Sunday, December 13, 2009
As those who have read my blogs and Spark page in the past year may know, I'm on a journey for the health of my whole self. This includes mind, body and spirit. My first year on Spark People was devoted to gaining a healthy body and to my emotional well being. I'm making some great progress with both but something was still missing. This past August, hubby and I decided to make the commitment to go to church on a weekly basis. So far, we've only missed two Sundays. More importantly, we have an added dimension to our relationship with each other as well as with some friends and people in our community. I can't speak for him, but for me this spiritual nourishment has filled a void in me that I didn't even realize was there. It's funny how that happens.
I've always been connected to my God throughout my life and I've considered myself a spiritual person. What was missing then? Lots! For one thing, the fellowship of my church community. In this day and age of technology I was becoming isolated. How can I get the human contact, love and support that I so desperately need if I sit on my butt by myself? I took the step to join Spark People and to go to a gym to work out. This really helped me to branch out. With Spark People I can pretty much get support 24/7 by just going online. There are nights when they have been a real lifeline for me. The water aerobics classes and gym workouts became a social event as well as a workout; which was great. I've made many new friends with both. I've also started a specialized therapy for people with PTSD to help me overcome my fears. This was a huge step for me! Now with the additional dimension of a spiritual community, I'm finally starting to address the rest of my needs.
I remember the wonderful churches that I attended as a young person on up to my late thirties. Then somehow I got a little lost. I became a workaholic, obsessed with my career and the balance between mind, body and spirit took a big hit. I stopped exercising, doing mindful eating and slept only 5-6 hours a night. The weight piled on and I hated myself. I had very little life outside of my career and my family. I became so isolated and lonely, that work, family and food were IT for me. I still had an open line of communication with God and I found myself constantly asking for his intervention. Somehow, I just wasn't hearing him or I was missing the messages he was sending me. In retrospect, this was really sad. I ended up retiring on a disability. Outside of my family and food, I had very little to show for a lifetime of hard work. Somewhere along the line I had lost the inner me and I had managed to put myself at the bottom of the list.
As I said previously, my journey to health involves the health of the total self. I can't just concentrate on one area and neglect the rest. That's like trying to fix the engine in your car with a bandaid. I've had to do soul searching and decide where I want to go with my life and growth. Believe me, it was no small undertaking! I found so many things that I want to work on but doing so all at once would be overwhelming. So, I've done it slowly over time. I've finally reached the point where I'm open to gaining more spiritual nourishment outside of myself and my home. It is starting to feel really, really good.