Day 750: I’m In A Relationship And It’s Complicated

The Covenant Diet Blog - I'm In A Relationship With Food And It's Complicated

I’m in a relationship.

Yep.

And it’s not with my husband.

I know, this is kind of frowned upon nowadays but well, it IS the new millennium.

But ya see…

I’m in a relationship with food, and it’s complicated.

Okay, that was my lame attempt at a little humor this morning. {Am I even gonna get a pity laugh out of that one?!?! Ha!}

That probably wasn’t much of a shocker to anyone reading this though… I mean, it is a diet blog. But really, I’m realizing more than ever that a) it is some kind of weird co-dependency relationship with food, and b) it is just terribly complicated for me.

Recently I went to lunch with my best friend, my very own psychologist Dr. Laura (yeah, that’s weird… when did we get old enough to have doctorates!?!?!??) and although she is always wondering how things are going, she is never pushy with advice (even though I know that she has a slew of solutions or suggestions for me). But recently when we met and I lamented a little bit about having gained some weight, but that I wasn’t worried about it she said, “Yeah, you are just in the process of discovering what it means to have a healthy and balanced relationship with food.”

Seriously.

I thought about that for weeks. You see…

Originally, I didn’t really want to find balance.
I wanted to find SKINNINESS.

As I’ve journeyed along I’ve realized that balance is really probably… better. And as I thought about it even more after talking with her, a thought came to my mind: what if I’m limiting God by saying I just won’t have chocolate ever again. What if what He really wants to do in my life is completely change me, completely renew me, and make me completely strong, resilient, balanced. What if He really does want me to find balance instead of just restriction?

Honestly, I think learning how to find balance with food… learning how to have an uncomplicated relationship with food… that would be even more of a miracle than never eating chocolate again. It would take a whole new level of reliance upon Him.

I think that I’m up for it. This is, after all, a journey from gluttonous to glorious, and I’m starting to see that maybe there is an unexpected turn in the road up ahead. A new direction that will teach me to rely on Him and find balance with food.

Sounds like a pretty good deal to me.

 

Day 241: Those Dern Skinny French People

Apparently I have been eating.

A lot.

Often.

Because I am on day two of what I’m going to call my “Sans Snacky” Fast (if you haven’t noticed, I have a thing for titles or names to start with the same letter), and I have gone into the kitchen about 53 times in the past day and a half to get a snack.

How I have lost so much weight up to this point I don’t even know!?!?! Haha!

Y’all know that recently I started doing a no-eating-after-7pm “initiative” and it was really insightful to me as it showed me how much I was eating after dinner… even when I wasn’t hungry. even when I wasn’t craving. I was eating… just… just because.

Well, if I thought that was insightful then this experience is just downright revealing! (There might be a better word to put there but I’m working on four hours of sleep… hubby had a guys night last night so I heard every creak in the house until I finally nodded off around 1am, and then my toddler woke up at 5:00am!)

My mom recently mentioned a book she saw on a morning show called French Kids Eat Everything: How Our Family Moved to France, Cured Picky Eating, Banned Snacking, and Discovered 10 Simple Rules For Raising Happy, Healthy Eaters (which should seriously be considered for World’s Longest Book Title). I found it on amazon and read the description:

Moving her young family to her husband’s hometown in northern France, Karen Le Billon is prepared for some cultural adjustment but is surprised by the food education she and her family (at first unwillingly) receive. In contrast to her daughters, French children feed themselves neatly and happily—eating everything from beets to broccoli, salad to spinach, mussels to muesli. The family’s food habits soon come under scrutiny, as Karen is lectured for slipping her fussing toddler a snack—”a recipe for obesity!”—and forbidden from packing her older daughter a lunch in lieu of the elaborate school meal.

The family soon begins to see the wisdom in the “food rules” that help the French foster healthy eating habits and good manners—from the rigid “no snacking” rule to commonsense food routines that we used to share but have somehow forgotten. Soon, the family cures picky eating and learns to love trying new foods. But the real challenge comes when they move back to North America—where their commitment to “eating French” is put to the test. The result is a family food revolution with surprising but happy results—which suggest we need to dramatically rethink the way we feed children, at home and at school.

And no worries… this post will have nothing to do with my children’s dinner table habits!

But look at the five-mile-long title… what do you think grabbed my attention? Yep.

Banned Snacking.

Eeek.

Who would say such horrible things?!?!?!

But honestly, since my mom and I had this book-investigation a few weeks ago it has been popping into my mind.

And now that I have {gasp} banned snacking for the past two days… okay, okay… for a day and a half, I am starting to get a wee bit more interested in said book with said five-mile-long title.

Because I think the “permission” to snack has made the road to “unhungry” eating (aka: emotional eating, boredom eating, procrastination eating, etc) far more easy to get away with.

When you have a life sans-snacky then there just isn’t as much of an opportunity to eat emotionally, or because you’re bored, or because you realllllly don’t want to mop that funky, funky, funnnnnky kitchen floor. When you aren’t “allowed” to snack throughout the day, eating at mealtimes becomes, ironically, more of a “chore”. You eat at meal times to sustain. And that is the reason.

So much like the concept of “give us this day our daily bread” or in the New Living Translation, “give us our food for today”. (Matt 6:11) Or “give me just enough to satisfy my needs” (Proverbs 30:8).

Sure, dinner might be yummy but I’ll be eating to feed myself instead of to entertain or comfort or even simply because it’s habit.

Anyway, again, for you skinny-minded people that don’t overeat or snack or indulge (and yes, I have discovered that there are women like that out there), this might be a “duh” kind of realization, but it’s been like a revelation from the Lord for me!

Day 221: Shop It To Me

Day 18 of my hard-core Daniel Fast.

So, I’ll admit that shopping is way more fun now that my body is a little different. I just enjoy putting on clothes that fit nicely and don’t go all baggy in the wrong places or fit too large in the right places. It’s easier, too. I used to have to try on 53 tops before finding one that works.

But at the same time, shopping has gotten much harder. For two reasons.

One. I feel like I have gotten closer to God in an unexpected way… in a way that is learning to struggle less with my exterior self. It is another journey that I am just beginning… being free from the world’s impressions of me, but it is a journey I have needed to take my whole life… just as long as I have needed to do this covenant to be free from food. And well, feeling the need to buy a certain outfit of a certain brand of a certain tightness of a certain cut… well, I’m learning that I want to be as free from that as I have learned to be from food. I attribute this quite a bit to another covenant companion of mine whom I have mentioned covenanted from buying any new clothes this year. So, all of those thoughts run through my mind as I am looking at clothes.

Two. A less “spiritual” reason, but my husband recently resigned from his job as a school teacher because he has the opportunity to pursue, full time, the manufacturing and distribution of his product Chord Dice… it is a set of dice for guitar players that helps them to write new songs, learn chords, and for guitar teachers to use to teach their students theory. Allow me to gush my pride in my husband for a moment. I am so proud of him for following God’s leading throughout this process. He has said time and time again that it is God who goes before him. And he shamelessly put the inspiration verse on the instructions: Psalm 33:3… “Sing to him a new song; play skillfully, and shout for joy.”

Well, all of that wonderful ooshie-gushie stuff to say that right now we are having to be extremely tight on the ol’ budget. He just got his last paycheck from school and so we’ll have to rely solely upon his income as a part-time guitar teacher to sustain us (by the way, if you are in the McKinney area, he is great! McKinneyGuitarLessons.com). This means noooooooo extras for while. I’m totally okay with it but it sorta forces me into the no-buy mode.

Soooooooo, ALL of that to say that yesterday, when I went to drop off some clothes to sell at Clothes Mentor, I felt I had some extra time so I slipped in next door to belk’s and just… tried on clothes. For just the fun part. I tried on the clothes that I never look at because they are so expensive. I didn’t even go to the clearance rack. Only like four pieces, but it was fun! It was almost extra fun because I knew I wasn’t gonna buy anything! Ha! I used to do this in college with my friends… we’d go to the mall and just try on prom dresses for the heck of it!

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And then it was extra fun because I took some pics… who needs to buy clothes when you can have a pic of yourself wearing them for free?!?!? Ha!

Anyway, I’m not sure if this really has any spiritual significance but it was just too fun to not share!

Day 168: Mirror, Mirror

So, I’m now wearing a size 10 pretty comfortably and even a few size 8s. Honestly, a size 8 is what I was hoping to be able to wear at the end of the year… I never hoped that almost halfway through I’d have already have made it here.

Okay, okay… well, maybe I had hoped but I certainly hadn’t expected it!

But one thing that I have known all along is how the temptations would change and alter as my journey progressed. By no means was I ever under the impression that Satan would simply leave me alone…

“Oh welllllll, January is no longer addicted to food. Too bad that didn’t work… guess we’d better move on to the next person cause I just can’t think of anything new to throw into her life to weigh her down again.”

Yeah, not so much. In fact, I think Satan’s thoughts go more like this…

“Okay guys… January is no longer addicted to food. So it’s time to get out the big guns…we’d better move on to a temptation that is bigger, stronger, sneakier, and more difficult to fight off. I can think of several things to choose from.”

And he’s certainly trying out several different ones on me… all dealing with a focus on outward image. Like I mentioned a long time ago in my post Imma Be, I knew that fighting off the desire to be sexy and trendy was going to be an issue. Simply from having lost weight before and having seen the way that I responded to the skinniness. Even now as I fit into those smaller pre-marriage sizes, I’m a little appalled at myself for some of the clothes I’m pulling down from the top of my closet. Phrases like, “I actually wore this in public?!!?” have run through my mind plenty of times!

But one I didn’t expect was a dissatisfaction with my body. Before when I was in college and went from a size 14 to an 8 I thought my size 8 body was off the charts awesome! I was so excited every time I looked in the mirror.

But now, a size 8 body… well, I’ll admit, it makes me happy… but there are also moments when I look in the mirror and start to critique what I see.

Oh… I wonder if that fat flap will ever go away.
My belly button looks weird.
Will my inner thighs will always have that annoying… extraness?
Check out all my varicose veins!!!
If only my back was a little more toned…
I’d give anything if both my eyes were the same size.

And those are just the ones that I can think of right now!  A lot of it is subconscious but more and more I’m thinking it “outloud” in my mind. Which means that I am allowing my mind to acknowledge the “truth” of it.

This is not. good.

This is proof of my identity being found in something other than Christ. And that is unacceptable.

This is proof of me trading the truth about God for a lie. And that is doubly unacceptable.

Because look what happens when we do that…

They traded the truth about God for a lie. So they worshiped and served the things God created instead of the Creator himself, who is worthy of eternal praise! Amen… Since they thought it foolish to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to their foolish thinking and let them do things that should never be done. Their lives became full of every kind of wickedness, sin, greed, hate, envy, murder, quarreling, deception, malicious behavior, and gossip. They are backstabbers, haters of God, insolent, proud, and boastful. They invent new ways of sinning, and they disobey their parents. They refuse to understand, break their promises, are heartless, and have no mercy. Romans 1:25, 28-31

Yeah, so it’s not just me looking in the mirror and being annoyed with my belly button. It is the beginning of something much, much more than that. And honestly, check out that list… I do NOT want to become that person.

Okay, so it’s easy to look at that list and say “Oh no! (insert an inward gasp of fake shock) I don’t want to be those things!” But it’s an entirely other thing to NOT become those things. All I need to do though is look at what led them into those types of lives and reverse it (at least, that makes sense in theory).

They worshiped and served the things God created instead of the Creator himself, who is worthy of eternal praise. vs 25

So, to flip the process… I must worship the Creator himself, who is worthy of eternal praise.

And that makes sense, and I am reminded of my post, Exaggerated Eternity, and how it talked about making us smaller to make Him greater.

And I’ll admit… my focus has not be on His awesomeness, His glory, His power, His greatness, His mercy, His… His anything. I am two weeks behind on my bible readings… just doing a bit here and a bit there when I feel a bit guilty.

But God, this day. this moment. I am choosing you. Again, and again, and again, I must go through this process of choosing you. Sorry that it’s not a constant thing for me yet. And I say yet. Because I am not going to be satisfied with my life nor with myself until my choosing of you is a constant thing. And to get me back on focus, I’m going to make you first again. I’m going to give up facebook again since I know that is a deterrent from you… wish it weren’t but it is… and your word will be the first thing I open up in the morning (after I turn off the 23 alarms on my phone that wake me up… haha) and it will be the last thing on my mind at night. And God I ask that you would turn my heart back to your truth. back to your glory. back to You, who are worthy of eternal praise. Amen.

Day 155: UNworldly

One of the best things about losing weight is all of the comments that we get… “Oh my gosh, you look great!” “Wow- you are so small!” etc. It is also one of the worst things about losing weight… we tend to get almost “addicted” to the comments and then after a while when the comments stop, we start to think… do I still look great? do people still think I am small?

I know that I have gotten to have several of these comments over the past months… more than anything I think it’s because I was overweight for so long that a lot of people are more shocked that the weight has come off so quickly (honestly, I’m in that same boat with them). I still get comments and although I don’t feel like I need them like I would have on a previous diet, they are nice to hear.

And that made me think about there are several people that have covenants that wouldn’t be obvious to the general world. Like, my friend Sherry who is not buying anything new for the year as her covenant. There’s no weight to be lost. No one would probably even know about it unless she told them. No comments to be made… I mean, who is going to randomly say “Oh wow, Sherry… you haven’t worn any new, cool, super-trendy clothes in the past few months! Great!” But, Sherry is learning something from the get-go that will probably take me a bit longer to learn… she is learning to rely 100% on God’s approval of her. on His delight at her sacrifice. on His blessings alone. So, even though it might be harder some days for her to keep her focus and motivation because she is doing something so very… UNworldly… she, in the long run, will receive the greater prize! It actually makes me want to come up with something UNworldly… I want a cool God prize too!!!

But even for those that are on the covenant diet that were already skinny, like my friend Alice. She already had a rocket hot bod when starting the covenant, but she was addicted sugar. And although she might have wanted to get skinnier (although I’m not sure how that’s possible), she really just wanted the freedom from sugar. Skinny or no skinny. Freedom is better. But she’s probably not gonna get any comments from friends on “how much” weight she’s lost because she was already skinny. She, also, is doing something UNworldly in that she is utilizing the power of God to overcome an addiction that the world wouldn’t think is necessary to overcome since she is already skinny.

They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. 1 Corinthians 9:25

Day 150: The Devil Wears Speedo

Ahhhhhhh, it’s pool season again.

Admittedly, over the years pool season has given me both trembles of excitement… and waves of nausea. Hanging out by the pool (which, in our case is a little kiddie pool) in the shade of a tree under the hot sun with a cool Texas breeze drifting over me… oh it’s just pure decadence to me. I love the heat and I love the water… not a big fan of hurricanes which is the only reason I don’t live on the beach. But with all of that comes… bathing suits. And bathing suits, I’m convinced, are of. the. devil. And I’d just love to tell you why I think that!!!

  1. If a girl is skinny or has a great figure or whatever, then starting at a very young age, she is pressured into wearing skimpy, skimpy bikinis… much to the chagrin of a mother trying to protect her innocence as well as the chagrin of all the mothers of boys who are trying to protect their already fragile innocence! (I have recently come to understand this more keenly working in the youth department at church…)
  2. If a girl is not so skinny or doesn’t fit into the “skinny girl norm” look then wearing a bathing suit is nothing short of humiliating. I mean, most of us spend hours shopping trying to find some kind of outfit that will cover our less-than-favorite areas, and then come pool season, we have to wear what is essentially underwear out in public… exposing our bodies for what they really look like underneath those well-planned outfits from the rest of the year.

See?

Proof that the devil does exist… bathing suits.

As an adult, I have teetered so long in between both of those categories above. I always wanted to wear a “cute” bathing suit, but hated to be revealing and… well… skanky, and even more, I hated having to reveal that I was far more overweight than my capris would allow anyone to see!

But… yes, there’s always a “but” isn’t there? (And when I’m in my bathing suit it’s a really big “butt”- hahaha! Ohhhhh, I’m so funny!)

The other day my four year old went to a swim party at a local natatorium with this awesome splashy play area inside and a lazy river type thing and a big pool area and a hot tub and a ginormous red water slide. It was awesome. We adults were to go and play with them, so I had my hubs stay at home while our toddler napped and my four year old and I went on a little mommy-son outing! And what must mommy-dearest wear to this pool party? Well, a bathing suit, of course!

Over the years, since my family loves to go to the lake on my dad’s boat, I have chosen to get competitive swim suits (like speedo or TYR) because they are very lake friendly (especially when my dad pulls us around behind the boat tubing… the man is a master at flipping my brother and I off the tube). And I figured that type of suit would be best for going to this play area with my son who does not yet know how to swim and would probably be all over me.

I tell you all of this to say that I was determined to not be stressed about my appearance there. I kept reminding myself that what I looked like in a bathing suit had nothing to do with… well, with anything! The bathing suit was merely to cover what it needed to cover and allow me to swim and have a blast with my son.

And you know what… I actually believed myself this time. I wasn’t self-conscious there. I didn’t even try to suck in my belly! I just… swam. and laughed. and splashed. and swam some more. and chased my son around. and then I swam some more with him. It was a great, great time!

It was really one of the first times that I have felt like I was living that verse that I have had to repeat to myself over and over and over again…

The LORD doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart. 1 Samuel 16:7

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Day 148: Wedding Weight

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Coming up at the end of June is the wedding of one of my friends from high school. I graduated back in 1997 and I haven’t seen quite a lot of people since that day. Thanks to Facebook I have been able to keep up with a lot of them, but still… some of them I have yet to see.

And… well… I’ll be honest… all of that difficulty that I had with the weighing a few weeks ago. Yeah, it’s because of the wedding.

You see, I had figured out… by the time the end of June is here then I should be able to be down to a size 8… down to 145 or 150. And then… when I wasn’t on that (self-made) track anymore and it looked like I wasn’t going to be a cool 145 by the end of June, well, I got panicked. Cause (in my worldly-focused mind) I needed to weigh LESS than I did in high school, and I’m pretty sure I was around 160… bumping up against 170 in high school. All of these people I went to high school with don’t know that I got up to 210, so they won’t know that I’ve already lost a huge chunk of weight. So (again, let me repeat, in my world-focused mind) I needed to weigh at least twenty pounds less than I did in high school in order for people to say “Ooooooo Ahhhhhh, January… wow… you look so great… Ooooooo Ahhhhhh.”

Yeah. It’s soooo lame. I know.

I guess part of it is because, amazing Christians as they might have been, I spent a lot of my high school years trying to chase after their approval. I was still so new to living a life with Jesus that I hadn’t gotten rid of the need of “praise from men” yet. And I wasn’t in the “popular” church crowd. The sad part: I had such great friends during that time… but it took me years, and years, and yearsssss before I could appreciate them. And by then it was really too late to salvage those relationships that I let slip and slide into the past.

But anyway, I finally came face to face with the realization that I wanted to lose that weight by a certain deadline for a reason that had nothing. to. do. with. God. and had everything to do with this world.

And, well, this covenant… it IS God. It is only about God… weight. life. skinny. clothes. chocolate. vegetables. None of those things matter ultimately. On December 31, 2012 when the clock turns over to a new year… all that will matter is God.

So, even now, I am having to renew my mind. to reset my mind. to focus my mind. on things above and forget about the wedding (well, in terms of weight at least… I really am excited to see this wonderful girl… the best of girls… get married).

If then you have been raised with Christ to a new life, thus sharing His resurrection from the dead, aim at and seek the rich, eternal treasures that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. And set your mind and keep it set on what is above (the higher things), not on the things that are on the earth. Colossians 3:1-2

Day 141: The Impossible Life

The other day as I went shopping, I started trying to figure out how long I had been on the covenant in “months”. I write down every day what day I am on but for a non-math person I have to take a moment to divide by 30… and even then I usually abandon that method and just count the months since January 11th when I started.

So by that method I am a little past four months. Cool!

And then it hit me. Had I only done 3 months like I originally planned then I would have been finished with the covenant last month. And I would have missed out on the last month of blessings.

Day 93: Fallen And Forgiven
Day 106: He Is.
Day 117: HE WILL DO THIS!
Day 118: Trippin
Day 132: A Celebration Of Life
Day 136: A Fast Shopping Trip

And looking back at those days I am so glad that I chose to stick to God for a full year. Or I should say that I am so grateful that He called me to stick by Him for a full year.

Honestly it makes me wonder what my life would/could be like if I chose to do this covenant indefinitely. I mean… when I first started I would have thought it was nigh impossible to stay on this covenant for five years, twenty years, the rest of my life… but now I honestly have a lot less respect for the word impossible.

Jesus looked at them intently and said, “Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But with God everything is possible.” Matthew 19:26

Last year at this time I was sifting through my clothes and giving away almost all my size 8s, 10s, and 12s that I had been keeping in hopes that I would some day get skinny again. I was, in essence, giving up.

Last year, I did not really understand that what has happened was actually possible with God. Because, yes humanly speaking, me… being frees from food… it was impossible at that point. There was nothing that was gonna work to that end.

But, now I see… when you have the power of God on your side, and when you allow God to work His Power inside of you… really, really, really… ev.ery.thing. is possible.

It sorta makes me want to, like, take on the world! It makes me realize that this covenant diet is minuscule compared to what He can really do. And yet this covenant diet is the biggest thing that I have ever seen God do in my life.

Looks like I have an impossible life coming my way!

Day 139: Strong Arm

I know that I have also talked about my thoughts on working out before as well. It’s just… well, it’s just not my thing. And I chose, on purpose, not to work out during my covenant. Why? Well, I’m going to just copy-paste in part of a post where I talked about this because it’s easier than re-explaining it again!

“I am not working out because I don’t want to lose weight any other way than by my eating habits changing. That might sound ludicrous and weird, but here is my reason: I need my overeating food and addiction to food and focus on food to be eradicated from my life. If I find another way to be “skinny” (i.e. working out) instead of getting this addiction under control then it defeats the purpose of this entire covenant. My focus this year is not to change my body (although I will totally admit that I hope it changes for the smaller) but to change my heart, soul, and mind.” From Day Forty-Four

Why bring that up? Well, because I think that I am going to start working out.

Ya see, I have this thing going on with my hips… we are essentially guessing at what it is, but aren’t entirely sure (no insurance + four of us living on a teacher’s salary = no testing to find out definitively). I know that I mentioned it before… but basically, the pain sorta comes and goes. When I am having a painful day it is… well, it’s pretty excruciating. I went for about 9 days of pain-free bliss last week and then, bam… it was back.

I have learned pretty well to manage the pain with medication, stretching, and ice, ice, ice… instead of managing it with eating, eating, eating like I mentioned on Day Thirty-Eight, but lately I’m just… well, I’m just irritated with pain. It changes my patience level. It changes my outlook on life. It just… changes me. And that irritates me!

I did notice that when I really make my abdominals tight and use them as a support that it eases the pain a bit, and so I thought… well, it would be worth it to tighten those suckers up even if that alone kept the pain closer to a minimum. But I’m nervous about working out because that is what caused my hips to go all crazy in the first place (well, I think that was it). I had started trying to do that dern Couch to 5K thing and I was starting some pilates, so I’m not entirely sure which one to blame. I had even tried to be smart about it all and I had been walking for months to get my endurance up and get my body into slightly better shape so that I wouldn’t fall apart when I started running. Buttttttt, I fell apart anyway!

So, I don’t want to start trying to tighten my abs and then make my hips completely deteriorate!

But all of that was the long story to say that I am going to start working out. I’m not entirely sure what I’ll do… I’d like to be able to swim because it is just… well, it’s just such a great way to get a work out without all of the stress on the body. And, honestly, I don’t want to hurt my body anyyyyymore than I already have!

And plus, God is cool with us taking care of our bodies… even Proverbs 31 mentions it when talking about the uber perfect woman…

She does her work with energy, and her arms are strong. Proverbs 31:17

I know that the list of a Proverbs 31 woman is more of a list of guidance for what King Lemuel’s mom thought his wife should be like, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t strive to obtain a lot of those qualities. And I would love to be a woman that does my work with energy and is strong… especially strong arms! So, working out could potentially work for me in two ways: help me manage my pain and help me to become more like a Proverbs 31 woman! That’s one power-packed workout!

Day 133: Face To Facebook

I haven’t been very… good… about taking “real” pictures of my kids the past several months.

Okay, so I have been horrible about it. My iPhone is just so totally convenient, so I never remember to take my “real” camera… and I kept forgetting to charge it whenever I would take it to an “event”. Thank goodness my mother goes to most of the “big” events in my life and she always remembers her camera, so I often just piggy back off of her pics!

Anyway, I did finally charge my camera and take pics at my son’s preschool graduation and at my toddler’s birthday! And I was just so stinking proud of myself that I put them on Facebook (which I also haven’t done an official “album” in a while… most of my pics are mobile upload pics)!

Well, in doing so, I had to go through and choose which pictures I wanted, because… come on. Let’s all be honest here. It don’t matter if there are 37 people in a picture and alllllll of them look fabulous… if I don’t look good then it’s not a good pic. Haha! So, I went through and weeded through some of the less desirable pics of me and others there.

And my emotions at looking at pics of myself were a little back and forth. I’d look at myself in one picture and think, “Wow. I look way skinnier than I realized” and then five seconds later I would look at a pic and think, “Wow… I’m not nearly as far along as I thought.”

But what I think is cool… is that those thoughts just sorta… ended… right there. I just stopped thinking about how I looked and went on with my day. I more so enjoyed all the comments that people were making about my precious boys in the pics having fun. And it wasn’t like I consciously had to think, “Now January… you are beautiful just the way you are.” It was more like my thoughts ran subconsciously but more in this vein: “Now January… The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7

And I love that it was subconscious… that I never really thought about the fact that I was feeling “unconcerned” about my looks. I was just… well… unconcerned! To look back on that now at the end of the day, well, it’s just… cool. In fact, I’m kinda smiling to myself right now. Kinda… feeling the joy.

I take joy in doing your will, my God, for your instructions are written on my heart. Psalm 40:8