Sunday, June 5, 2011

Just had to get it off my chest...

My heart dropped this morning for the first time in a long time when Caleb told us lightheartedly that some of the kids in the neighborhood and he play Truth or Dare sometimes, and that once one of the kids dared him to pull down his pants - and he did. Not his underwear, he said. Just his pants. I fought back my tears as in my mind I fast forwarded his life 30 years to him getting flashbacks of a childhood of sexual abuse. Of some neighborhood "friend" or trusted parent playing silly games with him that led to more than just laughter, but to shame and forever messed up everything.

Having grown up in a household where my own mother's flashbacks started when she was 38 - not much older than I am now...when I was not much older than Caleb is now, my greatest fear is that something like that will happen to my own children that I won't know about or have control of. I am constantly paranoid that some older kid they play with or the ice cream truck guys have ulterior motives. I am, however, aware that I do not want to smother my children, so we give them plenty of freedoms. We let them down the street a few houses to play on a neighbor's porch, or to a close friend's backyard - we feel safe enough about this. But, what do we do when they start playing truth or dare on that front porch and pulling their pants down at the request of others?

Caleb sat with me outside on a picnic table chair this afternoon as Jon and I chatted with him about the game and about his friends and about how he felt, etc. It made my heart ache looking down at my sweet angel who had a scraped knee from his fall off the swingset, and at the crumbs on his shirt from the Peanut Butter and Jelly sandwich he'd just finished. He's just a baby, yet here we were talking about such heavy stuff. He said that he felt like he had to do it because he'd been dared to, but that he really didn't want to. UGH!! If that doesn't make a mother's heart explode...

Because this is such an emotional subject for me, Jon is the more level headed one with this. He assures me that we are working now to nip this in the bud and lay groundwork to be certain that this doesn't continue. Caleb knows he isn't allowed to play that game, and he knows why. He knows that a few of his best friends are for sure not allowed to play, so if anyone ever asks them to play, he can say no, and they can all walk away together. That's if I ever let him out of my sight again!!

It's easy to brush off a simple game like that as "curiosity" or whatever. But...what if it's not? What if childhood sexual abuse is so common that we have just become familiar with these twisted little games to the point where they seem "normal" to us now? We have not raised our children to believe that it would EVER be normal or okay to request of their friend to take off their pants. I will not justify something that is unacceptable by believing that every child plays this game.

So, I put my baby to bed tonight and prayed over him for protection from the sicknesses of this world. I thank God for Caleb's desire to do what he feels is right, and for his desire to be honest with his Mommy and Daddy. I prayed over Hannah and Johnny and Lily - for that protection. I am so afraid - what a huge responsibility we have been given to raise these babies. It has never felt quite so heavy as it has today.

I will go to bed tonight assured that my child hasn't been harmed or scarred for life, and with the confidence that our discovery of this "game" truly has enabled us to bring this to an end - for now. But I still will go to bed with my biggest fear remaining... and it's quite an uneasy feeling...

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Playing Catch-Up...or Something

I have literally not looked at my blog (or really anyone else's, for that matter) in nearly 4 months...mostly I'm sorry to myself for that - and Sam. Why have i been avoiding it? Well, I pretty much reached my weight goals (although I'm up about 5 pounds from where I want to be, but it's not from a lack of knowing what to do and how to do it, just from slacking), and I just didn't want to blog about that boring stuff anymore. And lately, I have had SO MUCH on my mind that I haven't even known where to begin when it comes to playing catch-up with blogging. So, maybe I won't even try...

But where should I begin? Maybe I will just list some thoughts I've been having, and then at some point in later blogs I will expand on some of the details on some of my thoughts. Yeah...that's what I'll do.

So, lately I've been struggling with:

* my feelings that perhaps the church as a whole (and I am generalizing here) is REALLY missing it. This is a horrendously sick and dying world - physically and spiritually - and it seems we've convinced ourselves that showing up and doing all the right, cool things on Sundays is what it means to live a life worthy of the calling of Christ...

* my feelings of judgment towards the judgmental. Does that make sense? So many Christians put so much emphasis on the DON'Ts in life (are we even certain that they are "don'ts"?) that we forget about the command to LOVE. I struggle not to get angry with that.

* waiting on God. He has caused my heart to really beat for those in developing nations, but I struggle not knowing WHEN or even IF He will send us to them, and if He is, then by what means will He use? I've allowed this to be a factor of UNmotivation for me in present day living - with my home, and my kids, and my husband and serving right here and now.

* a lack of feeling as though I'm stepping out on faith to do anything. I was encouraged in our Uganda meeting on Sunday to hear one team member talk about how this trip is THE GREATEST leap of faith that he has ever taken. I crave that leap, and that need and that dependence. What am I missing? What am I not doing? Am I stagnant?

* wondering if this trip to Uganda that Jon and I are leading is a God-driven and led trip, or something that I just decided to plan to get me to Africa sooner than God is intending. Wow, that's scary for me to say out loud...

Maybe that's it for now. If I have one or two readers left out there, don't hesitate to comment or ask questions.

Ahhhh...I must say, it feels good to be back!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Weigh-In #??

While I HAVE been keeping track of what I eat, how much water I drink and the exercising I do, I have NOT been keeping track of weeks or weigh-in numbers. So, today was weigh in # who knows. But...who cares, cause the outcome is GREAT! I started back in April weighing in at 152. Then I did the Master Cleanse, but gained most of that 9 pounds back. I started this particular weight loss journey - the sustainable, habit changing, healthier living journey - at 149. My goal weight is 130, which will be 22 pounds when all is said and done. (I know, I'm AWESOME at math!) Today when I got on the scale it read 133.4! WOW! I was really hoping to be at 135 by Lily's birthday which is on the 22nd...but ideally I wanted to be at my goal - and now I am seeing that it just might be possible! Last week I was 136.8, so it seems if I really stick with it for these next couple of weeks, that I'll be there!

I really wish I had taken actual BEFORE pictures, because the difference I see and feel is amazing - to me, at least. I'd really like to be able to compare it with an AFTER picture in a couple weeks. But, I shouldn't complain because I'm nearly there, picture or no picture! HOORAY!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Keep Your Head Up!

Sounds worse than it is... I'm not hanging my head out of shame or failure or anything of the kind. I'm simply reminding myself that with all the 5:45am walks and runs I'm venturing out on, I need to keep my head up so I don't miss all those early morning creatures!

It's been quite awhile since I've posted...I'VE BEEN BUSY, and still am, actually. I'm having a yard sale this Friday and Saturday, VBS in our neighborhood starting the 19th and I'm the music leader (motions and all, people!), PLUS we're moving into our new house on the 31st and there's TONS to do (of which Jon is doing 99% of it...I've just done some painting)! So, there's a lot going on, but I'm happy to say that WEIGHT LOSS IS one of the things happening.

I FINALLY fell off my plateau of 141.8 pounds, and I can see and feel a significant difference! Trying clothes on in the dressing rooms used to be HORRIBLY depressing, as I would bring in things that I thought would fit, but NOPE, they sure didn't cause my sweet love-handles and gut would be protruding from all sides - UGH! Now I can bring skinny-person shirts into the dressing room and actually be excited about the way they fit! HOORAY!! Feels good!

None of this has anything to do with my blog title. What I was going to talk about were all the cute little animals I see in the mornings when I go out. I'm up super early so the raccoons, groundhogs, rabbits and birds don't know to expect anyone. I've had a few face-offs with the local raccoon family...I can't tell who's more intimidated by our closeness - me or the raccoon. But we've been close! Then there's the cute little bunnies. Oh, but that poor, poor beautiful blue jay I hit with my car yesterday on my way to go walking with my dad. It was a sad moment. Anyway, I do like to keep my head up so I can see this morning beauty that all the happily sleeping people (of whom I am slightly jealous) are missing.

HOWEVER, if I kept my head up all the time I would have missed my scale reading 136.8 this past Thursday...GETTING CLOSE to my goal! I'm going to weigh in again this Thursday in hopes for another loss. 6.8 pounds until the end! Wonder if I can make it by Lily's 1st birthday on the 22nd?? Maybe that's pushing it...

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Still at it...

It's been a little while since I've updated. Mostly because I don't have anything exciting to write about, but I guess that's not exactly the point of this journey. It's more about the accountability - letting the world (or all 3 of you readers) know what I'm up to and showing you all the dirty numbers on the scale!

So the update is this: I'm definitely still at this whole getting in shape thing. I've been faithful with my weekly exercise routines, and am doing well with protein intake versus sugar and fat intake for the most part. I feel a LOT better when I am clothed and look in the mirror. I see a significant difference no matter what the scale says, which is what's the most important I think.

Two major feel good moments: 1. on Monday I weighed in UNDER 140 for the first time in a LONG time - hooray!! I was 139.8...I'll take it! 2. I tried on my 2 bathing suits that I own (one of which I figured out I've had for 9 years), and I actually didn't hate it. Now that's progress!!

So maybe I did have exciting things to write about after all! I have less than 10 pounds to go now (9.8 to be exact) until I reach my goal weight. I hear that the last few pounds are the hardest to lose. Sounds awesome. I guess I'll just keep at it and get there eventually!!

BTW - Jon and I bought our first house - HOORAY!!!! :) (and this is the just-home-from-the-closing picture...)

Saturday, May 22, 2010

For some reason I've been losing a little of my motivation to really be eating healthy. When I'm out or at a friend's house I feel like I'm just throwing it all down the drain and eating what everyone else is having, regardless of how bad it is for me. I am wondering if it's partially due to the fact that my healthy and yummy breakfast foods are gone. I'd been having 3 egg whites with salsa (actually REALLY yummy!) and/or some organic vanilla yogurt with granola. With those things not being in the house, I feel like my day isn't jump started with healthy eating like it had been. Instead I've been having either whole wheat toast with Simply Jif peanut butter or some Multi-Grain Cheerios...both of which are pretty good, but not my usual start to the day that's been exciting to me. Hmmm... Maybe I should just get out and actually go shopping and see if helps to have that food around.

This week has been really good for my work-out plan. I've done 2 days of interval training on the treadmill, which I love....after it's all over. It's TOUGH, though! It's going back and forth between a quick walk to all different speeds of jogging and running - all the way to 10mph - kill me now! I sweat like a nasty beast when it's done! But, I know I've worked hard, at least! I've done 2 days of lifting, which has been really cool. I'm supposed to be focusing on doing the exercise correctly and breathing the right way - amazing the difference those things make! It doesn't take much to really feel my muscles working! I also did 1 day of just walking...3 miles wit friends at a walking trail plus another 2 miles on the treadmill. I enjoy a good long walk!

I just don't know if I'm going to make it down to my goal weight. I feel stuck right around this 140 spot...feel like I've been stuck here for years! Just need to stick with it, I guess...and wait until I reach my goal to allow myself to plateau. Hmph - I'm a big whiner, huh?! :)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Wed. Weigh-In...A Wasted Week!

Well, yesterday was weigh-in number 3, and while it wasn't as bad as I thought it might be, I wasn't happy with the results. I gained .4 pounds - almost a half a pound, and was 141.6. Not surprising after my weekend away...details on that weekend are in the previous post if anyone cares. I was SUUUUPER excited to get into the 130's, so I was bummed feeling like I'd wasted a whole week. Now I have to keep trying and see if I can get there by next Wednesday.

I have started my lifting and interval training routine, which has been great! The lifting seems a little easy, so I may need to find out about tweaking that a bit. But 20 minutes of interval training between 4mph and 10mph on the treadmill kicked my BUTT - and it felt SO good afterward! I'm really looking forward to keeping this up and seeing the results.

One of the motivating factors for me in all this is helping to inspire others to get up and go, too. My sister-in-law has been out regularly walking and I am SO proud of her for getting out there and doing it! Also, I was super mean to my friend last night and MADE her get off her butt and exercise - haha! She protested, but felt so good in the end that she'd done it. I'm really proud of you guys!! :) So, let's stay in this together, shall we? :)