4.19.2014

The death crawl

If there is one thing I have learned in life....It is that I am stronger than I know..
and the only way to find out how much I have in me..is to push till I can't push anymore..
and then push a little further.
We always stop before we look weak, don't we.
Before we feel pain.
Before it requires something..
Something more than we think we have.
The only time we grow is when we step into the abyss of the unkown.
Full of fear...
Full of uncertainty.
and we do it anyway.
Past the point of pain..
through tears.
Through the dark.
never quitting...pushing and pushing.
Then God takes off the blindfold and we find we are further than we thought.
We are in the end zone.
Don't quit.
Don't quit.
Don't quit.
HOLD ON.
DON'T QUIT.



4.18.2014

passion>spiritual death

Hello all,
back from the silence.
Not because I was in a bad place..
I was incredibly busy...
working 25 hours a week..making sure I get my daily exercise...however small..
and working on making my (now departed to the airforce) daughter's old room into my new art room.

Speaking of Art...
I believe I talked about how I was dead inside.
And didn't realize it.
And then one day I did.
This was before I realized I was morbidly obese..
by a year or two.
And my husband had deployed again to Iraq.
And I was worn out..
fatter than ever.
I took up crocheting..thinking that If I kept my hands busy..I would stop eating.
That was a bad year.
It was the year my husband deployed for the fourth time..
which was preceded by a miscarriage..
a miscarriage that was preceded by finding out my oldest brother had a terminally progressive illness.
My marriage was bad.
My life was devoid of fun.
My oldest was becoming disrespectful and unruly..
I didn't have the energy to even correct her...let alone enjoy her.
And I saw a commercial for The defense institute.
It promised to teach my child to defend herself...it wasn't a martial arts school...it was a self defense school.
Their motto.
IF you want art, buy a brush.
Which, of course, caught my attention.
So I enrolled her.
It saved my sanity.
Three days a week I would take Kate after school.
Her teacher was loud...and happy and upbeat and positive..
he irritated me a little.
But still...
I would sit and crochet.
She would run in circles..
and any time she exhibited the signs of disrespect towards Eric...her sensei...
he would call her on it..
"mom" he would yell...
"Yes."  I would say.
"Does she do this at home?"
Yes,  I would say...
he said "If she does it again, You tell me, and when she gets here...she can do pushups till she corrects her attitude."
The first time he said that, I felt a ton of weight lift off my shoulders.
He no longer irritated me. LOL.

I can't tell you how many times during that year I utilized the threat..
"Don't make me tell Eric."
She hated Eric.
But she didn't hate me.

Then Kate told me she didn't want me sitting through her classes...so I would drive around for 45 minutes till she got done.
one day...as I was driving up and down academy blvd with sophie in the back screaming her head off...I thought..."this isn't a life, it's a life sentence"..
I finally realized the depths of my unhappiness.
I sat trying to figure out the last time I was happy?

...The next class I sat through..
 I tried to figure out what Eric had that I didn't.
He seemed to be full of energy..
brimming over...always upbeat.
Then I realized that he had passion.
He loved what he was doing.
He believed in what he was doing.
and that propelled him through life.
It made people want to listen.
To be like him.
And then I looked at me.
And thought...when was the last time I was passionate about anything.
And it was in high school art class.
Then I realized that I didn't know what I liked.
What music.
I didn't listen to it anymore.
I didn't draw anymore.
I had no real friends.
my world had become a small circle of people who I never told anything to...I revealed nothing.
I admitted nothing.
I felt nothing.
Deep down, my thoughts were: "my life is over, I am here to facilitate the dreams of my children and my husband."
yeah.
wow, right?

It was there in the middle of a self defense class for kids that I finally saw my spiritual state.
If I hadn't seen it and started to correct it..
I never would have been able to begin to fix my physical state.
All real change happens from the inside out.
So I knew..
I had to know at least one thing about myself.
So I picked  'what is my favorite color?'
And it took a while...
but it's swimming pool blue.
And so, one day...I painted my bedroom swimming pool blue.
My husband still thinks it was accidental.
but it wasn't.
It was me.


That was the beginning.

With Love,
Chris


3.31.2014

micro (small) resolutions

heydy hey people...
been working a lot
don't have much time.
ever get the feeling you have bitten off more than you can chew...

an example of this might look like:

I am going to eat 1200 calories
work out six days a week.
and go to church three times a week..

when up till that point..
you were eating whatever you could pile drive into your pie hole..
your work out consisted of flapping your gums.
and God was a mild profanity used in a slow check out lane at the supermarket.

I heard tell of this thing called micro resolutions.
Instead of going bat out of hell insane and death spiraling..
the idea is to give yourself one thing to do that is easy...
SO EASY, you would feel like a loser if you didn't complete it...
one specific idea was to make a resolution to exercise for a minimum of four minutes in a row per day.

And before you know it you are jogging to the beach to have a naked swim with the dolphins and dropping forty pounds.

So pick something...like...I am no longer drinking soda...do it till it gets done..
and then pick another something.
something like- I am going to exercise for four minutes a day no matter what.
and you keep doing it till your whole life changes...
or you die.
one of those.
I pick...hmmmmmm....from here on out...instead of eating a candy bar on my break at work..I eat a piece of fruit..
apple...or banana.
That's it.
I already exercise 6 days a week.
so I got that going for me.
Tell me what your micro resolution is..
or what you think it should be..
in the comments below.
Chris out.

stuck in silence...

nope.
Being whole is great and scary.
Btw.
Just saw this song..and love it.
I love music.
Good music..
will be back tomorrow with a 'real post'.
enjoy.




Love,
Chris

3.14.2014

fat is the symptom-love is the cure

I would say the majority of morbidly obese people are that way because they are dealing with serious shit.
And instead of drinking, or doing drugs...they eat.

Why would I eat instead of deal with my life?

It was easier.

there...I said it.
It is EASIER.
not in the long run of course..

But in the short run....you bet your ass.

For me, food did indeed taste better than thin felt.
I am one of those unfortunate (or fortunate) women who does not give a shit if a man thinks my ass is wide.
Don't like it, lump it.

Well, that just left ME to care.
and I didn't.
Not for the longest time.
I cared about getting through each day.
Because I was miserable without knowing I was miserable.
YOu may think that is an impossibility..
But all my life,  my mentality was "Life is tough....no one wants to hear you bitch...so suck it up."
So I did.
I learned to effectively mask all my feelings by eating them.
It started around the age of twelve and continued til about five years ago.
Until I stopped eating them....
I thought I was a very even keeled person.
Water off a duck's back and all that.
lolololol..
When I stopped eating..
I started noticing things.
Things like how my husband talked to me.
(keep in mind my husband is a sober alcoholic...and how he talked to me is undoubtedly how he talks to himself in his own mind.)
How I spoke to myself in my own mind.
How others looked at and treated me because of my size.

The day I looked up and really saw myself at build a bear...
it was like waking up from a coma.
That awakening was not magic..
It was a long process.
A process which began at a karate class.
I know...it's labyrinthine...this story of mine.
But I am an examiner by nature..
I need the whys and hows....it is how I am made.
but back to awakening.
I had thought, up to that point...til the age of 35...that I was merely philosophical about my childhood...
And when I stopped eating..
and stopped masking..
I felt this weird pressure in my chest that kept growing and growing.
and growing.
And It was rage
sorry..
IT WAS RAGE RAGE RAGE RAGE RAGE RAGE RAGE RAGE RAGE.

up till that point..
I had lived with a low level depression that I masked with apathy and eating.
and Not Thinking About It.

Once I confronted the state my body was in...270 pounds on a 5'3 frame...and the state my mind was in....and I would lay awake at night reliving parts of my childhood while trying to sleep...
...the rage would grow...
And I threw myself into weight loss.
I used the rage to my advantage...
And it really propelled me down the scale.

Then, at around 156 pounds (a weight I maintained through high school, something to think about later I suppose)
I hit a new emotion.
FEAR.
I was also molested by my stepfather's father.
he touched me inappropriately.
And I never told anyone until I was 19.
He called me his 'petite princess" and  would try and tickle me and put me on his lap..
and then one night...he laid down next to me and touched me.
and I rolled over and he left.
And I never went near him again.
But it colored the way I saw my body.
I felt dirty.
Every man I had met until I was 15 had been abusive, or perverted.
I hated men.
except my brother.
which was my saving grace..
In the time since...I have met men who aren't abusive.
Who are very good men...
My mom's fourth husband is a good man.
preachers and so fourth..
and my husband...while struggling with his own issues..is at his core, a good man..
so back to the fear.
The readers who have been here a while remember my fainting goat post.
A man tried to flirt with me at the mall..
and I was so afraid, I had to sit down before I fell out.
I was afraid to be 'petite'....or vulnerable.
There are a lot of reasons why I chose food.
It's easy,
IT's available.
IT doesn't judge.
It is legal.
and it worked.
But it kept me from feeling...and that is no way to go through life.
IT kept me from confronting the people who needed to be confronted, facing the issues in my mind that needed to be faced...It kept me dead inside.
Waking up from that was like the feeling your hand gets when you lie on it all night, and you have cut off your blood supply.
It is painful.
It can feel easier to revert.
or bury it in shit..
or spray some garden fresh spray.
or whatever euphemism makes it easier to live a lie than face a hard truth.

who wants to live a lie?
not me.

These last six months...the last of my fantasy land wishes were stripped away..
And everything I had hoped would be true about me if faced with bad circumstances..
I found to be true.
There is Nothing like a real trial by fire to show you who you are..
And If I hadn't been doing what I had been for the last 5 years..
I never would have been ready for the last six months.
And who knows...maybe six months ago never would have happened, If I hadn't become who I have become?
so it goes....
in any case:
I have become so solid in the knowledge of who I am..and what I am capable of...that I was able to find my feet in short order.
even as I have remained overweight...
I lay in bed one night a few months back, and accepted every pound on my body...not as some symbol of failure..
but as an acknowledgement that I am here...and the space I occupy and my body
is mine..
mine to cherish or abuse.
Mine.
I own it...all of it.
And I love it and am grateful for it..
old, overweight, stretched out....one weak knee..
I am here.
I love my body...it has carried me through.
Now I want to show myself what I am capable of..
I want to feel energetic and full of possibility.
And that means keeping my body in good shape.
For me.
God willing, I have a full life to live..people to meet and enjoy..
a world to see.
So why would I allow my body to be hindered.
when there is so much to do?
I have eaten under 1800 this whole week...
and exercised every day..
next week I will up my exercise and take another 100 calories off the plate...
not because I am disgusted with myself..
But because I have a goal to reach and things to do.
Anger will propel you.
Love will free you.
Chris out.



The difference between setting a goal and avoiding a consequence

AVOIDING CONSEQUENCES is vague....you know what you don't want....where you don't want to go...But how do you arrive at your destination without knowing what you do want?

I don't want to go to Peoria..

okay.

Where do you want to go?

Some people go their whole lives trying to avoid negative consequences...
I have started calling it "living in the dontwants."

It is only recently that I realized that I had made most of my life decisions to avoid negative consequences, instead of creating a road map to the kind of life I would love and enjoy.

There is a HUGE difference.

Peoria is one place in a million...

Knowing you don't want to go THERE is limiting choices, not creating opportunities.

Finding out where you want to go takes knowing yourself..and knowing yourself means stripping away the toxic garbage piled on you by damaged people and learning what you enjoy, where your talents lie and what you admire...and what you want to achieve in life..

These were Questions I couldn't even contemplate at one time..
Hell, at one point...I didn't even know my favorite color..
I was so numbed out and walled off...I was just existing.
Now,  knowing what you don't want is fine...
all my life, I have known what I don't want.
Knowing what I do want....well, I had never even thought about it..
I went along with whatever didn't feel too terrible.
It was a part of my belief that 'this was as good as it gets."
Sometimes things even turned out nice.
The only thing I ever had a definite idea about in life was parenting.
I knew EXACTLY what kind of mom I wanted to be...
I wanted to be a mom who raised her children as independent beings.
People with their own minds, hearts and goals.
I wanted to fill them with the knowledge that there is indeed a God.
One who had planned them and wanted them to grow and use their talent to it's fullest potential.
I wanted them to feel confident...to be well educated and to have loads of options...
Imagine that...I had a plan...I implemented the plan with joy..
and
 They are confident, well educated people who have options..


 
 

and with all those options...
This last Sunday they chose God...they chose to confess him before man.
 As southern Baptist we believe when we confess him with our mouths before man, he will confess us before our father in heaven.

 It was HANDS DOWN
the best moment of my life.
It was a moment I had worked towards.

You see, in parenting, I didn't actively fail.
Because I had a vision of the type of people I wanted to produce.
I didn't go into that venture thinking..."I just don't want to produce a murderer".

Or as Chris Rock once famously said....'Just keep them off the pole"...

I had standards...high ones....
And the determination to see my standards and plans through..
IN anything....you have to know what you want your end product to look like...
For instance..
You don't go grocery shopping without knowing what you are looking for.
You don't start baking a cake without the proper ingredients.

Or if you do....you'll get something that is less than stellar.
Knowing that  you don't want black forest cake, will not help unless you decide WHAT YOU DO WANT...

When I got married...I knew I didn't want an abusive alcoholic who would beat me and control the money..
But I had no idea how to spot what a 'good man' looked like.
Considering my childhood, I didn't do as poorly as I could have.
I did have  a list...
A list of traits I didn't want...
jealousy,
explosive anger...
control issues.

I wanted;
hard worker
intelligent
disciplined

And he is all those things...
I also opted for
indifference..
absence....
and a hands off attitude to every major decision that was made as a couple.

which worked when I was a very hypersensitive and unconfident person.
I thought it meant he trusted me..
when what it meant was an abdication of the responsibility to be my partner and take part in both the benefits and responsibilities of parenting and being a couple.
And as a result..
my marriage has been less than stellar...
over these last six months I have taken a good hard look at what kind of marriages I admire..
and now..
Having  come to know myself...
I know the traits that I admire and desire in a spouse..
and it is time to see if I married that person..
kindness
generosity
a good humor and ability to laugh at themselves and life.
a person who commits to their family and community.
These are traits that I value.
So it is time I made friends with my husband....and that we WORK on our marriage...together.

And that is on both of us.

I am now involving him in issues large and small...
He has begun taking the kids places...

I am speaking kindly and demanding to be spoken to kindly.
It is a beginning.

Tomorrow I will talk about fitness and eating.
This was another aspect of my life that I had allowed to be subpar.

Needless to say...if your goal is: "I just don't want to be fat."
that isn't a goal.
it is a consequence you want to avoid...
attached to it are all sorts of ideas you probably haven't sorted.
The main one being that it is the fat that is making your miserable
 when in reality...
it is the misery making you fat.....


But I will discuss that tomorrow.
I am very tired..
I have hit the gym five days running and have kept my calories under 1700 while working and running a ton of errands...so it is off to bed for me.

The best thing I ever did for myself was to start this blog...
It has helped me find my voice, and in turn..find myself.
Thank you so much.
with love,
Chris

3.11.2014

Why i actively failed...

Okay...that is quite a title.
I went to college, but didn't finish...I had many reasons..
But mostly, looking back, I feared success...I didn't know who I would be as a career woman.

I had no model for that...I had a 3.98 gpa...in paralegal training...I aced constitutional law...
But I would talk to my mom on the phone using four letter words...and the word ain't...(which I personally find abhorrent, just ask my children.)

The year we bought our home, I had taken pictures...it was a home with a foundation....I grew up in a trailer..my mom now lives in a manufactured home...on a foundation.  I knew she had worked her whole life to achieve what she achieved..and I felt like I had walked into mine...I brought the pictures with me to Michigan, but left them in my car...two days into my visit, my mom asked me where they were...so I told her why I hadn't brought them in...she was flabbergasted...

When I was losing weight and succeeding,  I didn't want to look like a show off...I wanted my friends who were concerned about their weight to lose weight too...I didn't feel comfortable succeeding where others were not...

I was simultaneously excited by the positive attention, and afraid I couldn't handle it...It also began to highlight the faults in my relationship with my husband..

I have chosen mediocrity and stagnation...some success was good...but not enough to upend the boat, not enough to cause stress or anxiety...and certainly not enough for people to place their faith or trust in me.  I felt I was a sham...that any success I had was luck...deep down, I even had doubts about the weight loss...I always described it as some magical flip of a switch...when what it was, was me deciding I was too good of a person to be judged solely on the basis of weight...

And if my husband had not looked me dead in the eye and told me that he put the roof over my head, the clothes on my back and the food in my mouth...and had I not had the fleeting thought.."Who in the hell does he think he is talking to?"  I never would have had the impetus to go out and obtain employment...

I HAVE ALLOWED MY OWN DIMINISHMENT FOR THE COMFORT AND BENEFIT OF OTHERS...

NO MORE.

In our culture...women are still expected to be accommodate others, to be nurturers...that is fine, as far as it goes...for children, the down trodden...the mentally incompetent..I spent my childhood feeling like I had to apologize for my existence, and half my adult life trying to prove to one person in particular that I was lovable...there is a meme on facebook..it says, if you are constantly trying to prove your worth to someone, you have already forgotten your value...
Except I never knew my value...I have found my value...it is discoverable..you just have to look at your gifts and what you bring..and instead of diminishing them...or viewing them through the distorted lens of a broken and shrivelled mirror (the damaged people in your life) view them through the lens of love (God for me).

To move forward doesn't mean denying who you were, or belittling where you came from...it means that you took the pain and the reality, processed it and instead of allowing it to sublimate and stymie your future, you use it as the lesson it was intended to be....and it becomes another step in your ascension and growth towards all you were meant to become.

I failed because I believed that was all I was worth or could/should hope for.

Now I know better.
When you know better, you do better.
Chris out.