Saturday, November 7, 2009

Time to End the Experiment, Obvs., And Other Stuff

So, one month of barely having weekly posts (Tuesday Ten and Thursday Thank You) was more than enough for me. Turns out I hate having a schedule/deadline for something I intended to do for funsies (who knew?!?!). Amazingly enough I have more than enough deadline pressure in my worklife to impose one on my online life. No more habitual posting for me. This blog will now return to absolute randomness.

In other news, I want to thank my sister for posting about the second anniversary of Mom's passing. I find that I don't want to write about it but I'm glad that Riss did. In some ways I have a better relationship with Mom now. Her spirit visits me fairly regularly and she is so very happy where she is now, I think happier than she was in her body, perhaps because in her last years she was in so much physical pain. As I am dealing with my own persistent pain and lack of energy, I find myself having far more sympathy for Mom than I did when she was here. And perhaps in her present state she is better able to know how I really feel. I deeply regret the fact that Mom was mostly unaware of how much I cared for her during her earthly life. I feel that she is aware now of how much she was loved, not just by me, but by others as well. And is so wonderful to know that Mom is happy. My joy in her healing outshines my grief in her passing.

More newsiness: I'm still working on the habitual anxiety thing. More noticing tension and breathing into it, because talking to my anxiety does not help. At all. My tension seems to be very body-based and I'm finding that only body-based responses have any lessening effect on it. So more breathing, stretching, being still.

I'm also testing out Martha Beck's idea  (well, it might not be her idea originally but she's the person I learned it from) that if you will do one small thing for the most neglected area of your physical space/home, you will find unexpected improvements in your mental/emotional life. I've made small efforts at addressing the mess we call "the library" hoping that in so doing I can work on the anxiety thing from another angle. Beck argues that your home is a reflection of your interior mind. I would agree if I was the only person living here. On the other hand, perhaps the messiness of my home reflects this cluttered mind of mine. Or perhaps its not so much cluttered as full of many ideas and interests. And given that my husband and children are as un-single-minded as I, it's no wonder we have a home full of stuff. Also, I've learned from Martha that I am polochronic, which is my excuse for why it's rarely time to clean up. Tee hee.

I've been re-reading books lately. I find it interesting that I don't react as strongly to the stories/characters as I did the first time I read these stories. Perhaps this change in reactions is due to changes in myself. I'm still parsing this out in my head - perhaps I will write more about this later.

Also, I find myself saying What Tami Said a lot. Her post Fat and happy: Why "The Biggest Loser" loses, which I somehow missed earlier this month, says exactly why I won't watch "weight loss TV" or participate in any kinds of weight loss talk. I know that weight loss is something very, very important to people that I deeply love, but it is not important anymore to me. Which is such a wonderful, wonderful thing, can I tell you? I can get on the scale now and truly not care what it says. No more anxiety, no more pain in my heart that I am unworthy of love because of what my body looks like. I can actually look in the mirror without shame, without feeling deep hatred for my belly, without thinking every part of me should be smaller, firmer, cuter. And I want to stay in this place. So please understand that this is why I will never talk diets or good vs. bad food or fitting into skinny clothes ever again. Because smaller is not better for me and I no longer believe that taking up less space makes me more worthy of living. And thank you, Tami, for this post and for your blog in general.

I think this is enough other stuff for now. In the meantime, thank you to all of my dear friends who read this blog, infrequent though it is.


  1. In terms of your attention to weight attitude, I understand how you feel. In college I arrived at the same conclusion, and found myself far happier than I ever was before. However, 2 years after Sarah was born and weighing about 240 lb., I started having problems with foot pain, joint pain, back pain, and other issues directly related to weight. My subsequent weight loss was directly health related and not image related. And I do feel so much better. What are your thoughts in regards to weight as it relates to health? (If you don't even wish to discuss weight in this context, I'm cool with that, too. Just curious.)

  2. Another question. Having read Martha Beck's book "Leaving the Saints" and various rebuttals to her true story, I find myself with negative feelings towards her (why, I'm not sure, since I know none of the players personally and the incidents, whether they occurred or not, have no direct effect on my life - perhaps some serious self-examination is in order here.) Anyway, if you felt someone were not totally honest in one area of their life, would you then be able to move past that and accept wisdom from them in regards to other non-related ares? I guess it is unrealistic to expect perfection from anyone, and yet when I find perceived flaws, I want to discount the entirety of their experience. Thoughts?

  3. I've not experienced health issues related to my weight, so I can't really comment as to that. I do think that weight is a bugaboo in modern American medical care. I also think that it is almost impossible to change your body long term. And I think that exercise is far more directly related to wellness than any number on the scale. But my main point in this post is that I chose to shield myself from the American obsession with smallness, at least in women, and the stupid idea that fat people can't be happy, well-adjusted people.

    As to Martha - I also read Leaving the Saints and I had the same concerns that you describe. I took classes from both Martha and her Dad at BYU so the book was very hard for me, because in a way I love both of them. I don't look at the book as dishonest but as somewhat self-delusioned. And it did take me awhile to be able to take anything else Martha wrote seriously after that book. But then I realized - Martha is no more self-delusioned than I am. And if I can find enlightenment and hope in her writings, then why not? If I restricted my reading to perfect authors I wouldn't read. I think it's a matter of listening to other's ideas from a place where you accept their humanity and understand that everything that has been written comes from a particular person, a particular experience and perspective. If I discount the entirety of another's experiences, then I must also discount all of my own. That's a step I'm not ready to take. :)