The reasons we binge and why we are never satisfied.

I got sick in April of 2015—all of a sudden just found myself laying in a bed at the emergency room, IV pumping into my arm, every thought imaginable pumping out of my mouth. I was completely out of it. It’s as if I was high—I remember my heart racing and skipping beats all at the same time. My pulse, raging. I lost fifteen pounds. Wasn’t eating. Wasn’t drinking. Couldn’t feel. Couldn’t smell. Couldn’t stand up long. Got sick laying down. There were times, even, when I couldn’t walk.

It took me months to come to terms with the fact that I’d never figure out what really happened to, and it’s taken me one year to begin to recover. I’m still that road. There’s not a day that passes by when I don’t relive what could have killed me.

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Among the laundry list of struggles I now live with, those concerning food and eating have been the hardest. This has left me with not only an aftermath of physical symptoms, but also a few lingering mental symptoms that I’ve been left fighting as well.

The moment I got sick, it was as if I’d lost control of my entire body—both mind and body. In attempts to recover, stay healthy, and to keep from repeat attacks, I have been following a strict diet—one that I’ve developed through trial and error. But every so often, I get tired of being strict. I get tired of keeping up with the limited groceries and the list of dos and don’ts.

I get tired of not being able to eat what everyone else is eating, or going on dates without it being a hassle to have this removed and that taken off and this added and that cooked like this. Sometimes, I want a break from the anxiety of making sure I don’t put into my mouth what might harm or hurt me. And, sometimes life gets fast and I forget to meal prep. Or maybe I just want to crash and fall asleep in the bed and not worry about being proactive, cooking up tomorrow’s breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Oh. And snacks.

That’s where the bingeing comes in.

Freedom, it feels like. If even just for a short while. To just have a taste of what I feel like I’ve been missing out on. To not have to worry so much. To fit in. To be carefree.

That freewill and that taunting voice inside are also harder to deny when it comes to the mental battle that food can be. Especially knowing that, personally, there’s been a change in my body and my mental thought processes. I realize that, after I got sick, it’s been harder to hear the messages that “I’m full…I don’t need the sugar spike…I don’t have to listen to the urges and the cravings.” The addictions have been harder to turn off. To manage, to control. And sometimes, I just want food to be the answer. Whether for my body and for physical healing or for my mind and just feeling the high of eating whatever will stop those feelings of insatiable need.

The problem with binge eating is this: You’re always gonna hurt something. Whether it’s your body or your self-esteem. Rarely ever do you come out feeling on top. And it’s a hidden struggle. The kind that doesn’t always show on the scale or through your jeans. So, sometimes it’s easy to hide the hurt or the distress brought on by bingeing.

But bingeing shows up in the mind. In our thoughts. In our heart. The places where we think, “I can control this. I can stop after this one. I can work it off. I can start again.”

But we never do. Do we?

The reason we are never satisfied is because food can never heal a soul. And in some cases, there isn’t always much food can do for the body.

Bingeing will never remedy the guilt you feel over falling off your meal plan.
Bingeing is not a way to treat yourself.
Bingeing is a form of self-entitled self-sabotage.
Bingeing is not for the fat or the obese; it is for anyone with a warped understanding of food.
Bingeing will never satisfy the cravings or food addictions that you have.
Bingeing is not a free ride to happiness; it is a slow ride to self-destruction.

It’s important to understand why you binge. What happens before you binge? What are you lacking that keeps you from bingeing?

For me, the honest truth is that I give in to the lie that I will never physically get better. And if food and healthy living is seemingly the only road towards healing, why bother? Why waste the hard-earned money on expensive, organic groceries? Why waste time I barely have on meal prepping and cooking? If food isn’t helping, why care that it’s hurting? You know…that whole, “I’m just damaged goods…” kind of mindset.

Where are you in your health journey? How is your body? How have you been eating? How is your bingeing? And then after asking those questions, you have to ask the hard, heart questions.

Am I eating because I feel guilty?
Am I bingeing because I just want to feel the high that food brings me?
Am I eating out of pleasure?
Am I bingeing because I hate myself or my situation?
Am I eating because I’m bored?
Am I bingeing because I don’t believe that I can be a disciplined person?
Am I bingeing because I don’t make space for meal prepping or snacks when traveling?

Those heart questions are the hardest. And there’s dozens more. The list can go on. But once we ask these questions, the answers will start flooding in. God’s truth will also flood in.

That is when the change and transformation will take place. This is when we’ll find the power to do what we really desire to do, instead of falling into our temptations and failing to stand firm in the midst of situations that we know will only leave us feeling sick, guilty, powerless, and out of control.

3 thoughts on “The reasons we binge and why we are never satisfied.

  1. You have written, once again, straight from my heart dear friend. I want to thank you for speaking the truth, that is sometimes very difficult to hear. I have a few precious days off in a few weeks, and to top things off I’m home alone for the first time in a long time. I’ve already started planning what gorgeous food I’m going to make. It doesn’t matter that it’s going to ruin my diet plan for a few days. What matters is that I get the high from eating the things I ‘can’t have’. I needed your perspective, as maybe it’ll change mine.

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    1. Oh Helen…I totally know the struggle. This battle knows no size, color, country, personality. It’s so hard. And I know that planning mindset. Just a desire to rest, for relief…to find that through food. Which at times, can be okay. But most times we end up distorting it. I know the "home alone" feeling too – that is when and where the struggle is the strongest. But you are not alone. Your thoughts/feelings about this not unseen or unknown. Reach out when the temptation hits. I have someone who I text when it gets hard. And then…we will grow. When Jesus shines light on our darkness – healing and freedom come. It’s inevitable. I love you. I’m proud of you.

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  2. I see the pictures of the donuts and it reminds me of you! So sweet and something that I want more of in mu life! You are the strongest most courageous woman of God that I have know and the funny thing is you don’t see your self that way!You are everything and more that God has created you to be…a warrior for His word! He has equipped you with a gift few have…to put into writing your heart. You are the sweetest dessert just like Jesus! Food for the soul you are feeding us! In our work, so many are dragging themselves through the desert, hungry, tired and thirsty and then comes you! Feeding us along our journey! Meeting us in the most tried and hungry place, the desert! Rachel Kang you are doing a powerful thing! Revealing your weakness exposes us to ours. You are the most hopeful and again the sweetest dessert I know! Sweet girl, "May the God of Hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him!"

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