There was a night in which I thought I lost God but in truth it was the night I found him. My story starts when I was 8 years old
I sat in the classroom having dinner and thinking I was different, odd, ugly and fat. Harsh things for an 8 year old to say and was the start of a 13 year battle with Anorexia. People don’t talk, but hide away from problems and illnesses – but I want to share this with you now.
My past seemed so dark and scary, but in a sene I had it all. I was living in Stockport near Manchester with a loving family, learning music and being a ballet dancer. I was brought up a Catholic, going to church, being confirmed but never really thought about my faith. Life was great on the outside but on the inside I was crying and hurting. I was on medication for depression and had turned to self harming by the age of 14 as a way to cope with my emotions. I didn’t want people to think I was upset. Always smiling and happy on the outside but I was hurting on the inside.
GCSE’s and A-levels went by and soon I was at university, studying Music at York St John College. I began to eat more and soon hated myself more because I had put on a lot of weight in my eyes. I lost my faith by this point. I never went to church, never prayed, and didn’t own a bible. God was not part of my life and as far as I was concerned was not a Christian anymore. I thought God had abandoned me.
A Dark Path
My self harming got worse, as did my Anorexia. My friends didn’t know the truth of it all and I was made to be an attention seeker, which maybe I was but only because I wanted someone to notice, to say “It’s going to be ok.” Things steadily got worse until one night in 2005 I was walking home from work. I decided enough was enough. I was going to go home and kill myself. A harsh thought but I had lost the will to live. My heart ached so much, my head was tired of fighting the voices telling me I was fat, that I was not good enough, so I was going to go home and end it.
Light at the End of the Tunnel
Walking down Stonegate I turned past St Michael Le Belfry, the doors were open and I don’t know why but my feet just led me in there. I sat with my head in my heads and cried so much. I was angry with God. I felt like everything I had been taught was a lie – “God is always there…God loves you no matter what…..”. To which I thought, “You were never there, you left me when I needed you the most.” At that moment I felt a hand on my shoulder. A calming, reassuring hand.
God proved to me that at that moment, when I had lost all hope, that no matter how much darkness was in my heart that he was there. He was always there I had just turned from him and ignored him. I felt the storm was calmed – if only for a moment. That night I went to the hospital and stayed in over night. I decided death was not the answer but whatever the answer was it was to be found in God.
Nearly a year has gone by since that night and I’m not recovered but recovering. I’m being healed not by medication, not with the many therapists they wanted me to see, but by one book. All the answers are here in this one book that I never truly read – the Bible. God had put all the answers and help I needed into this one book.
Since that night my life is slowly been turned around and I am still learning so much about myself and God. I still have moments when I want to give in, some nights where I am exactly like that night in October, but each time I stop and think about that night and how I don’t want to give in, each time I manage to battle through it and by trusting God.
The story isn’t over there. I feel that if I was to just live now if would not be good enough. God saved me that night and for that I am whole heartedly thankful. I have taken the steps to speak out for those who have these illnesses and to speak out in general about the things on my heart as a way to thank him. As a result of which I have decided to not hide my past. I’m honest to people who notice marks on my skin and say “What’s that on you arm?” Already this has helped people to see light at the end of the tunnel.
God is my reason for fighting illness – He gave me strength when I needed it most. I have decided to be more active and try to help other people. One way of doing this has been to create a virtual place where Christians can meet, chat and talk about many things. This place is an internet forum. A place where no matter where you are in the world, you can stay in touch, because God is everywhere. A place where people can talk about God, events to go to, things on their heart and mission work.
It’s my vision that one day this will no longer stay as a York based forum but a nationwide forum where any student can talk and connect with people who believe the same as they do. This forum is still small but please come to see it. It’s not my forum it’s your forum. This forum was created by a few people, all students from York. The template is there to create it however people want it. It’s moderated by a few people to help it run smoothly, be a fun place, and a source of information. It is open to you – a way to connect with each other and with God too.
The Yorkstudents Internet Forum address is http://www.forumsvibe.com/yorkstudents