Tags

, , , , ,

Addiction…my life is riddled with addiction.  The most obvious of them stares back at me every time I pass a reflective surface. The less obvious addictions swirl under the surface and help make sure I stay addicted. I never had trouble with drugs or alcohol or gambling.  Besides food, my addiction is people.  People in general; men particularly. Sex, but that was only part of it. Sex was often just a way of convincing myself, however temporarily, that I was connected to something outside of me.  I thought the men – the act – filled an empty space inside me. Funny thing – the more I filled my life up with shallow people and my bed with random men, the emptier I became. I was a whore. There really is no nice way to put it.  I can’t even say I was a prostitute…they get paid. I tried to convince myself I liked what I was doing and that I was comfortable with “who I was”.

I began to seek greater “thrills”.  I am not even sure why except that a numbness seemed to invade me and I thought, maybe, that I could shock myself out of it.

Multiple partners; men I had never met; married men, dangerous situations.  It is only by God’s grace I wasn’t killed more than once.

The world had convinced me that I was trash.  So I acted like trash.  I let people treat me like trash.

God doesn’t make trash. I didn’t know that yet.

Addiction gave way to submission; slavery; I was OWNED.  I wore a collar put there by a man.  And he betrayed me.

How do I write the story in a way which shows the depth of the darkness but does not read like pornography (and bad porn at that)?  I’m not sure I can – which may keep the entire story from being written – only time will tell.  If I do write it all, I don’t imagine it will be on this blog.

However, as I’ve been healing, I’ve noticed a very real correlation between my addictions – and realize that I’ve been in submission to them for much of my adult life.

Sensuality. And not sensuality as it relates to sexuality, necessarily.  I’m talking about just using your senses to see, smell, taste, touch and hear. (Some people have a sense of direction.  Mine was amputated before birth.)  We are endowed with these senses, in my opinion, to make use of them – full use of them.

To completely understand where I am going with this – it’s important to know that I was raised (until mid-Junior High) in the middle of nowhere, Michigan.  The Midwest.  Now, I’m not slamming the Midwest but a rural town with fewer than 1000 people has very little to stimulate the senses unless you really go looking.  My parents didn’t really go looking.  They were happy, well, content, I guess, with life as they knew it.  I thought I was, as well. It was a bland life.  Don’t misunderstand me – we had fun, we had friends, we laughed, we cried.  But it was bland.  Our spice cupboard had garlic, onion and pumpkin pie spice.  Our school curriculum had all the usual stuff – nothing geared to exciting the mind, per se.  And the lack of diversity extended to the people as well.  We were white.  All of us.  We spoke English.  Every last one of us. We lived in an area where the main sources of income were wheat, soybeans and milk.  In my mind, the world existed in those colors. Everything about life was plain, whitewashed.  I didn’t realize it then but I was bored.

We moved during high school and my world began to open a little.  I went to school with people of many colors and backgrounds.  I began to hear other languages spoken.  But with the revelation of diversity also came the advent of the words prejudice and bigotry in my life.  I didn’t realize my parents were bigots.  I don’t think they realize it yet.  My senses just started to come alive.

Although some of my world was opening up but gastronomically, my palate had yet to be truly stimulated.  Chinese food was a BIG deal to our family – that was as exotic as food came (cashew chicken).  Meat and potatoes still reigned supreme even in a port city with fresh fish in ready supply.  Herbs remained unheard of and vegetables came out of cans.

I went away to college.  I began to explore. Culture, food, people.  Then I went out into the world.  There was so much I’d never even dreamed existed.  I began to explore all kinds of food – and spice.  And all different types of people.  And music. And life. And my senses came alive – began to flourish.

This SHOULD be where these ramblings begin to tie into the title.

As I look back now, I can see that when I began to try to taste everything life had to offer, I traded one form of bondage for another.  It’s one sort of slavery to be blissfully unaware of what you’re missing. It’s another to be so caught up in the pursuit of what you perceive to have missed that you neglect important aspects of life – but they are both slavery. Both keep you from rising to your full potential.  Both keep you from living a fulfilled life – both leave you reaching for something which is always just slightly beyond your grasp.

It seems that most of my life, I have been a slave to one thing or another. First it was just to food.  Then to men – and finally to the body that my love of food helped me create (which often helped keep the men I wanted out of my reach).  My senses had been fully stimulated and took over.  Completely.

A man’s betrayal broke my submission to him but not to the lifestyle which accompanied it.  Finding faith and the love of a good man did that – and took away my need to be owned.

But I was still slave to my body and the food which created it.

Sex fulfilled one addiction – food the other.  They’re not so different.  There is sensuality to be found in both.  There is good and bad.  For the most part, the bad comes from the excess.

Food porn.  Told you it wasn’t what you thought it would be!

Advertisements