Sunday, November 30, 2008

I'm missing you.

Perhaps it's a bit morbid, but I wanted to post the obituaries of some of my residents, the most recent ones to pass away. I miss them and love them. Yup.

Nellie Van Roekel

Nellie Alida TerLouw was born on November 23, 1907, near Sully, Iowa. In 1918 she and her family moved southeast of Pella, Iowa where she graduated from the Pleasant View Country School. On March 29, 1933, she was united in marriage with Richard Van Roekel, a son of Gerrit and Minnie Van Heukelom Van Roekel. They were united in marriage at the farm home of her parents, Nickolas and Ida Van Houweling Ter Louw. Following their marriage they began farming her parents‚ farm southeast of Pella. They then purchased their own farm east of Pella in the late 1940‚s where they raised their two children: Ronald Lee and Linda Joy. They farmed for 40 years and in 1970 moved into Pella. Nellie and Richard enjoyed traveling and were privileged to make several significant trips on tours. They served as councilors at the American Missionary Fellowship Youth Camp, also known as the Chariton Bible Camp, for several years and then became active with The Gideons. In March of 2001, Nellie and Richard became residents at the Griffin Nursing Center in Knoxville, Iowa where they were cared for until becoming residents in the Long Term Care Unit at the Pella Regional Center in Pella in January of 2002. Richard passed away there on June 16, 2004, at the age of 96 years. They were privileged to share over 71 years of married life together. Nellie spent the remaining years of her long, active life in the Long Term Care Unit reading, doing word search, and participating in crafts and other activities. She was most insistent on being outdoors in the mornings and evenings, when at all possible. Her long life ended peacefully there on Thursday morning, November 13, 2008, 10 days prior to her 101st birthday. Nellie is survived by her two children, Ronald Van Roekel and his wife, Mary Lou (Van Wyk) of Otley and Linda Witzenburg of Pella, 4 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.

Nellie was the last surviving member of her original family and leaves just one sister-in-law, Esther (Henry) Roorda of Pella. She was preceded in death by her husband, Richard Van Roekel; her parents, Nickolas and Ida TerLouw; her parents-in-law, Gerrit and Minnie Van Roekel; her brother, Gysbert TerLouw and his wife, Winnie; two sisters: Stella and her husband, Harry Boot, Jeanette and her husband, Marion De Bruin; and the following sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law: Louis and Chistine Van Roekel, Stevanna (Van Roekel) and Dave Roorda, Henry A. and Wilma Van Roekel, and Tena (Van Roekel) and Henry C. Roorda. Nellie had been active with the Pella Community Hospital Auxiliary and the Third Reformed Church of Pella and was a charter member of the Heartland Reformed Church at Pella.

For those desiring, memorials may be given for The Gideons Living Memorial Bible Plan .

Margaret Nunnikhoven

Margaret Lois Spence Nunnikhoven was born on December 1, 1913 to Joe and Nellie Grant Spence in Madrid, Iowa. She died on Sunday, November 2, 2008 at the Pella Regional Health Center-Long Term Care reaching the age of ninety-four.

Margaret graduated from Madrid High School and later attended American Institute of Business.

On March 21, 1936 Margaret was united in marriage with Antonie (Tony) A. Nunnikhoven in Polk City, Iowa. To this union six children were born: John, Joe, Marcia, Tom, Nelda, and Steve. She and Tony lived in Burlington, Iowa for sixty years, before moving to Pella in the late 1990’s.

Margaret enjoyed being a volunteer. She was active both at Hospice and as a hospital volunteer. She also enjoyed crocheting, gardening, cooking, tending to her houseplants, and holding babies. She would often be singing in the kitchen with a hymnbook propped on the window sill above the kitchen sink. She loved the Lord and her Bible was well worn. Margaret had confessed the Lord as her Savior at an early age and was in fellowship with those Gathered to the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ in Pella.

Those left to cherish her memory are her children and their spouses: John and Betty Nunnikhoven of Chester, Vermont; Joe and Patricia Nunnikhoven of Ladera Ranch, California; Marcia and Paul Thomas of West Orange, New Jersey; Tom and Kathy Nunnikhoven of Cordova, Tennessee; Nelda and David Pealer of Pella; and Steve and Marika Nunnikhoven of Mediapolis, Iowa; sixteen grandchildren; nineteen great-grandchildren; one sister, Ruth Emmans, of Seattle, Washington.

Preceding her in death: her husband, Antonie Nunnikhoven in 2002; her parents; brothers: John and Henry Spence; and her sister, Merna Kaiser.

Memorials may be given to Bible Truth Publishers, Addison, Illinois or Bethany Christian Services, Pella, Iowa.

Esther Bettger was born on September 8, 1922, in Mound City, SD, a daughter to John & Karolina Aman. In her early years, Esther attended school through grade 8 and worked as a telephone operator until 1946 when she married Victor A. Bettger in Herried, SD. Following their time at the Univ. of South Dakota in Vermilion, the Bettgers relocated to North Dakota in 1951. While living in Stanton for 21 years, Esther was kept busy raising a family, operating family businesses, and serving at her church. Prior to moving to Pella, IA in 2003, Esther lived in Roseau, MN, and St. Louis Park, MN. Victor preceded her in death in 1981. Wherever possible, Esther was available as a counselor and sought situations where she used her abilities to help individuals in many ways.

Esther is survived by her brother Walter Aman, Beaverton, OR, and by her four children and spouses: Tom & Kathy Bettger, Boise, ID; Ken & Pam Bettger, Pella, IA; Dan & R’Shelle Bettger, Rothschild, WI; and Cheryl & Carl Lyons, Fredericksburg, VA. Esther has 12 grandchildren and one great grandson. The longing of Esther’s heart to be with her Lord and loved ones in heaven was granted October 31, 2008, when she moved quietly from this life into the next. Esther was 86 years old at the time of her death.

In lieu of flowers and gifts, the family prefers memorials for First Baptist Church in Pella or Hospice of Pella.

Louesa Vander Zyl

Louesa Baarda was born on September 22, 1913, on a farm near Reasnor, Iowa. She was an only daughter born to John and Sarah (Duinink) Baarda, having two older brothers, Frank and Fred. They moved to another farm near Kellogg, Iowa when she was two years of age. She and her two brothers attended grade school in nearby Taintor, Iowa until 1926 when they moved to Newburg, Iowa. Louesa helped with the family farming until she was united in marriage with Floyd Vander Zyl on January 16, 1935, in Sully, Iowa. Louesa was baptized and had made profession of her faith at the First Reformed Church in Sully. Louesa and Floyd lived in Sully until moving to Pella, Iowa in 1937 where they became life-long members of the First Reformed Church of Pella. It was at this time they had three children: Phyllis Elaine, Eunice Lynn and Eldon Lee, known as Tony. After all their children were in school Louesa worked at the Pella Maid Rite, then the Central Park CafĂ© and, until her mid-seventies, in the kitchen at the Pella Community Hospital. She enjoyed work and would have never retired were it not for health problems. Floyd retired as an accountant, tax preparer and real estate agent in 1974 at which time they sold their home and eventually became residents of Fair Haven East. During this time they were involved at the Senior Citizens Center in Pella. Floyd passed away December 17, 1993. Louesa was very active in the First Reformed Church and was a charter member of the Christian Opportunity Center volunteer corps where her daughter, Phyllis, had worked for a time. Louesa was very generous in helping others and was quick to do things for them. She loved to bake and shared her bread, quick breads, Christmas fruit bread and pecan tassies. She won ribbons for her favorite angel food cake made without a mixer. In her later years she was thrilled to be blessed with two grandsons, Mathew and Mark, and was proud to see them grow to be fine young men. Louesa became a resident in the Long Term Care Unit at the Pella Regional Health Center in 2005 where her daughter, Phyllis, had been a resident for 15 years and passed away there on July 20, 2002. Louesa’s friends were very important to her, especially Guitta Graber, and she appreciated their visits in these last few years while residing there. Louesa passed away on Thursday morning, October 16, 2008, at the advanced age of 95 years. She is survived by her daughter, Eunice and her husband, Jim Van Tuyl of Bella Vista, Arkansas, her son, Eldon Vander Zyl and his wife, Cindy of Ames, Iowa and their two sons, Mathew Vander Zyl of Dallas, Texas and Mark Vander Zyl of Iowa City, Iowa. Louesa was preceded in death by her husband, Floyd and her daughter, Phyllis Vander Zyl; her parents, John and Sarah Baarda; her parents-in-law, Menze and Jennie (Vander Hart) Vander Zyl; and her two brothers, Frank and Fred Baarda.Arrangements by Van Dyk- Duven Funeral Home. Online condolences may be made at

For those desiring, memorials may given for the Dialysis Department of the Pella Regional Health Center or the Hospice of Pella Comfort House in Pella

Louise Hallenbeck

Della Louise Straight was a native of Taylor County, Iowa. She was born on June 1, 1919, to the late Truman and Ida Fern Standley Straight at Platteville, Iowa. D. Louise Straight attended the Platteville Country School and graduated from Blockton High School in 1936. Louise then attended Maryville State Teachers College in Maryville, Missouri. This qualified her to teach in rural schools in Missouri and Iowa. To aid in the war effort during World War II, Louise moved to Dayton, Ohio where she gained military clearance to join a secretarial pool at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. Afterwards she resumed teaching in New Market, Shenandoah, and Bedford, Iowa. It was while teaching in Shenandoah that Louise met Shenandoah High School band director, Vern Robert Hallenbeck. The two were married on July 6, 1954 at Louise’s family home in Platteville. After years of teaching, the Hallenbeck’s lived for a few years in Lebanon, Missouri and Townsend, Montana. In 1968 they moved to Pella, Iowa where Louise became secretary to the then President of Central College, Dr. Kenneth Weller and Vern became assistant librarian at Central College. Louise was a member of the Central College Auxiliary, the Second Reformed Church, the Business and Professional Women of Pella and Chapter BU of the P.E.O. Sisterhood. In 2003 Louise became a resident of Vriendschap Village in Pella and as her health began to fail, the Long Term Care Unit at the Pella Regional Health Center. She passed away there on Monday evening, October 13, 2008, at the age of 89 years. Louise is survived by her nephew, Jon K. Vogel and his wife, Sydney, of Arvada, Colorado, and their children: Julia Potwin of Coronado, California, James Vogel of Denver, Colorado and Sarah Louise Thomas of Arvada. Louise helped raise her nephew, Jon Vogel, when Jon lost his father when he was two years of age. She also spent much time with her cousin, Glen Straight’s children: Pam Browne of Bedford, Iowa, Claire Sawyer of Littlefield, Texas and Mary Louise Everhart of Williamsburg, Iowa. Glen Straight was raised as a brother to Louise. Louise was preceded in death by her husband, Vern R. Hallenbeck, who passed away on December 23, 2003; her parents, Truman and Ida Straight; her sister, Eleanor Vogel Hicks of Stockton, Missouri and her cousin, Glen Straight. Louise loved and depended on her neighbor and close friend, Karen Hudson of Pella and one of her great loves was a Husky named ‘Jackie’. Louise was a natural giver all of her life and will be greatly missed. Arrangements by Van Dyk - Duven Funeral Home. Online condolences may be made at

For those desiring, memorials in her memory may be designated for the Platteville Cemetery at Bedford, Iowa or Central College in Pella

Valentine Mathes, 102 of Pella, died Nov. 18. Funeral services will be Sat., Nov. 22, 1:30 p.m. at First Reformed Church in Pella. Fellowship time follows the service. Visitation will begin Friday afternoon at Van Dyk-Duven Funeral Home, with famiy present from noon until service time on Sat. at the church. Memorials may be designated for Words of Hope, a Reformed Church radio ministry broadcast, or the Covenant House, a home for runaway children.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Convicted But Not Condemned

I felt the need to return to discussing the things I am currently finding all too near at hand...the things that are trying to grip me and pull me down...those things that I'm praying to God won't find a foothold in my heart...ugh! So lame!

I don't know where this all came from even, really...I know after one of the recent recharges, I was driving home...and was upset about the pain in my legs and my inability to work out...and then started feeling guilty about how much I've been eating compared to how little physical activity I've participated in. Before I knew it, I was planning and started crying at my temptation to return to anorexia. As if that ever helps me with anything...I cried in the cruiser because I felt so gross and so huge and so guilty but at the same time knew that I wanted nothing to do with that. I was appalled at the thoughts I had. I was thinking about how fortunate it would be if they found hypothyroidism in my blood work because then they would give me thyroid hormone replacement, and if the dosing was too high (accidentally or otherwise) it would cause me to lose weight effortlessly. I wouldn't even have to stop eating. Then I realized that they would probably just adjust the dose or find a way to limit the number of pills I had in my possession at any given time, just like any good health care professional would. I can't lie. I entertained a few other ideas. Like increasing my caffeine intake to artificially increase my metabolism and speed up my GI tract...but then I realized that I already consume a large amount of caffeine and that I might have too much of a tolerance for that solution to be feasible or economical. Then I cried some more because that was craziness...trying to find a round about way to achieve the same self-destructive end? I repented...for real. I told God I was sorry for failing to trust Him like that. For failing to trust Him to heal my legs and for failing to trust Him to take care of my overall health. And for failing to trust in the beauty He'd given me...for accusing Him of screwing up...and since then, I've been mighty tempted to skip a meal here and there...but I know I can't. If I skip one meal, then I want to skip another because I get some twisted pleasure out of feeling empty. Feeling empty is enjoyable for me in a twisted way...I mean, when it's time for me to eat, I know because I feel sick -- nauseated and dizzy...It's neat because when I feel that way, initially I think, "I should go lay down or something. I think I'm getting sick." The correct response is actually to eat something...the opposite of what I want to do...I's twisted. What makes it more twisted is that, as a result, there have been a handful of meals in the past few weeks where I was kind of force feeding myself. I didn't have an appetite (that's the definition of anorexia) but I knew I hadn't had enough calories to not eat that I made myself eat was so awful and sick. make matters worse, we discussed eating disorders in class last week for 3 hours. Neat, right? I don't know if I could even tell you how extremely uncomfortable I was. I felt so embarassed and like such a failure...I know that's not the case. Everyone has their struggles. I tell that to people all the time. But it's so surreal to be learning the things you should do to support and help and treat an anorexic pt and remember being on the other hear lecture and remember people "trying that one"...or knowing how true it was to know that I still don't always know how to identify my emotions/feelings or interpret physical signals such as know just how much that pt will fight against attempts to remember planning how you would beat them...cheat the remember plotting how I would pull off another day without eating while talking to someone about how I was hurting myself...I mean...I mean, it was all good information, and some of the experience I have had have helped me be there for others because I was there and thought those things and had those be learning "the theory" of it...hurt. I felt so...I don't even know...I wanted to run...I can't listen to theory when the reality is so fresh in my mind and when that stupid anorexia is lurking too close for comfort, trying to draw me in again.

Well, surprise surprise, it doesn't end there. *painful laugh* I don't know if it was the struggle or the shame...but some amazing lies about inadequacy jumped into my head...I started hearing lies about how I shouldn't be a I can't help anyone anyway...even if I do pass the rest of my classes and graduate in May, where am I supposed to go? Who in the world would benefit from having me around? Seriously...not the best grades...still plenty of painfully exposed wounds.

Transition to my afternoon class where we talked about end of life care. Now, don't get me wrong. I love taking care of people who are in the "end stages of life". I think it's beautiful in a way I can't describe. I'm comfortable with it, and I consider it a tremendous honor to share that experience with them and their show them that they matter and are cared for and loved up to the very end of their life on Earth...sometimes I feel like it's literally carrying them to Jesus...because you wash them up while the last signs of life fade...their heart isn't beating, they aren't breathing anymore, their organs are shutting down...but research suggests that the brain is the last to go...that it's likely they can still hear you...they still know. I love saying those last goodbyes and careful washing their body, though they don't need it's still something to be valued. I digress...that lecture was hard for me because it made me think of a lot of people I really love. Yep, you guessed old residents back home in the nursing home. Some of them I took care of the weeks before they died, some of them died while I was home sleeping, some of them died while I was at school...and some of them...I don't know if they have died or if they're waiting and wondering why I never came back like I said I would. I doubt it's a big deal to them, but it is to me. I feel so I abandoned my friends...I left for camp and haven't been back since. I was going to visit when I got home from camp, but I had poison ivy and didn't go...and I haven't been home long enough to go in since...I don't even know if I can bring myself to go in over Christmas...and that's what makes me feel awful. I'm afraid to find out how many more died while I was many goodbyes I didn't get to many friends, who I said I would visit, died before I fulfilled my promise...I know I'd love the new residents, too...but the problem is that if I walk in there, I'll find out just how many I will continue to miss...and I don't know if I can deal with all those losses on the same day I meet new residents. It makes me feel like the world's biggest jerk? How could I run from like that? How dumb is it to let my fear keep me away? I hope you now see how that would feed into inadequacy...I can't even love them...not enough...not right...not at all...I failed them...I mean, I knew would...I'm human...I've failed them and failed to love them so many times...but when I'm in the nursing home...I'm so aware of Christ's love in me for them...because I get irritated and impatient...but somehow...I keep loving them and caring about them and for them...even when I'm tired or hurting or grumpy...that's Christ...I feel bad because I feel like I'm failing to carry His love to them...I know that others do as well and the whole world does depend on me to do that...but to know that it's fear that is keeping me from doing it? *shakes head*

So, I listened to a sermon recently that talked about the "things that grip us". One of them that hit me hard was inadequacy. He said something to the effect of, "Inadequacy grips us making us ashamed of our flaws. We begin to believe we are the only ones who don't measure up and make mistakes and soon enough we isolate ourselves to keep others from seeing." That hit so close to home that I literally slapped a hand to my heart (what I forgot was that I was wearing a tank top and I slapped myself just hard enough make a sweet noise and sting a lot). Why you may ask? Because I always do that! Ugh! I don't just get down on myself...I get down on myself, feel ashamed for doing so...and cut myself off from everyone around me, especially those who may help or care or love me. So guess what been doing lately and trying not to do? That's right...avoid people. I've had to like force myself to get out of bed somedays...force myself to leave my go see talk to people...cause I'd rather just lay bed...away from the world. Good thing there are consequences to me missing most things...otherwise I would skip it all, confirmation, school, church, Bible study...everything...if I could. I find myself thinking, "I just don't think I can handle being around people." Now understand...the beauty of my current state is that unlike in the's not a constant...nope, sometimes I'm fine...and other times I want to just curl up and give up on everything.

So, the song that's been convicting me on a lot of this is "Sympathy for the Martyr" by Straylight Run. Pertinent lyrics:
"You just can’t relax and you can’t rely
On anyone for anything (skip ahead)...

So tie the noose
And raise the cross
The martyr’s arrived
A desperate plea
For sympathy, it’s all you need

A laundry list of problems doesn’t make you interesting
And never getting help doesn’t make you brave
Not listening to reason doesn’t mean that you have faith
You’re just cutting off your nose to spite your face"

Guess who never gets help? Me! *crying laugh* A new thing I've been trying is getting help when I need it and letting people be there for me and love me...I'm not real great at it...but I've been giving it a whirl...if but poorly. So, I was thankful to be at camp this have people legitimately ask how I was...but parts of the weekend were less than ideal...and that resulted in? More feelings of the form of? Worthlessness, being entirely replaceable and unimportant. For example, anyone can be camp nurse and pass meds, give out ice, look at dodgeball injuries...I don't have anything of particular importance to offer...nothing particularly special and needed...anyone can do this. Do they? I suppose not...but they could. And other things...took me right back to high being 16, recovering from anorexia (why does that have to be such a theme) and dating a guy that didn't value me for more than a body. And even as a body I wasn't good enough, hence the cheating...I was unimportant (though allegedly cared for), unvalued (though told I was loved), and replaceable...Worthless...

So...this week has been a major struggle...and I want to give up...but at the same time...I'm clinging to the things I know and begging God to let me learn the things I already "know" these things can be gone...Because I know they're lies...I can rationalize them and make them sound true, but that doesn't make them truth. They are lies. I know that...but unfortunately, knowing that just frustrates me and leaves me feeling ashamed that they're even an issue...and have been for even this long.

Well, I've decided to close with the song that I've been singing to myself all week "Dear Lie" by TLC:

"Dear lie
You suck
You said you could fix anything
Instead I'm fucked
You made things even worse for me
If I had balls I'd tell you get away from me
Guess I'm not smart
I let you unnerve me
I let you control me
Afraid the truth would hurt me
When it's you that hurts me more

Get outta my mouth
Get outta my head
Get outta my mind
Stop puttin' words in my head
Get outta my mouth
You're nothing but trouble
Get outta my life
Get out of me
Out of me (out of me)
Out of me
Out of me lie
Lie lie lie lie

Dear lie
You're dumb
You think you've got the best of me
[ TLC Lyrics are found on ]
You think you won
Misread my vulnerability
I've got your walls
Now get the hell away from me
I've learned your art
Won't let you unnerve me
Won't let you control me
The truth will only free me
And your lies won't hurt no
No more


Lie lie
I've got
Your walls
Now get the hell away from me
I learned your art
Won't let you unnerve me
Wont' let you control me
The truth will only free me
And your lies won't hurt no
No more


Lie lie
Dear lie
Lie Lie Lie Lie
Lie Lie
Dear lie"

Beneath the Pile-up

I feel like I'm buried right now. So much has just piling up on top of me. But at the same time, I don't feel hopelessly lost like I have in the past. In some ways this is worse because it adds a particular twinge of fear. Things fly at me, try to pull me down...and while they don't pull me down far, I know what's down there...and I end up afraid. It's a kind of classic conditioning I guess. Not the neutral kind that causes a dog to salivate when he hears a bell...the kind that causes you to flinch when someone raises their hand because you just know they're going to hit you. Thus, I'm seeing things come at me, and I cringe and I cry as they grab at me. I cling to what I know and hope it's enough and cry...because as much as I know that these things are untrue and defeated and in the past...they're here and they're real...Wow, Takara, could you be more vague? Why, yes, I could...but that's what happens when I let my thoughts spill out...they aren't always complete.

So, a few weeks ago, God and I were talking about love. I told Him I wanted to truly know His love in a crazy ridiculous way. I wanted to know His love for me and what it means to be His daughter/lover/ let His love flood over me. I wanted to see it in crazy ways and know more about Him. It was cool and you know, God told me some things and showed me some things that pretty much blew my mind. Things about love and beauty and all that awesome stuff. There was this sweet song by Scott Andrew that really stuck out to me. It's called "Holding Back". It starts off:
"They’re gonna tell you
you’re gonna pay too high a price
and try to convince you
you’ve gotta play it safe this time
they’re gonna work you
they’re gonna try to wear you thin
they want to protect you
and leave you trapped inside your skin

Holding back and pretending not to be
want you want to be, want you want to be
Holding back and pretending not to be
want you want to be"

Like all summer...well, actually longer. I was listening to a sermon recently that talked about longing...longing to join in. It used a swimming analogy about adults wanting to get in the pool but instead sitting on the side. I don't know if that's how I've been living...I would compare it more to a night swim I took this summer. I got down to the lake and two of my friends were already in the water -- swimming and splashing. Another friend and I got ready to get in...she jumped off the dock with a shriek...and I walked down to the shallow end and waded out. I watched them splash around and have fun and longed to join them. But I just wasn't sure if I wanted to get completely wet. I waded out to my stomach. You know, to the point where the water laps at your belly button and your abs seize up to try to stay out of the frigid lake. Yup. And I just hung out. Eventually, I waded out further, and finally, dipped my head back...everything had at least been wet once except my face...and then I slowly and hesitantly swam out to join my friends. Lately, I've been wondering where exactly I'm at in that analogy with my faith...with my understanding of God and His incomprehensible awesomeness (or at least in an area of it). I know I got to the point where I was out to my waist and watching everyone...and when I was talking with God that night. I thought that would be me dipping my head back into the water, allowing me to start a hesitant swim out to my friends. But with the way the past couple weeks have went. I'm not sure anymore. I don't know. I feel more secure and more connected to God than in the past. I don't feel as swayed by all the struggles and temptations and lies...but at the same time...U hate that they're getting to me at all. Maybe I haven't made much progress after all. Blargh!

This brings me to another song I've been loving lately. At one recharge, when I was feeling especially overwhelmed, I was listening to my Pizzle (that's iPod for those who don't know me) and "Relearn Love" by Scott Stapp came on. The lyrics that stood out most to me were:
"The comfort of your arms around me
Your tender hands caress my head
I lay beside you I'm not worthy
This jaded man's not who I am
I touched the flame and I've been burned
All I need's a second chance
Give me eyes of a child
And teach this man to relearn love

Teach me all over, all over
To relearn love
Show me again…"

This really got me thinking about a lot of things. Do I really know what love is? I hear the word and use the word, but do I really understand it? God's's not like the "love" I've known from's not something that comes and goes. Isn't there something in like Hosea that talks about God's love being steadfast...steadfast. It's not like certain people in my past who, at some point, stopped meaning "I love you" though they continued to say it. And it's not like others who say "I love you" only when I do something right or like they wanted. Or like others who "love me" so that I can do _____ for them. God doesn't "love" me because he has to or because he just feels so sorry for me that he thinks it might brighten my day (though it does brighten my day). It's steadfast...unconditional...unchanging...complete...perfect...That's hard to understand but so good to know. Because while it doesn't make sense to me...I'm so thankful to know that while I feel buffeted or tempted or even when I make a poor choice or fail to love Him back...God is right there loving me...whether I realize it or "feel" it or not. That's a big deal...and something I'm only beginning to understand in any type of real way...but something I'm wanting to learn.

Hmmm...with all that hope...I think this train of thought has completed it's journey. Yup.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Never Getting Help Doesn't Make You Brave

I had a plan for that lyric that was a bit more hopefully…but I’m currently sitting in a lecture on eating disorders and to avoid crying, I’m going to blog…that way I don’t have to fully listen. I just am not wanting to hear this. Once upon a time, in class, one of our teachers said that a disease should not define a person. And my past is in the past. I have been set free from that…I’m free in Christ. God and I have talked plenty lately about beauty and love…I’ve noticed that when I look in the mirror, I see beauty (even though I don’t believe it always gets captured by a camera). And I just have felt very challenged lately. God and I have been working through a lot of things (I intend to blog about it later…). That’s how I came across the title of this blog. There’s a song by Straylight Run called “Sympathy for the Martyr”. I was shocked at how thoroughly challenged and convicted I felt by it.

Enough of that, I can’t be profound and describe crap right now. I just…I feel antsy…I feel like running…’cause it’s mighty hard to listen to an explanation of something you went through…something you still battle sometimes. The truth makes me want to cry. Hearing things I know too well is not easy…I just…don’t want to hear…I don’t like having to know the science about it…it’s timely, as I was tempted earlier this week to return to some of those behaviors. I also feel bad because I want it gone…it’s not, yet…I mean I just heard her talking about the inability to recognize visceral and emotional cues…meaning “people with anorexia often can’t adequately describe their feelings and misinterpret physical cues such as hunger”…shoot dang…that’s largely true…I still don’t recognize hunger well. I often interpret hunger as nausea. So, my first instinct is to not eat because I’m “nauseated” but actually I should eat because I’m hungry…so, I eat when I’m nauseated or dizzy…and my teacher just commented on the risk of relapse, which is huge. I know that…but that usually just makes me feel hopeless…like it’s bound to come for me again…but you know what, I do know that there’s hope and freedom in Christ…and I know that I can keep going and keep getting better…I do…and I know that I don’t have to be pinned down by my past…but…it’s hard…especially in this setting…because it feels like my dirty little secret…

I know this is rambling…this is me coping, I guess…trying to remain in the room during this lecture…to not run…to be a nurse and learn…yup…learn…and to not take it personally…to not hear it as a verdict…