I said I was going to talk about over-eating. No one has ever told me to stop eating, except this one high school boyfriend, who reminded me each time I put a morsel in my mouth it would be the one that made me fat. I come from a long line of diabetes and thyroid conditions and I overcompensated my fear of being morbidly obese by worrying about my weight. When I graduated high school, I was all of about 95 lbs. I lost 11 lbs, total, my freshman year of college, instead of gaining the proverbial 15, but, if you know me at all, you know I love chocolate and can eat enough to get my money’s worth at an all-you-can-eat seafood buffet. I’m skinny, but I overeat all the time. To my knowledge, I’ve never been accused of gluttony, probably because I can hold my cupcakes.
It’s in my blood to go to excess, maybe. I don’t just believe in things a little bit, I take opinions to their (sometimes) illogical conclusions. I can’t stop at one piece of candy or one cup of coffee or one hour on the computer. I don’t sit down to watch part of a movie. I hate leaving part of a book unread. I’m an all-or-nothing kind of girl. My maternal grandmother was a 100% worrier. If my grandpa didn’t come home when she thought he should, she would be on the police scanner, on the phone with the hospitals, watching the news for reports of major accidents… her worries drove her to excesses of fear. My biological, paternal grandmother walked away from her family, and, as far as I know, never looked back. Three children and a husband she left behind with no attempt to reconcile or contact.
I think about her sometimes. I suppose I might look something like her. I wonder what was in her blood that made her give up? Was it an all-or-nothing attitude? Was she bent on a different life, and since she couldn’t have it, dropped the life she didn’t want and went searching? Is that blood in me? I worry about my biological make-up. I scan my children’s behaviors for signs of that compulsive personality that demands perfection. I sift through evidence in my personal life that might indicate what blood type I possess.
Honestly, I don’t remember whether I’m A+ or B- or C++. I knew once upon a time, but have now forgotten. I hope I don’t need a transfusion. I do know a few things: I have an iron deficiency, my circulation can be poor, if I cut myself shaving my legs, I can expect to bleed for a long time… those are things I know through observation.
Other things, I have to learn through faith. I believe that it doesn’t matter what my blood type is, because I know what type of blood Jesus had. His blood was innocent, perfect, enough to cover my personality flaws and biological shortcomings, pure enough to cleanse my sins and make me whole, sacrificed for me so that I would never be forsaken. His blood type is all that matters, because his blood makes my life full. There is enough strength in the blood shed for me to lift me up. I contemplate his blood every Sunday while taking communion. “This is the blood of Christ, shed for you,” the server says before I raise the small cup to my lips. Excessive love fills that cup and in writing this, I just changed my opinion of transfusions. I get one every time I ask for forgiveness, healing, grace and love.