Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Practical Pondering and Julie's Journal

Hi Folks!

This week you get a BOGO (buy one, get one) post. As many of you know, I went on vacation and upon my return I came down with bronchitis and a sinus infection. As a result, there was no blog last week.

When I returned from Virginia I found a tick on Tana, my dog, and pulled it off of her. I knew there had to be more but was unable to find any. Sure enough about a week later I found a brown berry on my kitchen floor. Upon closer inspection it was not a berry but an overengorged tick that was unable to move itself since its legs couldn't reach the floor. That is how I feel in my body right now.

I am in the midst of a personal struggle that has to do with my health and my weight. I have some health issues that are being treated that have caused me to gain 29 pounds in the past 9 weeks. There are several reasons for this weight gain, none of which are related to overeating, unhealthy eating or lack of fitness. I truly have no control over my body. One thing I have learned is that I always have choices in every situation. Now they may not be great choices, but nonetheless I always have choices. I could bury myself in gallons of ice cream and cinnamon chip scones but then I would be completely discouraged and have 60 pounds to lose instead of 30. I could ignore the doctor's advice and try to find my own way through this challenge. Although I am feeling afraid, discouraged, mad, and frustrated, I am choosing to go back to the basics of what I know is healthy for my body. In order for my body to have a fighting chance in this health challenge, I must do everything I know to keep it healthy. That way my body can assist in its own healing process. While there is a temptation to choose the gallons of ice cream, I know from experience what will serve me better.

I hear all of the encouraging words that my support system shares with me but even though I hear it and understand it in my head, it is very hard for me to believe it as the truth in my heart. It is hard for me not to believe the racket that is screaming at me, "You loser. You are going to gain all of your weight back. What are you doing teaching a weight loss class when you can't keep your own weight off."

Life happens. Sometimes we truly have no control over circumstance in our lives but what we do control is how we respond to the situation. Back to the basics for me means doing what worked for me in the beginning of my journey when I was over 400 pounds:

1. Challenge the racket
2. Gather support and encouragement from the safe people in my life
3. Look for encouragement where ever I can find it
4. Drink lots and lots of water
5. Keep a food journal to ensure that I am being honest with myself about food intake
6. Continue fitness as I am able. If I am not able to walk, find an alternative
7. Always share my truth. If I try to hide it, it will cause shame.
8. Listen and believe the truth, which is that I have a health crisis that will get resolved and this is merely a bump in the road.

I will lose the 30 pounds
I will get back on track
I will be healthy again

What do you do when "life happens"? Can you share a life experience that relates to this and what your action was? What helps you stay on track through a challenge you have no control over?

Have a great week, ladies!


Frances said...

I am surprised that nobody has posted. But then I realize, it's hard to comment when there is so much to say and yet nothing to add.

Thank you for reminding me that I am making the choice; and everything that I do is a choice. So, what happens when I am between a rock and a hard place? Well, I have the choice to paddle faster or to hold it down to move slower than the current. If I don’t make a choice, I am really screwed because I am letting the river take me with no consideration on my part at all. By not making a choice, I will end up crushed against that rock and that hard place. By making a choice to paddle faster than the current or to hold the paddle to go slower than the current, I can effect a change. I have discovered recently that holding and moving slower than the current gives me the time to observe, to consider, to seek and so to find the way that best serves Him. Certainly there will be times that paddling faster will be the answer, but what a relief to discover the power of moving more slowly than the current!

Thinking of you all, ff

Janice said...

Thank you Julie for being so transparent with us. I am so sorry about your health struggles and I do hope and pray that you are well again soon.

Although I (thankfully) do not have a health struggle right now, my "out of control" situation is being unemployed. In the past couple of months, I have let my guard down and permitted myself to begin old eating habits (ie lots of ice cream and chocolate). Although I had been weighing weekly since last summer, I stopped getting on the scales for a few weeks becuase I was afraid of what I would see. That, to me, is the equivalent a cat hiding its head under the couch and thinking itself invisible while the rest of it is in plain sight. It doesn't solve anything to try to deny or ignore the truth. So I would say the first step for me getting back on track to making healthier choices was to get on the scale and try not to shame myself for whatever I saw. It is what it is. Now I have a choice whether or not to do something about it.

The second thing I have done that seems to be helping was to make some commitments to new exercise and healthier eating. I joined a Boot Camp that meets for just 45 minutes M W F at 5:30 AM. It gets me out of bed and I'm working on strengthening parts of me that haven't been worked in awhile. It is hard but I feel encouraged as I see small changes. I feel accountable to the group and to myself as I paid money for this. I want to get my money's worth and keep my pride by showing up! And my commitment to this new exercise reminds me that I do want to make healthier choices and I am taking action to follow through with that.

The 3rd step for me is that I am following a different eating plan that includes mostly raw, fresh foods. In order to do this, I have had to "Reframe" how I think of food. It is not my comfort and it is not my recreation. It is what I need for fuel for my body so I can fully live. I tend to eat a lot of processed foods so this is very new for me. I am eating lots of vegetables, fruit, and proten. I am feeling much better and less lethargic. And I have stopped buying ice cream and chocolate for now.

This is a lifelong struggle. However, I know I make it harder than it needs to be sometimes. I have the tools I need to be successful in following through with lifestyle change and I don't intend to give up. It is worth the fight. "I" am worth the fight.