Behind my smile
I was wandering through the dunes with a suicide note in my bag.
Everything is under control
That's what my life was like shortly after I had to quit my study because of a severe depression. I was nothing but skin and bones. I was lonely and exhausted. I had no hope and no perspective. Anorexia nervosa and self harm had me in a chokehold. Death seemed like a pretty good option.
All my life I had tried to keep everything under control, to do everything right. I was a very sweet, obedient, christian girl. Maybe this way I could convince God to be good to me. But it never worked. He seemed farther away from me than ever.
Furious with God
Why did I hold on? I'm still not sure. Getting the right kind of help was very challenging. Psychiatric care looked like a jungle to me: intakes, referrals, diagnoses, research, wait lists. Eventually I was able to follow a nine-month residential program. I learned to eat again, and organize my life in a healthy manner.
After treatment I went back to college, got married and found a job. I wasn't stable at all. Sometimes I was self destructive and my faith in God was almost non-existent. For years, I had been furious with him. I did my very best, and yet there were happening so many things I couldn't control - and neither could God, I concluded. I couldn't show how angry I was, because that didn't suit my carefully crafted persona.
I was done with being a christian. But I couldn't let it go. God kept knocking on my door. Bit by bit I dared to show him and others what was really going on behind my smile. God allowed me to rage and cry until I was worn. Until I could do nothing but seek shelter and comfort with him.
God didn't give up on me. It showed me he isn't far from me. He is close. And his love doesn't run out. He asks me to trust him. I'm free, loved and stronger than ever. I don't understand everything and I'm not sure I can recover from what I've been through. But I know this: God is good and he loves me.
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