Wednesday, August 11, 2010

WFMW: Fat Talk Free Zone


Ok friends, I'll be honest.

I've been in a funk this week. Ok, maybe this whole month.

I lost my joy. My peace. Even my sparkle. :(

First, some history....

As many of you know, my weight has been a life long issue for me. For as long as I can remember, I've felt not thin enough. Or pretty enough. I believed the lie no one would ever find me beautiful. (Recap
here)

My weight struggle came to an all-time high when I was pregnant with my eldest son Jake. I was alone. Soon-to-be a single mom. And I ate my stress, pain, fear, and shame (and anything else someone would feed me!).

Here is a picture of me on July 15, 1994 ~ the day Jake was born. (When Jake was little, when he would see this picture he would say, "Oooh, Mama Biiiiggg!" Yep, Mama was big!)


By Jake's 2nd birthday, I lost all the weight, and more. See pic below...


Even at the weight I was above (wearing a size 4 dress), I still felt not thin enough. Or pretty enough. Or that I could ever be beautiful.

I didn't eat a piece of Jake's birthday cake that day because I felt so unbelievably fat. It was empty, defeated living.

Thankfully, soon after Jake's 2nd birthday, I met Jesus (woo hoo!) ~ and my life has not been the same since!!

In His great mercy, Jesus has not only given me a new life, but a NEW MIND!! I now have the mind of Christ! And over the past 15 years, I've been very intentional about filling my mind with the TRUTH of who GOD says that I am!

And even though I no longer wear a size 4 (picture below is from this past weekend), I have been walking in Truth and freedom and joy....

....until this summer.

Unfortunately, someone close to me, is uncomfortable with my weight. Thinks I'm unattractive. Doesn't find me beautiful. And thinks it's important to share this information with me.

I wish it was some random weird commenter from cyber-space, but it's someone in my community that I value and respect.

Friends, I'll be honest, this has really thrown me for a loop. The other night I was on the phone with my girlfriend balwing my eyes out (yes, the ugly cry) ~ and I felt like I was headed in a backwards direction, and fast. The lies were taking over, and I didn't know how to make them stop.

Have you ever been there before??

As I spent time praying later that evening, I rememembered something I learned in a Bible Study that was eye opening for me. Kelly Minter, in her book No other gods shares, "Satan will tell us what's true, but he never tells us the TRUTH".

Remembering that simple statement was like an "AHA" light bulb moment for me!!

Yes, it is true, I am not a size 4 (or an 8 anymore).
Yes, it is true, my body has given birth to 4 children.
Yes, it is true, I do not look like the women on the magazines.
Yes, those things are true.

But the TRUTH is that I am beautiful and accepted by God....just the way that I am!!

The TRUTH is that God delights in me!!

The TRUTH is that I am secure, significant, set apart in Christ!

The TRUTH is that I am dearly loved by the Lord God Almighty! Woo Hoo!!

"Satan will tell us what's true, but he never tells us the TRUTH".

My greatest desire is to be a voice of TRUTH in my own life, and the lives of every single person I come in contact with (my friends, family, neighborhood, community, on-line, and more!).

I will not allow the comments of others to make me have "crazy head".

I will not return to an eating disorder.

And I will not allow my words to others feed into the lies we receive from the media and the world, about where TRUE BEAUTY and WORTH comes from ~ so help me God!!

That's why I'm declaring my life to be a Fat Talk Free Zone! I recently came across the Reflections Body Image Program. I love what they are doing to teach women to pursue health, well-being, and true beauty!

In case you are wondering "what is fat talk, anyway?" Here's how the Reflections Program describes it...

Fat Talk describes all of the statements made in everyday conversation that reinforce the thin ideal and contribute to women’s dissatisfaction with their bodies.

Examples of fat talk may include: “I’m so fat,” “Do I look fat in this?” “I need to lose 10 pounds” and “She’s too fat to be wearing that swimsuit.”

Statements that are considered fat talk don’t necessarily have to be negative; they can seem positive yet also reinforce the need to be thin – “You look great! Have you lost weight?”

Sorry, Satan, you may try your sly and subtle tricks with me ~ BUT NO MORE! I will live and stand and walk in TRUTH!

And the TRUTH is that our God does not talk "Fat Talk" to His dearly loved children!

The official "Fat Talk Free" week isn't until the fall of this year, but I'm declaring my life to be Fat Talk Free....Lord willing, from this day forward!! Anyone with me??



P.S. For more Works for Me Wednesday tips, head on over to visit Kristen at We are that Family AND... if you've not seen this video on Fat Talk before, PLEASE take 3 minutes to watch it! You'll be so glad you did!








20 comments:

Crissy said...

What a wonderful idea! I think it is especially important to live a 'Fat Talk Free Zone' around our daughters. I think fat talk is so common that we think it is normal but it shouldn't be. I am totally with you on this!

BTW, you are beautiful inside and out. I think the more stuff you do for God the more attacks you are going to get and satan knows exactly how to attack us. Thank you for sharing your life with us!

Angela said...

You are beautiful. I don't know how or why anyone would tell you anything different. It makes me very sad that someone did that to you.

However, I am glad you have risen above it! I like your way of thinking.

Keep your head high you beautiful woman!

Lucy Ann Moll said...

Cindy,

Great remark: Satan tells us what is true, but he never tells us the truth. I'm going to remember that. And I'll do the Post-It thingy too.

Thanks, Lucy

Marilyn in Mississippi said...

Oh. My. Goodness! From the first time I saw your picture on your blog I have thought what a beautiful lady you are! I have even thought..."Why couldn't I have had a beautiful smile like that?"..."Why coudn't I have had beautiful hair like hers?"...."She looks so happy and like she's got it all together!"...etc, etc. Soooooo, I guess Satan has been feeding me the lie also huh??? I have NEVER felt pretty. Just the other night my husband and I were watching a really old movie and the guy had just fell in love with a beautiful girl and was asking her to marry him. All at once I was overcome with sadness that my husband never had a beautiful wife! I told him so and he just laughed and laughed and told me I was crazy!

And I can not believe that someone would have the audacity to TELL YOU you're overweight!!! I think you look great! She must be the one with problems!

God bless you!

Marilyn...in Mississippi

Dawn said...

Shame, shame, shame on someone who is in your inner circle (and undoubtably knows your history) to feel the need to tell you these lies. Most likely, she is feeling insecure in her own skin and is trying to build up herself by tearing down others.

I have struggled all my adult life with weight issues - both too much and too little. It's an area that I am easily tempted to fall back into "bad thinking" if I don't stay alert to the enemy and keep my eyes forcused on the Lord. It's a battle and I can relate to your struggle. And, it's one that I am keenly aware of as my daughter is now a teen and faces some of the same pressures and stereotypes.

I'll be praying for you as well as the other person in your life.

No fat talk... I like that idea!

Melissa, Multi-Tasking Mama said...

I love this and it came at just the right time for me, looking at all the pictures of myself froma conference I just attended and comparing to all the beautiful women that were there. NO MORE FAT TALK!

Beth in NC said...

I can't believe someone would actually use their mouth to lie like that. You are BEAUTIFUL! Are you kidding me? Even at your "biggest" (which isn't big to me at all) you were beautiful.

Satan's native language is to lie. I can't stand him.

I'm sorry someone was so ridiculously crazy to tell you such mess, but thank GOD your spirit is rising up and fighting the lies!

Keep going forward Sister.
Beth

M. Wondergem said...

Cindy, Thank you for being vulnerable with your trials/heartbreak and how God is faithful each time to show you the Truth (that is, with a capital "T" :)). Your faith is an encouragement to the rest of us who are struggling in one way or another. You are such a blessing!

When I look at the most recent picture you posted,I see the JOY that radiates from within you. And I know that that is from the love of Christ that you experience and share each and everyday. You live a life that makes people want what you have--and that's the point, right?!

Jessica said...

Amen! I struggle with my weight...having birthed and nursed four babies. Struggling with what my body used to be and what it is now. But I'm finding that the closer I become to Christ, the more I have the mind of Christ and I do not look at food the same or my body or those around me.

You are beautiful. Your smile makes me smile. No Fat Talk. I like that!

KarriedByHisLove said...

Wow! First, dear Cindy, let me say how very much I appreciate your honesty and vulnerability! Please know what a treasure you have given by sharing your heart!!

You are a darling, beautiful woman....and I think I know how hard it is to believe that! But you are!! And your beauty is not only physical, but you also are beautiful inwardly-- godly beauty!! A "glow," if you will, that comes from love and peace and joy!!

I am sorry that this wound came through someone close to you, someone you respected and valued. It put me in mind of David in Ps 55 where he said, "If an enemy were insulting me, I could endure it, if a foe were raising himself against me, I could hide from him. But it is you, a man like myself, my companion, my close friend, with whom I once enjoyed sweet fellowship." I pray that this wound will be healed for you and God's will be done in your relationship with that person.

You do really sparkle and it breaks my heart to think that you feel you have lost your sparkle! "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy." (John) He is such a cunning enemy,-- but don't we love the Truth!! It sets us free!! All the enemy really has is lies! I am so with you in that struggle to stand on the Truth!! Lies begone!! Our God reigns!!!! I stand with you, my sister, on the TRUTH!!!

bj said...

My wife came across your post, and it touched her deeply. She mentioned it to me at dinner, and later wanted me to read it. I am grateful that you not only are encouraging women to abandon "fat talk" but you showed the truth that God would have us see. We are children of God, and as such are beauty comes from within. I never knew there were groups that encouraged women to give up fat talk before, but as long as I have been married, and I have been encouraging my wife to do the same. When she read your blog today it resonated with her in a way my encouragements never could. I think she was always thinking that I was just "being nice" and not really "telling the truth" about how I felt. God bless you in your efforts, and for your conquering spirit.

Teresa said...

Cindy, first of all your are beautiful..I am so glad that you declared The Truth of God over yourself...It's funny because in 2007 I authored and published my book, "God Is Enthralled by Your Beauty" Finally Looking into the Mirror He Sees You In. I have struggled with the same mind games...but I must hear my liberator's voice; no longer the voice of the one who tries to take us captive! Great post...and YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL both physically and within your heart!!!!

Barbie said...

I find your beautiful and see the joy of the Lord radiating through that lovely smile of yours! I am so sorry someone has hurt you and opened up a wound from your past. Know that satan is the father of lies, but we serve a God of truth! I love the idea of the "Fat Free Talk Zone". I too am struggling. I will check that out for sure. Oh, I just friended you on Facebook. When you accept, please watch the video of the song I posted today. You need to hear these words, as did I!! You are beautiful!

Kim said...

Cindy thanks for sharing your heart with us! I've been thinking a lot about beauty this summer. Just read a book from Shari Brandel about clothes, colors, etc. from a Christian prespective. I would highly recommend it. Maybe you saw her at "She Speaks".

Striving for the inner-beauty to shine through and have a "balance" on taking care of the outward appearance!

Mom2fur said...

Good for you! I think you are beautiful in all the pictures, even the baby picture!
Glad you learned that the Good Lord has your back!
And that 'friend' with the snobby comment? Sometimes, people knock others down to build themselves up, so I wonder if there is a hidden self-esteem issue there.
Here's to seeing you 'sparkle' even brighter ASAP!

Lea said...

Oh, Cindy, take a look in the mirror at the contagious smile of yours and know that you are simply gorgeous! I would venture to say that this "friend" has some very serious issues going on in her life. I pray that you will be able to love her through HIM and perhaps HE will end up using you in a mighty way in her life. Blessings galore to you dear one!

LisaShaw said...

Oh dear beautiful sister in Christ, I chewed on each word as I've been there over and over again.

I'm so sorry that you had that experience from someone but I'm also not surprised by it. We can be so cruel to each other as people can't we?!

I am praying for you...

I'm thankful that for 20 years my hubby has told me that I am beautiful in every way even when satan comes along and says you are heavy. At times he speaks those lies to our mind. Other times we hear those lies through others. We begin to question ourselves even our calling in GOD! Let me share with you... I was 245 lbs in 2006 and lost 61 lbs of that in 2007. Started menopause in 2008 and have regained about 30 lbs. I am fighting still with not eating emotionally and I keep to my workouts but it just doesn't seem to be enough. However, I BRIEFLY allowed satan's lies and the comments of a blogger whom I had a lot of respect for who stopped following my fit blog when I had it. She sent me an Email of her disappointment that I had looked in my videos and in the words I spoke very transparently as to be regaining weight.

She tried to give me a pep talk but all I could see in her words was the word she used "disappointment". It tore my heart out and I'm not a thin skinned person but the words of others (those whom I've cared about) can sting and floor me!

Her email took me to the pantry of chips and I had to get a grip. Since that happened (later part of last year), I began to cut back on videos on my other blog and eventually stopped. I'm restarting soon because the LORD has spoken healing to my heart!

But I dreaded being seen because of her stinging email but recently the LORD (through Breaking Free revised study) has reminded me of whom I am in Him and if my husband and loved ones and GOD loves on me then the words of another person who is disappointed that I'm not smaller, is not relevant to me or to my life.

I have never been small. Being a black woman culturally I come from a large boned family. My smallest was a 9-10 and that was high school!! Never to be seen again. I made up my mind that big or small, fat or thin that's not my focus -- GOD is and I won't allow others to take me out of His focus for my life! GOD reminds us often my friend that we are beautiful in His sight and that's all that counts!

I love you and your heart of transparency. I wish I could speak with you because I think we have similar hearts in several areas.

Stay encouraged dear sister. I'm praying for you. I appreciate prayers for me. Love it that we're in the NO FAT ZONE TALK!!!

LisaShaw said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Debbie said...

Lisa Shaw sent me a link to this post. I maintained my weight between 116-120 pounds my whole life. However, two things happened in the last few years. Menopause and we sold our house with all the furniture including my treadmill. I live in Phoenix and summers are too hot to walk outside. I've gained about 20 pounds which for me is a lot.

But I hate thinking about weight. I want to simply be healthy and not so overconsumed by appearance. This was a great post.

Blessings,
Debbie

Rosario said...

Today, I spoke with my sister and She was telling me something about her friend saying something about being Fat, so I told her about your blog and will be sending her this post to read. I did not see the video the first time I read the post, I must had overlooked it. But now I did and its true. My own daughter is scared to be fat. I am going to read more so that I am able to let her know we need to think differently.

Blog Widget by LinkWithin