First, I would like to say that some of the things I talk about on my blog are not meant to be complaining or critical, etc. I am analyzing where certain feelings came from so that I can make changes for the future. So, if I talk about someone in my past in a less than forgiving light, it is not because I am trying to lash out. I am analyzing where I came from so I can hopefully have different responses in the future. That is a part of healing.
I know I talk about my physical pain a lot, but that is what I am facing right now. That is a primary motivation for getting serious on this journey. And as I chronicle where I am, I will be able to see how far I have come as I am getting better. And I am sure there are others out there struggling with the same thing. Maybe, as I progress, I can help someone else and encourage them to keep trying, so they can get to a better place too.
So, my daughters joined a softball team. It got me to thinking back. In the years after high school, I played softball and volleyball all the time with some co-ed teams from our church. I loved it. And I was actually pretty good at it. All through school I thought I was no athlete. That’s what was communicated to me early on by school P.E. teachers and coaches. I felt ridiculed by my elementary school P.E. teacher and, because of that, I totally quit trying. I can only imagine how different things might have been if he had just given me a little encouragement – a little “You can do it!” Because I found out later, I really could. On our co-ed teams, there were usually two girls who got to play all the time and never had to sit on the bench. The rest of the girls rotated in and out. I was always one of the two who never sat on the bench. I had a pretty mean throwing arm and a pretty mean bat, when I was patient. And I was a pretty good setter in volleyball (the guys were usually the spikers, unless we had a girl who had played a lot of volleyball). I used to love going through those spiking drills – setting them up with different signals and letting the guy pound it into the opposite court.
Anyway, this got me to thinking. I had so much self-condemnation through so much of my life. But this part of my life, I was beginning to become who I really wanted to be. I was fairly active (although could have done a lot more, I know now). So much of my recreation involved being active. That is what I would like to get back to. What ended this back then? Actually, I think it was my husband’s attitude. I was playing on these teams when we got married. He never wanted to participate with me (even though he was a very good athlete in his younger days), and he kind of discouraged me from participating in these things. It wasn’t spiritual enough for him. And yet he was so ready to criticize me for gaining weight. He constantly communicated to me that he was ashamed of me, that I was disgusting, etc. My confidence dropped to new depths. And it seemed like every time I started trying to dig myself out, he would beat me down again. My marriage did not end because of this (I was in it “for better or worse”), but this is one thing I am so thankful to be away from. I have healed a lot in the years since my divorce. I still struggle with some of the same things, but these days, I am more able to work proactively to change things. This time through, I want to do everything I can to overcome this lifetime struggle and be on the winning side of it. I will always have to work on it, but I want to work on staying there, instead of constantly trying to get there. And I will never again let someone else determine my value, like I allowed my husband to do.
I want my future life to be full of activity. I don’t know if I will ever play on a softball team again, but who knows? I might. (Do they have softball teams for middle-aged people? Lol.) But I want to go on hikes and bike rides and find all kinds of ways to be active. Even ballroom dancing. That looks like so much fun! I know if my recreation is steeped in physical activity, I will much more likely be able to maintain a healthy weight.
Unfortunately, I am not at a place where I can do that right now. I am trying to work back up to being able to walk my own dog. But I will get there! I am determined! I swore to myself I would never be one of those people who got so big that they have to ride around on a scooter all the time. No condemnation, if that is where you are, but I don’t want to go there. And I felt dangerously close to that a couple of weeks ago. I know losing my mobility would be devastating. I want to do all I can to avoid that. So, I am crawling out of that hole…one last time.