The weeks that have passed since writing The Numbers Game, Part 2 have been a struggle for me. Actually, using the word "struggle" is an incredible understatement.
I was determined not to step foot on the bathroom scale since declaring I would not allow it to be a part of my daily routine any longer. However, it began weighing heavily on my mind every morning as I prepared myself for the day. The scale sat in its usual place, taunting me, calling me so desiring to wield its power over me and dictate to me if I will feel good about myself today or not. I had resisted, until a week ago.
During this hiatus from the bathroom scale, I felt as if I were growing larger by the moment. My clothes all seemed to be shrinking and every morning I found something in my closet I thought was just a tad tighter than the last time I wore it. No one mentioned to me that it looked like I had lost weight lately and this compounded my panicky feelings. My days consistently battled with low self- esteem and of measuring and comparing myself to every other woman I encountered. I apologize if that makes anyone reading this feel uncomfortable, but I am trying to bear it all today in this post.
Fast-forward to this past week. Jay had a doctor's appointment and despite working out 3 days a week, he gained enough weight for his doctor to be concerned. Yeah, ok, so some of it is muscle weight, but he and I know that most is not. Additionally, I know that I had put on some pounds since mid-May, how much, I did not know. However, since he was going to be cutting back, I figured out I would be supportive and jump on the band wagon.
I knew it wasn't going to be pretty. I have been uncomfortable in most of my clothes and my eating habits have been completely out of control. As I stepped onto the scale, I let out an audible gasp, my stomach began to knot. I have gained 12 pounds since mid-May. 12 pounds.
Do I know how petty all of this is? Yes. Is it completely out of perspective? Yes. Are there a million more things in this world that are more important? Yes. Yet, I am con summed with this.
Control. There is it, that word again. Self-control, discipline, focus, manage; whatever word you want to use, it describes what I battle in my life. My control verses God's control. For 5 years, I have controlled my weight, allowing me to better deal with all of the other uncontrollables in my life - children, husband, death, work, house, etc. Now, even that is out of my control. My inner self has completely come unglued, chaos reigning and borderline depression setting up camp.
I can remember a time when my house was my controllable area. Cleaning an exorbitant amount - wiping baseboards weekly, cleaning blinds weekly, organizing and reorganizing closets. I chose this focus because my weight was so vastly out of control, I didn't even see it as an area under my influence. As the children grew and became more destructive to the house and I began my journey to physical fitness, my focus shifted to something I could actually dictate, food consumed. Compounding that were the added burdens of cancer and death - two variables completely out of my hands.
I am very angry with myself. My anger at my weight gain is superseded by my anger at myself for wasting so much emotional energy with this topic. I am extraordinarily disappointed at how I treat others around me when I feel this inwardly chaotic. I transfer my frustrations at failing at my own ridiculous goal of perfection to my children. I was very unfair to them yesterday and I am still struggling with that reality this morning.
Now I am scrambling, lowering my caloric intake, drinking water by the jug full, all the while growing agitated and completely aggravated by my constant state of hunger and desire for chocolate. For what, I ask myself? To feel in control again. The irony of the statement does not escape me; I know nothing is truly under my control.
I have had seasons when I was at rest in my life, when I was not running that treadmill of constant work and control. Short-lived these seasons were, but I have lived them. Disappointingly, I am back in this pit of numbers, scrambling on my own, by my own strength to gain footing to climb out of it. I know failure is assured with this method, and yet, my sinful tendency is to solve it on my own, with my own control.
I know what I need to do, but will I do it? It is another season of brokenness and I pray that it will be the last one with this stronghold I will have to endure. I pray for the end to this maddening numbers game.