Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Life of Forgivness

I remember the argument well. I believe that forgiveness is a lifestyle that I choose to live. My friend disagreed with me. I felt that every day I needed to make the choice to live in forgiveness. She was striving to climb the mountain and conquer it all at once.

I had been there before. I guess that is why I was so passionate at trying to get my point across to her. I struggled at conquering forgiveness. I wanted to leave it all behind. I wanted that saying, "Forgive and forget" to be so true in my life. Yet reaching for that goal only brought frustration and disappointment in my life.

I thought about it for sometime realizing that I wasn't God. I don't have that ability to forgive and forget. I am human. I have the ability to wake up each morning and choose forgiveness. Which I do. I don't want my forgiveness to keep me locked up like a bird. A bird with a quiet song and no flight. I want to have the freedom to spread my wings and share my song.

Finding out that most of the time it's hardest to forgive myself was not an easy moment for me. I had come to a place where I was choosing to forgive others for things they had said or done, even when they hadn't asked for my forgiveness or said they were sorry. Yet I was still holding myself to blame. I wasn't giving myself the same pass I was giving others. This was a much harder journey. But one that brought much more healing to my life than others.

When I was able to forgive myself for things that weren't even my fault...I was able to hand those things over to the one who could help me the most. I was no longer swimming in a muddled pool of self hatred...I was living in freedom.


Friday, October 26, 2012

Love Letters....Letters of Love

I found this website that got my attention. All about people writing other people anonymous love letters. Seems a bit strange to me, but I totally understand it. There are times in your life when a note of encouragement is just what you need. When you need a reminder of who you are and what is important in your life. I wrote about this in another post that had to do with Katniss Everdeen.

Now they don't send out mushy letters full of sonnets and i's with hearts. They write encouraging letters. Letters full of truth and love. Letters full of colorfully written words with at times illustrations doodled around the side. So this website gave me a wonderful idea. One that I am starting today with my daughters.

Do you remember the days before there was email? Before Facebook? There were the days after you got home from camp and you waited. You hoped that someone would write you a letter. Maybe that girl you got to know really well in your cabin...Perhaps the cute boy you crushed on all week would send you a small note in the mail. Whoever it was even if it was something silly you loved getting that piece of mail.

There is something about a handwritten note. Something about the fact that it traveled to you from someplace that maybe you haven't seen yet. The mystery of holding that envelope in your hand. What is it going to say? What new adventures has your friend been on? What are you going to learn? There have been letters in my life that have changed me for the better. Letters that have broken my heart. Letters that have healed wounds in my soul.

So what would in mean to our daughters when we go out to pick up the bills and junk mail if they had a handwritten letter or a picture drawn just for them and sent to them in the mail? I think it could mean a ton to them. So once a week I am going to be writing a letter or drawing a picture for one of my girls. I am not just going to place it in my mailbox I am going to really mail it to them. Because I think they can probably feel the difference! I wonder if you feel the same way about letters?

More Love Letters Signature

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

What I Learn....

My weeks have been overwhelming me lately. Mostly because of this little girl. We found out that she could basically only see in a blur. Her normal world was a mixed up mush. No definition. No clear lines. Everything just coming together all at once. She learned to adjust because she didn't know what it was like to see clear. We had been told her crossed eyes were just and optical illusion.  My heart ached for her.

 I talked to a mom this week. She felt the same pain I was feeling, but in a different way. Her daughter sees herself as fat, unattractive and less than perfect. She felt at a loss. Her daughter doesn't see things clearly. We see the definition. We see the lines. We know that something isn't right. But to her it's all a jumbled mess. Sometimes we don't always see the right answers or see the actual problem. We let things go thinking they are just illusions. Perhaps it's just a stage. Mostly we really need to dig down deep and find the real problem. Look into the heart and see what's really going on, and many times we will find the true problem is not on the surface. It's a deeper problem that needs to be fixed.

She has a deeper problem with her eyes. One she was born with, but can be fixed with her glasses. See her smile? When we dig down deep and we don't stop asking questions until we find the problem...their smiles will never end.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Hey Mom Look!

Whatever comes after those words can bring joy or pain to a mom's heart. I love the times my girls come to me and say "Hey mom look at me do this cartwheel." They aren't always the most graceful and they don't have the best form, but I am always proud of them.

Yesterday the Emotionalist came up to me while we were swimming..."Hey mom look...I can go down the slide!" Joy and panic struck me all at once. The slide is huge and for me as an adult my heart starts to beat fast as I look up at it. The twist and turns would make my stomach feel as if I was on a small roller coaster. There she went though...fearless. The water pushed her out of the bottom with such force it might have been like watching Jonah being spit out of the whale. Paddle away she did and she succeed at making it to the edge. My heart was so proud of her! This from the girl who didn't want to go swimming that day because she was afraid she wouldn't be able to touch the bottom!

A few days ago the Inquisitor came downstairs after she woke up. Hair all a mess and glasses on crooked and hands on both her hips. The words she said almost brought tears to my eyes. "Hey mom look...I am so skinny!" Did I miss something? When did I teach her that one? It was a moment of defeat for me. I felt as if I had let her down. Perhaps I hadn't protected her enough. I gave her a sad smile and said "You are perfect just the way God made you."

I find for our daughters the best thing to do is remind them that they are and that how they are is perfect. I think breaking down and attacking the skinny comment might have been a mistake. I don't even want to entertain that subject. Knowing they are perfect. Knowing they are fearfully and wonderfully made...that's important. What are ways you can show that to your daughters?


Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Another Day...

Another blog guest post! :) I told you yesterday that I was sharing part of my story over at Pruning Princesses. Well today Laura and I teamed up on a blog post full of information for you. Tips on how to spot if your child has an ED and tips on how to prevent. If you know me well you know that communication will be pretty high up on the list! So take some time today and check out the post. Also go back and read the post from the beginning of the week and go back later this week to check out some more great posts!

Pruning Princesses

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Pruning Princesses

I was going to write this post yesterday, because that's when it all started. But I have been going crazy with trying to get little details done for normal life. A broken car needing to be replaced. A new car needing to be purchased. Another daughter needed to get eyes checked...and many little things needing to get done in-between.

A blogging friend Laura has a wonderful blog called Pruning Princesses. She shares about raising girls and I connect with her blog a lot. Perhaps it's the fact that I have 5 girls of my own, but even if you only have 1 or maybe you only have friends who have daughters, I am sure you will find something you connect with.

Pruning Princesses 

Laura is taking a week to really hit the issues of eating disorders hard. I am a guest on her blog today and share a little piece of my story with her readers. Tomorrow there will be a post that Laura and I teamed up on about preventing EDs. Please stop by her blog and say hi and read a bit of what Laura and others have to say.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Bad Eyesight

I took my 3 year old in today for her first eye exam. Apparently she needed to go in sooner. My eyes welled up with tears when they placed lenses over my eyes to show me how she sees right now. Wow. I was assured that there was no way of me knowing since she has always seen this way and she couldn't tell me "Hey mom! I can't see well!" But this little girl needs glasses...

I have noticed that as women and young girls we have horrible eyesight when it comes to how we view ourselves. We have distorted our view with magazine articles, movies and television. We see actresses and musicians and hold them as perfect. We believe what we see with them is 20/20. Then what we see in ourselves is all a blur and we can't see it right.

My daughters eyes got me to thinking. What am I doing to help my daughter's see themselves with better eyesight? Am I constantly putting these unhealthy images in front of them making them think, that is perfect? Am I giving into our society and thinking that the blurry mess I see needs to be different? I looked in the mirror today, probably seeing better than I had in days thinking...This is me...The good, the bad and the ugly. But this is me and I am going to embrace that. Because what someone else sees as 20/20 is not what I see. Nobody is perfect. No BODY is perfect. And that's what I have to keep in mind.

One thing I try to do to help my girls is by being very honest with them. When we go through the grocery store and we are bombarded with sleazy looking women I will talk to my girls about modesty. Many people think they are too young to understand issues like that, but when they see things at such an early age, I say it's never too early. When my oldest starts talking about how she may start getting skinnier and skinnier I talk to her about how she is perfect. We talk about these things because they are realities. We talk about these things because I want them to have good "eyesight" for their bodies.


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Relapse...Can it Happen?

I always thought I was above relapsing. I had people tell me that it was possible and they even gave be crazy statistics, such as, 80% of those who recover relapse at some point. Oh but not me. I was in a good place. I was in my third year of college and I was about to get married. Spiritually I was in a great place too. I felt much closer to God than I had in years. Relapse wasn't even a possibility... until it happened.

Sometimes I wonder if it would have been easier with my first pregnancy if it had been longer than 2 months after we got married. Here was a miracle that we weren't expecting and the weight that came with carrying my little bundle of love. I didn't have a full relapse, but I did fall into the patterns that I had put behind me...thinking this will NEVER come back. I was wrong.

Fighting those thoughts and those desires was harder for me than they had ever been before. It was my silliness in thinking that it wouldn't return that caused it all to hit me full force and by surprise! The land of don't and don't became my life again. Filling my head with lies that if I ate that or didn't do this that I would only gain useless weight. The trips to the doctor were terrifying and halfway through I had to ask them to not let me see the numbers.

Pregnancy was enjoyable for me. I loved feeling the baby. I loved that God had chosen us to take care of this child. It became the thought of the daughter who was growing inside of me that pushed me along. I was taking care of myself and pushing the black thoughts aside for my little one.

I suppose I tell you this story for a few reasons. Perhaps you are in recovery and you have this flying high feeling and it's like nothing can bring this all back to you. Learn from me, we are not above this. Keep yourself open to people and reach out if you need help. Perhaps you are a parent of a young girl. Learn from my story and know an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Prevention is key to saving lives and a life of struggle. Perhaps you are a loved one of someone currently struggling or that has struggled. You are important to helping them after recovery. Help them notice signs of relapsing. Reach out for help and reach in to help!

Monday, October 1, 2012

The Winner is....

Thank you so much all you wonderful ladies for taking part in my special week of blogging. I know you have all been waiting for the big news and the winner of the giveaway is....

Key Interiors by Shinay

Thank you so much again! I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend and please continue to visit my blog and give your input! In the next few months I have some really special guest bloggers. They are mostly teen girls who have gone through or are struggling with eating disorders. I will be back later today with a normal blog post!