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Saturday, January 17, 2015

Time Doesn't Stop


It’s past mid-January and I’ve not even been out to my own blog!  “Milford”, as I call one of my WLS buddies, sometimes reminds me that I’ve not been keeping the world up to date on my progress.  Although I have plenty of things to say - just ask CME or my children! - I just haven’t made the time to put it my thoughts down on paper.  So this is one of those long get it all out posts...

I can start by reporting that my focus for CHRISTmas was Christ.  Yes, I enjoy the traditions of decorating (well, the decorations at least) and the Christmas music, gift giving, etc.  But it’s gotten so out of control in a lot of cases and I feel like The GIFT of CHRISTmas is an afterthought for many.  There are things I’d redo this year if I could, but in general I stayed in the word and in the reason we even celebrate.  My church had an 11pm candlelight service for the first time – and it was packed!  We’ve always had afternoon/early evening services, but the 11pm was new.  Can I just say that it was probably the highlight of my Christmas Eve?  I truly felt as if I was preparing my heart for the coming of the King!  Oh…and food?  Yeah, it was good.  I didn’t over indulge and I didn’t ‘focus’ on it.  I did make cookies with my sons and my precious g-baby!  I had forgotten what it was like to make decorated sugar cookies with a two year old! We did great until I ‘firmly’ said, “That’s enough cookies!  You’re going to get sick…” A small meltdown and a big hug session later and we were all good again. 

An interesting thing happened on CHRISTmas Day.  And I use the word interesting lightly...very lightly!  Long story short is that we had a major plumbing issue that required us to completely replace the pipe from the outside of our home to the septic tank.  It's winter.  It's cold.  Ground is frozen.  Pipes are filled with tree roots (and the obvious other 'matter').  Did I mention it's cold and the ground is frozen?  Regardless... after MANY days of lots of family hard work.  We did it.  There were two days that I had to make frequent trips to one of two different gas stations because the bathroom pipes led to the ditch we were digging.  But two days is nothing, right?  On the upside, even though NONE of us wanted to be doing such a nasty job, it did occur to me more than once that I physically was able to be out there helping - digging, swinging a pick axe, chopping thick tree roots with a hatchet.  Yes, I was sore, but I was doing it.  Not sure I would have (or could have) done those same tasks just a few short years ago.  So I say, Thank you God for making it possible for me to do this crappy job!  

Fixing What's Broken 
Before I ever started this journey, I made a promise to my friend L.  She told me that she would only support my WLS decision if I promised to take care of the emotional and spiritual side of me as well.  And though I've done that through the classes and support groups that bariatric center provided, I'd not really dug deep into matters of the heart, mind and spirit.  Not until recently. A precious, God-filled, Spirit-led friend of mine is helping me look back at my life and identify key events that shaped my thoughts, my life, my weight.  Sometimes it's easy to key-in on a specific detail while other times I feel like I'm totally clueless as to where God is taking me.  Subconsciously even, I think I resist going to places I don't want to address.  I've made strides in forgiveness during this process.  Forgiving people from my past, forgiving people in my life now, and forgiving myself.  I've had to be totally repentant of believing the lies I've been told...rather than believing what God has to say about me.  This process has been both humbling and freeing.  I'm so thankful for my friend C and her desire to help others find restoration for their lives!  God bless her calling!!! 

First Impressions
Without going into too much detail because this blog is open to the world, I had a moment recently when I was reminded that people are judged by first impressions - by the way we look. It's so unfair and those impressions can be overcome (as this one was) but to see it play out makes me sad. I found myself wondering what this same person thought about me in past. And then I found myself wondering...almost projecting my own past emotions on others I see. "Are they sad? Have they endured the ridicule I did? Have they ever considered WLS?"  Equally not fair of me to have those "first thoughts" but it is reality. I pray God continues to grow me to the point where I'm not judging strangers - even though I've thought mine was coming from empathy. Lord give me your eyes!!

In my time with C, part of the process is allowing God to speak into my life. Recently He gave me the word "enough" which is interesting to me. 
I've struggled for years thinking I wasn't "enough"...not smart enough, not pretty enough, not thin enough, not (adjective) enough... Truth of the matter is, I AM enough because of who I am in Christ!  I am made in the image of God (Genesis 1:27) therefore I am fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14). He loves me unconditionally to the point that while I am far from perfect and still a sinner Christ died for me (Romans 5:8). And I am enough because He chose me! (John 15:16) Trying to absorb this truth as I continue my life as His child! Trying to listen to Him and hold tight to knowing that Christ is enough for me!! When my focus stays on Him, I can face each day from a place of victory...no matter what life tries to put in my way!

My Journey
As my friend recently said,"my journey...is my journey." And he is so right. The farther out from surgery, the easier it is to let old habits creep back in.  It's not like I'm not aware of them; for me it's that I'm just not as disciplined as immediately post-surgery. I even told CME last week that I noticed I had let my portion sizes get out of control. Not that I was binging or way overeating, but I knew I was consuming more than I needed to. Stating that out loud to him, freed me from what felt like a "secret". That may sound silly, but satan uses those "secrets" to try to lure me back to a dark place. Exposing them is part of my accountability.  Weight wise I still could shed 10-15 pounds and be at a good spot. I'm not "working" to do that but I am definitely needing to weigh daily and not put any weight back on!  I may ask for new scales for my birthday! Ha!

So there's a snapshot of what's happened and what's going on. God continues to groom me in all areas of my life and this journey has brought me so much closer to Him!  May I continue to let Him work in and through me...even when it takes me to uncomfortable places!!!