after my ectopic pregnancy ended I found myself taking "before" pictures and throwing myself into fitness. I was going to fix my life by fixing my body. protein powders, BCAA (branch chain amino acids), vitamins, pre-workouts. all of these different shaped bottles and pouches showed up on my counter tops and in my cupboards. I threw myself head first into learning about proper lifting technique for weights (I'm a total nerd about technique). I started following hundreds of other fitness moms on instagram for inspiration. hours upon hours of wishing and dreaming and planning on how "Happy" I would be with my "after" pictures.
as my muscles grew, so did my confidence. I had more energy. I was motivated to get out of bed in the morning. I was happier. I was also obsessed, which is probably why I was happier. when your thoughts are directed at something intensely they can't be focused on your unmet emotional needs or unresolved past trauma. that's another post.
but from watching these women accomplish their goals and spew fitness gospel. I believed therein lied my answer. fix your body=fix your life. there was one woman in particular I watched in fascination as she lost 100 lbs, left an unhappy and abusive marriage and "Transformed" her life. she won a fitness competition, she got implants, she had it all. and something was always triggered in me. I couldn't put my finger on it, but I could sense her sadness as she "progressed". almost as if you could feel that she realized the truth, fixing just your body doesn't fix your issues. mentally, emotionally, or spiritually. are they connected? yes! but focusing solely on one and ignoring the others, well... we all know how that feels.
this morning I thought about her and looked her up on instagram only to find her account had vanished. other posts were there announcing the sad news, she was arrested for a DUI hit and run and murder. she was higher than a kite, and drunk and drove away from the scene.
this is a mother of two.
and instead of judging and condemning and pointing my finger going "see! you didn't have it all figured out", I just sat there, staring at the screen and feeling for her. so lost, confused and full of guilt and shame. where was she so incredibly hurt? why did she believe those dark lies about herself?
her motto on her site was, I AM STRONG, I AM CAPABLE, I AM WORTHY. all great affirmations for your bathroom mirror, I might add. but saying affirmations don't work a lick if you don't truly feel them or believe them.
how do you feel positive affirmations and believe them? it's hard in the beginning. you have to look at all the other feelings going on and let them go. I think we all try to let them go without really feeling them, we want to skip that part. but you can't let go of something you aren't holding in the first place. so we run around, fixing our bodies, fixing our brains with degrees, distracting ourself with awesome job titles and business etc but not healing emotionally. no anti-depressant in the world can help you HEAL your emotions. they numb, yes. which sometimes is very important. but they don't fix anything.
I guess the point of this rant is, don't ignore the most important part of your journey. your feelings. I was getting stronger physically, but mentally still beating myself up every second of the day. healing physically and getting healthy is important. healing mentally and getting stronger emotionally is important. growing spiritually in your connection to God and Jesus Christ are suuuuper important. they all are important. you don't have to master all at once (I actually don't even think that's possible). but try not to throw all your self help eggs into one basket. because it's not healthy. and it slows your progress. but maybe that's how some of us need to learn?
everyone has to hit rock bottom. whether that's losing your faith and finding it again. or going to jail and living in an orange jumpsuit for 20 years. its' all different. it's all valid.