Weigh-In Wednesday: It Ain’t Pretty

I’m going to hope that writing ugly truths is less painful if you do it quickly, kind of like ripping off a bandage. Here goes:

Weight on March 6: 169.6
Weight on May 1: 175.2
GAIN of 5.6 pounds
I want to cry just looking at those numbers. And I wanted to cry even more when I happened to glance over at the sidebar where I have kept a log of my weigh-ins for various months since I had Charlotte. If you’ll notice, last May 1, I weighed 174.2. One pound LESS than what I weigh right now. That means that over the course of a year I did not lose any weight but instead gained a pound. 
You know what’s really sad? On Monday when I got on the scale, it said 177.6. That is so close to 180, and I haven’t seen the 180s since last January. I don’t want to go back there again. I didn’t even want to go back to the 170s, yet here I am, firmly entrenched. It is ridiculous how much my weight has crept up since I got sick. I realize that the drastic weight loss I experienced back in November was due to being sick and I honestly didn’t think I would keep all of it off, but I really and truly believed I could at least stay in the 160s, preferably the lower 160s. Now I’m just a few cheeseburgers away from 180 pounds, and I feel sick. I know I have been through a lot recently, and I know that this is not the end of the world, but I am having a hard time finding the balance between being kind to myself and being too lenient. I guess that sums me up in a nutshell: I’m either a drill sergeant or a lazy bum. There is no middle ground with me.

Part of me is really ashamed of all of this. Part of me wishes I could just crawl into a hole somewhere and never come out. But I know that I can’t let the shame win. Shame doesn’t face problems; it buries its head and pretends they’re not there. Shame doesn’t overcome; shame surrenders in defeat. Shame doesn’t lead to victory; it only leads to captivity. I will not bury my head in the sand, and I will not surrender. I will not be held captive. I have to keep fighting. Even if it takes me the rest of my LIFE to figure this whole weight loss thing out, I have to figure it out.

Lord, help me.


Grasping at Gratitude

Today has not been a good day. It hasn’t been a good week, truthfully, which is why I haven’t blogged much. I am physically tired, emotionally tired, spiritually tired. I am not feeling the greatest with my ulcerative colitis (and am currently waiting on a callback from my GI doctor about other treatment options), and it’s been very tempting for me to throw myself a pity party. In fact, earlier today I started drafting a post in my head about how hard living with ulcerative colitis has been and how I’m an emotional train wreck blah, blah, blah, but I’m not going to write that post now. The truth is, it is hard, but it’s not the hardest thing. The way my condition is right now is bearable. I’d love for it to go away. I’d love to be healed, but I can endure how I feel right now. I’m just being a big wimp.

The hardest thing is for me to remain grateful. As I have written before, I am prone to negativity, and if I am not careful, I can easily drown in the cesspool of lies in my head. So the hardest thing for me is to remember that while I have Christ, I have all I need. TRULY, all I need. He is my portion and the strength of my heart forever (Psalm 73:26). He has given me everything I need for life and godliness (1 Peter 1:3). Though I may feel as though my outer self is wasting away (and let’s face it, at 170 pounds, I’m not wasting away), He is renewing me day by day (2 Corinthians 4:16).

So, while at times everything in me wants to cry and moan, I can rejoice instead. I can rejoice that the struggle I am facing is temporary. I can rejoice that one day there will be no more sickness, no more death, no more fear, no more sadness. I can rejoice that I have a Heavenly Father who is intimately acquainted with me and my sorrows and joys, for He made me, fearfully and wonderfully (Psalm 139). I can rejoice that Christ suffered more than I can ever imagine so that one day all who love Him will suffer no more. I can rejoice that I do not have to bear my burdens alone but that Jesus invites me to take up HIS burden, which is easy and light (Matthew 11:29). I can rejoice that I have a loving and supporting husband who lets me sob into his shoulder. I can rejoice that I have an understanding boss who lets me leave work in the middle of the day because I just can’t stay any longer. I can rejoice that I have friends who pray for me and make me laugh and distract me from the things that are weighing me down.

I don’t know what God’s plans for me and ulcerative colitis are. I don’t know if I will find a medication that will work. I don’t know if He will heal me. What I do know is that He loves me and is with me, and I need His presence so much more than I need to be healed. The good news is, He never sleeps and is always available, so I can say with the Psalmist, “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.”

Weigh-In Wednesday: Weary

Weight on February 20: 168.6
Weight today: 169.6
GAIN of 1 pound

Is anyone really surprised by this? It seems like lately gaining weight is what I do best. I am flirting with the 170s, and I really don’t want to be in the 170s again. I spent the bulk of 2012 there, and I’d love to spend the bulk of 2013 in the 160s, or even the high 150s. I have done better with my eating choices recently, and I’ve even managed to make it to the gym several times, but I am not consistent enough with these actions to really see results, as evidenced by this weigh-in.

Honestly, I’m weary of this whole struggle. I have been dealing with my weight my entire life. As long as I can remember I have been overweight, even in elementary school. I get so frustrated with the fact that I am sitting here obsessing over food when there are babies without parents, people without food, etc. Considering the serious problems of the world, this issue is ridiculous. I hate that something as trivial as food consumes so much of my thoughts, but I fear that if I didn’t think about it, I would end up weighing 300 pounds. I desperately need to find balance.

I long for a day when I can just eat a meal and not agonize over what’s on my plate. I long for a day when my thoughts aren’t consumed by food, but I don’t know if that day will ever come. I don’t know if I will ever find true freedom from this. Sometimes I am grateful for this struggle because it has helped deepen my dependence on God and kept me humble, but then I also know that I am not meant to live in bondage, so I don’t know what to think.

What I do know is that I am a child of God, and He loves me in spite of the mess I make of my life at times, and I am deeply grateful for that.

Weigh-In Wednesday: Out of Focus

What do you know, it’s been 5 weeks since my last weigh-in post. I confess that the reason for this is not that I’ve stopped weighing but that I haven’t liked the numbers I’ve seen. Still, keeping quiet isn’t helping me, so here you go.

Weight January 16: 167.6
Weight today:          168.6
GAIN of 1 pound

I’m now up a solid 10 pounds from where I was in December, and I’m not happy about it. However, this dissatisfaction obviously hasn’t motivated me to do something about it. As I wrote yesterday, self-discipline has been severely lacking from my life, and my body is paying the price, as is my self-esteem. My size 12 pants are all starting to feel too tight, and most of the time when I look at myself in the mirror, I feel gross. Just writing that sentence makes me feel sad because I am still smaller than I have been since I was 18 years old, and I have managed to maintain a 93-pound weight loss. It’s not like I’m a total failure, and yet I have felt that way recently. I feel like I will never lose another pound.

I know a lot of this is all in my head and stems from my tendency towards negativity. I would never say to other people some of the things I say to myself. I know I am often too hard on myself, but then sometimes I think I am letting myself off too easily. Still, it’s not as though the negative self-talk I often employ actually helps me reach my goals. More often not, the negativity just leaves me feeling more defeated. A defeated life is no life at all, especially for the Christian. In Christ I have freedom, and yet I often live as though I am still in bondage.

Ultimately, I need to stop thinking about myself so much and start thinking more on Christ. He is the remedy to all that ails me, both physical and spiritual. He is my strength when I am weak. And I am so desperately weak.

Tonight I call to mind the words of a wonderful hymn:

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face.
And the things of the earth will grow strangely dim
In the light of His glory and grace.

May I turn my focus away from myself and to Christ.