|This is not me. I will never look like this. |
But this is how I will FEEL next Friday!
We hear a lot about "living out our dreams." I was just talking to my brother about this the other day. His dream is to move to California "someday." He has had this dream for a little more than a year. And he's no closer than he was a year ago, because he keeps getting sidelined by this, that or the other thing. He lost his focus, and now his dream seems like an impossibility. I tried to encourage him (young and unattached, there's nothing stopping him!) but I know all about people trying to convince you to do something before you are convinced that you actually deserve it.
I'll be living out a dream of mine next week, when I run my first 5K in Disney World with my BFF. It's literally going to be a dream come true. And I am making it happen. It feels surreal now, but I finally will be putting into action something I've dreamed about for quiet some time. And that's just the beginning of my "New Year, New Me" attitude. I may not finish it in record time, but by gosh by golly I am crossing that finish line, and I am already proud of myself.
I recently entered a contest that if I win, may take me away from home for about a month. At first, I thought I couldn't do it. "No way", I thought. I didn't dare to DREAM I could make it happen. Because that would mean I'd have to put myself first. This kind of ties in to yesterday's post, because putting myself first would kind of take me out of my comfort zone.
As my husband prepared to help me with the contest video, I asked him, "OK, before we go any further, do I have your blessing to do this even if it means I'm away from home for month?" Without hesitation, he answered "yes." It took me back to February 2006, to the part of our vows (which I am proud to say I wrote myself) where we promised to "support one another in our goals."
Supportive, he was. (there goes my Yoda again!) Thanks, honey.
As moms, our nurturing instinct almost forces us to put others before ourselves. And that is definitely OK, to an extent. It's a loving, kind thing to do. But you also have to make time to be loving and kind to yourself, too. It's kind of easy to forget. I remember a therapist friend once giving me the analogy of the airplane spiel before take-off: "Parents of young children, be sure to secure your own oxygen mask before assisting children". Make perfect sense, right? In that scenario, you have to be the one in control of yourself so that you can take care of others.
Anyone else hear that "ah ha?"
Me, selfish? Never. But I can also be aware that I am deserving of an opportunity to find the balance I lost a while back. I have had successes and failures (in that order) just as many of you have. And they can get discouraging. I have a few sets of 'before' and 'after' pictures. I'm kind of a 'before' again. And it's OK. Because I realized yesterday, in entering this contest, that it's OK to admit to yourself that you need a little help, a little "time out" to work on YOU, and with the support of those around you, it's possible to DREAM BIG. I went to the Biggest Loser Resort for a week over a year ago, and I allowed the stresses of life to get in the way of reaching my goal after I got back - not unlike some contestants you see that gain some (or all, or more) of their weight back. Lesson learned. I love evolving, learning from mistakes. I also love it when I have a moment of clarity in an ordinary day, to help me with an internal struggle over doing the right thing.
Today I made my son and I an egg sandwich. One of the eggs fried up kind of funny. The yolks went all to one side, and it was a funny shape. The other egg was perfect. Guess which one my son got? My funny-looking egg sure tasted fine, and my son never even knew that I gave him the "better" egg - it never occurred to me to think twice about it, and as a mom/wife I've done a gazillion similar things over my lifetime.
I bought myself a daily devotional as a Christmas gift to myself. It's Joyce Meyer's "Love Out Loud." If I ever needed confirmation that I was doing the right thing in putting myself first, I got it in yesterday's page. Here's an excerpt:
Me? I'm gonna