Saturday, July 19, 2014

Transferrable Skills

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The last few days I have been lost in the depths of self-pity. Woe is me, things are challenging so I deserve to eat It's It ice cream sandwiches, goldfish crackers and string cheese until I'm over-full. Because that totally helps the situation, right? And I haven't been to the gym. I had a headache last week that hung around for 3 solid days. It just kept coming back.

Friday I finally managed to kick the headache between back-to-back dosing of Excedrin along with a massage. The massage was AMAZING. Painful at times, but amazing. Best one I've had in ages. I used to get headaches, in my old life, all the time. But since I've started taking care of myself they are a rarity. I know I was eating a lot of crap there for a while but lately I'd been eating better, more whole foods.Well, until the end of last week.

Anyway, I went to bed last night feeling like a loser. Same old behaviors, same old question - why?! But then my higher self stepped in to answer, thankfully. First off, settle down tiger, it's not that bad. Two string cheeses and many handfuls of goldfish do not equal that crap I used to eat. So, yes, reminiscent of old behaviors but do not equate the two. Second, I really didn't eat much yesterday in general so the late night snacks didn't exactly send my calorie count into the stratosphere.

But more important...I'm doing the best I can. I'm a mom, with two young children, and their needs are heavy on my mind these days. And I question myself, sometimes like a cynical CIA agent, doubting my skills as a mother, as a person, doubting my integrity and worthiness. I know, I know - I told you things are hard. I'm going to start writing here soon, more about what's happening in my life. But I have to get things a little more straightened out in my own head first.

Wait, I had a point. About the mother part. I've started to apply the same tools I learned in losing and keeping the weight off to my feelings about myself as a mother. Highlight the positive, accept the imperfections as part and parcel of the journey, expect disappointment, reinforce the good, set myself up for success, know there is no failure as long as one hasn't given up...and most powerful of all, try to see myself as they see me. Those little eyes looking up at me as though I am all that I should be, all that they want me to be. When I allow myself to feel their love, their acceptance, their joy in knowing me as their mother, and not be scared by it, it frees me to bring the very best of me to them. And I know this time, those all loving eyes, it passes quickly. I don't want to waste even a moment of these precious times.

There are lots of ways to be a mom, and this is my way. And my way, on balance, is good. I'm working on replacing that good with great! but I'm not there yet. I've been so hard on myself, so unrelenting in the criticism, the disappointment that I will not succeed in eliminating pain from an imperfect past by creating a perfect present. How many times have I written here about beating yourself up? About how it only serves to undermine, to weaken you for the journey. How bashing yourself on the head over and over again will only leave you weary and behind before you even start. We can't hate ourselves into a version of ourselves we can love. I read that recently and it resonated with me.

It's more than this, what's happening with me, but in some ways, it all comes down to this. I'm a mother and all moms know, we must be right with our children or nothing else feels right. If I let things hurt me, it trickles to them. So I must be true and good with myself, so I can be true and good for them. Thank you for reading, I know it's a bit off topic.


  1. I don't know you personally Michelle, but if you are 1/10th of the real human being that you appear on these pages you are stronger, more inspiring, wiser and more gracious than most of the people I know!

    1. Thank you Bonnie. Really. I appreciate the kind words.

  2. Hi Michelle! Being a mother is the hardest job in the world. We all want to be perfect and we all fail. I wish you could see you are all your kiddos want and need. But, we are our own worst critics,especially when it comes to our babies. I wish you peace of mind and sweet moments with your kids.

  3. I'm very new to all these fitness/weight loss/healthy living blogs, and it's so nice to read such an open, honest post. I'm a mom of 3 and I can completely relate to what you wrote. Really enjoyed it.

  4. It's Progress, not Perfection, in ALL things, right?


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