Tuesday, July 30, 2013

JULY 30th Self-Pity is a Dangerous Thing!

It's a fact of life that some people insist on pointing out the flaws in others. Oh, they think they are helping, and are so sure about their insights. But the vibe can be one of judgement... a critical spirit. 

Then there are those who, while recognizing realities, still choose to UPlift others. To believe the best, to offer encouragement. They don't coddle, they don't enable. But they offer the one who struggles the sense that someone actually believes in them.

That's a powerful thing.

When we find hope and belief slipping through our fingers like sand... to have someone come along side and see potential in us is... well, it reaches down and grabs us, and pulls us back up. We stand again, shake it off, and go on. 

We stop indulging in self-pity, we stop playing the martyr, we stop acting like a victim.

We... as in... ME.

This is on my mind because I WAS indulging in self-pity today. The fires here in Oregon have gone crazy, the air is full of particulates, and breathing outside is hard for me. For a couple of days now I haven't been able to go outside and do my pool exercises. Boo hoo, poor me. :-}

So I was cleaning out old computer files, deleting stuff, and came across something that stopped me in my tracks. And it changed my whole attitude.

It was written for me in 2010 by my sister, Karen. She hadn't started her writer's blog yet , so she had left this in the comments on my blog:

Dear Sister:
I've seen you when you cried,
And when you tried to hide;
You'd always say you failed,
When the desired boat had sailed.
But that was yester-year,
After you shed many a tear;
A swan song now you sing,
Grasping on to everything!
You will not be put down,
Nor will you cast the frown,
You push away the strife,
And plunge straight into life!
For this you will prevail,
Though some might see a snail,
But the tortoise beat the hare-
On the race that was a dare!

Wow.... it felt like it was written for me NOW. Here. Today.

Thanks, Sis. I needed that.

Enjoy the Journey,



  1. Awww. It reminds me of an indie movie I watched recently on netflix - Bob, Who Lives at Home. I think you'd really like it. It's about how no one is worthless and nothing is random if we pay attention.

    1. Thanks, Mary. I think I saw an ad for that movie... I'll have to check it out!

  2. That Kitty picture is the sweetest.

    I've never really looked at your stats until now. I guess I have found you such an awesome person that things like weight management seemed unimportant.

    I see you are almost at the place where things went awry, in 2013. How did you turn things around and what have you been doing the last few months? It has to be more than the pool, wonderful as it is, because food is still about 80% of losing weight.

    A change that brings positive benefits does not happened by chance. First of all is the 'character building phase.' Hanging in there, while nothing seems to be going right. There is the process of finding your way, I nearly wrote again, but it's more than that. You, me, we really do come to a place where we make a new start with new knowledge of how to do what works and we go through whatever it takes to make it work.

    Changing is never easy but you have to climb out of the pit first. That takes strength and persistence and you are amazingly strong. Your sister got it right.

    Perhaps you need to find some way of incorporating it into a specific piece of inspirational artwork. *smiles*

    Do hope the wildfires are quenched very soon. I guess that's unlikely, if your weather pattern is similar to ours, August would be a hot dry month.

    Enough rambling from me. Hope you get out into the wonderful pool very soon and stay cool *grinning*


    1. Hi MargieAnne!
      You are right, it's more than just the pool exercises. In fact, I don't exercise to lose weight, but for a myriad of other beneficial reasons. One of those is that it seems "diet" and "exercise" are synergistic for me. When I do exercise, it affects my motivation levels, and I WANT to do better with the diet part. I still remember a friend saying, years ago: You can't do with exercise what you are NOT doing with the eating.

      It's been a combination of things that finally turned it around for me. Too long to go into here, but maybe I'll put it together in a post sometime. As you can see how long it took me to get back to answering your comment, one of those things has been that I've not been spending as MUCH time online as before.

      The fires here in Oregon are still fouling the air... I can't go outside without choking up. But I'm thankful we haven't been ordered to evacuate, like many areas have. Hopefully, it'll clear up soon, and I can get back to the pool. I miss it!

  3. Hi Loretta, I love what your sister wrote to you. She sure understands you well.

    I especially like this part of your writing--"Then there are those who, while recognizing realities, still choose to UPlift others. To believe the best, to offer encouragement. They don't coddle, they don't enable. But they offer the one who struggles the sense that someone actually believes in them."

    We can do that to ourselves too. That exact sentiment. We can uplift ourselves, believe in our own best, not coddle or enable our own self, and you and I can firmly believe in "me" no matter how hard we struggle. But try not to struggle too much. Too much struggle is not good for us. See it as a "challenging opportunity" whenever you can.

    Also don't forget that you've already done so well. You started at 460 pounds, and you lost more than 100 pounds! That's just amazing and inspiring, on many levels. I think it's hard to conceptualize but we have to remember our past success because that was a huge test of our human spirit--and look at how well we did! Don't you just appreciate yourself so much for that?!!! I sure do. I hope you let yourself inspire you--like you've inspired me and others so much.

    Remind yourself to be magical, not just with art, but with your health too. You can let your artistic magic seep into all aspects of your life. Perhaps, sometime you can make a beautiful fruit and/or vegetable picture or design--take a photo--and then eat it. Health and fitness dreams are magical and artistic too. You are so loveable. I still keep certain comments of yours. :D

    1. What a nice comment, Marion. Thank you!
      And I appreciated this reminder: See it as a "challenging opportunity" whenever you can."

      I try to think that way, but have to admit I do slip often. I remember many moons ago being taught by a friend in business to think of "problems" as "challenges" instead. I never forgot that, though sometimes I don't apply it! :-D

      It's a little embarrassing to say, but of all the people I know online, when I updated my weight ticker today, it was you I most wanted to see it. You've helped me more than you know these last few months. :-) I was excited that I lost another 8 pounds last month!

    2. Hi Loretta! I'm super happy and *deeply proud* of you. 8 pounds is a LOT. I'd give you a big hug too if I lived closer. Of course you are excited! This news is going to motivate my weightlifting this morning. :D

  4. Sometimes the self-pity is a feeling that is needed to get us to slow down and pay a little deeper attention. As in your own circumstance.....you found the poem...what you needed in the moment. Often those are the real truths, the real uplifting moments.

    In my own journey, it is in learning to have those feelings, good, bad or otherwise, and be grateful for those as well as the good. It is when I find myself receiving the greatest answers and rewards...when I am grateful for ALL my feelings. Then the circumstances with move me toward my tiny miracles...

    It has been often said that some of the greatest art, the greatest writings, come from a place of pain....Perhaps that is because art is the process of gratitude of all we have to offer....much love xoxo

    1. "Sometimes the self-pity is a feeling that is needed to get us to slow down and pay a little deeper attention."
      Now that's something I hadn't thought of, Jules! I hadn't thought of it in quite that way.
      One thing that has helped me lately is even recognizing the self-pity more accurately. Then I can ask "why" am I feeling that way, and see if there is a lie there that is misleading me, or something else I need to work on. For me, the self-pity can be like water thrown on a fire. It can damped out enthusiasm and motivation, and stall progress. So, I do try to recognize it and get to the bottom of it.

      A quote I read years ago has stayed with me: "Self-pity is easily the most destructive of the nonpharmaceutical narcotics; it is addictive, gives momentary pleasure, and separates the victim from reality." -John W Gardner

      I can be thankful for being able to recognize and acknowledge all feelings, but do not believe I need to allow unhealthy ones to STAY around. All feelings are information; but all that information is not necessarily based on truth. Ya know? :-D

  5. Hi Loretta - I agree with Marion so much on what she wrote. YOU my dear are a shining star for so many reasons!

  6. This must have been meant for you (and me). I 've got the last 21 episodes of The Sopranos recorded on my DVR from HBO and I watched an episode last night where Tony is in the hospital after being shot. At first he's in a coma and dreaming a whole other life and then when he's out of the coma he's recovering. He's basically at square zero when he comes out of the coma. This notice is posted on his hospital room wall and it helps him through his recovery . I found it pretty inspiring and wrote this down , just last night for my own motivation . So I now share with you.

    It is an Ojibway Indian quote:
    "Sometimes I go about in pity for myself, and all the while, a great wind carries me across the sky. "

    1. "Sometimes I go about in pity for myself, and all the while, a great wind carries me across the sky. "

      Thank you, PJ, I like that... very much!

  7. So glad I found your blog! It is so very inspiring. I guess we all have those pity me days! I just started my own blog. I am 34, weigh 502, and I am so ready to change my life.


  8. What a great post, and oh so very true!


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