Saturday, December 10, 2011

the truth.

It's weird how when you feel like you should be writing in your journal but don't, out of sheer laziness, you start to feel like things are building up inside of you.  Nothing in particular- just things.  Now that I've seen the difference that regular journaling can make, I feel and notice a difference when I haven't been doing it.

I really am terrible with consistency and I want to be better about that.  But the only way to that is by being more consistent so.....

I think I'm in some sort of rut or something.  I think I'm trying to avoid something....something that's working its way out to be faced.  Perhaps it's simply that I know I have no one or nothing to blame for my obese weight but myself.  I don't want to admit that and take that responsibility because then it means I cant' do what I want- or that I must otherwise say I am choosing morbid obesity.  That I am choosing to put my health at risk.  That I am choosing to be uncomfortable around others, in my clothes, or in the bedroom.  Who would make those choices??  Who in their right mind anyway?

I recently found this photo from when I had lost all that weight after Nutrisystem.  I twas taken just days before I found out I was pregnant with K.  I look fantastic and so young.  I keep looking at it and the thought comes to me over and over "You did it before, what's stopping you now?"  And you know what?  I don't know.  I wish I could figure out what that difference was between now and then.  I suppose I wanted it more then.  That much is obvious.  But why?  I suppose it could be because that was my first true, serious attempt at losing that weight and I felt like I had something to prove- to myself and to the world- that I could do this.  Now that I've regained that weight, and more, I feel like it's just discouragement.  I guess I either don't' truly believe I can, or I don't think I have what is left to make it happen.

As I write that thought though I know it's so not true.  I know that's precisely how Satan would have me feel.  I know that I've experienced miracles and healing from the Lord.  I know that He has shown me that He cares very much about the things that matter to me, even the seemingly most insignificant things- and that He would happily give me whatever help I needed for what would make me happy if I would but ask.  So what is stopping me?  Am I afraid of losing weight?  Afraid of feeling strong and in control?  Afraid of feeling like I am attractive?  Afraid of admitting my own choices by making the choice to do things differently and having it actually produce results?  That last one seems to really ring true.  I guess I am afraid of the judgments others will make of my current self based on my future self.  That seems so ridiculous because the fact is that if they're going to make judgments then they are likely making judgments now and at least then they'd more likely be more positive?  What do I care about what 'they' think anyway?  I just remember feeling so angry about how much better I was treated, how much more respect and attention I got, after I had lost those 60lbs.  Why I'm allowing that to half me now I just don't know.  As though I think I'm proving something to the world by choosing to stay fat?  Thinking if I do so long enough they'll treat me that way again regardless???  What the heck?!  I certainly wouldn't have myself to hide behind anymore.

Monday, August 8, 2011

lessons learned.

I just feel the need to write.  I'm not even sure of or how to express all my feelings but they need to be recorded.

After the cardiologist discovered last week that my carotid arteries are 50% blocked, I have an MRA today.  The ultrasound didn't show plaque.  I can't help thinking it has something to do with weakened artery walls- and that it's something related to my dad's AVM or my mom's aneurysm.  In any case, my initial reaction was one of hurt, dismay, fear, etc.  I thought 'here we go again' (with another big trial).  I felt embarrassed  that perhaps I brought this upon myself and that if I'd only faced up to my food addiction sooner.... But no sooner had I had that particular thought, the thought clearly came to my mind (and again as I write this) 'I'm not trying to punish you, I am trying to save you!'  How often do we see trials and tribulations as difficulties, inconveniences, or punishments & consequences?  Yet so often they are opportunities for growth and learning- for saving ourselves in an eternal sense.  Even when faced with consequences of other's agency or simply of a mortal life (because God doesn't 'inflict' everything on us)- we are promised that, if we ask for it, all these things will be made good and for our experience.  That's such a wonderful promise and I know it to be true as I have experienced it many times in my life.  I have struggled and endured trial after trial, always seeking to see the lesson.  However, sometimes that isn't immediately clear.  Even so, I have found that when I faced with seemingly insurmountable difficulty or trial, if I take it before the Lord and ask him to turn it for good, then I am more able to turn my life over to Him- putting my will in His hands.  This has always had the best outcome.  Not only that, but it is the only way to overcome fear, for casting out fear can only occur with a welcoming of faith.

This past year has been filled with many trials of faith, but also much growth and change.  As I struggled with physical therapy for my brain injury, I couldn't see the point of it all.  I felt broken and helpless.  It was a big inconvenience that affected my ability to be a mother and caused, at least to me, additional stress for my kids and husband.  So often I asked why.  I received a priesthood blessing at some point that told me I would be healed in due time and blessed me with patience.  Those were not the words I wanted to hear.  I wanted to be healed right then and there and I had the faith that I could.  But that was not God's plan and I needed to put my trust in Him.  I thought he was 'inflicting' this on me to 'make' me learn something.  I understand now that He very lovingly saw a less painful opportunity to teach me and help me grow with lessons that would sustain me in the coming months and trials ahead.  As I turned my life to Him and asked Him for that blessing, I allowed that to happen.  He wasn't going to force a lesson on me or just 'use' me to teach someone else a lesson.  During the course of the physical therapy, I would feel like I was taking 3 steps forward and 2 steps back.  I would break down in the middle of a session, crying.  J was usually my therapist and was so wonderful.  He explained to me that my body had healed itself wrong (by compensating) and that in order for it to heal correctly it needed to first be broken down- much like a broken bone that heals on its own before first being put in the right place and has to be rebroken.  Therefore, things were most certainly going to get worse before they got better but I needed to trust him that they would get better and that he would show me how and be there to help me every step of the way.  Wow- can we cay parallel to life?!  So many times in the last year I have seen the truth of that from an eternal perspective and returned to that lesson for strength and comfort.  I also learned in a very physical way about how we need to push ourselves to do hard things we may not want to, but that going more than we are able does us more harm than good.  That was a hard lesson for me to learn, as I've always felt I just needed to be strong and push through things.  I thought that if I just pushed myself harder then I would heal faster (and be done with this trial/inconvenience faster).  I learned that the opposite was true and that if we trust in the one who knows what they are doing and trust in the timing of it all, believing all would be well in due time, then that would happen- and we wouldn't make ourselves sick in the meantime.

I have had to draw on these lessons time and time again over the last year as I have worked through and with the disclosure of being married to a pornography addict, the realization of my own addictions, and facing a chaotic past filled with turmoil and abuse- with the resolution to be the transitional generation.

Finding out about the extent of DH's addiction and the lies in our marriage led me to visit a counselor with the desire to not be a victim and to stop the trend in the family of women being victimized.  She led me to participate in an intensive recovery group called SOLE- Survivors of Life Experiences.  It was a group for women who'd survived trauma of many kinds, often abuse.  I didn't want to go initially.  I felt it didn't apply to me or that I wasn't 'that' bad.  But the Lord testified to me in more ways than one that this was where He wanted me and I would be blessed for going.  The SOLE experience was literally life-changing.  I learned how I had developed coping behaviors and thinking patterns as a means of getting through and surviving my life.  Having been used by so many others it was hard not to see God as doing the same to me.  Having a father who only seemed to love and approve of me when 'perfect', I felt like God loved me and yet had a checklist he was keeping that if I didn't' live up to, I didn't' have His full approval and love.  As I went through the program and prayed for humility, I felt more broken.  Much as my body needed to be broken to heal correctly, my soul no needed to be.  How grateful I was to have learned that lesson for it was easier to do so in that environment and gave me the strength and hope in the next.... For I truly felt more broken than ever!  The miraculous thing was that as I went through this experience I found that I was able to feel the love of my Heavenly Father.  To really feel it.  I had always known He loved me and had indeed felt His spirit and love- but this was a far more intense and personal experience.  It's like the veil has become a bit more thin when I choose it to be- and what a joyous feeling that is!  I'm sad that I since haven't done as well, been as consistent, at striving for that and allowing for that...but such is the struggle of mortality and each second of every day is a chance to start anew.  I feel like the Lord has testified to me many times this past year of His love for me.  He has validated my every feeling (never leaving me feeling guilty for having a negative one).  He has graced me with His presence, simply being at my side at times.  He has cheered me on and fought for me.  He has allowed me to experience the companionship, support, and encouragement of my mother life I've never known.  He has opened my eyes wide to all kinds of things- blessings, weaknesses, sins, graces, miracles, and lessons.  For those things I am so unbelievably grateful.  Living life with your eyes opened is like being in the temple when they turn more lights on- you don't realized how dim it has been until you suddenly have more light.

I went to the St. George temple a couple weeks ago for the first time.  The opportunity presented itself and I had tot take it.  I'd been feeling for some time a strong need to go to the temple (though not for any particular reason) and the Las Vegas one had been closed for cleaning.  No sooner did I walk in the door than I was overcome by a tremendous feeling of love, like I had never before experienced.  I was taken by surprise because I didn't feel like I'd been lacking that feeling and wondered what the purpose could be for Him choosing to fill me so greatly at that time.  I reasoned that it was because I was also feeling the love, joy, approval, and presence of my mom.  I was also planning to work through steps 4 and 5 of the ARP & PASG groups- where you make a searching and honest inventory of your life and then disclose it.  I thought "Heavenly Father already knows all these things about me- everything past and present, in the open or hidden by shame- yet He loves me this much, with this intensity."  That was a very powerful experience and very freeing.  I came to realize that it is His love (which is felt by faith) that dispels fear and grants power.  It really is love (in the form of experiencing God's love for us) that conquers all.  Not only that, but the Atonement happened because of love- Christ loved us all so much that He was willing to go through that for each and every one of us.  Wow.

So back to now.... Experiencing that intense feeling of love opened my eyes and softened my heart, allowing me to really feel again the depth and sincerity of my love for DH.  With all we've been through in the past year, that is a tremendous gift and one I had prayed for even when receiving validation that if I needed to leave that was okay, for I had done my part in my marriage.  But to feel those same intensity of feelings felt on our wedding day was truly a wonderful gift.

So I have this MRA today and I can't help feeling that my life is about to change in a very real way.  That all these lessons and experiences over the last year have been leading up to this.  And I'm grateful for that.  I'm grateful to have the experience of learning and growing line upon line and precept on precept.  I'm grateful to have learned the value of one step at a time and trusting in the Lord.  I see great love and care in all He has been with me through in the past few years.  I see His face smiling at me with nothing but love and acceptance, in spite of all my weaknesses and shortcomings.  I didn't always feel this way.  I no longer see Him as just allowing bad things to happen to me or as inflicting things upon me to teach me a lesson.  He loves me.  I got a priesthood blessing last night in preparation for today.  Really, it mostly said a lot of things I'd been praying for and I felt liek a lot of it was for DH's benefit as he was the one giving it.  I was told of the love people here on earth and in Heaven have for me.  I was told that those on the other side of the veil would be with me.  I was encouraged to draw on and remember these things- this love & the love of my Heavenly Father as I put my life in the Lord's hands (something I'd been praying for though not in quite so literally a sense).  I was encouraged not to be afraid and to trust God.  I was told that I'd had a difficult and hard life, having gone through so much already in such a short time.  I guess it was nice to have that validated.  I was blessed to be strong in body, mind and spirit.  I feel like something big is coming but that the Lord wants me to know He loves me very much and has given me and my family the tools necessary to get us through this.  I just will need to remember and draw on that regularly.  I guess that's why I felt the need to write all these things down.  It's easy to fear the unknown and to think of all the possible bad scenarios- particularly when you've experienced so much of that.  But the only way to overcome that is by trusting God, loving Him, and allowing yourself to feel His love for you.  He may only be concerned on an eternal and spiritual perspective (though I think He is concerned for the physical and temporal as well) but "I am saving you" is the thought I had and continue to have.  How and what that entails- well I guess that's up to him. ;)

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


I got on the scale this morning to find I'd gained a pound this week.  What a bummer.  But I'm going to tell myself it's just muscle because I do feel like my body is reshaping.  However, this continual bloating feeling I get after eating is no good.  I know I've made some bad food choices as a result as well.

Monday, June 20, 2011

a little personal.

I have noticed a real difference in my mood and attitude on the days I get up early and workout.  I think I need to make more of an effort to get up early and do some sort of light exercise on my days 'off'.

Yesterday was a big day for 'the situation'.  I put my foot down and spoke up regardless of what the outcome would be.  I knew that I needed to for my integrity.  I was proud of myself for standing up for myself and acknowledging my right to have a voice and to stand for the right.  I got angry and I yelled and, honestly, it felt good to feel those emotions and to express them without stuffing them.  The look on DH's face scared me.  It was one I hadn't seen before- just a look of contempt and hatred for me.  He hardly said a word more to me before going to bed, but I felt at peace with myself nonetheless.  He says today that he isn't mad at me anymore.  I don't need to have him tell me that I was right and he was wrong (though that certainly would be nice) and I can go on even if he were still mad.  I know that I did the right thing and it felt good to not back down for fear of confrontation for once- with the situation and with him.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

just morning.

There is nowhere that we have to be first thing this morning and that is such a wonderful feeling.  After a lot of yelling (that I'm not proud of) yesterday, we were able to get the downstairs looking good.  It's nice to start the day that way and I'm hoping it can stay so.

Yesterday was a rough day.  It was my day 'off' from my training.  While it felt so wonderful to sleep in, I think it made a difference not having that exercise to start my day and quiet time to myself.  I also didn't start by writing like I have been.

My mother-in-law called me just to check in, which was nice.  However, as she was talking about work, it was all I could do not to say something about the situation that's been on my mind.  That really really triggered me.  I know that I need this situation to be resolved for me to move on.  Yes, my happiness is independent of others as it needs to be, but I am not okay with standing idly by while something gets ignored that really shouldn't.

Thankfully, I was able to end the day yesterday be going to a RS activity where Steve Fotheringham spoke.  I always love listening to him.  He was talking about studying the scriptures and finding Christ in all things.  It really was good and it was nice, too, to just spend an hour focusing on just spiritual things.  We are blessed to have access to a lot of really wonderful people like him.

I think I need to spend some time creating some things.  That will help me to feel better as well.  Often, though, i feel like I can't do that until I've made sure the house is clean first.  So, since my bedroom is not clean, and the laundry is not all done, I feel like I have to postpone an activity like sewing.  It's probably because that's just the sort of thing I have to do with the kids for them to get things done.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

so blessed.

I think Heavenly Father has really blessed me and helped me with my training these last couple of days.  I have been able to get up, do it, and recover quickly.  So much so that by yesterday morning I'd even forgotten that I'd gotten up at 5:30am and gone for a bike ride.  I'm so grateful.  This morning I ran (well, walked/jogged) and I had my best time ever.  I also think that my new inhaler prescription has helped immensely.  My chest simply doesn't hurt and I don't feel nearly as out of breath.  Yay!  There is hope.

Yesterday we had an all-around good day.  Everyone worked in the morning and then we went swimming at the Y that afternoon.  The place was packed but K doesn't mind when he is in the water and K2 did really well.  I'm hoping we can go again this afternoon but we will see.  I have piano lessons.  I do have to do a 30 minute swim for my training though.

DH has been really supportive with my training these last couple of days and I am really grateful.  He has woken up early to make sure I wake up.  While I am out he has made the bed and done the dishes.  It's just nice to have those little things taken care of.

I need to do my work on my steps today.  I need to make sure I am doing something on them everyday and remember the 5 dailies of recovery (which I can't remember at this very moment).

There is much to be done but I have hope that it can be done- and that is a really nice feeling.  I am so grateful to my Heavenly Father for this feeling and renewing of hope- and grateful to really feel such love toward Him.

Monday, June 13, 2011


I'm up early.  Going to go for a bike ride in a bit.  Praying it goes better this time than the last time.  ;)  It'll be the first I've done anything since getting sick from it.

I had some weird dreams last night.  In one of them I was riding my bike through my neighborhood from when I was a child, only as an adult now and seeing the changes.  I saw the old house at the end of the street where I was first abused and the bushes where my friend who lived there and I used to hide behind.  I still wasn't sure how I felt seeing it and it was like I looked at it longer trying to remember what else happened there.  The whole dream just sort of left me with some weird feelings and I recall even having the thought during it that I needed to go for a bike ride to clear my head of all this unnecessary junk.  Soooo.... that's what I'm going to go do.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

just because.

DH and I had a nice date last night.  It wasn't anything special but it was a really nice time hanging out.  It's Saturday now but he is working to get some extra cash.  He is a hard worker and I am grateful.  I am grateful, too, that we have a good babysitter that we can rely on.  The kids finally cleaned their rooms yesterday just so she could come babysit.  I thought it was funny that they thought it was like a special treat for them to have a babysitter.

Friday, June 10, 2011

an answer.

Yesterday was a hard day.  I felt really triggered and I'm not sure why except that it's that time of the month and I was really tired.  I was awful and moody and my kids deserved better.  What made it 'worse' was that our phone (& thus internet) was turned off and we didn't have money in the account  yet so I couldn't go shopping either.  I know that was an inappropriate response and that those have become sort of replacement addictions.  So it was hard and it felt like having a great big itch that I couldn't scratch.  I wasn't sure what I should do and I was feeling a lot of confusion about dieting versus mindful eating... so I just read my scriptures and then fell asleep.  When I woke up I had the thought that perhaps dieting was akin to 'white knuckling' and that it was repeating past unsuccessful behaviors and attitudes.  On the other hand, simply choosing to eat mindfully was exhibiting faith in the Lord and patience with his plan- trusting that as we choose the right (eat mindfully in accordance with the Word of Wisdom) and work on just working the steps of the program then the healing will come in the Lord's time and the weight loss will naturally follow.  That actually seems the harder path to me because of the long-term trust (in myself and God) required and necessary patience.  And, yet, though I doubt and question if it's just myself rationalizing myself off yet another diet....I know that is the answer that gives me the most peace....because this time I am making a different kind of change and I have hurt myself by breaking that trust & belief in myself before.  I need to apologize to myself, forgive myself, and allow myself to not be perfect... all while taking responsibility for myself and my actions.  I guess that's growing up.  ;)

So I guess I have my answer.  I ate for a couple weeks just choosing to eat mindfully and focusing on my recovery rather than losing weight.  I felt peace and contentment- and found that I lost a couple of pounds each week... So I guess that's my answer.  It was after having a slip that I felt jumbled and anxious and looking for a quick fix- which then led to feeling confusion and self-doubt.  That is not the Lord's way.  So I may not lose as quickly as some others and I will have to be less self-conscious about my weight...but I can seek to have peace and contentment in spite of it, knowing that I am choosing the right and I am healing myself from the inside out.  We are promised our weaknesses may be made our strengths and I believe this is how.

Thursday, June 9, 2011


I'm so incredibly tired.  Just like yesterday (when K2 got up at 5:30!).  Lately I'll be exhausted (to the point of falling asleep while driving just a short distance) all day and then come evening I suddenly have insomnia.  Ugh.  Working on making myself get up though so that hopefully I can work backwards on a bedtime.

I went to the PASG group last night simply because I wanted to.  I felt like I had something to give.  I hadn't been for a couple of weeks and I felt good hearing from one of the sister missionaries how much something I shared a couple weeks ago had helped her.  She did a little write-up on it and gave a handout on PTSD.  I read through the information on PTSD and realized how so much of my life has likely been run by it.  Crazy. I should've gotten help and medicine a long time ago.  But the important thing is that I am now and I am feeling freed as I regain mastery and control over my life by seeing it for what it truly is and turning it over to the Lord.  I was also reminded at group about the need for gratitude journals so I am goign to work on being more consistent in writing in mine.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

oops. bummer.

Really?  It's been that long since I wrote?  Wow.
Well, Thursday night (6/2) I rode my bike for half an hour and went to group.  On Friday I called my Dr because my chest was still hurting from the bike ride as though I hadn't taken any asthma medicine before my workout.  When he saw me that evening he said I'd really messed myself up and my bronchial system was super inflamed.  He gave me a steroid shot- which sucked- and some medicine.  We had been praying to know whether to go to Brianhead for the weekend as we had planned.  When we discovered earlier in the day that our bank account was dry then that sort of answered that.  So I thought we should hike Mary Jane Falls on Saturday instead.  Well, then the doctor said how inflamed my airways were so DH vetoed going anywhere with thinner air.  I'm grateful we got clear answers to our prayers.  I heard on the news yesterday that a woman was in critical condition after a boulder fell on her head on that very same hike over the weekend.  I can't help but wonder...

So any exercise or training has been off-limits, which is a major bummer.  But for whatever reason things really did flare up badly and I did have to spend time in the ER Sat night getting oxygen, a breathing treatment, and an i.v.
So it was obviously a very lazy weekend.  I also found it hard to eat well while sick.  Like I just didn't have the brain capacity to think of good food and to eat...and I just wanted carbs.  So I didn't do as well as I had been but I also didn't do horribly either.  I will weigh-in tomorrow.

Things otherwise are going okay.  I just am really super tired.  I'm trying to get things organized for the summer.  I can't believe school gets out in a couple of days.  I know the summer is just going to fly by and then it will be my birthday before I know it.  I really don't want to be overweight going into my 30s.  I want to have developed long-lasting healthy habits- sort of like my gift to myself.

DH has been doing okay.  Things have been really hard and stressful at work.  He works for his dad and that adds an extra element of stress when things are taken out on him.  But he has opened up to me and told me it has been hard and that he has written in his journal instead of acting out.  Even so, it's like I'm just waiting for the other shoe to drop.  There is a situation at work that needs to be handled and I know I will feel much better when it is.

Thursday, June 2, 2011


Good morning.  DH did a nice job yesterday of making it special but not pressuring me to feel the same.  He got me some earrings and short sleeved robes I had mentioned wanting.  I'd planned to make a nice dinner but he surprised me by arranging a babysitter and taking me to dinner at PF Changs.  I got to get my hair done yesterday as well.  I love my hairdresser.  It's so nice to have my hair back to a more 'sassy' style again.  It just feels more 'me' and I feel more like putting myself together. That's so important.

I've been surprised at how much writing in here daily has helped in general.  I feel more stabilized and focused during the day without putting a lot of thought into it.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

9 years.

Today is our 9-year anniversary.  I should be excited about it given that I didn't think we would make it here last summer- but I just can't seem to muster it.  I don't really care to celebrate it and I didn't get DH anything.

Last night I signed up for my first triathlon.  It's in Utah in September.  I'm planning on the fact that I've already paid and registered helping me stay more focused and on task with working out and eating well.  I already made better breakfast choices today.  Weighed myself today.  217.8 YUK! Ridiculous too!  I am going to make good choices and I am going to do a lot of documenting of my life this next year.


So it’s official. I’m doing a tri. Ladies, join me here: Seems like a good introductory one. I’ve been doing a lot of ‘self-work’ lately. It’s been hard. It’s been painful. It led to a bit of spiraling and regaining a ridiculous amount of weight…which then led to making some serious, honest assertions about myself….But whatev, it’s all good. It’ll be a slow change. As annoying as that is to me I know that is how it needs to be for me. Hopefully people don’t make too many judgments about me in the meantime. If they do…that’s their problem, not mine, right? You just never know what it is like for someone. That’s all I’m going to say. In any case, I’m doing this triathalon…and I’m gonna rock it just by completing it.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011


I feel so bloated and uncomfortable lately.  It makes me sick.  I don't want to be seen by anyone.  I even cancelled book club at my house this week.  I just feel embarrassed and ashamed of how much weight I've put on and like I can't let anyone see me until I make a change and at least am where I was a couple of months ago.

Yesterday was a good day.  It felt nice to have a good balance between work and play.  We got a lot of cleaning and organizing done but I also took time to sit and watch a movie with the kids and to have an impromptu BBQ with the neighbors.

I wanted to run some errands today but K was up through the night and still complaining this morning of his foot hurting him.  Seems unfair to make him walk around much.

Tomorrow is our anniversary.  We don't have any special plans nor do I particularly care to make any.  I should be excited to celebrate making it another year when i really wasn't sure we would.  But I dunno... I need to pray to feel that 'magic.'  I didn't get DH anything either.  Don't really feel like spending the money so we'll see if I can come up with something to make.

W just said K2 is getting into brown sugar downstairs.  Seems there is always some price to pay for taking time for myself.  That's why I need to get up early.  Just wish I wasn't having such insomnia lately.

Monday, May 30, 2011


I went to ARP this last week and have been more actively working the steps.  It is painful, hard, scary, overwhelming... and yet I feel great peace afterward as though it is a confirmation that I am doing the right thing, no matter how hard.

Last night I had another of those dreams where I express resentment to my mom for 'abandoning' us....or where she is suddenly there when she shouldn't be.  Why am I still having these dreams?  I imagine there will be more as I work through recovery and deal with those deep-seated issues.  I clearly have abandonment issues- fear of abandonment... It strikes me that I eat to make myself unattractive to 'push' people away.... because then there is the illusion of control over whether I leave first or if they leave me then it's because I've done it.  Obviously this is false.  What is really going to happen is that I am going to cause harm to my physical well-being that possibly results in my death at an earlier age (thus making it less likely that others I love dearly will 'abandon' me by dying first).  Yep...I'd say the abandonment issue is definitely one that needs to be addressed.  Hmmm.  I need to remember that God has a plan and will be the 'driver' of my rollercoaster regardless of my attempts at being in control.  Thus it would be better to simply trust Him to direct my ride, knowing the He will keep me safe and that I'll always arrive 'home' in the end... and to simply enjoy the ride.

My plan is to wake up early to care for myself first each day.  I will do that by doing the following: scripture study, prayer, journaling, ARP/PASG step, and exercise.  Then, throughout the day or at the end I will also practice: self-care, prayer, couple prayer, and have an accountability check-in.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

deeper confession.

Tonight I told DH that I have an addiction to food and that I would like to go to ARP group meetings or at least use the manual to deal with it.  I also unexpectedly shared with him that I had planned on leaving come summertime had I not seen progress in his recovery.  That was hard.  I'm not sure if I had told him like I'd thought or if I had decided not to tell him that thought but it just sort of came out.  It was hard to see that pain and hurt in his eyes.  I'm not sure if I did the right thing in telling him.  I have to hope he understands my intentions and doesn't take it personally.  The fact is, I do love him and I do want to stay with him.  What is difficult is allowing him to see my path, expressing my feelings without his fixing things- all while feeling triggered and wanting him to understand that I am triggered without taking it personally or trying to fix it.  I still struggle to reach that state of total acceptance of this 'struggle' being the new reality for us.  I guess because I think that accepting it means giving up the fight to make things better.

Thursday, May 19, 2011


My  name is Hala and I have an addiction to food.  I use overeating as a means of making myself feel secure in my marriage.  For example, I think to myself  "If I don't feel good about how I look (or just plain don't feel good) then I feel more drawn to be with DH because I know he loves me and accepts me as I am.... or if I don't feel good about my body then I can 'hide' from being intimate- or I can use my being overweight as a 'justification' for a lack of sex life or lack of apparent interest from my spouse...thus it 'protects' me."  Of course, these are faulty thought processes.  I only hurt myself by making myself unhealthy and uncomfortable.  I draw inward and become reclusive unless I consciously fight those urges.  It limits my life and my involvement with my children.  It doesn't show the proper love and respect for the beautiful gift of a body that God has given me.  Instead it shows a lack of self-discipline & self-mastery and allows Satan to have the body he so deserves.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

weighing the options.

I have options.

YMCA  $50/mo

Ideal Protein Diet

  • $85/wk + vitamins
  • expensive but effective fast
  • possible allergies
  • balance of prepared, convenient foods and personal planning of own meals
  • support through weekly coaching

Weight Watchers

  • $20-$30/mo
  • online tracking without individual calories
  • I know many who've had long long-term success with it
  • emphasis on variety and moderation
  • flexible
  • on my own unless willing to add another meeting to my schedule


  • $180 up front for first 6mo then $30/mo or $10/mo if pay for a year in advance
  • wearable armband gives real, accurate info as to calories burned throughout the day
  • visual 'real' teaching of the 'science' of food and consumption
  • track intake but easier to adjust to correct calories needed to consume because of the real info on calories expended
  • need to always wear the armband

Thursday, April 7, 2011

medical update.

I've had quite a few people asking for updates on the latest medical drama in our home so I thought I'd just post a note about it rather than several status updates.  ;)
After months of increasing problems it appears that eliminating the common chemicals I am allergic to has finally begun to make a difference.  My enlarged lymph nodes are finally decreasing and some even seem to have gone away.  Better yet, I haven't developed any new  symptoms, which is more than I could say for several months in a row.   Maybe we really did figure the bizareness out and maybe, just maybe, I really can go back on a diet and lose this way for real and safely.  :)  The one sad thing is that I have found that I can't wear many of my pairs of earrings anymore.  The holes they go in just start itching and driving me crazy.  This really is sad.  I love my earrings.

We have been trying to figure out the cause of frequent migraines W has been having.  I had assumed it was due to allergies for a long time.  However, increasing allergy regimens didn't seem to help and his nose was so constantly congested even with treatment that the doctor sent us for allergy testing.  I was shocked to find out that he was negative for everything (especially after learning I am allergic to nearly everything).  The pediatrician and a neurologist both confirmed he has been having migraines, rather than just headaches.  Thinking perhaps it was still related to his nasal congestion, I took him to my ENT.  He has been having dizziness frequently with these headaches and complaining of his head feeling 'funny.'  So I also thought it would be good to rule out any vertigo issues I and my grandpa have.  Anyway, the allergist and his pulmonologist both sent him for a CT of his sinuses and chest xray.  The chest xray looked fine (yay) and I reviewed the CT with the ENT just yesterday.  He does have some narrowing and possible sinus disease.  His turbinates (if you know what those are) are really rather large.  He has what may be a cyst or what may also just be sign of infection in one side as well.  However, the ENT doesn't think these are enough to warrant the kind of headaches he has been having.  Thankfully, adding a nasal antihistamine (to treat non-allergic rhinitis) in addition to his nasal steroid has really helped his being able to breathe through his nose.  The ENT is inclined to wait until the neurologist deems it necessary to do anything about his sinuses, after ruling other things out.  He had an EEG today to rule out seizures being a cause of the dizziness and 'funny' feeling (he sometimes wakes up in the middle of the night with it).  He did great for it...holding still and falling asleep just like he was supposed to so it was a relief he didn't need to be sedated.  He will, unfortunately, have to be sedated for his MRI at the end of the month though.  After seeing how nervous he was about staying still for the CT though I was glad they were going to sedate for the MRI.  We won't get any results on the EEG or MRI until the middle of May unfortunately as that is when he has his follow-up so that they could go over both together.  I do like his doctor, which was more than I could say about my pediatric neurologist.  He has really excellent credentials too so I have high hopes.  It's a bit of a pain but I'm glad they are anxious to be super thorough.  Billy's family has a history of migraines.  I was technically diagnosed with epilepsy as a teenager.  My dad had an AVM.  I have a brother with a tumor on his optic nerve.  And then of course there is my mom and her brain aneurysm.  Soooo yeah.... happy to be thorough. :)

Then there is K2.  He had an endoscopy and colonoscopy last week.  He is doing well.  They showed that his reflux medicine is adequately treating him so that is good.  The doctor couldn't find the polyps that we had seen.  This is a good thing in that polyps would've been really rare, likely bad, and certain regular checkups for the rest of his life.  It's a bad thing in that if it wasn't polyps it was a rectal prolapse (or a miracle happened and it was polyps and they went away on their own- something I'm not discounting).  The doctor wants us to keep an eye out for it happening again and to watch his weight closely.  His concern is that it could be an early sign of cystic fibrosis, something a cousin of mine had.  Like I said, we will just watch and monitor him.  Hopefully he will just improve and improve and all this will go away on its own.  :)  He has tested positive for allergies to milk, eggs, and wheat but they are only minor allergies so we don't have to do much.  More like irritants.  I have just tried to cut back on those in his diet where I can and be aware that he may have issues if he has a lot. 

So there you have it. That's the general update for the time being.  I'm grateful I was blessed with a desire to learn about medical things from a very early age.  Reading medical texts has served me well. :)

Sunday, January 30, 2011

a little progress update.

One of my plans for this year that I posted was to finally lose that ‘baby weight’ for good. Well, in an effort to be accountable I thought I’d do a little monthly check in with ya.
Here goes:
Jan (overall) totals:
Down 14lbs
Chest: -4.5 inches
Waist: -2.5 inches
Hips: -2.25 inches
 Arms: -1.25 inches per arm
Thighs: -2 inches per thigh
That’s 15 3/4 inches overall!
I am happy with that. I've been losing it with the Ideal Protein Diet.  I set a mini goal to lose 20 by Valentine’s Day and I think I’m on my way there!

Monday, January 3, 2011

a look back at 2010.

It was a hard year for a lot of people, ourselves included. As I thought back on 2010 I realized just how much of it seemed to have been spent at doctor’s offices, in bed, or at therapy appointments… all for me. I am grateful that my children were largely healthy for the year (aside from K getting his tonsils out and having a large mole removed from his back, P breaking her arm and needing a lot of miserable skin treatments for other problems, and Kyle getting tubes in his ears). I am not sure how we would have juggled much more. I think I went to the grocery store maybe 6 times during the year. I’m grateful I had a good store of food storage to use and a husband who could pick up some things here and there. January started with my wisdom teeth coming out, getting horribly infected, then getting braces on before they were even fully healed. By the end of February I was having serious vertigo problems that were leaving me largely bedridden for days at a time. It took over a month before an ENT finally determined that I had gotten a minor traumatic brain injury and damaged my otolith (something in your inner ear) back when I had fallen and hit my head on the stairs in October (also the reason for the braces, to realign my messed up bite). So it was that in either March or April I began physical therapy at the Werner Institute. It was a long, painful, sometimes sickening process as I had to have multiple epiley maneuvers and experienced many setbacks. I went twice a week for an hour every single week until the beginning of September. What a blessing it is to move around normally! To be able to ride in a car (or even drive), especially at night, without feeling like you’re going to throw up… to be able to pick something up off the ground or turn side to side without feeling like you’re going to either throw up or fall over… to be able to feel awake and not worn out from your brain working overtime just to keep you upright. I still experience the effects if I get worn down, overly stressed, or sick…but it’s not nearly as bad and I even find myself grateful for a very clear signal from my body that forces me to stop everything and just rest. I went straight from physical therapy to being involved in a wonderful 12-week therapy group called SOLE (Survivors of Life Experiences). That ended at Thanksgiving and we filled the last month of the year with appointments as we had met our deductibles.

While it seems that much of the year was spent in a fog I realized that it was a year of tremendous growth and lessons learned. I learned much about humility and patience. I gained much more of these attributes than I ever honestly thought I’d have. I learned that when something heals wrong you have to break it to fix it the right way. This is often incredibly painful. Even though we have the remarkable ability of adapting to cope and survive, it doesn’t mean that those mechanisms we develop are the best for us and at some point we must examine and correct where needed. I learned that my Heavenly Father loves me for me and that He loves me for my imperfections…that I do not need to be perfect to receive His love and approval. I learned that if we pray for a change of heart and for humility, we will surely receive… That it does not have to be a heart-wrenching experience as we feel pride crushed, but rather it is an opening experience as we are better able to receive the Lord in our lives and feel His presence more than ever. I learned how to just let things go. I experienced a powerful Priesthood blessing from someone unaware of my circumstance that gave me unmeasured blessings and showed me just how much my Heavenly Father truly is aware of my every need, often even before I am. I experienced many answers to prayers as I received confirmation from multiple sources… giving me greater confidence in myself and my ability to receive personal revelation. I was blessed to be able to see others through the eyes of Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and to glimpse the love they feel for us. I learned how much I need others and yet how much I don’t…how very capable I am. I learned to experience peace and joy in the midst of chaos and imperfect circumstances. I grew…and I am grateful.

Also, I found this list that I had made at the beginning of 2010. I prefer to make ‘affirmations’ rather than goals and see how many come to pass. My health issues threw a wrench into a few things but I’m pretty happy with where I ended up. Here is the list I’d made:

In 2010 I will:
- Read at least 20 books Done

- Finish rereading the Book of Mormon Done

- Take a name to the temple Done

- Lose all this baby weight (and yes, I’m still going to call it that even though my baby will turn 2 this year), slowly but surely so that it stays off uhhh….yeahhhh…

- Go on a hike each month was getting done until I could no longer hike as the walking made me dizzy and nauseous 

- Pay off AT LEAST one or two creditors Done

- Attend the temple each month Done (minus Dec  but I was going weekly for a few months so that must count)

- Be more provident by preparing my own mixes for ready-use Done

- Learn to can (no, not can-can) I made some jam that didn’t really set and I canned some dry mixes, does that count?

- Teach Will and Pammie to play piano uhhhh

- Paint something Done

- Focus each day not on making my house clean, but instead on helping it be more clean more often Done

- Take one photo each day to document what our life is like This went out the door as soon as I spent a full week unable to even get out of bed without help to go to the bathroom.

So I’m pretty satisfied with it. This year’s list looks something like this:

In 2011 I will:

- Finish reading the New Testament

- Read 20 books again

- Attend the temple monthly

- Pray daily

- Pay off at least another two creditors

- Write a letter to someone each month

- Document our lives (whether it be regular blogging, daily pics, journaling…dunno)

- Have regular one-on-one time with each of my kids

- Spend 5 hours a week in personal meditation, reflection, scripture study etc as challenged by our Stake President

- Get my kids all doing regular chores

- Lose at least 20 pounds….preferrably all the rest I have to lose as well

- Live within a budget and record finances

- ‘DeJunk’ weekly

- Go on at least 6 hikes

- Go camping

- Sew each kid a pair of pajama pants and myself a full outfit

- Update the favorites recipe book I compiled