Finally Home, At Home

 


It appears that time has escaped me, yet again. Between work and social engagements, I’m left with mere hours to plan, prepare, and purchase gifts for my family and friends. Nothing like a little holiday scramble to really get you in the Christmas spirit.

That and an overpriced plane ticket.

I just booked my flight home for Christmas…yesterday.

Oopsie daisy.

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Home.

That word brings up a lot of emotion for me.

I lived in the same house my entire life before I moved to NYC. And for as many beautiful and cherished memories I have within those walls, it also holds many not-so-lovely memories. Memories of pain. Of despair. Of “what-could-have-beens.” For my childhood home is also where I suffered through my anorexia. A world away from my current life – fully restored & fully alive – in NYC.

So returning home, to be honest, has always been a double edged sword: completely filled with love from my family and loved ones there, yet haunted by the dark past that is so visible everywhere I turn — Places that were the setting of my enslavement to ED. There’s something about a physical reminder that’s a real jab in the side.

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But something happened during my last trip home over Thanksgiving:

The cloud had lifted.

There was no longer a veil of pain over my home.

And I attribute that to one thing:

Forgiveness.

A heavy word, yes, I know.

I’m not talking about forgiveness from my family and loved ones. They have so graciously done that since Day One at inpatient, and continue to love and support me to this day.

And I’m not talking about God’s forgiveness, either. Because, His forgiveness is alive and well in my soul, too, the minute I asked for it.

I’m talking about forgiving myself.

I’ve finally forgiven myself of the pain I inflicted on my loved ones and the harm I did to my body.

Forgiveness. Finally. And I can now allow myself to truly go home.


I can now let myself see past that dark history and see my childhood home for what it truly is: a place to move forward. A place where there are people who love and care about me. A place of peace. A place where I have been forgiven. A place where I can continue to blossom into the young woman I was made to be. A place where there is a future. Joy. Hope. Peace.

Forgiveness. Of self.

Yesterday the little girl I nanny for, asked me why we only celebrate Christmas on one day.

In NYC, there is a large Jewish population, and we’re at the tail end of Hanukkah. So naturally, this little girl wanted to know why Christmas only has one day of presents, when her Jewish friends get eight?

And so I gave her the best answer I could think of on the spot: “Christmas is the celebration of Jesus’ birthday.”

And as I was walking home, I felt like I had really given a paltry response to such an important question.

“We’re celebrating Jesus’ birthday”!?  *Facepalm

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Come on, BBB – you can do better than that!!

Seriously though. Why Christmas? What’s the significance of Christ’s birth?

Forgiveness.

Jesus was born to die.

A sobering thought to think about as we’re hanging mistletoe and singing lovey dovey carols about “Joy to the World” and “Jolly Old St. Nick.”

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We’re celebrating the birth of the man whose one purpose on this earth was to die. So that you and I could be forgiven and have admittance into Heaven.

My anorexia, and all the bullshit that went with it – the lying, the deception, the hurtful things yelled in rage at people I love, the killing of my body and turning away from God – all those things I did, were forgiven. They were forgiven the second the nails went through Jesus’ hands on the Cross. They were forgiven the second I apologized to Him and asked for forgiveness.

He is loving and full of mercy. And He has forgiven me of all of that crap in my past. Even the things that I felt suffocated in shame from. Forgiven.

But even though I accepted His forgiveness at inpatient, I still hadn’t forgiven myself. And so I carried around an astronomical amount of guilt and pain.

And that was why, when I would go home, all I would see was the backdrop of where I had hurt the people I love, and hurt myself. My home, which should have been a place of comfort, instead accused me of all the wrongs in my past.

But I realized, that in doing so – in holding onto those things and not forgiving myself, even though God had already forgiven me – I was in essence, denying the Cross.

I was saying, “Yes, but what I did is unforgivable, even for You, God.”

That right there, friends, is pride at its ugliest.

Withholding self-forgiveness did nothing but keep me from the freedom that God so wanted me to have.

And freedom it is.

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I can now truly say, that I am excited to return home. To return to a place where, yes, there was a lot of hurt – but also a lot of love and mercy shown. Reminders of pain are now reminders of forgiveness and unconditional love.

I am now at home, at home.

And it’s all because, in a manger, lies a Child, who came into the world to die on a Cross, so that you and I might be forgiven.


And that, truly is a joy to the world.

Published by

beautybeyondbones

BBB: Because we’re all recovering from something. // For speaking/business inquiries: beautybeyondbones@yahoo.com

144 thoughts on “Finally Home, At Home

  1. Speaking from personal experience, the hardest thing to do is forgive yourself. I find forgiving others comes much easier than forgiving and forgetting what I’ve done to myself and to others. I truly hope you find peace and joy this Christmas!

    1. Thank you so much! So much wisdom in your words. Yes, it is much harder, but so incredibly freeing too. Thanks for your kindness this evening! Hugs and blessings to you! Merry Christmas!

  2. How would you deal with the feelings that come up when you know you’re home (parent’s house) is not filled with unconditional love? I am worried about not being able to meet the conditions for their love.

    1. Hi Ellie, How are you love? First of all, I’m sorry that going home has some difficult feelings attached to it. I just want to say that you are absolutely 100% loved and cherished just. as. you. are. by our Father. There is nothing we can do or say that will change that. So I hope that brings peace and comfort. And in terms of with your family, I would just be really honest with them. Talk about how you feel and how the environment feels to you. Communication is always the key to growth and healing. I guess to deal with those feelings, I would just honestly give the feelings of hurt to Jesus and let Him swoop in and fill my heart with love and acceptance and peace. I hope that helps, beautiful. You are the Daughter of the King. And He accepts you and loves you as is. Never forget that. Love ya babe. Thanks for reading xoxoxo

      1. Aw thanks BBB <3 you make my heart soften. I remind myself of Jesus' love so much lately and it is making me so happy. I know I will have a wonderful Christmas knowing I am perfect in Him no matter what other think or say 🙂

  3. Forgiving yourself is the absolute key to happiness. It’s so hard sometimes, but you’re stronger than you know. Merry Christmas to you! I hope you have a nice time “home”. We just bought our tickets to go “home” for the time between Christmas and when work starts again yesterday also haha.

  4. TY. Beautiful, meaningful to a lot of people I’m sure. Harmonic to those who still carry that inner burden – self forgiveness. Jesus blesses you for sharing your journey and bringing home to rest, His journey: simple yet powerful. Peace and Goodwill to You & Yours

    1. Thank you so much for these affirming words. God is so good. I owe my life to Him, quite literally. It is my deepest prayer that even one person will find hope and comfort here:) thanks for stopping by this evening. Love and blessings to you❤️

    1. Thank you so much Carlie! You’re right, difficult to discuss and difficult to implement into our lives. But so so worth it 🙂 thanks for stopping by and for your kind words! Hugs!

  5. I love your writing, because it is so raw and honest! This was beautiful and I am so glad that you are now able to be at home, at home. Self-forgiveness is so hard and I am working on understanding how deep God’s forgiveness goes, because I always feel like I have done so much wrong and that He won’t want to let it go, but then I remember that He is not one of my girlfriends and He is not petty like we are… He loves me no matter what and wants to be there for me. So thank you so much for sharing. 🙂

    1. Hi Lauren! Thank you so much for this thoughtful reflection. You are so right – God is so merciful and loving and wants to forgive us! There is so much freedom when we forgive — especially ourselves. And I can totally relate. I thought my eating disorder was too “unforgivable” but I had to realize that there is nothing – zip zilch nada – that is greater than the cross. He conquered it all. Thanks for stopping by! Love and hugs to you!!

  6. Beautiful post. And it’s good to be busy during the holidays. However, sometimes I think that I’m so busy trying to shop for gifts, meet with ppl, catch up, etc that I forget the true meaning of the holiday and trying to be thankful for what I have and how far I’ve come the past year.
    You are gorgeous btw! What nationality are you?

    1. Hi Floey! Oh my gosh, thank you-you’re so sweet:) you’re right-getting caught up in the business is so easy to do and can make us forget about what it is we’re celebrating!! Thanks for stopping by:) have a beautiful day! (And I’m German/Irish) hehe ❤️

  7. Reading this reminds me of one of the most meaningful realizations that I made during treatment. If God is perfect love, then he loves me perfectly, despite all my flaws and imperfections, exactly as I am. I have binge eating disorder as well as restriction (now in remission for a year, but this was exactly a year ago) and I was so deeply ashamed that I felt unlovable and unforgivable. A friend told me, “You will not learn anything about yourself that God doesn’t already know and hasn’t already forgiven.” I realized, “Who am I to withhold love and forgiveness from myself? Who am I to determine that I am unworthy? Who am I to judge myself in this way? Am I better than God? Do I have more authority than God or know something that God doesn’t?” No, it’s the other way around! I burst into tears in the middle of group therapy at this realization. It was probably the beginning of my being able to develop self-compassion and a turning point in my recovery. I’m so glad that it sounds like you are in a similar place! I hope that your visit home is a healing one. ❤️

    1. 🙌🙌🙌🙌oh my gosh Lulu can I give you a standing ovation?!! Your words are SO TRUE. Oh my gosh. Wow you really spoke tony soul this morning and I definitely needed to hear that. So thank you❤️❤️ congratulations on your year of remission! That is amazing! God is so good:) and you’re right- so forgiving and loving. I had a similar realization at inpatient, reflecting on the line “I’ll never know how much is cost to see my sin upon that cross” and I just broke down when I realized that my Eating disorder is on the cross. Powerful. God is so good. Thanks again for stopping by this morning. Merry Christmas! Sending love and blessings xox

  8. Hi BBB,have a wonderful time at home.. : )

    Even I had about 21 oppressive years – at the place I was born..so I can relate to your story to much extent..Recently when I visited my native, I did not visit my house..(mainly because no one from family stays there). But still, I had a longing to walk in those rooms, balcony, to experience the shades of those fruit trees.. to walk the hills. But something stopped me.. and I regretted it after I returned to my routine. I have actually forgiven my past and myself and whoever were responsible for the miserable years.. But now I think its the time to let go of deep down imprinted scars…

    Thanks for your post.. : )

    Love,

    Carol

    1. Hi Carol, thank you for this beautiful reflection. I’m sorry to hear that growing up left you with scars. That breaks my heart. Yes, letting go is so wonderfully freeing. Especially when we realize that our Father wants us to be free from that pain and live in total and complete love. His love. Thanks for stopping by. Blessings and love to you, friend❤️❤️

  9. Hi 🙂 I truly believe that Jesus was sent to us to teach, that his purpose on earth was to teach. In death he taught us not only about forgiveness but that our souls transcend this life, that we are so much more than our human existence. He taught us that love is unconditional, love for others and for ourselves. His birth gave the world the ultimate gift, the gift of hope and faith 🙂 Ultimately this is why the uplifting carols are always my favourites.
    So glad to hear that you are in such a good place 🙂 I hope you have a wonderful Christmas with your family and that the New Year continues to bring you blessings. Andrea x

    1. Hi Andrea, thank for beautiful and uplifting reflection. You’re so right. He was the highest example of unconditional love. And yes love your neighbor as yourself. Bam. It precisely spells out that we are to love ourselves too. Unconditionally. It’s a lot easier said than done but at least we have an amazing Helper:) thanks for stopping by! Hugs to you! And Merry Christmas!!

  10. Our hearts are strange places that are hard for us to even know, for secrets like to bury deep. But, our loving God illuminates the dark recesses of the soul shining brightly within to make us whole. “Do not fear” is spoken again and again to his children. It is only at the cross that we can face our sin and guilt, for they are impossible to deal with otherwise. I so enjoyed reading of how His grace gushes over you like the tallest waterfall so that in Christ you can face the curse of the dark because it is finished, already dealt with by His powerful covering of redeeming love nailed to the tree. Keep writing of your soul’s journey…so encouraging to read of His unending love that changes us!

    1. Hi Sheila ❤️Thank you so much for these beautiful words of encouragement. You’re absolutely right. God is so good and I literally owe everything to Him. Love and blessings to you and yours this Christmas ❤️❤️❤️❤️

  11. Such a compelling post! Self love is the hardest love to master because it requires us to look at ourselves without judgement. Not an easy task for most of us. Thank you for sharing your beautiful words! G-uno

    1. Hi G uno. Thank you so much! You are so right. It is such a difficult thing to look at ourselves without judgement. With acceptance. Forgiveness. But with it comes incredible freedom. Real freedom. Thanks for reading! Have a great day!

    1. Thank you Katie! I’m glad you like the pictures! A little bit of a labor of love but they’re fun to make! Thanks for stopping by and for your affirming words! Hugs and love to you!

    1. Hey Harry! It’s definitely a difficult thing. We can fully know we’ve been forgiven by God, but turning that into forgiveness for oneself takes a lot of grace. I’m so glad you’ve entered that freedom. Thanks for stopping by!

  12. You write a powerful message. I am most impressed by your wisdom. It comes from the experience of suffering, and turning to the One who suffered, died and rose for us. You have the gifts of faith and writing. I pray you long continue with both. God bless you.

    1. Thank you so much Joe. That really means a lot. Truly. I am humbled by your affirming words:) all I know is that God is good and I owe everything to him: my recovery, my health, my LIFE – to Him who is loving and merciful. Thanks for stopping by tonight. Blessings and peace to you this Christmas!

  13. Wow. You have no idea how much hope that gave me. I have had guilt for causing my family strife and this post opened my eyes to the fact that I have to forgive myself for that. I know that God has forgiven me (and so has my family) now it’s time to forgive myself. thanks for posting this!

    1. Hi Melody! I’m so glad this hit home with you❤️ you’re right, forgiving ourselves is the hardest part. I’m so glad you’ve decided to claim that freedom! Thanks for reading! Hugs and blessings to you!

  14. This is yet another inspiring and fantastic blog post 🙂 I bet you are really excited to visit home during christmastime because as you mention, you are fully cured of your past eating disorder. It is always wonderful to feel happiness whether so much sadness has plagued an individual in the past or not. Anyway, keep up the great work as always 🙂

    1. Hey there John:) oh thank you so much. Your encouraging words always bring me so much joy. You’re absolutely correct-I’m so excited to spend time with my loved ones as ME, without my past filtering and influencing the now. I’ve claimed that freedom and am resting in that peace. Thanks for stopping by! Hope you have an awesome weekend!

  15. This post struck a chord. I’ve been back to the tiny rural township I grew up in quite a bit this fall. No family or home left there but I drive by the house I grew up in and am filled with only fond memories. I’m sure there are some dark ones too . . but I’ve forgotten them over time. Great post.

  16. Beautiful words…I had to forgive myself of something that happened many years ago, and it was very hard to do – took me years – I know that God had already forgiven me, but I couldn’t forgive myself…until one day, I felt His presence and knew that I could….The best is yet to come! 🙂

    1. Hi Linda! Thank you for your heart felt reflection this morning! Oh I’m so glad you’ve claimed that freedom that comes with self-forgiveness. You’re so right, it is very hard to do, but with Him anything is possible! 🙂 thanks for stopping by! Have a beautiful Christmas xx

  17. Forgiving oneself is certainly important. Luckily, I’m suffering from all kids of sad moods and so, but they are never related to regrets. I treat things like this: after how long time this won’t matter anymore? Merry Christmas!

    1. Hi there! Thank you so much for this reflection. Yes, forgiveness – especially with ourselves – brings so much freedom. Even when it feels impossible, that freedom is within reach 🙂 Sending you lots of love and hugs this evening. Thanks for stopping by! hugs xoxo

  18. Beautiful post with deep inner thoughts. I like reading it and watching the images. I think I`ve got inspiration to srite my must do list before the New Year!

    1. Hi there! Thank you so much! I’m glad this stuck a chord with you and that you enjoyed my images! 🙂 oh New Years lists- that reminds me…I have to start thinking about that too! Thanks for stopping by! Hugs!

  19. Life certainly is a learning experience, that’s for sure! I’m glad you over-came the experience of being in that house! I have apporitions of a different sort, that tend to follow me around… There are just certain terrible things I can’t ever forget. It does one no good to dwell on those things, I found… Life’s too short!

  20. I’ve been there, done that. My form was alcohol. It made all the bad stuff go away, and I could be free. What I didn’t realize, was in my new found freedom, I was an asshole to literally everyone and everything.

    Nope, not even animals were safe. Tape on Cat Whiskers, yeah, it does what they say it does.

    It took me a long time to forgive myself of all the truly douchebagish things that I’ve done while on my trip to happiness via whiskey. I did though, and it’s become easier over the years for me to recover because of that. You sound like a truly beautiful person, so I’m glad you forgave yourself because you deserve forgiveness! 🙂

    1. Hi there! Thank you so much for your reflection! Luckily, all those things in our pasts are behind us and every morning we have the opportunity to start fresh. I’m so glad you’ve found the freedom of recovery! Wishing you all the best on your journey:) thanks again for stopping by! Hugs to you, friend xx

  21. Greetings!
    Thank you for stopping by my page and reading my blog posts. It really means a lot to me. I enjoyed reading this post. I can totally relate with all those icky feelings associated with going home. I haven’t been back to my hometown of Chicago in almost 4 years! I just moved from NYC almost a year ago after escaping a church cult. I can’t believe it’s almost been that long! I am also almost a month into recovery from Binge Eating Disorder so I can totally relate to you on your relationship with ED. Thanks do much for writing and being an inspiration and a light to our dark world. I look forward to reading more!

    Much love,
    Ahen

    1. Hi Ahen! Thank you so much for your kind response! Congratulations on your recovery! I know how difficult it is to break free from the bondage of ED- no matter what firm it takes. Thanks for stopping by! Wishing you peace and strength on your recovery journey xx

  22. Bless you for sharing your journey. I have a friend who desperately needs your words. I will share them with her. When we write we’re not always sure where our words land. I wanted to let you know they landed in a good place. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, and I mean that from the bottom of my heart.

    1. Thank you so much Lloyd. That means so incredibly much. That’s why I started this blog: in the hopes that even one person would find hope or encouragement here. Blessings and love to you and your friend. I will say a special prayer for her. Xx

  23. Hello, beautybeyondbones! It’s great to make your acquaintance! Thanks for taking the time to visit my blog!

    What a wonderful post! So honest and soul-baring. Your message is powerful, as is your journey. I look forward to reading more!

  24. You are an exceptional writer sharing your private journey from the dark to the light and on the way teaching all your readers very important lessons in life. Thank you for reminding us that it is okay to forgive ourselves for our failures. I hope you and your family have a very Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy New Year. 🌲

    1. Thank you so much Judy! That truly means so much. That is my deepest prayer: that even one person will find hope and encouragement here. Thanks for such kind words. Merry Christmas!

  25. This is a very thoughtful and introspective read. I went through all of these same feelings and had to come to a forgiveness. However, in my case it could only happen after there wasn’t a “home” to go back to. I forgave my family and and myself (for allowing them to treat me as they did) a year after my father passed away. But I can now think of the good times with my parents without any of the bad overshadowing it. I hope you have a good time at Home.

    1. Thank you so much for this affirmation, Lydiaa. I’m glad that you’ve come to that peace and forgiveness. I’m so happy for you that you can look back and see the good ❤️ thanks for stopping by and for sharing your heart. Blessings and love to you xx

  26. I applaud your transparency and willingness to be raw and real with a very intimate struggle. I love what you said about forgiveness and being able to forgive ourselves. I struggle in that area and you are right it’s totally pride! Easy to go undetected. Thank you for the likes on my blog. And please, keep writing. This is ministry 🙂 Glory to God and blessings to you.

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