Oh this is fitting. Always, Lord, you do this, and I should not expect any less. I am about to embark on a Bible study through Made to Crave on the Proverbs 31 ministry website, my small group of women at church is about to start a study through Lies Women Believe by Nancy Leigh DeMoss, and Diabetes Burnout is also talking about working through false information about living with diabetes and replacing it with TRUTH about living with the disease. All of this is about REPLACING THE LIES with THE TRUTH.
OK, Lord, I think I have a lot of work to do. Let me put on my helmet, because I know those “frying pan” moments are coming (these are the times in your life when you get “hit” over and over and over and over and over again with the same truth). Yes, I can already smell the bacon cooking in that cast iron skillet… Let Your Spirit speak, Lord, and may my head, my heart, and my spirit be willing to receive Your Truth…
In Made to Crave, chapter 11, Lysa shares some testimonies of times in life when things get so overwhelming, we just gravitate toward food (or other desire) to remove ourselves from the actual situations we are facing. It is way easier to avoid the issue at hand by replacing it with a more desirable object (or dessert…). This birthday cake sitting next to me at the dining room table is smelling so good and is so much more enjoyable than filling out the worksheets I printed off from Diabetes Burnout‘s Chapter 12…but that would just sink me in BOTH books’ topics this evening!
Why fill myself with sugary desserts? Why desire that bowl of ice cream? It is so smooth and cold and creamy…and I can, in that brief moment of time, not think about the effect on my blood sugar and my waistline. After all, ice cream is in my blood! My aunt and uncle own an ice cream store in my hometown, and opening date for the season ahead is just around the corner…
I know, I know, stop tempting my readers!
The point Lysa makes in this chapter is that stress and the intensity of life drive us to seek comfort. Now, do we want to receive comfort through sex, through food, through alcohol or drugs, or do we want to receive that Peace that Passes All Understanding from our Father? I know what I SHOULD choose. The problem is, we don’t always choose God’s Peace because that is not the easy path to take. McDonald’s and $0.59 ice cream cones and $1.29 small fries is just around the corner…so easy to hop in the car and stuff my face with sweet and salty goodness…wait, badness…for my body.
Do I ever KNOW emotional eating! I tried that whole hypnosis for weight loss thing awhile back. It worked for a while, but I didn’t keep up with my “homework.” In struggling through my low self-worth and self-image issues, I ate. A lot. In high school, I would save up my quarters and buy Zebra cakes as often as I could, and Oatmeal Pies if I found enough change on the way too school. In college, after my sister passed away, I went back and forth between not eating at all, and very nearly binge eating every day. When I got married a year out of college, and my then-husband and I had emotional struggles in our marriage, I ate. When he didn’t want to eat healthy foods and we ate out 2-3 times a week (at various hamburger establishments), I put on easily 60 pounds. By the time we separated and then divorced, I felt so bad about myself, and had established such unhealthy routines, I lost hope.
Then I discovered dancing! Oh, did I enjoy learning how to Salsa, Bachata, East and West Coast Swing Dance! I bought dance shoes, and desired to go dancing as often as possible! I was working full time as a teacher, and going out 3-4 times a week and staying out til 2 in the morning each night! Who needed sleep?!?!? I craved how I felt on the dance floor! I felt sexy. I felt beautiful. I felt engaging! I would follow the male lead and twist and twirl wherever he led me (unless my clumsiness got in the way…which it did…on occasion…). I lost 25 pounds just by GOING OUT!
But I spent so little time with the Lord in that period of my life. God slowly grabbed hold of my heart, and drew me near to Him. He drew me to a new church home, inspired me to get involved in the choir, the musical the church put on every year, the Bible Study opportunities offered. I lost my teaching job, no doubt because I could barely function emotionally or physically because of grief, divorce, and manic behaviors. I was seeing a counselor, and joined three different Bible studies. This is where my frying pan moments began. All three studies, and one of my best friends, called me out in ALL THE SAME AREAS. Truth! God hit me from four different sides at the same time. Book, Book, Book, FRIEND! Every DAY! I had a lot of emotional and spiritual bruises that year. And I needed them. I needed the wake-up call. I needed to be grounded back to reality, back to my heavenly Father.
It is that year I learned it is ok to reach out and ask for help. I NEED to if I am going to function. And I always revert back to hiding behind a mask of a smile, that everything is hunky dory. That’s why I am thankful to be reading these books right now. I am removing my inner and outer mask. I need to face my denials, work through them, and get healthy. All around healthy. Spiritually, I have come a long way. And with that, I need to get caught up emotionally, mentally, and physically.
In terms of my diabetes burnout, I am making strides toward better self-care. I still need reminding once in a while to check my glucose levels, and I am continuing to make progress. I am reminded that glucose levels outside of the “normal” range do not mean that I messed up, but is another piece of data to measure my overall health. Elevated levels can mean infection (or pneumonia, like I had a few weeks ago), that elevated morning numbers might mean I am rebounding overnight (which I know has happened twice this week). The glucose levels are DATA! I have a bachelors in MATHEMATICS! I LIKE data!
Perspective is everything. This disease does not control me unless I LET it. I am weak, but my God is STRONG. He has allowed me to experience this trial, and many others, for a purpose I may never fully understand. And I will walk this path, one step at a time. With each step, I know I will eventually get back on track. I guess I just needed a “vacation” for a while. Now, Polonsky writes that an occasional vacation from diabetes is OK, BUT….not for long periods of time. A day once in a while is fine. Not 7 months in a row…
So, I am getting back on track. I will establish a routine, and I will maintain that routine until the Lord gives me the strength to maintain it. Then I can talk to myself about establishing my “Diabetes Holiday” moments. That is way down the path from now though. I don’t want to slip off the path too soon and want to stay off again for too long.
Now, Polonksy also writes about challenging my beliefs about diabetes. One of those beliefs is that I must be perfect in how I care for myself. He challenges me to think instead that “I should take care of my diabetes as well as I can, with the understanding that no one can do it perfectly.” (Polonsky 132) No one. Not me, not any other person who has diabetes, whether type 1 or type 2 or any other type. Another belief, ignoring this disease, needs to be conquered with the truth that my body is a temple of the Lord, and I need to treat it as such. Yes, I won’t be perfect at it. And I can do a much better job than I am right now.
Glucose meter, test strips, insulin, vitamins, skinny fiber, Made to Crave, Diabetes Burnout, and my Bible at the ready to help me get fit spiritually, physically, and emotionally. Mental health is another story all together. I have my Zoloft to help with that. 😉
♥••*´¨`*•.☆• LetsDoThisTogether •☆.•*´¨`*••♥
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