Archives for: November 2011, 21
I am thankful for a lot of things in this Thanksgiving week. One of the biggest items on my list is the restoration of DD’s hormone balance.
If you are a long time reader of this blog, you remember that in her senior year DD began to deal with body image issues. You can search the archives if you want to know all the details, but I’ll summarize. DD was never anorexic. She never stopped eating. But she cut her calories back and became obsessive about exercise. She lost too much weight and threw her hormones all out of balance.
I was firmly convinced that this was a spiritual issue with her, not a psychological issue. She was rejecting the way that God had made her. She needed to deal with Him about that, not have someone play games with her psyche.
She is a smart girl, and when she went off to college, she said all of the right things, but in her mind, she was still determined to remake her body in her own image. Not surprising, she got worse before she got better. She eventually agreed to a daily accountability e-mail with me. While this stopped her weight loss, it did not result in her gaining weight.
Though she was exercising too much and not eating enough, she was extremely committed to the BTD. So the food she was eating was almost all beneficial. I think that is one of the things that protected her from worse effects on her health.
God allowed her to have a couple of health scares. He also brought some incredibly wonderful and supportive people into her life. She met some other girls who were dealing with the same issue, and as she got to know them, she began to see her own behavior for what it was. He also brought a wonderful young man into her life (I’ve called him ESS in my blogs) who loves her exactly the way God made her.
But most of all, God confronted her every morning in her Bible study. When I read back through her accountability e-mail, I am amazed. Some days He reminded her how much He loved her. Some days He forced her to face her rebellion and sin. Some days He showed her that he created her with a purpose and had a plan for her life. She listened, and her mind was renewed.
Not overnight, but gradually she changed her habits and began to gain weight. It took a long time, and a few setbacks along the way, but she got her weight back to a normal BMI. However, her hormones were still not working.
Our family doctor was more concerned about some hormone levels than others, and the one that he was most concerned about was her low thyroid. DD and I did enough reading to know that thyroid function drops in people with eating and exercise disorders for the same reason it drops in people faced with famine – it is one of the ways our bodies preserve life. When there aren’t enough calories, all body functions slow down.
She resisted taking thyroid hormone for a long time. She tried increasing iodine and several other natural remedies. Our doctor eventually convinced her that her other hormones were probably not going to return to normal until she got her thyroid working properly again.
For three months now, she has been restored to good health. She wants to wait a few more months, and then talk to the doctor about a safe way to wean herself off of the thyroid medication. Thankful hardly begins to describe how she and her dad and I feel.