Personal stuff – some testimony

Thursday, April 28, 2005
On a personal note, I bit the bullet yesterday and joined Weight Watchers, but it is with fear and trepidation. What has happened in the past is that I have lost 20-40 pounds, then get scared, and go off the program, and gain back the weight. So this time I am trying hard to break this pattern.

I started the study the Lord’s Table (which you can get for free on the internet).to go along with the weight loss, but plan to use the Weight Watcher’s plan which is healthier for me. I figure I haven’t been able to stick to Weight Watchers alone, so perhaps by adding God to the mix it will be easier.  And I am also asking you, my Xanga friends to help me stay accountable to this.

One thing that I started thinking about was the aspect of food in my past. Most of you know that my past was filled with abuse. If you do not know my past, I started writing about it on March 15,  and then there are other entries every few days after that. Well, food also was incorporated in that, so I figure I will explain some of that and maybe find a key that will help me to find a way to fight this stronghold.

As a kid there are a few horrid memories about food. One was when my father wanted me to taste a particular food item, awful ones like pickled pigs’ feet or beer when I was 3 or 4 and I made a face. That caused me to be backhanded, and I soon learned to eat whatever was put in front of me, without reaction.

My mom was a member of the clean plate club, in that whatever she put on my plate I had to finish it, and she put way more than a child should eat.

One thing that I did was to take cookies in secret from the cookie jar. It was stealing so I was breaking a commandment in that, but for me it was one tiny aspect of my childhood that I could control. There was little that I had any power over, but I became quite adept at taking the right amount of cookies that wouldn’t be noticed, removing the metal lid quietly, and there was a sense of triumph because I pulled one over on them.

My mom was very subservient to my father. As you know, he was an alcoholic and a mean drunk, so when he came home, which would be at all hours of the day and night. He could get very brutal if his food was not quickly served. So she would partially cook the meat, leave it coagulating in the fat on the stove, cook all the other food and leave it sitting. Now we couldn’t eat before he got home, so we sat there for awhile. When it got to be about 7 or so, she would quickly serve me, because I had to go to bed. But when she served me I had to scarf down the food so quickly because it was a sure beating if I was caught eating and didn’t wait for him. Now the problem is there were nights when he didn’t get home until after midnight, and sometimes he ate out.

We never ate around the table. My father would eat on the sofa watching TV, and I ate at the kitchen table. My mom would serve my father and me, then take her dinner to the tv table in the living room and eat at her chair. One time, she accidentally slopped some spaghetti on his stomach (he sat in his underwear). He was furious, came into the kitchen, banged his plate on the table, causing everything to jump, and I had to sit there eating calmly on the outside, but not reacting by pulling back or making a face or crying, for then I would have been beaten for he was furious.

Most times there was yelling and screaming in the house, or I would get a beating for doing the wrong thing. The wrong thing was something like smiling when I should have laughed, not smiling, laughing when I should have smiled, being  in a room that he thought I shouldn’t be. I don’t know what the rules were, because they changed all the time. So I spent most of my life tiptoeing around trying not to make a sound, not to cough, not to move, not to react, and to try and read what they wanted. I failed often. And when I did I got beaten or yelled at, and so most of my childhood I was controlling tears that couldn’t be shown because tears would cause a beating, unless you were being beaten and you had to cry the right amount of tears, not too many or not too few.

Do you kind of understand why I tiptoe around Abba Father God? Even though I know that He is not like my earthly father, I still fear him and am afraid that one day I will do something that angers God.

Anyway, after the beating, or when the tears were there, I often had to eat as if there was nothing wrong. That meant, my hand couldn’t shake, I had to chew and smile and swallow, when everything sort of made me want to puke, but puking was out of the question. I really didn’t taste or enjoy the meal, I just wanted to get through it so that he would not come into the kitchen and find something wrong with how I was eating, chewing, or whatever.

So food was not dealt with in the ordinary way when I was a child, and this was stuff that happened before the serious sexual abuse occurred. When that occurred, things got even worse, and food became a way to stuff feelings.

I will write more later, but right now Jim needs the computer. Please pray for Jim and his heath, and that somehow this stuff will get worked out.

I thank you for your patience with me as I sort this stuff.



About Heather Marsten

Welcome to Heather's Blog. I'm looking forward to meeting you and checking out your sites. I just moved about nine years of material over from another blog site, Xanga, who may close down mid-July. At first I was disappointed to make the move because I had a lifetime membership at Xanga and had to spend weeks transferring posts. But now I'm thrilled. Already I've met new bloggers and read many new websites. Blogging is a wonderful way to expand my horizons and garner new ideas. I'm a happily married mom of three young adults. My husband and I are proud to watch our children grow and venture out into the world. My daughter is still in college but my two sons have graduated. One has a job and the other just graduated and is in the process of finding a job in his field, physics. Anyone know of any jobs out there? I'm proud of our children and love watching them grow and mature. They've become fine, compassionate, and loving people. Empty nest? Nah, I'm too busy to let an empty nest bother me. Not enough hours in the day. My husband and I enjoy quiet time together and I have many interests to pursue - one of which is blogging :D I am a born-again believer and love God. As you read this blog, you will discover that Bible studies thrill me. There is so much wisdom contained between the covers of the Bible and I am fortunate to sit under the teachings of a remarkable pastor, Pastor Don Moore. Members of our church (Living Word Chapel in West Hurley, New York) are encouraged to teach and there are visiting pastors who stop by our church, I also study the Bible on my own and love sharing what I learn. One other passion is writing. My current work in process is a memoir. A scene from my memoir was published in a book called: Heavenly Company: Entertaining Angels Unaware - an anthology of angelic encounters compiled by Cecil Murphy. I'm hoping my memoir will encourage other survivors of abuse. I grew up in a home filled with abuse, including incest. For most of my life I was searching for something that would fill the void of not being loved by my parents. I tried many ways to find that love -- therapy, relationships, occult studies, and keeping my life so filled I had no way to think about my past. It was only when I discovered God that I was able to put the pieces of my life back together and walk forward in a joyous life. My nickname - wondering has changed from wondering where the heck God was in my life, to wondering what incredible adventure is going to happen next. I hope you enjoy my site. Please say hi, share some thoughts, and ask questions. I look forward to meeting you and checking out your sites. Have a blessed day. Heather
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