Monday, April 30, 2012

Taking Control - Hannah's Story Part 4

Hannah's Redemption Story
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Taking Control
Part 4

Webster’s dictionary declares that “control” is to have power over. Looking back to that time of my life brings that word to me time and again.


So much loss had been mine. At such a young age. At such a high cost. And a shattered world was all I had left as I watched Jack begin relationships with other girls while I still called him ‘mine’.

Jack wanted to continue our relationship, and I allowed it. Craved it, actually. Why I didn’t see it then, I don’t know, but I found myself anticipating Jack’s arrival while making frantic attempts to perfect myself in my ever-increasing desire to win his undivided love and attention.

Anything to make him stay.

The little girl in the garden watched me. I saw the pain in her eyes, knowing she knew the panic I felt.

I hadn’t been able to make Daddy stay, and now, Jack was also slipping from my grasp. Fear ran rampant through the hallways of my mind, torturing me at every turn. In a world where chaos was the rule, I desperately needed some peace. Some control.

I found it staring back at me on my dinner plate one evening.

My body was changing, and I couldn’t say I liked what I was seeing.  Though I was tall and willowy, I feared Jack would find my still-growing body thick and unattractive.   I pushed the mashed potatoes aside, claiming to be full.  After only a small helping of asparagus and a slice of chicken breast, I mentally patted myself on the back for the restraint I had shown.

One day followed another, and I continued to show self-control at mealtimes - though my portions became increasingly smaller. Soon, I could see the results of my efforts while standing before the bathroom mirror. I tapped my fingers over each rib, much like the keyboards of a piano and smiled. In my opinion, I was looking better everyday!

There were still some problem areas though. I could pinch the skin together on each side of my hips and stomach. And a little under my biceps.

I furrowed my brow. I couldn’t deny the other changes I was seeing as well. My once-thick locks of hair had noticeably thinned. My mother worried over the changes she was seeing. I reassured her that all was well, but doubted she believed me. I might not be able to hide my now-protruding collarbone and bony elbows, but at least no one knew about the constant weakness in my body... or the concern I felt over how loose my teeth had become.

Much like my stomach, the void in my soul was begging to be filled. For so long, I had been searching - longing to be shake the clouds of abandonment and rejection that hovered over me. I couldn’t let this area of my life go - this eating issue. Too many times I had suffered from the failures of others and I cherished the power I now held in my hands. The power to control at least something in my own life!

I wrinkled my nose at myself and vowed to continue with my newfound regimen. I could do it!

I knew I could! 

Tossing my makeup back into the bathroom cabinet, I bypassed the kitchen and headed off to school.  I was happy.  I liked the progress I was seeing.  In just a few months, I promised myself, my body would be perfect.  Absolutely perfect.

And Jack and Daddy?  They would be so proud of me!


Note: Through the following weeks, we will walk through "Hannah's" journey as she continues to search for acceptance and meaning in her life and her story will conclude on June 10th at Firm Foundation Ministries - my home church. Hannah will be coming to reveal her true identity as well as testify to the grace of God in her life.

I invite you to come, as I know you will be able to appreciate the life that Hannah now lives. She is an amazing person who inspires me daily! Hannah's story conclusion will be posted here as well.

Please feel free to share this link with others. As I've listened to Hannah tell me her story... as I write these words, I am struck over and over again at the importance of father/daughter relationships. I began this series, praying it would encourage young women - teenage women... that it would help them find their value in Christ alone. But the more I listen, the more I write, the more I realize the lesson in here for fathers as well.

If you haven't already, be sure to subscribe to Walking on Water (top right corner), and plan to join us each Monday as Hannah's story continues to unfold.

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