Friday, July 08, 2011
A year and a day after mom passed, our family was blessed with the birth of my youngest niece. Tomorrow is my eldest niece's birthday. Happy Birthday to both! Isn't it such a blessing that life's sorrows have balancing joys?
Which brings back the ongoing theme of balance. The days with a little more indulgence, the days with a little more vigorous activity, the days that encourage order, the days that encourage fun. Recognizing all that life has to offer and living in the moment is a healthy way to live. Listening to our bodies and what they really need... nurturing our inner child and parenting ourselves.
As I await the arrival of my brother I rejoice in having taken the steps to encourage a more orderly home. I hope that this effort will become the same kind of ongoing thing that grows into "maintenance" of another sort.
Don't you love how Spark gives that criss-cross effect in all areas of life?
Thursday, July 07, 2011
This is a word that my sisters have introduced to me. Literal translation: Year Time. It denotes the commemoration of the date of someone's death. Today is our mother's Jahrzeit. She passed away in 1996, exactly three weeks after my husband's brother passed, and about seven weeks before his mother. What a summer that was, fifteen years ago, now.
Anniversaries of various types have differing impacts as the years pass. Many of us who have fought the weight / food / addiction issues track to the day so many milestones: I remember to the day when I started my first "last straw" effort to learn how to get healthy, "for the rest of my life". I don't remember so much the exact dates of subsequent "day 1" restarts, but I do remember the most recent one... because I think this time it really *is* forever. At least, that is my resolve, my prayer, my desire.
I've learned a thing or two over the years. Things like it's OK not to be perfect. That one slip doesn't have to become a long slide. That it gives no pleasure to do some of the things that contributed to the weight problem any more. That weight doesn't serve the purpose it once did in my life (believe me, it *was* serving some purpose or I would not have held on to it).
I *enjoy* my new way of eating and moving and breathing and accepting. Life is good... and it is really all about attitude and gratitude... oh, yeah, and acting on it.
Wednesday, July 06, 2011
Sometimes our journey to health and fitness seems to be a bit of a winding path. I think of it like a labyrinth, winding back on itself. Many of us are on this journey, and we are at different places in the labyrinth... sometimes they come close to one another, then suddenly diverge. Sometimes we appear to be on opposite sides of the circle, and then a few steps later... side by side! To get through the path, though, one has to keep moving, slowly, meditatively, and learning, rather than try to shout directions to another, as we cannot see his or her path, only our own.
Nothing brings this out more than holidays, and the periodic get-together with family. One may be in a very beatific (peaceful, blessed) state leading up to such a gather, then find others at places in the journey, and be tempted to give them "instructions" or advice on how to walk their path. Or, perhaps someone else is giving YOU the advice!
As an apparently successful loser of pounds, I am occasionally asked by people who apparently NEVER had the pounds to lose how to motivate their husband or friend or some loved one or other to "do something" about their weight / health.
I have found it most helpful, in my own journey, if people just left me be! Why? Because there is this little rebel in me that doesn't want someone else living my life! It is, as the adolescent yells at his/her parent, MY LIFE!
So... a little poll: those of you who have lost significant weight and become fit... did anything anyone else did or said truly positively influence you to "do something" about your issues? If so, what did they say? Did it hurt a lot? Or it it free you from hurting? Or did your motivation have to come from within?
We must walk our own path. Those who are nearby or on a parallel course may be able to talk about the view, but may not see the next twist in your path. Those who have walked your path before may have something to say about how it looked as they passed by, but not know how the vegetation has changed with a passing season. The best we can do is encourage one another that the journey is worthwhile, that the path has much to offer. And we can listen to what others have to say about where they are on the path... with compassion and gratitude... and keeping advice to ourselves, unless it is asked for.
Monday, July 04, 2011
We celebrate the independence of the United States of America today. Independence was declared from a King and Country that taxed the nobles who had moved here but did not allow them a voice in Parliament. Anyway, that's what we are taught in school.
I think of other declarations of Independence, too. In the Old Testament, it is said that Moses went to Pharoah and asked for his people to be freed... then led them out in the face of resistance. I think of movements today, political movements and armed struggles where one group seeks freedom from control of another. The group and social struggles wage on over who shall control, who shall govern.
And then, being me, I bring it to a personal level, with a twist. Suppose, instead of seeing myself as the budding American Nationalist, I saw myself as King George. Such impudence these freedom seekers have! Trying to get away from me! It is my RIGHT to rule them, tax them, use them!
Only after a long and painful struggle did King George and his advisers throw in the towel, surrender to the independence that those American Rebels had declared.
This brings a different perspective, and some questions: What might I be holding on to that I need to grant independence to? How can I shorten my own pain and struggle?
Am I holding on to the idea that I can control the actions of others? I need to let that go, grant it independence!
Am I holding on to the thought that weight and fitness once achieved will solve all the problems in my life and make me happy? I need to let that go, too.
Am I holding on to the concept that I don't deserve happiness and order, that I'm somehow unworthy? Then I should let that concept go, and enjoy the happiness that is all around for the taking!
Am I holding on to a belief that I am incapable of governing myself, of having discipline in my life? Self-government is for adults... am I ready to let myself be one? If so, I need to let go of the thought that I'm weak or childish... I need to grant "me" independence.
I have met the tyrant... and she is ME! It is I who can grant me independence! I don't have to struggle... I can let me be me! And I can love it!
Have a great 4th of July! Let yourself be self-governed today!
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