Day before yesterday I struggled with thoughts of self-harm all day long. Finally on my way home I stopped and poured my thoughts out to my best friend’s cellphone….

Yesterday was bad too. Thoughts of the devil telling me to just come back to him because no one else understands, but he does. I told him where to go because I’ve been down that road before.  I’m not a bad person or a bad Christian. I just have an illness that manifests itself in ways contrary to who I really am.  And I have to remind myself of who I really am; how God sees me, not how I (or others) see me.

Yesterday I sought help. I called my therapist and he made room to see me though he had been gone most of the day. He said what I was experiencing confirmed his thoughts of my  having a mixed episode.  My husband and girls are gone to my brother-in-law’s today and tomorrow for the Chiefs and Steelers game, but I’m so down that I just didn’t want to go. This worried my therapist. My being home alone with feelings of despair and thoughts of mutilating myself…. Well it’s an understandable concern.  I couldn’t go, though. I couldn’t bring myself to play happy and pretend in front of people who want to understand, but don’t.

I said I’m staying home to do homework and “recover”, as the therapist put it. Am I? Or am I going to quote “grind metal on metal”; force myself to keep going when I should be relaxing and trying to eat something?

Well, I doubt I’ll eat much. I had half a cliff bar and a glass of milk for breakfast. For lunch, half of a Babybel cheese round and two Triskets with a gulp of vanilla MuscleMilk. Oh, and a swig of Dr Pepper. Yes, I realize that isn’t the healthiest or much. I’m going for protein though and if that little bit has some protein in it then I’m on the upside of down.

This morning I weighed myself and I was at 126.6lb. And you know what I thought?  Only 8lbs to go! Even my wedding ring is loose fitting these days….And I’m kinda proud of that fact.

For those that are worried I’ve lost my way with God or I have a spiritual problem, please be assured this is not one of those times.  I still love God and cling to the hope of salvation I have in Jesus.  To deny what I am experiencing right now though would be lying. To say that my faith in God is all I need to get well or to overcome this illness would be… Well it would be nice, but the reality is that my illness is my thorn in the flesh. It keeps me real and clinging to Jesus. It reminds me of my need and even though I am in the midst of the storm and can’t see the end in sight, deep down I know God is saving me from myself and chasing me down; He is reaching His hand out to me while I sink, kinda the way Peter did.

The one thing I know is that I am not alone in this time.  The devil may run away with my thoughts and try to convince me otherwise, but he’s always been an idiot, trying to do things he’ll never fully accomplish and against his Creator taboot. We both know this so I don’t know why he keeps trying, but he does.

One piece of parting advice for those struggling the same as me right now:  know the truth:  You are NOT your illness.  You may have crazy thoughts or do crazy things because of it, but those do not define you in Christ’s eyes and those are NOT who you really are.  I’ve done some things because of my illness that I couldn’t control completely, but I am sorry for them. I repent of them and that is who I am: NOT the person I appeared to be in the midst of them.  People can’t always see past our actions and words to the truth behind them, but God can. He knows our hearts and where our allegiances lie.  We learn through our illnesses. They make us stronger. 

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