So this is me, a big scaredy cat. The one that everyone sees and no one knows how afraid that I really am. This picture encompasses a whole that I have struggled with for years. The first two chapters of the book for actually go together. My addiction to food as gotten me to the big part of life. I would never have admitted to anyone, let alone myself, that I was addicted to food. Truthfully, not really the food part of eating, but the dessert part, and not just at dessert time. I actually could live off of sweets and I would be just fine. I was uncomfortable with who I was, so I ate more. My husband wanted me to lose weight so I could fit into the image of who I was when we first got married, so I ate more. My mom would tell me that I needed to lose the weight, so my response, eat more. The doctors and the list can go on forever, wanted me to lose weight, so my coping mechanism, eat. I never could make myself sick after eating, so I was not bulimic, nor could I ever starve myself. So I told myself that I did not have an eating disorder. Then I went to work for Adult Probation and I realized that the only difference between my addiction and their addiction, was my was not illegal. I finally realized that I truly did have an addiction. I do have a lapband (did really well with it when I first got it), I do not eat nearly as much as I ever did before, I still love my sweets, but I now know that I have to have limits on my sweets. I kw exercise is a huge part of it, hence when I stopped working out, I gained weight. Now some are thinking just go exercise and everything will be ok. In theory yes, in reality no. The reason that I stopped working out, I got injured and had to have right knee surgery. Then I had to have a second surgery on the same knee to fix another problem. From there, let’s say bad knee plus a flight of stairs equals an ugly fall resulting in a dislocated and fractured (in two places) right ankle. So surgery one was to fix that and surgery two to fix another problem in the ankle. So now because of the knee and the ankle, I am limited. Then because of said bad knee and ankle, I have sprained both my knee and ankle so many times, that I am not functioning at a full level, my brain doesn’t think so, since I forget to slow down and take care of my ankle. So I eat less and cut back on my sweets. I moved into the label free once I started to admit that deep down I was an addict.
So moving on from afraid to courageous. I did it in this order because until I released my addiction, I was living a life of fear. I was afraid of what others thought of me and how others saw me because I was not the ideal image of what other thought of me. So what does my picture have to do with me being a big scaredy cat. EVERYTHING!!! My church was getting ready to have it’s annual women’s conference. I wanted to go, however, just the thought of it sent me into a spiral of anxiety. I was in the car with my husband and I just could not even imagine me going. Being with that many people, sharing a space with strangers, and oh how the list could go on forever. The next morning, my sweet friend invited me to go to the retreat. I told her the truth that I would love to go but I was TERRIFIED!!!!!! She said that I can ride with her and that I would be with her and it would be ok. I didn’t answer her then, I just started praying, “God please take this fear away from me. I am not a scared person, I want to go on this retreat because I needed it. God, I call up the peace inside of me that is given by Your Holy Spirit.” I kept reminding myself that the spirit of fear was not from God. So, I took the plunge and registered for the retreat. Then even bigger, I went to the retreat. Talk about moving from fear to courageous. I am so grateful that I went. I had a blast, and received so much that weekend. This picture was taken of me at the retreat at the beginning of May this year.
Now on a quick side note about the stamp “NEW” on my arm. That too was moving from fear to courageous. I have a “thing” about my hands or being touched with dirtiness. I don’t shake hands, unless I know you or it is something important. I carry hand sanitizer every where, I have to use the wipes to clean shopping carts. Ok, I think you are getting the picture. I saw everyone getting that stamp. I said absolutely there is no way I am going to allow that thing on me after it has been on all those other women. Ewwwww gross. They made an announcement that you needed the stamp to have dinner that night. Me cringing the whole time, I went and got stamped. One huge step for me to walk in the land of courageous and not the land of the scaredy cat. (Found out later that you really didn’t need the stamp, but God didn’t let me know that until afterward)