stopping the insanity

So, clearly, this weekend appeared to be a weekend of excess.  And could I have eaten less pasta and bread?  Yeah, probably.  And could I have eaten less candy/chocolate/ice cream?  Probably.  But I would also say that I didn’t eat as much of the candy/chocolate/ice cream as I wanted. And that poses a problem for me.

As I learned back in January, I am hypoglycemic.  This means that carbs are a particular problem for me because my body absorbs and distributes the carbs so quickly that I CRASH after carbo-loading.  Eating carbs causes me to have a blood sugar low within an hour or so that makes me FEEL super hungry.

As a matter of fact, when I eat candy mid-afternoon, by the time I get home at 5:30, I am irrationally hungry.  I don’t even bother to stop at the store because I am SO hungry that I am not sure how I will make it through the store without A) forgetting half of my list or B) maiming the first person who tries to abscond with my cart.

And don’t get me started with the parking lot.Let’s just assume there would be much carnage.

So anyway, I do not make wise decisions when I am on a sugar low.

Plus, my body converts these carbs to fat faster than you can say “Put down the butter Paula Deen!”  And if that wasn’t enough to make me pass on the sugary delights, the fact that we would like to get pregnant again means that I am at high risk for developing gestational diabetes.  While a high birth weight for our babies has always been a real possibility (my dear husband rocked the scales at a mighty 13 1/2 lbs and 24 inches of pure baby delight), gestational diabetes ups the ante significantly.  If that was the only serious side affect of gestational diabetes, that would be one thing.  Unfortunately, there are several other unfortunate potential by-products of gestational diabetes that give me pause for concern.

I realize that the idea of giving up all sweets seems … well… un-American.

I mean, who does that?

But after taking a long, hard look at myself in the mirror, reviewing the scale, and looking in the mirror again, I decided that I need to do just that.

Oh, not to worry, the idea of giving up all sweets did not come without serious mental protest and angst.  My poor, sugar-addicted brain said, “But dear Emily, what about BIRTHDAY cake?  What knd of person says NO to BIRTHDAY cake?? What about having something sweet to make eating healthy worth it?  Just a little bit of sweet stuff won’t hurt!”

Does a birthday cake make the birthday, I ask you?  Do I need a 3 p.m. sugar fix?  Do I need dessert after EVERY DINNER?  The fact that I tried to find reasons NOT to give it up was the biggest indicator that I SHOULD give it up.

I submit to you this: the celebration is to be augmented by the food.  The food is not to be augmented by the celebration.  This is a VERY difficult decision for me to give up sweets.  But I realized I was putting my desire to have a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup ahead of being healthy.  I was putting a slice of amazing, gooey chocolate cake ahead of feeling good.

Not any more.  Starting tomorrow (I had ice cream before I made the decision today), Frank and I are quitting the sweets cold turkey.  It’s going to be difficult because I am going to have to be really honest about what is a sweet and what is not.  I thought about buying some Fiber-One bars for their fiber-related benefits and because… wait for it… they also have a chocolate product.  Houston, I have a problem.  Using a Fiber-One bar to “replace” candy is not right.

And, of course, I realize that my eating habits are causing a rift with God and in my marriage.  I know that sounds far-fetched, but bear with me.  When I eat poorly, I feel bad about myself.  Instead of focusing on becoming the person that God wants me to be, I focus on how bad I feel about myself.  And if that’s not enough, I happen to have a wonderful, sweet, adoring husband who thinks that I am beautiful, no matter what, but I turn him away so I can have a self-loathing pity party.  Now, Frank muscles through it, but I think about how much BETTER my marriage would be if we avoided these kinds of pity parties all together.

So anyway.  This is my new adventure.  Anyone else want to join me?  I plan on discussing this frequently on the blog as I am anticipating a lot of withdrawal symptoms that may include “the shakes” and inexplicable crying/anger.  But once I get through the detox portion, I expect that I will feel MUCH better.  Right?  ::scratches arms, looks for a candy bar:: Right??

brave

I am not a brave person.

Ask Frank.

When I am walking up the stairs and he chases after me, I sit down on the stairs and curl up.

True story.  It’s like my knees stop working.

Fight or flight?

Is laying down and dying an option?

And this transcends into other areas of my life.

The amount of effort it takes for me to do things often seems monumental.

And sometimes, I wonder why things fail and I realize that my fear stopped me from taking a critical step.

I know that I am smart.  Maybe not genius IQ, but I know enough to be dangerously effective.

But fear of disappointing people stops me in my tracks.

My dear friend and fellow blogger, Heidi, found out that she is expecting.  This baby is so wanted!

But she has been hurt a lot – four years + of infertility and two miscarriages are stunningly difficult things to endure.

She vocalizes something I’ve worried about since we realized that this fertility biz was not looking awesome for us: that once we get pregnant, what if there is more pain?

And I wonder, do I have what it takes to make it through the first 9 weeks of pregnancy without wondering if every ache and pain is a sign of another loss?

Can I be brave?

And not just in pregnancy – but in all areas of life: work, family, friends, missions, finances, etc?

I think I can.  I am pretty sure I can.

And I have a God that says I can.

I think about the disciple Peter a lot.  The oldest of the disciples.  The one who Jesus regularly used as an example.

One day, the disciples were in a boat in the midst of a raging storm, and Jesus walks on water to them and quiets the storm.

Wanting to be just like his teacher – and believing bravely that he CAN be just like his teacher – Peter follows Jesus out onto the water.

And Peter walks on water.

Pastor Rob Bell points out that it is when Peter hesitates – when he lets fear creep in – when he stops believing in himself – that he starts to sink.

Pastor Bell points out that Jesus BELIEVED in Peter.

But Peter did not believe in Peter.

And I wonder, is God walking along side me telling me, “You CAN do this!”

And I am not failing at things because God didn’t answer a prayer or give me enough or teach me enough or instruct me enough: I have to own up to the fact that I might be failing because I don’t believe that I can do it.

God has already provided me with everything I could ever need.

Supplying the bravery is up to me.

small steps to feeling better…

So, as you can tell from my previous post, the recovery from the D&C hasn’t been all sunshine and roses.  There are a few *minor* side affects that are still working their way out of my system.

But in an effort to return to normal, Frank and I took a few steps towards feeling more normal.

First, we left the house.  Not that I haven’t left the house, but I’ve really only left in order to go to work or the grocery store.  I haven’t gone out on social visits, really.  So, first step was to visit my parents and see my sister’s new townhouse.  It was really nice.  I think it helped that the sun was shining and it was over 40 degrees. (side note: there comes a time in every winter that I think, “it will NEVER again be above 40!” and then, miraculously, it is above 40 degrees).

Then we went to get my oil changed on my car.  I know I should be better about changing my oil. I know that.  But for some reason, I have a mental block when it comes to changing my oil.  So a few hundred miles over the limit and a few *ahem* weeks over the date limit, my oil is changed and dear George (the name for my car) is a happy camper.

After the Midas adventure, we went to check out cars.  Not because we are buying a car right now, but because I like to see new, shiny cars.  We sat in a few vehicles, looked at a few certified used ones on the lot and then did the next thing that came to mind: we took a nap!

My dear friend Allison brought over some delicious baked mostaccoli – YUM!  We also stopped by Frank’s friend Jeff’s house for a Loser Party.  Yes, that’s right, a Loser Party.  Everyone who came received a “loser” ribbon and a take home gift of Easy Mac and canned Spaghettio type food.  Yum.

Such a typical Saturday, yet I felt the best that I’ve felt in a week.  And that is awesome.  Praise God for great Saturdays!

2.2 miles of therapy

I think running is therapy for me.

It’s me, proving to myself, that I can run.  I can make it each quarter mile further.

Each step is me not caving.

Each step reminds me of the verses in the Bible that say to rejoice in suffering and trials.

Each step reminds me that because I took one step, the next time it will be easier and faster and lighter.

People have said that you run against no one but yourself.

And that’s true.

But you also run for no one but yourself and because God gave us the ability to choose to run.

I run for me and to be closer to God.  Even if I say nothing and He says nothing, it’s sort of like an aligning of me with His Spirit.

I run as fast as I can mentally and physically and emotionally.

Tonight I started crying while I was running, but I kept going.  I ran through the tears and found a good pace and felt better.

I was crying because the thought occurred to me that the saddest and hardest part of what we are going through is the thought that if we don’t have children, who will tell future generations how much Frank and I loved eachother?  Who will tell future generations the great things that God has done in our lives?

And you know, I don’t have anything else to say about that.  It’s just sad.  And yeah, maybe we will have kids.   And maybe we won’t.  I think I’m just sad.

The cool thing about running is that sometimes it gets really hard.  Sometimes I think, “I just can’t go on, I’ll never make the next mile.”  And then, I push and I make it.  That gives me a lot of hope.

So maybe right now it’s hard and I’m just sad, but I will persevere.  And God’s Word says that perseverance builds character and character gives us hope.

In sadness I can have hope.  And that is awesome.

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