Friday, May 27, 2011

MAY 27th Spiraling UPwards

Hi there Journal & Friends,

I've been doing this blog thing since the middle of 2009. Today I'm going to do something I've never done before: base my whole post directly on one comment. First let me make it clear I'm not mad at this commentor. Oh sure, I was a little annoyed at first. Then, I remembered: this is an opportunity. To clarify, to make sure of what I believe,  to see if it passes inspection. MY inspection.

 In fact, I appreciate that this person took her time to leave a thoughtful comment. It's just that...well... in my opinion, she is wrong. She doesn't understand me or my philosophy. :-)

This is the comment that was left in response to the post I wrote after several days of soul searching, HERE. 

I don't want take anything out of context, so here's the comment in it's entirety. You can see the person really was trying to be nice:

Hi Loretta, I read your blog a lot. I just wanted to say, and not in a mean way but in a "helpful" way, that you're going around and around in circles here.

Read your blog carefully over the last 6 months. You're reposting new and interesting thoughts and ephiphanies that you actually had months ago. I'm only saying this to try to help you stop spinning your wheels and actually start accomplishing your goals.

Maybe list your goals and hang that list on the refrigerator to see everyday, then STICK WITH THEM!!!!! Believe me, I'm not perfect but I've realized that you have to stick with it long term to have any real success.

I read "All the Weigh" today where Kenz says the secret to her success is: "time, patience, and CONSISTENCY". I believe you also wrote about consistency recently.

If the blog helps you to reach your goals, than by all means blog. Is the blog a way of wasting time or procrastinating??? When I'm on the computer, that's what I feel like I'm doing, just prcrastinating and not doing anything to reach my goals.

You have so much talent and such a big heart. I really want to see you become healthy and able to move and walk and enjoy life before it's too late. Good luck and good health to you.


 Like I said, I believe it was meant to be a caring comment. But... she's wrong. Why? 

Because I am NOT going in circles. 
I am going in an 
UPWARD SPIRAL of growth.  

Meaning, while I may be still learning and processing same or similar ideas, each go around I am learning and making progress. I know it. I feel it. I am encouraged. If anyone else can't see it or doesn't agree, that's not my problem.

  • To feel more encouraged in my priorities, is progress.
  • To feel freer and closer to living my authentic life, is progress.
  • To not feel stuck any longer is progress.
  • To not feel like I have to please others in what or how or how often I write, is progress.
  • To let go of the fear that it's too late for me, is progress.
  • To choose optimism when it would be easier to give in to the doubts, is progress.
  • To swim UPstream when it would be easier to give up and float downstream like a dead fish, is progress.
  • To pull out 2 shirts last night that used to be WAY too tight to even think about wearing, only to discover they now fit quite comfortably, even loosely, is progress!

Back in the '80's, I lost about 80 pounds. Then I hit a stall... and decided I was a "failure", and gave up and re-gained it all back... and eventually 200 pounds more!!! It was that "all or nothing" thinking that did me in. It's taken me YEARS to recover from that type of thinking. So, I refuse to accept that now.

I said at the beginning of this year, and even put it at the top of my sidebar, that CONSISTENCY is my theme for this year. Well... think about it: if I had consistency in the bag, I wouldn't have to make it a theme. I wouldn't be needing to work on it. It would be a non-issue. So... of COURSE I would be talking about it more than once. I am a work in progress, like I've said ad nauseam. Of course I will be re-visiting ideas I am working on, to not just learn ABOUT, but to integrate them into my life. To LIVE them, not just yap about them. 

I said this back in December of 2010: 
"I am no longer searching for that "aha" moment, that next big revelation, some deep and mysterious "answer" or missing link. I already know what to do, for me. It's just a matter of continuing the journey."

So what I write about is not meant to be "epiphanies"... it's just stuff that is on my mind, now. If anyone feels it is a waste of their time to read my posts because I am not entertaining them with bright and shiny "new" ideas each time... well... I know lots of other great and creative blogs to which I can refer you. 

There seems to be a subtle idea that pops up now and then in Bloggyland that chastises those that dare to admit they don't have it all together... that talk about the stuff they are working on. And some people will point out their failings instead of their successes. I'm not talking about my commenter here, but it did make me think of this. It's been on my mind lately. It's as though unless you have your stuff together, you shouldn't have a blog... you aren't serious... you are playing games or just bullsh*tting.  

But we are not all at the same place along this road to wellness!! Duh!! Those just starting out will probably be talking about a lot of their stumbles to get going, their struggles, trying to find their own path, and maybe when the newness wears off, their fight to continue.

Those in the middle of a long journey might be feeling the LONGNESS of the journey. They might feel impatient at times, discouraged, frustrated, and need to dig deep for their second wind (ask me how I know!).

Those at the end, or in maintenance will be sharing a whole OTHER set of experiences. Personally, I find those people encouraging to read, because it helps me envision where I will be some day, and maybe how to handle some of those hurdles.

My point? Watch out how you evaluate someone elses journey. You might not understand them. They might look at it differently than you do. My commenter meant to be helpful. And she was. She helped me to solidify how I really feel. Maybe some people can change a way of being, a lifetime of habits, in 6 months... but I'm not one of them. It's taken me YEARS to get even this far. For change to be permanent, it's got to come from the INside. 

I feel solid, encouraged, and NOT stuck going in circles. Maybe that is what my commentor sees, because I've talked about similar stuff before. Obviously that's because I am still processing that stuff! Like I said, I am in an UPWARD cycle of growth. Like a spiral staircase, going around but UPward. (Thanks to Deb for that idea, I love that word picture).

For me, learning is a process. It's not a once and for all done deal. What kind of an artist would I be if after I learned the basic color wheel, I figured I had it all down, and there was nothing else to learn about color. Same deal here... this is my LIFE I am working on. And not just weight... spiritual, family, husband, goals, purpose, friends, work, play, dreams, health, neighbors, church, community... you name it, and it comes into play. It's all affected by how I choose my priorities.

I write what *I* need to read. This is my journey. So if I repeat myself... well, so what?? 

From Dr Phil's book: "Ultimately, only you--and you alone-- are responsible for getting your weight under control."

My verse for today: "But as for me, I will always have hope; I will praise you more and more."

My quote for today: "Success is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm!" --Winston Churchill

Enjoy the Journey,


DAY 651

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

MAY 25th In Search of My Priorities

Good afternoon Journal & Friends,

Still alive and kickin' here in the WET Pacific Northwest! We had a gully washer earlier, and now it can't decide if it wants to be rain, hail, thunder or sunshine... so it keeps switching back and forth. Joey kept running outside and watching it with a puzzled look on her face. 

I've been doing a lot of thinking the last few days. It all started with a painful... make that VERY painful cyst in my nether regions (sorry you fellas).  This is the second time in as many months. It swelled up... burst... bled... healed. Only to repeat. Only this time the closest lymph node was swollen, red and painful. 

Naturally I consulted Dr Google. And was horrified to read the word "lymphoma" among the possibilites. First, let me just say my doctor, this last Monday, said it was just a garden variety cyst. It figures. Yes, these are incredibly painful, but kinda common. We will have to wait to see if the infection drained out or whether it comes back. If yes, he will cut it open and drain it thoroughly. Great. Sumpthin to look forward to...

Anyway, the whole point of this post is that the minute I read about "lymphoma"... and I admitted to myself I am not immortal... and that things like this happen to people, even me... I asked myself what would I do with the time I had left?? My immediate answer was: Well, I wouldn't be spending my time writing a weight loss blog!!! I'm not a writer... I'm an artist!!!

See... the previous week I had read a blog where the writer was all excited about his new goals. It's a good blog... one I read fairly regularly. He said his goals were to get to 1000 followers... to write a book... and to have something to offer for sale through his blog. 

That's when it first hit me... uh... I didn't relate. Totally didn't relate. I rarely look at my follower numbers. I don't have a desire to write a weight loss book. And I don't want to sell stuff from my blog. Now, my art blog... sure, someday I'd like to sell prints and cards and such that could be a blessing to others... but not here. Here... freely I have received... freely I give.

So when the health scare hit, and I remembered my reaction to the blogger who WAS a writer... well, it got me to thinking. And that's why I haven't been here much. 

I've been wondering if I wanted to change my priorities. 
To post less. 
To shift how I spend my time. 

I've been reading a book by Stephen Covey, and he talks about spending our time, our lives, doing what really matters most to us. To "lean the ladder against the right wall." And it's different for each of us.

It's so important to find our purpose, our calling, what lights us up inside... and to reach for it. To not let doubts, fears and lies keep us from living our own "authentic" life.  I've been struggling lately with those doubts, and I think I'm winning.

I want to always remember my "WHY", my reason for doing this whole weight loss thing in the first place. I don't want to waste any more time being side-tracked by repeating the same old mistakes over and over. I want to get ON with it.

My original purpose was for my blog to help me stay focused. And it really did! I posted every day without fail for over a year. It's now almost ingrained, finally, to check with my goals and see if I'm on track. It really did work! I highly recommend it for anyone just starting out, or who wants to get back into the Focus Habit.

I'm not saying I am doing perfect. I never have done perfect. But I've made progress. And this blog has contributed to that progress. And all the wonderful people I've met along the way. That was such an added and surprising bonus!! I'm so thankful for all of you. 

I want to continue my blog... just not so often. But I do plan to visit ya'll and keep in touch! You are real to me, and I've become invested in your lives, and care what happens to you. :-)

From Dr Phil's book: "Are your thoughts, beliefs, and attitudes moving you closer to what you want?"

My verse for today: "Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;  his love endures forever."

My quote for today: "I want to know God's thoughts... the rest are details." --Albert Einstein

Enjoy the Journey,


DAY 649

Friday, May 20, 2011

MAY 20th New Favorite Pretties

Good Afternoon Journal & Friends,

Well, I gone an dun it! I started my "collection". It's all Anne's fault... err... due to her influence. See, one of my favorite blogs is Anne, at Carb Tripper. And one thing I've noticed over the past couple of years in her photos is the beautiful assortment of little plates she uses. She has an amazing collection. Oh, and Lisa at my favorite RECIPE place, 24-7 Low Carb Diner does that too!

So... yep, I decided to spend money on ME... !  and start my own collection of one-of-a-kind little plates AND little tea cups.

But before the tea cups, I went to my favorite online tea place... Republic of Tea and got their 20oz Personal Carafe. Ooh la la! I'd never used one before, and hoped it kept the tea warm for at least an hour. Well! Hello 2 1/2 hours of hot tea! I got the ruby red one, just because. 

I decided to pop in occasionally at places like the Goodwill to look for pretty teacups. Here is the first of many.

And Anne's little plates that started it all? Yep, here are the first for my new collection.

I decided I was worth something special, and to not feel guilty about it or apologize. Though I will admit, I did spend time "justifying" my expenditure to MyGuy. Oh well... progress not perfection, yes?

From Dr Phil's book: "This is about you, your weight, and your health; it is not about them."

My verse for today: "Be at rest once more, O my soul, for the Lord has been good to you."

My quote for today: "The most affectionate creature in the world is a wet dog." --Ambrose Bierce

Enjoy the Journey,


DAY 644

Thursday, May 19, 2011

MAY 19th Snarling Dogs & Powerful Lessons

Hi Journal & Friends,

Yesterday something happened with Joey that shocked me... scared me... warmed my heart.... and taught me something. So, here is comes...


Believe in yourself. 
Then ACT on it!

Joey loves to hang out on the front screened-in porch, especially when there are sunbeams on these chilly days.

Vevie joined Joey on the porch, to catch some rays.

Since Vevie left, Joey ran into the house and brought out her Duck for company.

Bored with Ducky, she found her Bear and promptly dragged it out, too.

Ahhh... asleep in the sunbeam.

But yesterday I got a big scare when suddenly, from next door charged our neighbors 70 pound dog, barking and snarling like he was going to eat Joey alive! It all happened so fast, that I was stunned. 

Joey, inside the screened porch, jumped up and faced her attacker, braced her feet apart, head down, and BARKED WITH HUGE MENACE RIGHT BACK AT THIS ATTACKER!! She didn't back up ONE INCH!. 

Joey is only about 5 pounds, and not quite 5 months old. I guess she is too young to know she would have been "lunch" for this attacking dog. But she stood her ground, fearlessly protecting her territory, her home. And me, I suppose, since I was right there inside the door and afterward, she ran up to me to "tell" me all about it. 

I was so thankful Joey had been inside the screened porch, though if the neighbor hadn't ran over and dragged his hunk of a dog away, I wasn't too sure that it might have come right through the screen! (Jim recently bought a new little harness for Joey, which doesn't press against her throat when pulled. If needed for safety, you can actually lift her right up by it, and not choke her. Now I'm thankful he insisted... and will tell him he was right.)

Later, after my blood pressure came back down from outer space...I thought of several things.

  • Mark Twain said "It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog."  Now I've seen this first hand! Joey believed in herself, and she was prepared to act on it. Yes, she might be too little to know any better yet. But the point is, she was taking a stand, and that was that.

  • I remembered the little note I had taped to the edge of my computer. It says: "What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?" Five pound Joey was nose to nose with a 70 pound attacking dog, yet she didn't budge. She "believed" she would not fail. I'm not too sure at her age if she calculated that "Oh, I'm safe because there is this flimsy screening between me and that snarling monster".  Was she foolishly naive?? Of course. But I was awed by her courage.

  • I also I realized that if need be, I was prepared to take on that Snarling Monster with my bare hands, if it meant protecting Joey. See... Joey is Jim's dog. I'm the "baby sitter". She ADORES Jim, and actually sits by the front door starting around 30 minutes before he is due home from work... she longingly looks down the street if she is on the porch, as though she knows it's almost time for her Daddy to come home. When he finally does get here, she goes nuts with enthusiasm, wagging her whole body!                         .....But Joey and I have a different relationship. I like her... she likes me. We are okay. When Jim is home, she NEVER poops in the wrong place now. Her whole world consists of pleasing Jim. For me... not so much. I still have to watch her like a hawk. We have a more complicated relationship. So... when I had the scare from the neighbor dog, I realized that regardless of my resistance, I have fallen in love with Joey, and would do anything to protect her. Anything. She is my girl, too.

  • And lastly, I want to believe in myself, the way Joey believed in herself yesterday. No doubts. No hesitation. No excuses. No fears. When we truly believe, we act. Amazing the things a scruffy little pup can teach you!

From Dr Phil's book: "What is true about you in your mind, you will live."

My verse for today: "My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song."

My quote for today: "Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear -- not absence of fear." --Mark Twain

Enjoy the Journey,


DAY 643

Related Posts with Thumbnails