Thursday, January 7, 2010

DAY 151 Choices & Am I Catatonic Yet?

Hi Journal & Friends!

As you might have noticed from yesterday's post, this journey is not always easy for me. Others write that it will GET easier... I am looking forward to that! But in the meantime, I have learned something.

Life is about choice.

I wake up every morning with a choice as to what my attitude will be.
I wake up every morning deciding if I will make healthy choices or not.
I wake up every morning and get to choose on what to focus, the positive or the negative.

That is not fantasy. The "negatives" are still there. Physical negatives, financial negatives, etc. But there are also positives. So much for which to feel thankful. Hey, any morning you wake up this side of the dirt is a good morning! And every new day is a new chance to make progress, healthy choices, and find joy in life.  

I am not a morning person... mornings are the hardest time for me. So I am quite serious when I say I must CHOOSE the kind of day I will have. And some days I choose it many times throughout the day!

It's a choice on what to focus. A choice.

I've been at this weight loss thing a looonnng time. In January 2010, I will turn 59... gasp! So a lot of this is old hat for me (no pun intended!). I wouldn't want anyone to read that I started this blog in August of 2009, and think I was an instant success, and figured it all out easily and immediately, and that it's been smooth sailing ever since. Nope, nadda, nyet, not even close.

have been doing some deep digging for quite a few years. It's just that I finally put it all together this year. I finally found most of the puzzle pieces, and got them in the right spots, and was willing to let go of my "comfort" food and face my stuff. One of my favorite sayings is: "Face your stuff, don't stuff your face." But it took me a long time to be willing to add ACTION to the knowledge of what to do. And yet even now sometimes, I still resist! I'll admit it... whenever I read people saying it's easy, I growl!! I guess I'm just not there yet, and don't get it. 

I remember years ago, shortly after I married MyGuy. I was in my late twenties, and yes, struggling to lose weight. 

(click to enlarge)
I had been about 230 when I got married, and started zooming back up the scale. I was sooo discouraged. One morning I sat in the living room, and I remember wanting to just escape. I had read somewhere about catatonic people... and I just wanted to "do" that, to drift off somewhere nice. 

Looking back, I can recognize depression. I had a wonderful, sweet, kind and loving new husband, no physical ills to speak of, a promising life ahead of us. But I was totally self-absorbed and discouraged about once again ballooning up weight-wise. I wanted to give up. To quit trying. To escape the emotional pain. 

So I sat there in the living room, all cried out, and tried to "go catatonic". It's kinda funny to me now, but so painful back then. I sat and stared, and refused to talk. Am I catatonic yet?? I envisioned myself in a little rowboat, all alone, no oars, drifting out into the huge ocean, getting farther and farther from shore. It was quiet and peaceful, and I wanted to just keep drifting away.

MyGuy came in, and knew I had been crying and why. He knelt down and put his arms around me, and started quietly talking to me... telling me how much he loved me, how much God loved me... I don't remember much else of what he said. But I remember being held from drifting farther away by Love.

We sat there for a long time like that. It was that Love that brought me back. Being loved and accepted just the way I was, for myself, warts and all. And that amazing man has stayed with me all these years, loving me at my most unloveable. And God, too, has loved and accepted me all these years, not giving up on me, even when *I* wanted to give up.

This is just one of many very painful experiences. We have all had them. No, this journey is not "easy" for me in sense that change is not easy. Maybe some have found a method, a program that is easy for them. That's different. But going deep inside and facing our issues is not comfortable. But IT IS WORTH IT. 

And choosing to focus on joy, life, hope, love, health, and my DREAMS just gives this journey the inner fuel to keep going. It's a daily choice. I NEED that positive fuel to keep my Engine of Determination revved up. It's not a race, but it IS a journey. And I am determined to get there, no matter how long it takes. I will never quit... I will always keep going, no matter what.

That is my choice.

From Dr Phil's book: "You must have a new conversation with yourself that responds to negative messages truthfully and positively."                          

My verse for today: "Be very careful, then, how you live--not as unwise but as wise."

My quote for today: "Adult behavior is about making choices. Only children think they can have it all. And if they don't, they are therefore deprived." --Dr Stephen Gullo


Anonymous said...

Are you very tall Retta? Because 230 looks awesome on you! I am shorty shorty short pants and at 192 look nowhere near as cute as you in your wedding pic!

Your hubby sounds like a sensitive soul who really knows how to show you he loves you!

Christine said...

YOur husband sounds incredible.
I think you are both lucky.

Retta said...

NANCY: Well, back in the day, I was 5'10" (I've shrunk over the years to 5'7"). Yes, he is one of those guys that don't think it's macho to wear pink, yet can show incredible tenderness--in private. I remember the most touching thing he ever did... hope this isn't tmi...

I was terribly sick, and had... um... diarrhea all over the place!! Didn't make it all the way to the potty. That man cleaned me all up, put me to bed, and then cleaned the bathroom all up. As I was apologizing over and over, he shushed me, and looked me right in the eye, and said: that is what Love DOES.

I never again doubted that he loved me. What a guy.

CHRIS: He was 28 when we got married, and I was 26... I had been convinced "all the good ones were taken". So yeah, I was pretty amazed to get one of the "good ones"!

Wonderful memories!

antgirl said...

Awww, what I beautiful story.

My main battles in my reconstruction were Depression and anxiety. What a frickin' pit! I saw no way out, but I kept trying.

So, I am proof there is another side. I found the way out. I can not tell you how much it astounds me that I am centered, lit up and optimistic. That I look forward to tomorrow and am not just enduring. To me, that is a bigger and more important achievement than the weight loss.

Writing bumped me out of depression and helped me find balance and piece. That's one reason why it's so important to me. Over time, the anxiety began to lessen [I had attacks 24/7, no exaggeration].

I did not envision this, I just wanted to get rid of the anxiety and be a little more confident. I would have considered that success.

Writing helped, because creating my own worlds shifted my focus away from my own. It helped me to retrain myself.

I also concentrated on 'I can's' and did my best to ignore the 'I can'ts'.

It takes time. It's a process. You'll get there. Your husband is amazing.

Anonymous said...

Loretta, What a heartfelt, honest, hope-filled post! And if that is you in that picture--you couldn't posibly have been 230 pounds! You look absolutely thin! If you were 230 pounds, then your goal weight of 199 may be too low! Ain't that some good news? :D Deb

Retta said...

MARY: "Looking forward to tomorrow and not just enduring"... that is EXACTLY the way I am determined to live my life! It is hard for me to imagine YOU depressed. If I had to describe the FEEL of your blog, I would use words like joyful, peaceful, stable, alive, blossoming, determined... and many more!

It's interesting how your writing transformed your life. It's like connecting with your authentic self. I can relate to that so much.

I have a little note tacked up in my studio: Focus on what you CAN do, not on what you can't.

DEB: I remember working hard to get down to 230, and holding the line cuz my Mom was making my wedding dress, and I wanted it to still fit, ha ha ha! I was taller then, 5'10", so not sure if I could still pull off 230 now at 5'7". Then there is that whole mental thing of finally getting out of the 2's into the Onesies. Maybe I'll change my mind as I get closer. :-)


Losing 100 said...

What a wonderful post! It sounds like you have a great husband, and great perspective. Thank you for your words. it was just what I needed to hear. Attitude is everything!

Dayne Gingrich said...

Great post! You definitely need to talk to my students about this subject... it's ALLLLLLLLL about choice.

Retta said...

LOSING 100: I am glad this helped you!

DAYNE: Thanks, Dayne, that's nice. But I'm pretty sure you have it all covered. I think I stumbled onto another website that might be yours, also, and it's super:
Is that yours?? I really like it.


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