This Is Long… But It’s Good! :D

So if you’ve been keeping up with me at all.. & if you haven’t, you’re missing out.. I’m loads of fun! 😀 ) you might remember that I recently mentioned I’ve been actively losing weight. Well guess what? I have officially lost the entire 30 lbs I set out to lose in February. — I may lose an extra lb or 2 before it’s all over & done with for good… but I have at this point reached my goal weight. — Which begs the question, what next?

— We’re gonna pause right here cause my dog is looking at me like she needs to go outside & potty, stand by……………………………………………………..

I’m back! 🙂 Not that you would have ever known that I left & then returned in the first place, but since I shared it with you.. I did take a few minutes to trot outside with the pup mid-blogging this here post. 🙂  (Yeeeeahh… the word ‘here’ shouldn’t be before the word ‘post’ as it’s redundant & totally unnecessary… but I like it so it stays! Let’s just toss proper grammar out the window for tonight. — I feel like breaking the rules. 😀

Okay, where were we before I got distracted? Oh yeah. What next?

I recently blogged a bit about how I have learned so much about things like motivation, discipline, & determination from my weight loss journey & it’s really changed the way I see tasks that I’ve set for myself.

It’s easy to be motivated & disciplined when it’s fun or you’re in the mood for it. When you’re seeing results & when you’re optimistic & ready to go & get at it. But what I had to learn is staying disciplined & determined when I didn’t feel like it. You don’t lose 30 lbs in 4 & a half months by keeping with it only when it’s fun or you feel like it. You do it by keeping with it all the time. No matter how you’re feeling about it any given day.

I’ve never fought so hard to reach a goal before. Not without quitting a thousand times along the way. (Which I also talked about in a previous blog post.)

I went from no exercise to exercising every day. I can’t tell you how many times there were days when I just didn’t feel like it & on many occasion had talked myself out of it. But I would rally & get up & do it anyway. & sometimes I would be annoyed the entire time, just grudgingly going about it because darn it I would rather be reading a book or watching tv. But I would tell myself, 1 hour & then you can watch tv or read or whatever you wanna do for the rest of the day or night or what have you. But first…. 1 hour.

The same goes for changes in my diet. Portion control & calorie limits & making due with teeny, tiny, minuscule, barely there, slices of chocolate pound cake cause one regular slice contains more calories than an entire meal! That’s hard. It takes discipline. It takes determination. Let’s be real… it also takes the mighty hand of God! For it is not my strength, but His! 😀

So what’s next? Writing. That’s what we tackle next. I have to take the same tactics that I took with losing weight & apply it to writing. It’s easy to do when it’s fun or I’m in the mood or it feels good or it makes me happy. Not so much when I don’t feel like it or it’s not coming together or I’m terrified I’m a talent-less hack. (Let’s be real, that last part’s not true.. but there will be days I’m sure I’ll feel like it!)

So that’s where I’m going next. I’ve said it before over the years. Probably a million times. The difference in then & now… is that I have learned so much about myself from this journey that I know what that journey is going to take. — Ya girl here is about to fight for her writing. I’ve been fighting for myself. For my self-worth, & my body, & my soul, & my spirit, & I’m not finished in that arena. — On top of that, I’m about to add to it.

A couple of paragraphs above, I wrote, “that’s what we tackle next.” We. I don’t do any of this alone. I’d never make it. I joked about God’s strength helping me with pound cake consumption… but if I’m being real with you, I need you to know that I didn’t do any of this on my own or by myself. I exercise 1 hour every day, but that hour is God’s time. I spend it with Him. I pray, I talk, I worship, I listen, I learn. Some days more than others. I just want to be clear that while it has definitely been my willingness to stay disciplined & keep going…. it has always been His love, & His grace, & His mercy, & His strength that make any of this possible. — So when I say we… I literally mean, we. 🙂

I haven’t figured out the logistics of a writing schedule or anything like that yet. But in the next couple of weeks I’m going to see what unfolds & what I work out. So we shall see what happens!

Until next time… 😀

 

 

 

 

The Lies I Told…

I don’t care what anyone thinks of me. I don’t care if they think I’m not good enough. I don’t care if they think I’m stupid. I don’t care if they think I’m ugly. I don’t care if they think I’m pathetic or embarrassing myself every time I speak. I just plain don’t care what a single soul thinks of me.

& I just lied.

I care. I care very much & it’s one of my biggest problems.

I hear people say what I just said, how they don’t care what anyone thinks of them, and I wish I could say it with as much certainty as they do. I can’t though.

I care when someone thinks ill of me or little of me. I care if they think I’m unattractive or unintelligent. I care. It matters to me. It bothers me & that’s a problem. One that I need to solve.

Because while I care & while it bothers me… one thing remains the same…. it does not matter what anyone thinks of me… unless I allow it to matter.

I believe it was Eleanor Roosevelt that said, “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” (It was, I looked it up! 😀 ) & she was entirely correct.

Lately I (& God) have been working on me. Losing weight, exercising regularly, building myself up, working on the negativity that tumbles around in my head & turning it into something better, something positive & honest. Something worthwhile. I’ve been battling out the negativity I feel towards myself at times. The low self-confidence & feelings of not being quite good enough. They’ve ruled the roost, so to speak, for a long time. & I’m a work in progress.

I still care what people think of me. Too much. & I have to find a way to, simply put, just not care.

If someone doesn’t like me… oh well. If they think I’m a big ol dummy.. Okay, good for them, moving along. If they think I’m not worthy of them… cool, whatever… you do you, Imma do me. — I have to find a way to make this my reality. — If someone just does not like me, I have to be okay with that. & not let it turn into something ugly that seeps into my soul & convinces me that I should feel bad about myself because so & so says so.

It doesn’t matter what so & so says or thinks or anything else. I have to hold on tight to what I know. It matters what God thinks & it matters what I think. I line up with what He thinks, we’re on the same page. Every one else can go on thinking or saying whatever they want. It’s irrelevant. I know this… but I have to believe it, even in those moments when I can feel that negativity trying to creep in. I have to stand with what I know matters. & the negative opinions of other people are not what matters.

So I’m going to keep inching forward, little by little, til I get there.

In fact, some lady gave me some ugly looks at the eye doctor’s office last month (my mom was with me & says she thinks the lady didn’t like my shorts. Which were appropriate mind you, I’m not about to wear booty shorts up in the eye doctor’s office. Especially not mine.. he has crosses & bible verses hanging on the walls. Jesus is all over that room! I mean, come on, that’d be awkward! Jesus, The eye doctor, me, & some booty shorts all in the same room? I don’t think so! 😀 ) Anyhow, that lady looked right at me all rude & such. & at first I looked away cause it made me uncomfortable… & then I was like, no. I didn’t do anything to her. — So instead I looked her straight in the eye, like I got your number lady & I don’t care, & then I proceeded to walk around with my head held high like I owned the place. 😀 — She only got to make me feel inferior if I let her. & I didn’t.

Now I just have to apply that to my entire life! All the time.

Work in progress. 😀

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Devil’s Hair Dryer…

I’m sleepy & really need to go to bed… therefore my ability to write up something thoughtful & profound is a bit lacking at the moment. Sooooooo… I thought, how about some randoms & pointless chit-chat. — I like it. We’re gonna go with it. 😀

I am currently kicked back in the recliner, watching Living Single on Hulu, & sippin on a glass of water. (Gotta set the scene.. 🙂 )Clearly, I am living a wild life. Make no mistake… This is the way the adventurous live. 😀

Oh & speaking of adventures…

I bought a new hair dryer today. (Story time!) — My old, old one. Not the one I replaced today, but the one I replaced before it… quit on me like 2 months ago. I don’t live near a store with an appropriate variety of hair dryers for sale. There’s a grocery store & a dollar store, a furniture store, a thrift shop, hardware store, couple downtown boutiques, & a small local drug store. That’s it. Along with gas stations, some restaurants, & churches. So I’m limited in options when things like hair dryers quit on me & I need to run out & get one.

Anyhow… went up to dollar store couple months ago… bought a cheap hair dryer to get the job done. Weeeellllllllll…. lemme just tell you… you get what you get for $10.

So I’ve been using this hair dryer. First off… it worked pretty good for a bit. Until it didn’t. Which didn’t take long, mind you. (& I always kept forgetting to pick up a better one every time I was in a bigger town.)

Anyhow, It didn’t have one of those protective backs on it, the kind to keep your hair from getting pulled out of your head & into the back of the hair dryer. Y’all… I have long hair. This was a disaster even before it was a literal disaster. — So to get to the literal disaster… it started sparking!

Like lightning! On the inside! (This was not some sort of fancy lighting function, I’ve seen that advertised on hair dryers, fancy lights on it & such…Nope… this was straight up electricity misbehaving!)

This thing would cool down… spark… then heat back up. Repeatedly. — I’m like oh this can’t be safe. (It’s wasn’t.)

That thing sparked, smelled funny, & was most definitely a fire hazard. So long story short…. (even tho I just told a long story… that may feel rather anti-climatic by this point 😀 ) I had to replace that hair dryer today. Seemed like a much better idea than catching my hair on fire or burning our house down. Or me… I’m irreplaceable… (This I know for the Bible tells me so! :D) Just sayin…

Ohhhh & to add to that! I dried my hair a couple of hours ago with the new one. It’s all silky smooth. Feels good & stuff. & that’s when I realized that cheap hair dryer was the reason my hair was all fried & frayed no matter what I did lately.

So that thing was frying my hair, trying to fry me, & attempting to spark some legit flames. That hair dryer was of the devil I say!

Moral of the story: When you need a new hair dryer…. & you live in a teeny tiny town… go on ahead & drive the 30 minutes into the bigger town.. buy yourself a good & decent hair dryer.. & avoid the cheap $10 hair dryers at the local dollar stores… cause they are not good for you or your health or the structure of your homes.

So now that I’ve shared that little tidbit with you…. my job is done here. I’m off to bed! 😀

 

 

 

 

 

I Went Somewhere With This…

Ya wanna know the one thing I dislike more than most things? & before I get to that… just let me say that I dislike a lot of things. Hot weather, bacon, (which some would say makes me un-american.. 🙂 ) scary movies, animal abusers, heavy metal music, going to the dentist, terrorists… I mean… the list could go on & on. — But at the very top of it, there is one thing I dislike more than most things…. & that is a hateful christian that uses the name of Jesus to justify their hatred.

I want to say real quick, right here, before anyone misunderstands…. I’m not saying that I expect people to be perfect. I’m not saying that Christians shouldn’t screw up… we do, we will…. it’s part of being human. — I’m only talking about the ones that beat other people into the ground over their sins…. and claim it’s because God tells them too. — There is a difference.

I can be a hateful person.. and I am talking about myself personally right now. I can be mean. I can be petty.. I can be judgmental. I can decide that someone is sinning far worse than I am. I can put the spite in spiteful when I so choose. I can take “I am right & you are wrong” to a ridiculously condescending level. I can show people unkindness when I’m angry or disagree with them. I can do all these awful things. & I am guilty of doing so on many occasions. I am not perfect & I am well aware of it every single day. But here’s the thing….

I own that… I own up that I am a flawed human being because I am not perfect. I own my weaknesses & am aware that hate can pour out of me sometimes. But here’s the thing… I’m not going to give God the credit for those things. If I show hate to another human being in any form… I am not about to put that on God.

I don’t expect people to be perfect, but when someone fails to walk in love, and we all will time and time again, I also don’t expect them to give God the glory and credit for actions rooted in hatred. That’s a human failing, not his.

It angers me that there are christians that quote the bible word for word, but look down on someone who lands in prison…. because God says so. That there are christians that spout about their christianity all the time, but shun their families should they sin differently from them… because their bible says they must. That there are christians that sit in church & preach compassion, but then lack that very same compassion for people on the outside of their circles… because God says their way or no way.

It makes me angry because people are getting hurt. People that don’t know God are watching & they are forming opinions & making decisions about Him based off these sorts of things. They are doing God a disservice & an injustice. — They are telling a world full of people that God is not love. They are saying to the world, He loves you if… He loves you when… — He loves you… if you walk, and talk, and think like we do. As if His love, compassion, and kindness are conditional. When they are no such thing. — He loves you… period.

It drives me insane… but I’ve recently realized some things…. I said I was going somewhere with this… so here it goes….

 

 

I can speak up about Him. I can be kind and compassionate. To the ones they steer clear of, I can welcome with open arms. Every day, every word, every action I take… I can walk in love. — That’s what I can do. That’s who I can be. That’s what I can focus on.

What I realized was that it’s not about them. I’ve been so focused on them… that I missed that point entirely. They’re not my concern. What they do…. is their business. What I do.. is mine.

God has been working some serious overtime on this. It’s been a big hurdle for me. I think we’ve finally come out on the other side. We had to get passed the hatred I was harboring. Then we had to get passed my inability to overlook how families & friends just let that sort of behavior slide right on by. In the end, the last piece of that puzzle… I had to realize that it wasn’t my concern. I get no say in how others choose to live their lives… free will is free will.

It doesn’t mean I have to agree with them… because that’s not happening. It just means I have to stay in my lane.

It’s not about them. It’s never been about them. There’s an antithesis to that sort of hate… and it’s love. God is love and so long as I strive to do all things in love… I’ll be showing God everywhere I go & in everything I do. Love wins out over hate every time. Even when it doesn’t seem like it, it does. — I’m not perfect, I know it, and I won’t always get it right. But that’s okay. — I’m going to try.

I spent so much time giving people like this too much of my time & energy. Too many of my thoughts and too many of my words.

There’s a peace that comes with knowing that their words and their actions are not my concern & that anything they say or do is entirely irrelevant to me.

My job is not to police anyone else. It’s not theirs either. It’s God’s. I no longer want any part of it.

I just want to do what God needs me to do, stay in my lane, and keep moving forward.

I’ve been so worried about the damage that this sort of thing does to people, instead of focusing on the ability of God’s love to repair that damage. — I realized that’s what I need to be about.

It’s a far cry from where I was.

You may have even noticed that the tone of the first part of this post was a little different than the second half. — That’s because the first half was written 5 months ago… and it had a slightly different ending. — Mostly that I needed to let it go & be the opposite of them. — Which is still true… but it was slightly more hostile because I was still struggling very hard with it. — I’m not anymore.

This has been heavy bondage that’s been weighing me down… and I finally broke free. (Okay… God sprung me from this prison, let’s be real, jail break! lol.)

I used to feel anger, rage, and irritation. It used to consume me. But now…. I don’t feel any of that. — Don’t get me wrong… I still don’t like that this happens and I still don’t like that there are people that do this. But…. it doesn’t eat away at me anymore.

I’ve come a long way y’all. This post started somewhere else, written by someone with an entirely different attitude… than where it ended up. — I was on my way here at the time & had made some progress… but it took months to evolve all the way to this.

That’s God. All God. Every bit of it.

I thought about deleting this post altogether…. and then decided it’s a great example of God repairing damage done by hatred. I let it seep into my soul… and He took it out… & then replaced it with something far greater.

So it stays.. 🙂
Love you guys!

 

Read This… Pretty Please? :)

Haven’t been on here in ages. Just went scrolling through my old blog posts… reading & such… after a while I was like… wait.. I wrote this? Holy crap… I can write! — Haha!

Cause we all know writers are their own worst critics & after writing things wonder if it was a big mistake that made about zero sense. Turns out…. I’m pretty good. (takes moment to pat self on back 😀 )

So now that that’s over…. all that humble “go me” stuff & such.. I have stuff to tell you all!

First… I made lifestyle changes. We all know that means someone went on a diet… amiright? But seriously…. I did! I prefer to think of it as a lifestyle change tho… cause I can’t go back to what I was doing before. It’s why I needed to lose 30 lbs to begin with. — Anyhow… I don’t drink soda very often anymore… water is my primary source of hydration beverages. & surprisingly (Okay.. it surprised me.. maybe it won’t y’all.) I don’t even crave coke anymore. I used to drink it every single day. Waaaaaayy more of it than I should have been too. Anyhow… not the case anymore. — Water, water, water! (Tho every once in a while I do have a little coke. A treat, if you will. )

Lifestyle changes continued: I exercise! Every. Single. Day. — Without fail! — (Okay, mostly without fail. I have skipped a day here or there… but it’s rare & I usually replace it with some other calorie burning activity when I do. — I’m no slacker! ( she says as she conveniently ignores that she’s a slacker in regards to things like writing consistently..  😀 . Moving on… — Coupled with this… I watch my calorie intake & make sure I burn more than I consume on the daily. — For real… I have notebooks & every thing. All of this is written record.

Anyhow.. Started this in February.. It’s May… I’ve lost 25 lbs! (Okay it’s technically 24 lbs.. but come onnnnn…. I’m right there… just let me have it.. ;D )

Also.. I love exercising! I get super cranky if I have to go several days without doing so. (Which did happen when I tweaked my knee a few weeks ago… I was one big ol’ grump!) Anyhow…. Once I’ve lost all I intend too..  I’ll just change-up the calorie intake… burn the equivalent through regular exercise as often as possible & drink water… cause.. well.. I like it… & my body thanks me. lol! — So yeah.. that’s fun stuff, right? —

Ohh… btw.. I’ve always had slightly bigger ears than I wanted growing up. Not super big… but bigger than I would have preferred. You know, as a young lady. Anyhow.. I noticed last night… like.. why are my ears so noticeable all of a sudden? They seem to pop a little more in the mirror… what’s happening? & then it dawned on me… my face is thinner, my neck is thinner…. anddddd my ears are the same as always… just now they are like hey, here we are. You forgot about us because we blended in.. but now we stand out. Lookie lookie! — Yeah… that’s a thing for me now. But luckily… I’m an adult now… & way less self-conscious about them than I used to be. So we’re just gonna roll with it… the price you pay, I say.

Moving on…

Imma start writing again. I’ve really been focused on a better me. Like.. mentally, emotionally, & physically. All this exercise & losing weight & being healthy… has also been coupled with working on a better head space. A more confident me. A me that believes in me & invests in me. So I intend to roll back in with the writing also.

After reading through some of my blog posts there are several that I know good & well I didn’t share on the Facebook because I didn’t want to ruffle feathers or offend anyone. I’m a peace keeper, I am. But.. peace keeper or not… I fully intend to share them. I write. It’s what I do. If someone doesn’t like what or how I write… that’s their problem.. not mine. (Seeeeee… look at all the personal growth!) 🙂 — It’s the water… all the wisdom.. comes from the increased water intake, I’m sure.. 🙂

Anyhow.. this is already too long! So… lovely chatting with you all… talk soon! 🙂

 

 

 

 

The Little Things… 

Sorting through notes & ran across these. One I wrote to myself as encouragement a while back & the other my husband left for me to find some time ago. — I leave them in the stack of notes… Cause along & along I stumble across them & they remind me that sometimes one just needs a little extra encouragement. — I can do this. I got this. ❤❤❤

Diving Back In… 

Okay! So for the first time in months… & I do mean months, many, many months.. 😉 … I have busted out the lap top & writing basket. (That’s what I call it, 😀.. the writing basket, lol holds all my notes and fun stuff like that.. 😉.) Anyhow… it’s hard, it’s a lot of work, & kinda scary… feels a little daunting.. ya know? Cause a book is so big… ya start thinking about all those little pieces.. how you build something so big.. one word at a time… & honestly I almost wanna run screaming in the other direction. 😀. — But there is only one way to get this creation written down… & that’s one word at a time. & there’s only one person who can tell this story… And then tell all the ones to follow it… & that’s me. Cause I’ve created it and I’m the only one who can know it like I do. — So God help me, (that was a legit plea to God btw.. 😂.) Cause I’m diving back in! ❤