On Black, Fat, Femme Positivity: Why I'm at My Heaviest, My Most Confident, and Don't Need Your Approval to Exist
"If I breathe in public for five seconds, it’s also common that someone will feel the need to tell me, “YASSSSS!” in an attempt to ch...
Thursday, October 17, 2013
Let me be completely honest...
It's about 10pm on a Thursday as I am starting this post.
I want to sleep, but I can't stop crying.
The tears started flowing when about the 40th minute of my waiting on the bus struck the clock.
I'd just gotten off of work today. All seemed swell, I suppose. I could have used some sleep and personal time (i.e.: reading, prayer, more sleep), but all-in-all it was a good day.
I was hustling to the bus stop as I usually do to catch the one that arrives around 5:10pm. When I make it to the corner to cross the street and make it halfway up the hill where my bus would have been waiting, I see my bus pull away and turn the corner to head toward my neck of the woods.
I'll keep it plain: I swore. Now, I'm not a cussin' sailor like I was in my BC days (Before I knew Christ). But lately, my language has been very much outside my character...that's another note.
Moving on, I was quite miffed, but hustled my way on up to the bus stop and sat in the short-lived shade. Why is there even a covering at the bus stop if it doesn't shade you from the sun? Blueprint error?
I looked at my phone, because it was in my hand and my watch was covered by the sleeve of my sweater. (I was being a bum, so sue me.) 5:18pm. I waited, a bit irritated, but making it. Multiple buses that weren't mine passed--increasing my irritability. I look at my phone again. 5:29. Another bus passes. I grumbled, and waited "patiently." 5:37pm. I swore and complained. 5:40pm. Hopeful it was my bus turning the corner. ANOTHER Red River bus. I began scratching at the front of my purse, damaging the "leather." I had to get up and move around or else I probably could have worn a hole through the purse. I walked a few feet away from the bench where I once sat, and began to tense my hand muscles. *clench fist, unclench fist, stretch fingers, clench fist, crumple paper grocery bag* It got to the point where I felt deep anger. Surely, this bus should be here by now. Tears began to well, and I'm sure I felt my trachea in my esophagus. My anxiety rose and tears fell. I kept brushing them away, pretty embarrassed that people probably saw me crying. But I couldn't stop. I was so frustrated, upset, hurt even. Thoughts of being without began to flood my mind: If I had my license already...my car already...I wouldn't have to...
The bus finally came...5:45pm. Another one pulled up behind it. I asked the driver--the same one that left before I could make it--if she would be leaving first. She explained that another bus broke down and she would be leaving first. I felt so low. I felt petty. I felt selfish. Why had I gotten so angry? What was the reality behind my burning tears and clenched fists?
I sat on the bus, looked out the window, avoided eye contact and just cried. I tried to stop...for the most part. I eventually succumbed to the tears. A colleague got on the bus and waved, I gave a faint smile and returned the gesture halfheartedly. The next two stops, a lot of people got on the bus. I wanted to sit alone; to my dismay I had company. The guy saw me crying. He didn't know what to do. I wanted to apologize for my tears, but I didn't have the true desire to. I'd apologized for my tears enough. I just wanted to cry. And I did.
My weeping subsided once we hit the freeway, and I just stared ahead and out the window. By the time I got home, I was seemingly okay. I set my things down, got comfortable, ate some waffles (aka: carby, cinnamony goodness) and got to work on my online driving permit course. Eventually the system locked me out: my sign that I needed to give it a rest for the night. Before going to lie down, I checked Facebook to find that yet another friend got engaged/married/boo'd up, etcetera. I smiled, then felt kinda 'meh.' It made me think about some articles I was skimming at work. I ended up reading this article from Relevant Magazine. Great website, by the way! Anywho, it made the tears come back...
I dried my face and headed to my bed. I lied down, curled up and cried out to God...about my singleness, about my loneliness, about dating, about men, about my insecurities, about my frustrations, about how much I need Him. And He just took it. I believe He tried to settle me with a peace that at first took, then it wasn't enough. The peace of God wasn't enough. I continued to weep, toss, turn, blow my nose, cough. Weep. It was quiet at first. Then I got angry. I yelled out in tongues. I screamed. I told God it sucks not having my mother here to tell her how I'm feeling, to see if she understands, to get a comforting word from a woman who's gone through it. I told God it sucks to not be able to go to my dad for him to affirm me.
At that moment, I felt like God nodded His head yes. He waited for me to be real with Him. To get to the root of my pain, my anger, my tears. At this moment, I didn't miraculously feel better, I didn't get up with a smile on my face ready to sleep and conquer the day ahead. I got up, grabbed my Remember the Roses book by Lynette Lewis and I headed to my laptop while wiping away snot and tears. (I've heard Lynette speak on multiple occasions, and I believe she understands well the importance of crying out to and being transparent with God among other things. Please check out her website and books!)
I'm writing about this with puffy, red eyes, a slight headache and hope in my heart that this will not just help me to reflect and heal, but to reach someone else.
Be real and honest with yourself and with God. He's patient. Even when His own peace isn't enough for your broken heart and weary mind, He can handle it.
Tuesday, October 15, 2013
You heard me right!
I've been believing lies. Lies that say my blessings, my joy, my happiness are predicated on my falling in love with the Christ. Letting him be my husband first.
Now, don't get me wrong. Christ should be one's first love. I am not negating this factor. However, I've been sold on waiting for God to move...waiting for True Love while existing meagerly and simply surviving by using God to compensate for my emptiness rather than having Him truly fill the daddy-shaped, God-sized hole in my inmost being.
Yes, I've believed lies.
I read this blog post.
It's titled "I DON'T WAIT ANYMORE."
I was taken aback and a bit afraid to open it, because I assumed that this must mean that she now lives a wild, "sexually emancipated" life and would make a claim or 5 about why it's okay and why God understands our longing for intimacy, for love. Right?
The single virgin/celibate/abstinent Christian wants physical intimacy with the opposite sex. It's how we're wired. Sometimes we (myself included) get sexually frustrated and emotionally irritated. Often questioning God in anger and with much frank. "God, I've done what you've asked. I've suffered relentlessly. I've hurt enough! When is my turn?!" We feel picked over, unloved, untouched. And, shoot, I'll say it: downright horny! The single struggle is real! While many my age are either in one variety of relationship or another (i.e.: sexual, courtship, marriage, romantic-and-not-going-anywhere-at-all), I lie in wait...for God to move. I even try to brush myself up...multiple failed diets, putting on a little mascara, rocking awesome red lipsticks, throwing back a smile or two to even speed up the process. "Somebody needs to go 'head and marry me!" I'd jokingly say. Inwardly, I meant it. I meant it so much.
In all this angst, a question my spiritual Poppa asked me one day after church service keeps reverberating in my mind...
What do you think you have to do for God to bless you?
Lose 70-80 pounds?
I unflinchingly responded matter-of-factly with a yes. I was dismayed to find him shaking his head in an act of repudiation.
He then began to encourage me with a truth I know with my brain (saber) but that I need to know with my heart (conocer). Gotta love Spanish...it's deep.
His [God's] loving me, leading me, pursuing me, wooing me, caring for me, providing for me, and someday presenting me before my earthly groom who follows His example is NOT the end result.
My falling madly, wildly, deeply in love with the Saviour of my soul and wanter after my heart is not a premise to some of my greatest desires of finite intimacy.
Point, blank and the period: Jesus is not a means to an end.
You (I) can't just love God madly until your husband or wife comes along. God isn't a genie. He isn't a yo-yo. He isn't a fleeting thought...evanescent in the wake of a new transient romance.
He is all or
Treating God like the latter leaves the heart, mind, body and soul with much to desire.
I will raise my hand in conviction to say that I am guilty of treating God as a means to an end. My suffering Saviour cries and longs to be near me while I cry and long for intimacy. Making 'peace' or lack thereof with the fact that everything the enemy has said about me is in fact truth. Bypassing the irrefutable truth of His unhinged, uninhibited and unfettered love for me.
This God...this Jesus. This Christ. He does not await the proper time to pursue me. He does not gauge my worth based on what my bathroom scale says, whether or not I wear Wet n' Wild or Revlon, whether or not I felt like moisturizing my feet today (and, FYI, I did not). He doesn't wait for me to do something different with my hair or for this pimple on my face to go away (albeit a nuisance). He does not wait for me to stop overextending my budget because I NEED that new fall dress. Nor does He wait for me to get up on Monday morning to workout after the gym and I have become complete strangers. He does not wait for me to get it together. He doesn't wait for me to be who He made me to be.
He meets me where I am: In the valley, in the quiet, in the shadow, at my breaking, in my searching, in my wandering, when I feel alone and at my lowest. He meets me.
He pursues me when I'm not the bride He asked for, but the very one He wanted. And because of His unfathomable grace and ever-existing love exhibited most clearly when the blood excreted from the wounds on His broken, cross-burdened body...I won't wait anymore either.
I will not wait to have it all together: to have my ideal body, to figure out my finances, to be presented before my earthly groom, etcetera, etcetera.
I will start right now, today, loving my Groom with reckless abandon.
And when the pangs of being a quarter-life, single, Christian woman overwhelms me, I will remember the One who made clear what are lies and what is Truth.