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7/08/2011

getting to know me more

My biggest struggle is control. I doubt anyone will be surprised by this statement. It's apparent that I want to be in control of all situations and at all times. I need to know what is happening currently and what will happen in the future. I also have a tendency to overthink everything that has happened in the past. It's a problem. And I am doing my best to let go.

And each time I think I am at a point where I can finally let go, where I am finally okay with not being in control of every sitatuation, something happens to remind me that I don't hold the world in my hands. Something happens that reminds me that it doesn't matter how tightly I hold on because there is something (someone really) who sees everything and not just the little blips I notice.

Starting the journey to lose a 100  pounds is in my control. I can make choices on what to eat and what not to eat. No one drags me out of bed and forces me onto the treadmill at 6:30am6:45am in the morning. No one throws me into the pool and demands that I swim or water jog or participate in deep water aerobics. It is my choice to do those things, and it is also my choice to not do those things should I decide I need (or want) sleep more.

But it's not my choice to lose weight. That's up to my body. And so often it is disappointing to count calories, consider fat content, spend hours at the gym a week, and then step onto the scale to feel defeated about the amount lost. To feel like this goal of mine is impossible or will take entirely too long.

I think it's the same way with life. Except I feel like, for some reason, I can better control all aspects of my life not having to do with food or weight loss, and so when even the tiniest thing is different than I had expected, I lose it.

I lose the control I thought I had but never really did. And I get angry and frustrated and disappointed, and what could have been harmless has now been amplified in my mind times one-thousand.

It's not just when something goes differently than planned, though. Because I sometimes spend my time thinking about what next to plan for and what next to be prepared for. There's something inside of me that says that if I hold on tightly and overthink things than the bad that could happen will stay away.

In the past, I've admitted to my issues with control. But admitting to something and actually dealing with it are two completely different things. And as I continue this journey to lose 100 pounds, I am learning that in order to lose the weight and be healthy I also need to shed the negative tendencies so that I can be healthy in the mental sense as well as the physical sense.

The question now is how to let go. How to both recognize that I have control over nothing and to become content in that. How to lift up my hands and say I trust you - to friends, to myself, to God, to my husband. How to not hold onto anything at all. Not even by a finger. But to understand that life is better lived while enjoying it and not planning every hour of every day.

Steps to lose weight are easy. The results might not come as quickly or as easily as I want. But I know what I have to do. I can see the results in the scale (sometimes), in the mirror, and in pictures. But control? Control is not an extra 15 pounds. It's internal. And while its weight is heavier than any scale can measure, it's impossible to see (or so it seems to me).

But I am trying. Praying with everything I have to let go while also praying for things to go a certain way. Recognizing that I have no control over anything at all while also trying to be in control.

So maybe I see the control in circles under my eyes or hear it in my tone of voice. Maybe it rests in the way I get up in the morning for the gym as well as in the way I don't get up in the morning for the gym. And maybe when I learn to fully let go and just trust that my friends, my husband, and God will be there to catch me, I will see it in the scale, in the mirror, and in pictures.

(title from "gardenia" by mandy moore)

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