Don’t Eat The Doughnut

“Don’t eat the doughnut!” I felt these words in my spirit the minute I smelled the deliciousness in the room. I have a lot of food weaknesses. But there is something about the soft and sweet maple bar that will make me cave every time. I tell myself just one won’t matter. That a little bit of gluten and a little bit of sugar will not hurt me much and the delight for the moment will be worth it.
So I cave and I eat the doughnut.  And here lies the problem.

One doughnut may have been fine. But I have an emotional attachment to food. When I open the door to the one doughnut the next day when I am faced with an opportunity to cave again I will.  If I have hit some major stressors I will justify and tell myself, well I had gluten and sugar yesterday so I may as well. And the shield is down, the armor exposed and the battle is lost. All because I didn’t listen to those four little words. “Don’t eat the doughnut!”
Some of us in the battle of our illnesses have been given clear direction on how to be well. Most often that lies within the healthy choices we put in our bodies and exercise.  To do the things that will give a harvest of health we must take action. I can’t sit around waiting for health and eat the doughnut, or skip the gentle exercises and complain when I can hardly move the next day. For me personally, each day that I cave, makes me feel like I have to start all over at climbing the huge mountain.  My flares, thyroid, eyes, dizziness, and heart are all often the direct result of me not obeying what I know is right for my body.

It IS hard in this society to live a clean and healthy lifestyle. There are temptations all around us. The cravings are real as your husband is across the room eating everything you can’t touch and you have been living on vegetables for a week.  I want to be ‘normal’ and feel well and I want the junk too. But here is the reality, If I want health I need to listen to my body. I need to listen to the wise counsel that says, “Don’t do it, don’t eat the doughnut.”

I am at the bottom of the mountain again. I now weigh more than I ever have in my life, my pain levels are off the charts and all the other symptoms in a flare.
I have bee so lenient that I now have to start clawing my way back up to health from scratch. So I am building my truth tips to saying no to the doughnut and yes to my health, maybe they will help someone else as well. I have risen before and I will do it again!

1. Have alternatives handy-
When I am at a party, event or running around town with the hubby, I will cave every single time if I get hungry and I have no other choices around me. Keeping a bag of almonds, a healthy drink, or other allowed foods will keep me in check when the worst cravings arise.

2. Recognize your triggers-
It is important to examine your food triggers. Stress, emotions, loneliness, and boredom are my biggest triggers. Find alternatives to those food triggers that do not cover the issue, but address it. For example, I now know if I am eating out of boredom, I need to start writing, painting or play with the puppy. If I am lonely I reach out to others. If I am stressed,  I deal with the issue of looking at God’s truth about anxiety and worry instead of eating and just covering the problem in a moment.

3. DRINK-  
Dehydration is a health plan killer. If I get dehydrated, my crazy brain thinks I am hungry and I try to fill the void up with food. I feel foggy, achy, moody and all around off if I am not drinking my water. A bottle that I refill is my best aid. I don’t like the taste of water in a glass, weird I know and I don’t like water from the tap. So for me, a good filter, a bottle and even some slices of lime or lemon help me stay on track.

4. Start small-
If I try to cut out everything in one day and exercise an hour at a time right out of the slump, I will hurt, be frustrated and quit.
So I start usually by going gluten-free and drinking my water. I add some activity to my daily. I start slow. Then I add extra changes to health such as food restrictions and more time exercising and moving.

5. Be intentional and realistic-
My goal is health. Yes, I want to lose all this extra weight but ultimately I want to feel good and not be in a messy flare. I need to be intentional in reaching my goals. I will not be successful just wishing for it.  Know what you want and make the choices to get there.
I need to remember I did not develop bad habits overnight and it will take time to see my result. I will still crave the foods for a season and I will still want to eat the doughnut. Walking in true health for me is not denying the struggle, it is taking up my shield and overcoming the battle.

writing for joy
It is time to stand and hear with a heart that listens.

Ruby Red Slippers

While jesting with my Sheila Renae, I realized how much I miss her (again) and I laughing mentioned if only I had working ruby-red slippers, then I would click my way home.

I had only lived in Colorado for 9 short months of my life. But they were the most home filled months I had ever had. I had moved around my whole childhood, but there was something about that small town and the friend with a huge heart that always reminded me of ‘home’.

On March 12, 2012 it will be exactly 20 years since I last was able to give Sheila a real person to person hug.

She was my first and most constant best friend.

This friend was always there when I needed her, even with over a thousand miles away separating our bodies, the distance could never separate our hearts. I could always count on her humor to see me through heartbreak. I loved receiving pictures she had drawn, encouraging words through poems, letters, emails and phone calls. It was these gestures of constant true friendship that kept my head above water for those horrible ‘teen’ years and often keeps me above water now.

Sadly, as I reflect back, the only time Sheila was ever silent in my life is when she needed me most. We had lost connection for a season, and I prayed like mad because she was on my heart but I could not reach her.  God answered my prayer and brought her back into my life.

The joking reference of ruby slippers got me to thinking.  I did not appreciate what I had until it was taken away for a while. In the storms of life we lose much, but as the torrent calms, we see hope renewed.

I am working on living in true joy that surpasses all understanding.  There is a joy that sustains me in all things at all times when I allow it. It is during this absolute joy that I pause and remember, “there is no place like home.”

I’ve passed through many storms in life and much has been taken away. But my constant is, I always have peace because I know for me where home is. I have a hope in the kingdom of God.

He will never leave me or forsake me. I may go through some rough rides but He is always faithful, He is always there, He is always home.

Challenge this day my friends, evaluate, where is home for you?  Where can you come to in or through your trials of life. What will bring you peace and a sense of home? Do not stay lost forever in your trial, it is time to have the victory and walk through to the other side.

Thank you again Sheila Renae, for being an inspiration and speaking through your actions to my heart reminding me of home and who waits for me there. The storm is not over at this moment, and I do not own shiny red ruby slippers, but I know there will be an end to this long, long road.