4 broken butterflyWhen I was really, really, really, really fat

I ceased to be free. I stopped trying.

I stopped living. I simply existed.

My wings were broken, torn

by my own destructive habits.


I sat alone nursing my tattered and crushed self.

I silenced my voice.

Who would listen to a woman who can barely walk?

What good would it do to have an opinion?

I felt like a useless fat, broken, wingless butterfly.


Another voice screamed inside my head constantly.

“Be happy with what you have. It’s all you’re going to get.

You are fat and the world hates fat people.

You’ll never get a job you like. You’ll never write a book.

Just be happy your husband is willing to stay with you.”


And then that same voice would say,

“Go bake a batch of oatmeal cookies or brownies or Mamaw’s cake.

It’s the only thing you do well.

It’s the thing people love you for. It’s what you do.

Besides you need something for comfort. You deserve that.”


So I would eat and the cycle never stopped,

this part self-love, part self-hatred.

I felt like a useless blob, yes, but I still knew

I had flown at one time and maybe I could again.

Still, I was helpless to find a way to begin the journey back to flight.


Self-love says, “I am awesome. Why can’t anyone see that?”

And in the same breath, self-hate which says,

“An awesome person would not let themselves get in this mess.

What’s the matter with you?

Look how worthless you are.”


Self-love hates it that “normal” weight people

Will not accept me,. They think she’s lazy, weak-willed and indulgent.

Self-love pushes others away in order to protect from

anger, snide remarks, oinks and name-calling.

Self-love is really pride in its worst form.


Self-hatred convinces me “normal” weighters are right.

I am all the things they are thinking even if they aren’t saying them.

Self-hatred stuffs the screaming monster inside to keep it quiet,

to keep it from saying, “You’re a worthless piece of trash!

Go ahead and kill yourself with sugar. You deserve it.”


All I want is to climb out of this tomb I’ve built.

And though there are those who love me, who need me,

who try to support me, I push them away and I wonder, Why?

Why can’t I allow them access to all of me?

They can’t understand my problem.


How could they? They’ve never been in love with Sugar.

They’ve never sold their soul to the thing that always seems to be there

bringing comfort, protection, companionship, whatever I think I need.

I am magic. I command Sugar to help me and it does.

I can see it, taste it, smell it, feel it, hear my mouth as I chew.


I am not stupid. I am intelligent. I know it’s not helping.

I knew it’s slowly, but surely killing me.

The more I eat, the closer to death I come.

Still, I am worthless. Does it really matter?

Who really cares for me?


So I eat and I cry. Then I eat some more to keep from crying

and then the cycle starts all over.

At some point I know I must make a decision.

Then the doctor says, “You’ll be dead in five years if you keep eating like this.”

So there it is. Do I want to live or die?


What will it be—my life or a cookie? Am I worth even that?

I know with all that is within me that the Creator bought me with the price

of His only Son. It’s too magnificent to understand.

If I weigh 150 or 550 pounds God loves me the same

and He has a purpose for my life.


I know He wants me healthy to fulfill my destiny,

It just feels impossible to get there.

God in His grace extends His hand to me,

offers Himself in exchange for my monstrous issue.

Then, He sends one to guide me out of the trash heap that has become me.


Together with others on the journey, we begin the first small steps

one at a time, one foot in front of the other,

we go forward. It is progress. It is slow, but it is steady.

I want lasting change this time. I can’t take the waffling.

I’m all in. I’m changing my life for my life.


With each step, a layer of shame falls to the ground.

Another step, another layer.

I have many, many layers of fat, yes, but also of emotional baggage.

As they fall off I’m slowly remembering who I am, why I was made.

I’m remembering there used to be a spark.


The layers fall off and I begin to feel exposed,

but God reminds me He is right beside me.

His presence, His strength, His mercy, His grace

has brought me through another rebirth,

One I never dreamed would happen.


Once upon a time I was nothing but a worm.

I knew in order to become a new creation I must put my trust in the One.

And so I did and I became free.

Then I became entangled again and my wing broken.

Yet, God even mends broken butterflies.


And I have remade wings designed specifically by Creator

for those who’ve come through hardship, addiction, pain.

My new wings are stronger, more secure; they lift me higher.

I swoop and swerve, I soar teaching others to fly.

And we rise together on mended wings.


For information about the necklace that inspired this post, go HERE.


arms r t 5For those of you who feel you’ve lost hope of ever soaring of having your wings mended, let me assure you, God wants this for you more than you do, My best resource to get you started towards soaring isSweet Change 101: Seven Keys for the Weight Loss Journey.

It includes seven videos, study guides, action steps, supportive material and reflection questions. Because I believe we should not do this journey alone, I’ve thrown in two FREE months in Sweet Change Weight Loss Group, the group that’s setting people free.

Go to the Sweet Change 101 page and sign  up today. It’s time. What will your choice be?

Teresa Shields Parker
Teresa Shields Parker is a Christian weight loss author, coach and speaker, who has lost more than 250 pounds. Her book, "Sweet Grace: How I Lost 250 Pounds and Stopped Trying to Earn God's Favor", is the number 1 Christian Weight Loss Memoir on Amazon. Her other books include: "Sweet Journey to Transformation: Practical Steps to Lose Weight and Live Healthy", "Sweet Freedom: Losing Weight and Keeping It Off With God's Help", "Sweet Change: True Stories of Transformation" and "Sweet Hunger: Developing an Appetite for God".

She also offers Overcomers Christian Weight Loss Academy and VIP one-on-one coaching program, both available under the weight loss tab. To book Teresa for your next event, check the Speaking tab on her website. Also check out her blog and Sweet Grace for Your Journey podcast under the tabs by those names.