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Thursday, October 16, 2014

How 10 Ten Seconds Changed My Life

I had this whole post written about how crazy my life has been over the past year and how that led to my neglecting this blog.  After reading it, I realized that I could sum up ALL 3 PAGES in one sentence:

 Being healthy went from the top of my priority list, to the bottom of it. 

See??  This is my "I know that my priorities got messed up" look.

That's it. We moved, we needed more money, I was trying to build up a vocal studio and start a new music business, we were living with parents, I was teaching until 7:00 and then going to rehearsal until 10:30, we moved into a new house, I started a new day job, the boys started school, and I used any extra time that I had to try to be with them so that they wouldn't see how badly I was failing at being a parent. 

That is my year in summary. ONE YEAR!!!  WOW!!  My, how time flies! 

I write this after a doctors appointment that I recently had where it was determined that I was suffering from exhaustion, anxiety, depression, and maybe even some more underlying issues. After threatening to hospitalize me (I'm sure a last ditch effort to make me take him seriously,) the doctor told me to go home, get some rest, and "take my medicine" while I wait for blood work to come back. 

So, as I TRY to be a good girl and lay in bed, my mind has wandered back over the past year, and "where it all went wrong." 

I can list 100 things that led to my lack of care for my physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being. See, that's how it works.  It's never just one thing that throws your life off track. It's lots of little things.  Lots of little "I can handle this," or "I can add this to my life" decisions and events. All this leads up to the day that you look in the mirror and you don't recognize yourself anymore. In fact, you resent the person that you see.  Maybe even despise them. I wasn't taking care of myself, and as a result, I was failing at almost everything else that I was trying to do. 

Taking Care of Myself

A week ago, I sat in front of my mirror and examined my face, my arms, my stomach, my legs, even my nose. Like so many times before, I found myself literally HATING what I saw and feeling overwhelmed with the effort that it would take to change it. I know the rules. I know that sending those messages to your body actually makes matters worse, both physically AND emotionally. I know that it raises Cortisol levels that then lead to a lower metabolism and increased stomach fat. I have tons of previous posts about emotional health and it's relation to physical health.  But it didn't stop those feelings of frustration, defeat, embarrassment, and hatred from sneaking inside my head. I thought that by focusing on everyone else and their needs- or our needs, things would be better. But that's not true, is it? I mean, we need to be on top of our game to be able to handle things when times are tough.




I wonder if I had taken some "me" time each day, like I was used to doing, if I might have had the energy to deal with the cards that I was dealt at the time.  One thing is for certain, I wouldn't have had as much anxiety, stress, and depression.  I would have FELT better, had more energy, and better focus.  Perhaps I would have had better balance because I would have not felt so overwhelmed.  This is a lesson that I am just now learning. Instead, I ignored myself, and put the focus on trying to put out the fires that were part of my life. I was too busy and tired to fight back.... and perhaps even care. But THIS DAY, it was particularly bad.  I thought about going back on one of "those" diets that never worked before.  I thought about faking ADHD so that I could get a prescription for a drug that has extreme weight loss as a side effect!  What the....!!!  WHO WAS THIS GIRL THAT I WAS STARING AT IN THE MIRROR??  What happened to the girl that had energy about living a healthy life style- no matter what she LOOKED like!??  Then, a small thought entered my mind....

1...2...3...4...5...6...7...8...9...10... make it better! 

When my boys are scared, I tell them that it's ok, everyone gets scared, but everyone also has courage. Even if we don't FEEL like we have any at that time, it's still there. So, we have ten seconds to be afraid, to question, to be defeated.  THEN, we stand tall. We give it all we have. We make a change. We make a difference. We figure out a way that WE can make it better, and realize that not everything is in our control.  It doesn't matter what the outcome is.  We win some battles, we lose some battles in life, but I tell them I will ALWAYS be proud of them if they can honestly say that they stood tall and worked hard.  This gets us through nightmares, arguments, homework, and MOST of the issues that little boys face on a daily basis. 

CHANGE... AGAIN....ALWAYS.

These are our "battle" faces.... his is better than mine.
For me, one week ago, it got me to stop in my tracks, and start the pathway back to where I needed to be. I made an appointment to go to the doctor and be brave enough to say that AT THIS TIME, I can't do this alone.  Normally, my anxiety is something that I have control over. But right now- I need help. I am super tired, anxiety is at it's height, depression is at it's low, but I've had my 10 seconds... I need to have the courage to make a change. 

This post is the beginning of that change. The Healthy Redhead helped me feel good about myself.  I like to think that it helped others as well.  And, it's time to put some more focus into her. It sounds funny to talk about The Healthy Redhead as a different person, but she IS a different person. Different than who I am right now.  I don't know where to start, really. I guess we will all learn and grow together!  That was the point of the blog in the first place. I can't wait to see what happens! What I DO know is that I can't stop taking care of myself.  Everything else will fall apart if I have fallen apart. Again, I'm organizing a change. I'm TAKING the time to prioritize my life.  I'm pondering, praying, and setting the ball into motion.  I'm on my way back! Did you miss me?

I know that EVERYONE feels this way at times. We ALL let life get in the way of our well-being.  I REALLY encourage YOU to take "10 seconds" and breathe.  Be afraid. Be mad. Be hurt. Then, look yourself in they eye and make a difference. Make a change. Give it all you have! Figure out a way to make it better.





 

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