I have been doing well, meeting goals and feeling really good about my progress toward getting healthy. Last night I was at home and my husband was out at a work function. He was receiving an award, and I really wanted to be there for him, but we had scheduling conflicts and couldn’t arrange child care.
I was texting in my support and he had sent me a couple pictures when this voice in my head said “Good thing you weren’t there, your fat self would have ruined the picture.”…I started to cry.
That negative voice in my head had been gone for so long I had hoped it had gone away. It is still there, sneaking around in my subconscious ready to rip me to bits from the inside out. I wasn’t feeling sad…I wish that I could have been at the presentation, but some of my family had been able to go. I had a good night with the kids…we had our favourite “Tea Party” for dinner and I had control of the the TV for a whole night…my world should have rocked…where did the negativity come from?
What do I do? Where do I go from here? Where did the little voice come from?
I don’t know where you are in your spiritual journey, but I believe this was an attack. As a history major, I have studied many battles. The first rule of attack is look for a weakness and hit there. It was exactly what happened…my body, my temple…is my shame. I have not been a good steward of all I have been blessed with. I don’t take it lightly that I have been blessed with a fully functioning body and despite my years of abuse it has stood me in good stead.
I shut the voice down…ironically all it took was a quick glance in the mirror so I could see my progress. I take the attack as a sign that I am making progress and digging into a healthy lifestyle.
Anyone that knows me will tell you that I like to be in control. Now, this is not always a bad thing. If you need something done or a deadline met, I am your woman. If you are looking for creative ways to solve problems, I can help you out. If you need help organizing or cleaning out a closet, sign me up! There are times that this has not served me well. I find it hard to not obsess over my eating plan and track every little thing. I have issue with not knowing the plan or with plans that change all the time. I really struggle with letting God do His thing in my life…this one is particularly stupid because He has done some wonderful things when I stop grasping at my plans and let Him take over. I can only say that I am working on it.
We just got back from vacation where this control…especially in the food area, was tested. We were staying in a new town, which would make it hard to source the food we needed. We were eating out, at least for dinner, which meant that I couldn’t control the ingredients. The timing for eating would be off too, especially with two days each way, of travel. I was paranoid and desperately afraid that I would go off program and gain back weight, it was what had happened before. The WiFi was spotty so I wasn’t even able to track…so what happened you ask? I had to let go of the control and trust that my body and my eating program would hold strong.
This is what I did do…I stuck to my no sugar, no starch rule, even if I was tempted by Fried Pickles. I stopped when I was full and ate when I was hungry…no tracking, not even for one day. I hung out with my kids in the pool and we went mini-golfing. I went shopping and caught up with friends. We went to the aquarium and generally had a great family vacation. Then we went home and I had to face Mr. Measuring Tape and Mrs. Scale…I put it off for a day or so…but my time of reckoning was here. The Result…I lost weight and went down in inches…actually more then I have in previous weeks.
My loss of control freed me up to fully engage in my time with my family. Instead of worrying about food, tracking and timing… I let it go and was very successful. Plus, I have begun to trust my body again…that is huge! I can depend on it to say…” I am done eating now.” I don’t know how long it has been since that has happened. It all ties into my previous post about letting go of the good, to experience something better. I am hoping it is a lesson I continue to embrace.
I have so much to talk about…but some of it is still processing so I am going to break this into a couple different posts.
I was listening to one of my favourite pastors over the weekend and he said one thing that really resonated with me…“sometimes you have to give up the good, to experience the better”. The context for this was prioritizing how to spend your time, specifically quality time with your family, but I think that it is something that can be applied to all areas of our life.
Everyone is encouraged to give up things that are bad for us…toxic people, bad eating habits, poor money management…and those things that are even more destructive. There is a point though were two things can happen out side of giving up bad habits, when everything we are doing would be qualified as good: 1-We become satisfied with good enough and miss out on bigger blessings or 2-We get to the point where we are doing so much good, that we are impacted negatively.
The latter is where I found myself about a year and a half ago. As a teacher I am responsible for leading staff devotions about twice in a school year. I don’t love it, not because I don’t like staff devotions….I do…but I am always a bit unsure what to say and such. It was toward the end of the year and I began to prepare a cute little story about my kids and encouraging…but I couldn’t do it. I was a dried out shell with nothing left to give, not even for a 15 minute devotional and prayer time. I was spent, so I went with that theme and gave a real look at how I was feeling. I am not sure that it left anyone with a case of the warm-fuzzies, pretty sure it was a little depressing actually. I did have many staff members come up and tell me that they could relate to where I was. It also served as a bit of a wake-up call that things needed to change.
We slowly made changes to home life, work schedules and kid schedules so that I don’t have that feeling of being stuck on a treadmill that is going too fast and I can’t reach the stop button…do you ever have that out of control feeling? When I would get over-whelmed like that, food was my drug of choice…which just left me feeling more out of control.
I want to encourage you to think about your life…are there unhealthy things that you can let go of? The tougher question is: Are there good things that you should let go of so that you can experience the BETTER? This may mean saying “No” to a volunteer opportunity, or maybe not having the kids enrolled in an activity every night. It may mean that the house is not perfectly clean, or that there is unfolded laundry.
Don’t be afraid of the purge…so that you can live in “The Better”.
I don’t know about all of you, but I live in a bubble. I married a Christian man and I work at a Christian school. My kids go to a different Christian school and have adorable Christian friends. I have a wonderful support group through our couples Bible Study…even my personal trainer is a wonderful Christian woman. I attend a Bible preaching church, with great messages and worship. With all of this support I should be the strongest Christian out there…in the word every day, the superstar of personal devotion time and I should possess absolute knowledge of God’s will for my life!
TRUTH…I am none of those things. I paddle along in my lukewarm river of Christian-ese and I am content…actually I am complacent. Every once in a bit I get fired up about devotional time, or donating more money to the church…but in my comfort I fall back into my old comfy ways and nothing really ever changes.
I am the only one responsible for this, I have made other things a priority in my world…I am wrong, a sinner of the first order and I should repent.
But what comes after that?????????
I need to replace my bad habits with good ones…it has worked for my physical well-being, so it must work for my spiritual side too…it has been withering in the corner for far too long. I have decided to start while on vacation…spending 15 minutes of my time in the word, praying doing something to reconnect.
I will report back, once we have returned from our trip…keep me accountable!
So my family and I are heading away for March Break…I am excited, the kids are excited and we are heading to warmer weather so it is all good. But here is the million dollar question…do I cheat?
Now I could be referring to cheating on many things, but the one up-most in my mind is do I cheat on my eating program? Here are the facts…I have been very successful so far losing 23 lbs and 30 inches in 8 weeks. I feel good and I have more energy. I have been working out like crazy and my clothes are getting baggy…why would I give that up?
Here is the thing…I have made my vacations more about the food than about rest and relaxation. This is a mind shift that I am looking to change, part of my healthier relationship to food. So although my husband has decided to relax his eating program for the week I am sticking to mine.
Part of this might be the fear that I will never get back on track if I jump into a week of fried pickles and carb loading…but the bigger issue is that I want to focus on spending extra time with my kids, playing mini-golf and generally relaxing. I will continue to follow what I have learned over the past 8 weeks and I think it will be a better vacation.
I would love to hear your thoughts on vacation eating, so let me know in the comments.
It has been 8 weeks since I started my journey toward health this year…a little less time since I have started blogging about my experiences and I wanted to give a little update. Things are going okay…but my goals have been met with varied success.
I am making good progress with my eating program and exercise regime. I am down 23 lbs and just over 25 inches…this is the most progress that I have ever had on any kind of eating program. I won’t go into details here, but if you want more info then please message me for details.
While I have been focused on the physical I have let me other goals of health for the year fall by the wayside…maybe this is okay as I focus on one then and then move on to the next when I am established in new, healthier routines, but it is not what I had imagined.
Some of you may be wondering where I stand on my body acceptance challenge…I haven’t gotten to the point where I can test myself…my trainer is away for a bit and then we have a family vacation. I haven’t even gone out to buy the appropriate clothing, but the intention is still there and I am committed.
I pictured more of a big push to get everything on track at the same time, but that doesn’t seem to be how my journey is unfolding. I will have to make peace with that and reformulate my game plan. I need the moments of self-reflection to anchor myself and hold true to my goals…my health is too important to give up on.