need that to be enough

I've considered how to start this particular post multiple times, and each time I consider the beginning, I consider the words that will follow. Will they be positive? Will the exude strength? How much will I open up? Why can't I just be past this point already? Is any of this even worth documenting? Are others as sick of this constant back and forth as I am?

Because I am sick of it. And exhausted from it. And starting to really, truly wonder if I can even do this. There's a voice in my mind that tells me to stop, to give up, to not even try anymore. And I am doing my best to quiet that voice. It still wins out sometimes.

I've said before that it is not just about weight. This journey does not only include eating well and exercising often. There is a life outside of those things. Friendships to maintain and strengthen. A marriage to tend to. Two dogs who stick close to my side whenever I am home. A family to connect with whenever possible. A 40-hour work week to complete. A life to turn into what I want, hope, and pray it will be. A house to worry about.

If it were just about weight, I think this journey would be easier. I could focus on exercising for hours a day. I could limit the foods in my kitchen to suit only my needs. I could sleep in the middle of the day and take my dogs on walks.

But this journey is about life and what life is like when trying to lose weight.

We went to church on Sunday. I was tired and frustrated with myself. I'd failed to complete the second week of phase one of the South Beach Diet. I felt every ounce of my failure. I also felt every ounce of my being that wanted nothing more but to sit at home and consume comfort foods. Every ounce of my being that had been ready to crawl into bed at 8pm (and did one night) just so I could sleep and forget about the previous day and maybe put off the worry of the next day.

With minutes to spare before the start of the service, I settled into my seat and read through the bulletin. The church recently purchased a building. It's a historical church in the city that needs quite a bit of work, and within the bulletin, there was a pamphlet explaining the funds needed to be raised for the church. The breakdown of money took up one side of the pamphlet, and then on the other side was an explanation of the reason for the breakdown.

I came to the end of the explanation and read about how so many of us focus on the end goal instead of trusting God to walk with us through the journey. I leaned over to my husband and read the words aloud to him. I mentioned how much I struggle with focusing on the end goal, and he smiled because he knows.

How I wish I could say this sparked a change. That I let go of my desire to focus on the end goal and decided to put my faith and trust into a God that's never failed me before. How I wish I could say that the rest of the weekend and this week so far was wonderful and lacked any sort of anxiety.

But I can't honestly say any of that. Because this week has been hard. The rest of the day on Sunday was hard. Filled with all of these emotions (mainly anger and frustration) I couldn't seem to control, I let loose in a less than attractive manner. There were tears. I raised my voice. I didn't want to be comforted. And I felt the weight of it all.

This weight clings to me still. Maybe not as tightly as once before, but it is there. It comes in the form of the dogs ripping off the storm door at the back of the house. It comes in the form of our car being broken into and our house almost being broken into. It comes in the form of the scale either not moving or climbing back up to a number I hoped I had left behind for good.

So how do I move past all of this for good? That's what is on my mind each waking moment. And every night this week, since Saturday, we have completed a devotional together. And every night this week, the words have struck true to the weight and to the struggle and to where I am in my daily life and walk.

The most powerful words came on Tuesday night. Exhausted from sharing my hurts and struggles in a group setting, I came home unsure of what to do. There was a part of me that felt lighter. I had let people in. I had exposed myself. I was able to hear other's stories and to hear a faint whispering that I wasn't alone.

It's so hard for me to truly open up. I can let go of pieces of myself and share stories, but to show someone everything is terrifying. Because I feel like I have no right to struggle or to feel frustrated or to be anything but perfect. Compared to others my life is wonderful. Compared to others I have nothing to complain about.

But with urging from my husband to talk and a feeling rising up in my chest, I opened up. I didn't realize then that it was 364 days before I had had such an amazing and lifechanging experience. I think about that day and I know it was real and true. And I wonder both why some of those things have not yet come true and why I struggle with the same things now as I did then.

With all this in mind, and with a heart that felt raw and exposed, I settled into bed with my husband and opened to the devotional of the night. As we read the words, I knew they were meant for me in that exact moment.

I've spent so much time being strong. Or at least wanting to be strong. I've been through plenty to warrant strength, and even during the times when many would cave or fall or lose it, I held on. I tucked my chin to my chest and moved forward. I often wondered "why me." I didn't want pity. I wanted to understand why certain things happened to me and not to others. I wanted to understand why it couldn't just be easy.

Reading this devotional opened my eyes just a little bit. There is still a part of me that doesn't want to hear what I am being told, but I am quieting that part. I am turning to the Truth I know in the midst of all of this and asking for help that only He can provide me.

I need help with eating well. I need help with exercising (especially this week when I am tired and agitated). I need help with being a wife. I need help with my house. I need help with letting go of all the plans I have for every single day. I need help to sit still and soak up His presence. I need help (and constant reminders) that this journey is just as much about the journey and steps to get to the end as it is the end.

Desperately, I want to be positive and upbeat. I want to remind others that they can do this. That there is no giving up. I want to inspire. And I struggle with that so much as well because I feel like I am anything but positive and upbeat. In the midst of this struggle, I found a quote from Winston Churchill.
The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.
I chose to see opportunity in these difficulties. As I struggle with the questions listed above, I remember that this blog is a documentation of the past, of the present, and of what I want for the future. It is an avenue to document the life lessons as well as a place to come and to let go of all those struggles and words I keep holed up inside. It is an opportunity to share my story and also an opportunity to share my heart.

It is also an opportunity to share a place to mourn, a place to celebrate, a place to share, and a place to rest.

I hope you can find those places as well. If it's here, then welcome. I can't wait to find the different opportunities in every single difficulty.

(title from "lovely" by sara haze)

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