Why is the title of my memoir Starving?
Well, it is the perfect fit for how I felt. That ache in my belly, that need, that hunger for both emotional and physical support. And the more that I was deprived, the more that I felt it in my body and my mind.
The anxiety crept into my body because as we know “the body keeps the score” and I started throwing up every day at the age of 10. I couldn’t control it and I would carry a plastic bag in my pocket in case I purged everywhere – in the car, on the bus, in the grocery. It was always a threat. My body became a threat AND what I felt my mom thought of me was a reality – I was disgusting.
I am convinced that I my growth stalled at 4’11 because of my emotional need too stay small, under the radar so I wouldn’t be at the mercy of my mother’s stare or criticism. I was not put on growth hormones, but there was talk about it. What I really needed was someone to hug me, sit down with me and listen to me, send me to therapy and tuck me in at night. Instead, I was given Bible verses, which are wonderful, but not when they are left for you on the kitchen table with not explanation or loving person behind them. I think my parents were not able to manage my anxiety because they didn’t know how to manage there.
Wow – am I really writing this all down publicly?
Wow – I can feel a freeing breath come up just as I speak the truth. Not in order to hurt anyone, but because this is how it was for me. And I have never had the chance outside of therapy or a close circle of girlfriends to really talk about it all.
Thank you for listening, Dear Ones.
The ebook and paperback are now available here.
I hope this starts a conversation for women around shame and mental health. I will be a guest on two upcoming podcasts that explore these issues and I’m super excited to talk and not be silenced.
Thank you for being with me on this journey. And I promise I’ll do a design post this week. If you are looking for pretty pix of decor and design follow my instagram: @blueeggbrownnest
For more author talk and mental health talk meet me at my author’s site:
@christenbenstenauthor (this is my new author insta page)
Thank you for all the care and support as I walk through this process.