Monday, March 30, 2009

B is for Birthday,,,

It's happening. I'm turning another year older, in less than 24 hours. What does this mean for me? Really, not much. It's not a milestone of any sort. It isn't the BIG 4-0 or anything. However, this year I'm going to make it about change. No, I'm not Obama, I'm just wanting something to change in my life, and from what I hear, change starts, with me. So here are some things that I want to change, or things that I will learn in this next year of life.

I will start off with my weight, because it's the most obvious and biggest obstacle. I'm sick of being the fat one. I'm sick of being the fat mom, the fat sister, the fat wife.. you get the picture. I'm ashamed of how I look, I feel sick to my stomach every time I look in a mirror. I understand God loves me no matter what, what matters is what's inside, blah blah. Warren loves me, no matter what size I am. He sees who I am, regardless of what the scale says. I am truly blessed in that capacity. My kids love me, this I know. They do not judge me. Though, I am embarrassed for them, when their friends see me, I'm afraid sooner or later, if it hasn't happened already, their friends will make fun of THEM for having a fat mom. I do not want that for my kids. The reason I want to lose weight has a lot to do with HOW I became this way in the first place. Confused? Let me explain.

I can remember a time in my life, between the ages of 13-15 when I would look at myself, and see an obese girl. I felt fat. I struggled with food, I struggled with how I looked. When I was 15, I weighed a whopping 111lbs. I have pictures of myself where you can see my collar bone. I still saw fat. I wore baggy clothes, and felt and looked frumpy. Looking back at myself in high school, I was the definition of frump. I didn't feel thin, although I know I was. I didn't feel good about what I looked like. I related how I felt inside, with how I felt outside. I was uncomfortable in my own skin. I suppose that is normal for a teenage girl, it's not easy to feel good about what you look like, when you only see negatives. I only saw a fat, frumpy girl.

At 15, I was introduced to a 19 year old guy who would become my boyfriend. He was in fact, very cruel, and physically abusive.. at 15, I was raped. It isn't something I speak about a lot, mostly because I know it makes my family uncomfortable. It makes most people uncomfortable. The reason I'm bringing it up now, is simply to state my case.

At 15, being in that relationship destroyed what I had left of my already lacking, self esteem. I was never the same after that relationship ended. It is something I carried for many years, something I hid, something I was ashamed of, and in turn, it introduced me to the fine art of "emotional eating." This little treasure served me well. It was certainly easier to eat and feel better, than it was to speak up about what happened. For a long time I was scared to mention it to anyone, because I was afraid of people's reactions.

After four pregnancies, depression and more weight gain, I just lost who I was. Inside, I am a skinny girl with a bubbly, outgoing personality. It's the outside me, that keeps the inside me at bay. I've become afraid of being in large crowds, I hate meeting new people. I've become somewhat of a shut in. That isn't to say I never go anywhere, because I do, but mostly just to places no one knows me(grocery store,that sort of thing) unless it's family. I'm terrified of running into someone from my past. I walk with my head down, and praying that no one recognizes me. I'm always positive everyone around me, people I know, and people I don't know, are looking at me in disgust.. I would!


This year.. as I turn 36, I've decided I'm taking ME back. I'm going to shed this disguise of weight and anguish. I'm going to stop believing the worst of myself. I'm going to reach outside my comfort zone as often as I can. I am finally going to conquer this.. I will.. I will! I will express how I feel, even when I feel like no one is listening.

As for the rest of the list of things I'm going to change this year;

I'm going to be more patient.

I'm going to practice listening more.

I'm going to think before I speak.

I'm going to take my dog for long walks.

I'm going to walk my children to and from school, weather permitting.

I'm going to be a better wife, a better mom, a better Christian.

I'm going to keep smiling at strangers, even when they don't return it.

I'm going to ask for help when I need it, and not feel like a failure BECAUSE I ask.

I'm going to teach my kids how to cook and enjoy it!

I'm going to try at least one new recipe a month AND blog about it

I'm going to take more pictures

I'm going to learn at least one new thing this year.

I'm going to have more fun with my family.

I'm going to make and achieve goals

I'm going to take baby steps and look before I leap

I'm going to start writing more

This is the year of change for me. This time next year, I will be half the woman physically, but twice the woman mentally and emotionally.

This is going to happen, and I'm excited for it.

And just for fun, I'm going to cram in my Music Monday choice.. My reason behind it.. I just love the song and I used to listen to it ALL the time as a child! So I hope you do too. The quality isn't great, but that's because it's OLD :)

Monday, March 23, 2009

Just Another Music Monday..

I'm copying Stef.. because she likes it when people copy cat her :)

So.. my music choice for today, is something I actually heard and saw at church this past Saturday night. Our pastor played her video during his sermon on Unfailing Love. He taught us Two key characteristics of the Love of God.

An Unfailing Love that DEFIES the norm
An Unfailing Love that DEFINES us

What I learned was, we as human beings have the ability to love each other as God loves us. Maybe it won't be easy for us.. it definitely won't be easy, but it IS possible. Why? Because we are made in His own image.. Genesis 1:26-27

So then why can we not love like God?

I was speaking with someone today about how mankind has turned it's backs on the elderly. I was brought back to a story I heard this winter, about a WW2 Veteran who froze to death in his home, because he didn't pay his electric bill and the electric company shut off his electricity. He froze to death. This man fought for us, for our freedom.. he put himself in harms way, risked his life and only God knows what he saw, but he did it because he believed in his country, he loved.. his country. How do we repay him? Letting him die alone and cold in his home. Where is the love of our people?

If someone upsets you, makes you angry, hurts your feelings, betrays you.. do you just shut them out and never speak to them again? If the answer is yes, I am going to pray for you. If your answer is no, I am going to pray for you anyway, because it takes a strong faith and a strong character to forgive and to "love anyway" I understand it is difficult to look someone in the eyes, who has hurt you, and say, I choose to forgive you AND I choose to love you anyway.

Loving someone in spite of what they have done, is a huge thing. It isn't easy, it isn't meant to be. We aren't God. I watched The Passion For Christ, and wept when Jesus looked up and said, "Father forgive them for they know not what they do" He forgave them, he loved them anyway. He was beaten and bloodied and weak and in a kind of pain I pray no one ever has to feel. Yet, He forgave. He loved.

So why can you not forgive and love the person who made you angry?

Why can you not forgive and love the person who betrayed you?

Why can you not forgive the person you have known your entire life.. saw each other through so many of life's ups and downs.. and that maybe didn't do exactly what you wanted, or needed of them at any particular time.. why can you not forgive?

I know it isn't easy, I know that it is going to take a lot of "do-overs" but God forgives us when we fail.. when we forsake him.. when we sin. We are forgiven.

He loves us.. Oh how he loves us..
We are His portion and He is our prize,
Drawn to redemption by the grace in His eyes,
If grace is an ocean, we’re all sinking.
So Heaven meets earth like a sloppy wet kiss,
And the heart turns violently inside of my chest,
I don’t have time to maintain this regrets,
When I think about, the way

I challenge each of you to look inside yourself and find the kind of love God gives us.. is it there? Do you think you can find it? I challenge you today, even if it's just inside yourself, maybe it's YOU who needs to love YOU.. whomever, whatever, love anyway

Here is my song..