Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Filling Myself Up With The Good

"How is your medication?"

"I don't know. I do have an appointment with Dr. Kamat tomorrow, though." 

"I think you should discuss the medication with her. See if there's something more we can do." 

"My husband asked the same thing." 

"He's a good one!" 

"He is." 

During therapy yesterday, I was confronted again with reality: This is a Journey. I haven't arrived anywhere, I'm not finished with trying, this isn't something I conquer in a few months or years, the only way to get through this is to go through this... 

"Where does this self-pity come from? Because it keeps coming up and it's deep inside." 

"I don't know. Expectations I can't fulfill?" 

"Expectations that don't exist?" 


I find myself constantly afraid of failure, afraid I'll never be healthy again, afraid I will fail before I begin. The baby steps I'm asked to take seem insurmountable in one moment, and in the next they feel like not enough. I don't understand the fear because I have so much faith! I thought I had so much faith...

"I think you're doing great. These are baby steps and each time you come in, I see tiny improvements. They are small, but we want small."

"Baby steps."

"Baby steps. Bit by bit. We can't do anything drastic or it won't last. You need to do simple changes in order to change your life."


I recently read a beautiful essay that is, in essence, about food and non-dieting --which was something I drastically needed and had been praying to find! --but it was also about so much more. Melissa Dalton-Bradford, one of my favorite authors, wrote: 
To undrug our hearts we might need to retrain our desires/appetites/impulses. For that, it’s not enough to just stop scarfing the bad stuff for a while. That Quickie Miracle Cleansing Flush might drain something, but it won’t retrain much. Something draconian––ever eaten only Tic Tacs for three weeks?––might feel righteous, even holy, but it won’t rehabilitate us for good. We’ll be back to Twinkies before we know it. It’s not enough to remove evil, to tell my children to not spend so much time in a daze with a digital gadget, for instance. Remove the gadget, and what you have is an empty space. There must be a desirable and truly “nourishing” replacement that fills up –– or even crowds out –– the vacuum that remains. There has to be “nutritionally dense” matter that will fill both mind and spirit and train the soul toward those things.
Fill up my body with the good so there is no room left for the bad.

Fill up my heart with the good so there is no room left for the bad.

Fill up my mind with the good so there is no room left for the bad.

The timing of all of this is God-sent. Truly, a seemingly small but overwhelmingly large miracle in my life. The day after Mother's Day I had another aching experience of vulnerability, but I reached out to my husband and he responded quickly. As it was happening, I had an idea that would help me physically (making pre-made green smoothie bags for the freezer) and Brandon stopped at the store on his way home to get me supplies. As he was shopping, I found Melissa's essay. The next day was therapy.


"Can you find time in the day where you can have a consistent exercise routine?"

"I need to."

"Even just a short amount of time?"

"The irony is that I have all of these DVD's at home --Jillian Michaels, yoga, pilates --and the Jillian Michaels' one is only 20 minutes long!"

"What about during your boys' nap time? Or early in the morning?"

"I don't know. It just feels so hard! Which is silly --I mean, I'd have to get up, put on some shoes, put in the DVD, move the table, find the weights... It's so easy, but why is it so hard?"

"Cheryl, it's like you are swimming through sludge. That's what Depression is. Easy things aren't easy."

"And what's funny is that if I exercised, it would help my depression. But my depression is halting my desire to exercise..."

"There is a lot of truth in that."

The beautiful part in all of this is that I feel progression, even if it's hard to grasp. I'm reading my scriptures almost everyday on my own. I'm praying more sincerely. I'm seeking out truth and I'm replacing my self-hatred with self-love; I'm stopping the negative before it permeates. It may always be on the fringes, like a wolf encircling the fences, but my walls are getting higher. I'm learning to love not only myself, but this journey I am on. It's teaching me more about my Savior, more about the purposes of this life. I feel more compassion for those who struggle in their minds... I understand more about what sanctification can be (more on that later)... 


From my Pinterest Board, "This is My Brain":



Mother of the Wild Boys said...

Thank you for sharing your heart...I love these ideas!

Amber said...

"swimming through sludge" So very true.