Beauty and the (ED) Beast

I am currently reading a blog that has simply captured me. Beautybeyondbones visited my blog, read an article, and liked it.  Me, happy to have a new reader, visited her site to see what she is about.  Her blog is all about her anorexia.  Yeah, I know.  Not exactly a pick-me-up topic.

“I’m feeling kinda blue today. I think I’ll go read the posts of an anorexic girl.”

But guess what; that’s exactly what this site does for me! I feel like I’m reading one of my better World War II histories.  A true story of battle and victory.  I’m hooked.  I want to see an HBO biopic on this girl.  She’s working on a book (she might have finished it, but I’m still in her 2015 posts), and I hope it gets published, then made into a movie.

Those of you who know me understand that I’m an older, overweight white guy who has never had an eating disorder (meaning UNDER eating). So why am I hyped on beautybeyondbones?

First, she’s a good writer. She tells her story piece by piece, making you feel what she has felt.  She’s got an original voice.  She an economical and clear writer.

Next, I’ve learned things about anorexia that never really registered for me before. I knew it has to do with weight loss, body image, and a distorted perception of self.  I had no idea of the depth of self-loathing it entails.  I perceive her description as an almost-conscious slow suicide with a built-in, looped soundtrack that consists of nothing but “You’re scum.  You deserve this slow, suffering slide to the grave.”

And that looped soundtrack? That isn’t her self-talk.  No, that’s her ED (Eating Disorder) talking and taking her down.  She fights with it.  It reads like a possession.  I even asked her if I read that right.  Yes, it’s very much like that, she told me.  Still she manages to tell her story without self-pity, without being a downer.  I read those painful sections and the Dad in me comes out.  I want to wrap her in my arms, kiss the top of her head, and tell her we love her.  It’s OK.  We just want to help.

Her posts always end well. Either there was a success or at least a lesson learned.  You feel uplifted.

What else? She’s Christian and knows she wouldn’t be alive right now without Jesus coming in, doing the whole hug and kiss on the head thing, and giving her the strength to heal.  Even now, when she’s recovered, back to a healthy form, and living life she’s free to say that she feels beautiful again.  And it isn’t because of what she sees in her mirror.  It’s the Grace she feels in her heart.  She takes no credit, but points relentlessly to God as the real Victor here.  She knows her beauty is really Jesus’.  Without that, as she wrote, “If I can be loved, then they’re letting the riffraff in.”

She speaks mostly to other anorexic girls, but as a Christian, she speaks to the entire Christian community. Got a problem?  Today sucked?  Life sucks?  I think that I just…can’t…make…it…today?  Well, there’s Beauty, telling us how she came back from 78 pounds of almost-dead to God’s grateful, successful child today.  It’s encouraging and positive.

If you like a good, uplifting life story, if you want to feel encouraged by another’s Christian faith and success under fire, if you want to understand anorexia better for whatever reason…go to her blog site. Start at this link, and do what she says.  Start with the oldest blog first and read it from the start.

Beauty, if you’re reading this, I hope I got it all right. If I got anything wrong, please accept my apologies and set it straight in comments.

11 thoughts on “Beauty and the (ED) Beast

  1. I enjoyed your post. I have suffered from this eating disorder for more than a majority of my life. It is hell for sure. But by the grace of God only, am I alive today. Each day is a struggle. Each meal a challege. Praise be ot God He has led me through and continues to do. He is awesome.

  2. Jeffrey. I don’t know how it is that I just now am coming across this, but can I just say…wow. THANK YOU. I am literally sitting here, just feeling so completely encouraged, loved, validated, honored, humbled, but more than anything, grateful. So incredibly grateful for you taking the time out of your day to read my words, and respond, and offer kindness and affirmation. You are a gift to me. I want you to know that. I’m falling asleep tonight with a huge, thankful smile on my face and a warmth in my heart, and that is thanks to you, my friend. Sending bigs hugs. God is good, and I thank Him for you!

    • God has such a great sense of timing. I’m sitting here working on another post. I haven’t written for a week, because work has just buried me. So I thought of you and something I wrote to you about always running a surplus when we “spend ourselves” to help others. We can’t give away enough to run out; that’s how God made us. So I open my site to reference a previous post, and here’s your comment from last night. I gasped, put my hand on my heart, and got a bit teary – how wonderful! Here you are with thousands of followers, and I did something to make you feel good! I am now running a surplus for the “spend” on writing “Beauty and the (ED) Beast.” The novel I sent you, The Tupperware, is about this very idea – do someone some good. I hope you enjoy it, get something out of it.

      Beauty, you just made my morning and my day! I hope you slept well. In Christ, Jeff.

      • Thanks Jeff☺️ How awesome. You’re absolutely right- when we give ourselves away – whether loving, helping, encouraging, listening, praying, whatever– God refills that with absolute abundance. 10 fold. It’s counterintuitive, but He loves when His children give. Thanks again for just being an awesome friend. I really do thank God for you! Have a great Saturday and good luck with your post!

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