One can for every pound I lose...bring it!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

The Best Laid Plans...

Did you ever hear the saying "The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry"? Here's the definition:

No matter how carefully a project is planned, something may still go wrong with it.

Story of my life.

I've had plans - big plans, big plans - for most of my life. Not too long ago I made a plan to be "Fit & 40, not Fat & 40" - but at 41, I weigh more than I did a year ago.


And, a year before that, I recall being on a real "health kick" - I vividly remember one particular day in October 2009, walking in the park, marveling at God's beauty in the colored leaves falling at my feet while I walked in the crisp fall air - I remember giving thanks for my healthy body and the beautiful nature God gave me to enjoy. I was using my gym membership on a regular basis and I was on my way to  weight loss of 20 pounds or so.

And then this:
I was laid up on the couch with broken ribs and torn knees and a neck brace that robbed me of sleep for weeks. My 20 pounds joined me rather quickly on that couch. The fact is, I needed to slow down, and perhaps this is the lesson I needed to learn that. To clarify, I don't mean literally - the accident was not our fault - I needed to slow down mentally. And that accident shaped my appreciation for life a hundred-fold. I am still marvelling at how my body has healed and is capable of moving again. When I was running today and wanted to quit, this is the picture that came to mind.

This picture brings me full circle to a year ago when I was ready to embark on my Biggest Loser journey - a year ago on this date, I was packing my cool-max socks and Ryjka aqua shoes and I had BIG PLANS to start my once-and-for-all-I'm-gonna-do-it-I'll-prove-it-to-everyone adventure of a lifetime. Those plans worked great for a few months. Then, life happened, and my plans grew less important as I grew busier. Funny how when you put something on the back burner, you don't see it as much, right?

I remember at one of the Women of Faith conferences I attended, Thelma Wells spoke of her day planner, and how every square of the month was filled in with things she had planned...and then, she fell ill. I remember how she said God "laughs" at our plans...because as we try to control the things in our lives and lose focus of giving our lives over to Him, we learn we are NOT in control at all. Now, don't get me have to pay the bills, go to work, etc. But the point is, in spite of all our planning, we have to realize that things won't always go as planned.

I am sure all the married people can attest to that. I was no Bridezilla, but I sure was "picky" about what music could be played at my wedding. And by picky, I mean controlling. (-: I gave a list to the DJ and FORBID him to play any chicken dance, electric slide, or other goofy tune (my apologies if you like those, it's just not my cup of tea.) I gave him enough songs to be able to last the whole reception.

So, you can imagine my horror when I heard "Save a horse, ride a cowboy" playing on my perfectly planned, elegant day. He had indulged a Guest's request and ignored my instructions. O. M. G. It sure is funny now, but it sure was soooo not funny at the time. In spite of all my careful planning, I was not in control after all. We have friends who are on their way to get married in Hawaii today. I am sure they were not expecting a Nor'easter to dump 10 inches of snow in our area in October, but it happened. And they had to adapt their plans.

Lesson learned. After many years of trying to control things, I am adapting. It's part of letting go and letting God, and it's part of giving up this "I've got the whole world in my hands" attitude. Today I woke up ready for a run. I am on my way to Disney in January for my 1st 5K with my BFF, and I woke up absolutely ITCHING to run. I put on my Nike cold weather gear (with the sleeves that have finger pockets and everything) and I headed out. A few steps from the house, the aforementioned snowstorm had made the road I wanted to run on more appropriate for ice skates. So I turned around,tip toed my way home, and then I did something that was very unusual for me.

I got in my car, and drove to the gym.

Refusing to be defeated, I adapted my strategy. It was rather inconvenient for me to get in that car and drive today - I am sure staying home and saying "there goes THAT plan" would have fit my previous modus operandi...but this is how I know that I am not "done yet", and that that he who began a good work in (me) will carry it on to completion (Philippians 1:6)

 As the daughter of a man who found sobriety in AA, I know all about "One Day at a Time"...and I am applying it to my life. Am I looking forward to my 5K in Disney in January? You betcha. I won't stop planning my life, but I will do so prayerfully, knowing there will be times when things don't work out quite the way I want.

But when my plans go awry, I still know that I have a goal, and to accept any less than the best for myself is selling myself short. With some friends losing loved ones this year, the fact that we are not guaranteed tomorrow is something I know all too well. I want to live my life to the fullest and if that means being flexible so be it. It's less "laissez-faire" and more "go with the flow" and it's something I need to practice every day. This life is the only one I got, and I just refuse to quit. Murphy's Law will not stop me. So there.

I'm planning on running again on Tuesday...anyone know what the weather's gonna be? (-:

Monday, October 24, 2011

A Question of Character

This past week a few things happened to make me stop and question myself.


Like, who am I?

Some people that I thought I was friendly with made some less than flattering remarks about me. I found out and it took me by surprise. After the hurt wore off, I reflected on the comments. And by reflected, I mean obsessed.

I didn't understand. I try to be good to everyone I know, and I like to think that I am overall a pleasant person. I know that sometimes "perception" can be misleading, but I'm never able to completely dismiss a "diss". It's not the first time it's happened, and I'm sure it won't be the last. That knowledge doesn't make it any easier.

I came across a quote from John Wooden:

"Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.”

Love me some John Wooden!

Anyway, I memorized this one rather quickly and used it as comfort. Yup, who cares about reputation? I remember in the 9th grade I sure did when I caught mono, and everyone said it was from kissing a certain boy, when in fact I believe I got it from the water fountain. True Story. Reputation? Don't get me started.  

Then I started thinking about my character. And by thinking, I mean doubting.

What was my character? Who was I trying to be? Who was I, really?

I am someone who is trying to lose weight and be healthy, who is struggling with aligning my motivation with perspiration.

I am someone who loves to write, who has been too embarrassed to blog about setbacks.

I am a good person who cares about everyone's feelings. Sometimes too much.

I am someone who tries to live life by The Golden Rule.

I want to be a small part of the light in a dark world.

I'm all these things, and more. So to have someone doubt this "character" of mine was confusing, to say the least.

When I talked with my Mom about these things people said, she put it this way: "It doesn't matter as long as you know who you are in Christ."

Hmmm. That was food for thought. These scriptures came to mind:

“Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?” – 1 Corinthians 3:16

“You are the salt of the earth… You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden.” – Matthew 5:13-14

 Romans 8 says
 “There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus..."

I love that everything I need to face life's obstacles is in my Bible. The sting of the comments made this past week can be dulled with a good shot of The Word. The same was true of the betrayal I faced last year by a so-called friend. I still need to forgive her every day, but it doesn't hurt as much.

Not everyone will "get" me. I have a handful of good, solid, "salt of the Earth" friends and a committed, strong and caring husband to lean on when my character is questioned. 

One good thing? I haven't let this set me back from my goals. I am concerned with my journey, not my pace, and I am still on my way. I celebrate small victories (like, not consoling myself with junk just because someone was mean to me) and I surround myself with friends who lift me up. I am almost halfway through my 5K program (for those of you who are concerned with my timeline yes, I started over again) and will be "Running Disney" in January.

I am a believer in things happening for a reason. I needed the reminder that I am loved beyond comprehension. I needed to be reminded about the importance of forgiveness and show those who hurt me a spirit of Love (that was tough, but I did it.)

Without trials, the victories are not as sweet. I needed to remember that too. If it were easy to get back in a size 6, I wouldn't appreciate it as much. (Dear God, it doesn't have to be too hard either) (-:

What people think of me is none of my business. This was a light bulb moment for me this week. I hope you have yours, and that your "character" isn't questioned by the person that counts the!