what the scale reads. Spiritually, I’ve grown in the last year; I’m closer to God now than I was back then. That is what’s important.
As one of my best friends said to me, “You are so much more than your weight.” That resonates with me, and I hope it does with you, too. I want to leave you with this scripture:
1 Samuel 16:7
But the Lord said to Samuel, “Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”