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Brake Failure..... I'm grateful

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Today the brakes went out in my van. Oh, they were grinding earlier in the week & I knew that they needed to be replaced but today.... there were NO brakes! Very scary to have to drive slowly & carefully to work, then dentist, then to the repair shop. By the time that I got to the repair shop I was feeling tense & stressed. I brought the van to a slow but rolling stop at the shop and breathed a sigh of relief. They spent over 6 hours working on the van while I sat in their waiting room and in the end it was still not fixed due to serious complications and one of the mechanics' fiancee drove me home. I won't be able to get the van until sometime late tomorrow.

I am grateful!

Why? Because, despite the fact that the brakes went out and it's going to cost me more money than expected due to the complications: 1. I didn't have an accident. 2. I got the van to the shop safely. 3. I have been able to make arrangements with various people for rides to & from work for Becca (DIL), Paul (DH) and myself tomorrow. 4. The Granddaughters' dad is off work tomorrow so I don't have to pick them up from the bus stop. 5. I actually have money in the bank to be able to pay for the repair work. 6. The mechanics were very nice & helpful and when something got damaged by their machine they agreed that they will not charge me extra for the repairs.


I am also grateful that I got to have a long talk with the mechanic about the van and all the money that I have poured into it this year. I was feeling a bit down about the fact that I have spent more money on the van than I paid for it originally AND more than the blue book value on it now. He made a very positive & valuable point to me. He said that I have repaired the two main problems that vans like mine have and that the money that I am spending now is just to take care of things that will always go wrong, minor things. This is a vehicle that I bought from the original owner, whom I know and trust, and now have been taking care of myself. I know the history of this vehicle and he says that if I keep up with it, it will last me a long time. WOW! This really put my mind at ease during a difficult & stressful event that in the past would have derailed my eating easily. Instead of rushing next door to the fast food joint while waiting... I sat in the waiting room and read my book. I AM GRATEFUL!!!!

I am also grateful that I got back to work at the Y today and was able to get in some good exercise. I woke up very sore this morning (results of yesterday's fall) and it felt really GREAT to be able to workout and stretch those muscles. I have a lot more bruises today than yesterday and was more sore in places that I didn't realize I had hurt yesterday. I am grateful that I have a job that allows me to take care of ME and work out the kinks. I'm also grateful to the ladies in my water aerobic classes that shared good wish with me and told me that they had been praying for me. I feel very blessed that I didn't break anything yesterday when I fell and that I am able to function in my job and my day to day life.

Today is just another example of putting positive thinking into action and remembering to count my blessings and make my gratitude list. I am grateful that I am focused on this right now because it is definitely helping me to stay away from emotional/compulsive overeating and on track. I am so grateful!

Bright blessings to you all. Thank you for being here for me. Love, Dawn

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GOATS03 12/17/2011 9:37PM

    Yes, Thank God that you are safe. I love your positiveness..thanks for sharing.

Merry Xmas
Sue

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ENUFF81020 12/17/2011 8:22PM

    Hi Dawn,
I have learned that no matter what the vehicle is and if you bought it new or used, and sometimes even its age--you will have things to deal with. It is also a funny thing that each vehicle seems to have its own special irritating needs that seem to be almost repetitive.
I have driven a car that lost its brakes and it is a nerve wracking, intense, and frightening ordeal. You did good to get it to the mechanic. I am blessed with a son and husband who can do the repairs which saves money, but parts are pricey too.
Mostly, even though I haven't been by lately because my life has been hectic beyond reason between going back to school, my kids, work and two surgeries this month--I am thankful that you are here finding the silver lining as always. It is there if we look for it. I am learning one handed typing again, which is an interesting experience. I am lucky to be online and able to type anything!
Gentle hugs,
Sylvia

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LMSTRAW 12/13/2011 11:51PM

    So thankful you got through this safely! I remembe a year ago, when you had no transportation at all, no job and no money. God IS good, Dawn, and He will see you through! Take care my friend, and have a wonderful holiday!

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TRACYZABELLE 12/12/2011 7:10AM

    I am going thisweek to get mine done :)

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MRS*RADISH 12/4/2011 10:43AM

  Love this blog post, Dawn! So sorry I missed it before...It has a wonderful message for all of us to remember! I love your positive attitude - it's contagious!

So glad everything worked out well for you in the end. I have to believe your thought process really helped make it all happen the way it did. Congrats, Dawn...Hope you're enjoying the holiday season!

Lainie

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SEAWAVE 12/3/2011 10:38AM

    I've come to realize that it's not what happens to you, it's how you chose to react to it. You have such an amazing, positive attitude -- it's inspiring to read your posts.

Keep smiling, and I hope you've healed from your fall...
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DONNELDA22 12/2/2011 7:48AM

    So sorry to hear that you hurt yourself last month.

Hope you are feeling much better now. emoticon

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MELLYBEANS0919 11/19/2011 4:12PM

    You are so positive, I love that. I hope the van is fixed soon!

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NPA4LOSS 11/17/2011 9:56AM

    emoticon emoticon and emoticon

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SECRETMUSIC 11/13/2011 7:33AM

    Dawn, it is so amazing to read your blog, having been on this journey with you since the days you had a serious wound and needed a wheelchair to navigate. You are an intrepid soul!

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SUNSET24 11/9/2011 8:07AM

    thank god you are safe, lawrd. amen! hugsssssssssssssssss

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IUHRYTR 11/6/2011 8:31PM

    Hard to believe the brakes went out again. Let's hope they're fixed properly this time. Glad there were no accidents. -- Lou

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RAYLINSTEPHENS 11/6/2011 6:06PM

    emoticon attitude!

Love you!

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DONNA_VT 11/6/2011 4:42PM

    Another wacky ride with Dawn . . . . .so glad you are safe and the van is able to be fixed. You are a rock and my idol for the power of positive thinking!

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MMRB7111 11/6/2011 7:43AM

    Dawn, I am so glad you are safe and you were able to get the van to the shop without an accident. Things seems to be working out for your life ........I am very glad too because you truly deserve it.

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1BEACHWALKER 11/6/2011 1:49AM

    Glad you weren't hurt worse in your fall and was able to work out the kinks. You are more fit now and that helps in situations like that! Glad you were able to get the van to the shop and all is going to work out!! Hope your injuries heal quickly! emoticon

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TEDYBEAR2838 11/5/2011 4:27PM

    WOW, you really do have a lot to be grateful for! emoticon

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DYNAMICDEB53 11/5/2011 12:16AM

    Dawn so glad you are safe and able to afford the needed repairs. Sorry you are dealing with it. Yes there is a lot to be grateful for.
Hugs and smiles
Deb

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GRANDMA_SANDY48 11/4/2011 10:55PM

    So glad you were safe in your van and that while you are still sore, you were able to stretch. I too am grateful that I came across your blog emoticon

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SUSAN134 11/4/2011 9:20PM

    Like the others, I'm incredibly grateful that when the brakes failed, you
were able to limp into a shop with it. I'm also grateful that you ALWAYS look on the bright side of things and inspire us to be positive too!

Thank you my friend!

Hugs

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LYNDALOVES2HIKE 11/4/2011 8:27PM

    I am so glad you are safe! Wow, no brakes could be disaster! I'm also glad your mechanic was reassuring about fixing your van - it's funny how some vehicles just seem to go and go and go! My son bought an old old Ford van for $500 about 6 yrs ago and drove it for more than 3 yrs before it needed any repairs - my husband is driving an old Mercedes with several hundred thousand miles on it, although it has needed some expensive repairs - still less expensive than buying a new one, for sure! Sounds like yours will keep going for a long time - thanks for sharing your gratitudes!!
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LINDAKAY228 11/4/2011 12:43PM

    So glad that you got safely to the shop and that the outlook overall for the van is very positive. My 1999 Nissan Sentra has been good to me (bought it 3 years ago) and has taken me many places and I keep hoping and praying nothing happens because I don't have money to replace it either. In a perfect world we would both be driving brand new vehicles with warranties but this is real life LOL! One time a number of years ago in another car the accelerator got stuck on my vehicle and that was scary riding the brake and trying to keep it slowed down through traffic to get to the shop. I know how tense and stressed you were yesterday dealing with no brakes. But God is good and overall we are taken care of.

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SA9CHI 11/4/2011 11:58AM

    thank goodness you brought your van in the shop when you did!

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BARBARAROSE54 11/4/2011 11:17AM

    emoticon keep staying positive!

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TRAVELNISTA 11/4/2011 9:15AM

    I am just in awe of you and how well you handle obstacles. emoticon emoticon

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DEBRA0818 11/4/2011 8:09AM

    Great way to look at things that happen to you Dawn! A lot of people would be pretty happy to have six hours to read (I'm one of them). Turning every occasion into an occasion to give thanks is a wonderful way to go through life.

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WENDYLEE15 11/4/2011 7:48AM

    So glad you are safe!! What a blessing!! Have a wonderful day !!
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BE-THE-CHANGE 11/4/2011 5:29AM

    Thank goodness you are OK and got to the repair shop safely. It sounds like this is the last of the major van problems so that is great news! I hope your bruises heal quickly.

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WISLNDR 11/4/2011 4:09AM

    Wow, 2 blogs in a row!! You and I are on a roll (It's 6 or 7 days for me!!) I'm glad you got some good news about the van and it's safe again; it's hard to know when it's time to throw in the towel but it sounds like that's not going to be an issue for you!!

Thanks for sharing, have a great weekend!!

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MT-MOONCHASER 11/4/2011 12:29AM

    I am grateful that even though you had a serious problem with your car, it wasn't wrecked and you were able to get it to a mechanic.

I will be forever grateful that I happened upon your blog and Spark page somehow and have been inspired by your story.

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emoticon

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DIFROMWYOMING 11/3/2011 11:00PM

    I'm trying to catch up after being stranded in a storm, but I was grateful we got almost the very last rooms in town so we were safe and dry, and got home safely.
I'm grateful that you are not injured badly, that you arrived safe to the mechanics and that you are finishing some things on your car that will make it a safe mode of transportation for you.
Friends never stop caring.
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SUSIEPH1 11/3/2011 10:13PM

    emoticon
Glad you are safe Dawn .. You are in the best job to take care of you!!
Water is wonderful to help Aches and Pains!
I also love to swim .
Hopefully I can be back in the pool really soon!!
Hugs Susie emoticon emoticon

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VAMANOS 11/3/2011 10:12PM

    I am grateful that you are safe and unhurt, other than soreness from the fall, which I'm sorry about. Years and years ago, I drove a van that would leak out all the brake fluid at varying speeds, so that the brakes would fail without warning. One minute, I'm braking ok at a stop sign and the next, no brakes at all. I would have to run the thing into a curb to stop. Luckily, it was a small town. So glad yours are getting fixed!

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LJCANNON 11/3/2011 10:06PM

    emoticonI am so glad that you are safe, and that the van will be up and running soon.
emoticonKeeping you in prayer that you will heal quickly!!

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46SHADOW 11/3/2011 10:04PM

    Love your attitude! i could use a little of that right now!

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YATMAMA 11/3/2011 10:04PM

    I'm so sorry you fell and got hurt. I hope you will begin to see improvement quickly. That 100 pound difference could very well have saved you broken bones or worse. Thank God for the victories you have achieved!! I am SO proud of you. A good prognosis from your mechanic is as exciting as one from your doctor or computer repairman. lol What a relief that is!! *HUG* I am so happy for you, dear one. I love you to pieces.

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FALLING DOWN..... I'm grateful

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Today I fell. It was a hard fall. I tripped over the dog's chain & landed hard on my knee, the one that I fell on several years ago & crushed. I landed not only on my knee, but on top of some of the grandchildrens' bikes so hard that I knocked the bike handle bars through the front screen & window. SIGH. My ankle is scraped up & bloody. My thigh is bruised badly. My right elbow & shoulder are sore. What a way to start the day.

I am grateful!

Why? Because when I fell, in 2007 I was hurt MUCH worse. I weighed over 100 pounds more. If I had not found Spark People and lost weight, this morning's fall would have done much more damage than it did. I am very very grateful.

This month, the Alternate Challenge in the 50 Pound Challenge team asks us to write a blog about our gratitudes. I have so many. I would never have the time or the space to write about all the things that I am grateful for. However, I would like to list some of them. I would also challenge you to take tiMme to do the same. FOcusing on the things that bless our lives and make us grateful helps to elevate our Positive Mental Attitudes. Staying positive helps keeps us happy & motivated.

My greatest gratitude is based on my family. I am blessed to have 2 wonderful sons. Wonderful because of the love that we share. Our lives have been chaotic at best. We have never had a lot of money or "things" but we have had a LOT of love. They bless my life daily. I am blessed to have 9 beautiful grandchildren. Five of them are in my life daily and my heart swells everytime that I think of them. There are 4 others in Tidewater that unfortunately I don't get to see very often. In fact, it's been years since I've seen them but they are in my heart daily. In the past I have not been able to give much to them. I have let the fact that there is no money stop me from staying in better contact with them. I have learned, recently, that I need to share my LOVE with them MORE than I need to give them "stuff". I hope to find a way to reach out to them in love and to get to know them better. I am grateful that there are avenues for me to use to do that through the internet & the mail. I am grateful for my grandchildren's parents & step-parents. My grandchildren are the light of my world. I am so grateful for them, words cannot express my true love for them. I have lost my brother but still love him more than I can ever express. He is in my heart always. I am grateful for the life & love that we shared while he was alive. I am grateful for my sister. She lives far away & we rarely talk, but I love her and am grateful that we are able to reach out to one another and are building a better relationship now that we are older. I am grateful for my husband. He is a hardworking, honest and extremely patient man. I love that we never argue. I am blessed to have him in my life.

My second greatest gratitude is my job. I am blessed to be working at the YMCA where I teach both water aerobics and swimming lessons. Most of you already know about my job. For those of you who are just getting to know me, believe this...I LOVE MY JOB! Where else could some one work not only with people that they enjoy working FOR but working WITH people that have become pieces of my heart? The students in my water aerobic classes are precious to me beyond words. I love them. I enjoy teaching the little children swim lessons, but this last session, I have been blessed to begin teaching Adult swim lessons. I AM SO BLESSED! Teaching these very special ladies has blessed my heart and my life beyond measure. Watching them progress, little by little, has touched me.. made me cry with joy.. made me proud beyond words. Never in my wildest dreams could I have imagined that I would one day have a job that would give me EVERYTHING that I ever needed. It helps me financially, and that is a necessary evil. It helps me physically by helping me get fit & healthy... I get to exercise DAILY! It has helped me emotionally by bringing me friends.. NO FAMILY OF CHOICE.. to love and cherish. I am grateful!

My next big gratitude is for my friends. I am not always a good friend to others. I stay too busy. It seems that I am running all the time. I have become a human-doing for the most part. However, I have been blessed with some very special people in my life who I call my friends. I am grateful to them for being patient with me and for loving me in spite of myself. To all of those who have been my friends through out the years... THANK YOU. To those of you who have become my friends recently... bear with me and KNOW that I am committed to trying harder to be a better friend. I am learning that respect and gratitude are vital to good friendships. I will do my best to reach out more and share more of MYSELF with you. I love you all. Thank you for being a part of my life.

The list could go on and on but these three GRATITUDES are the greatest in my world.

Finally, I am grateful beyond words for Spark People. I have found motivation, support, guidance, friendship, information, and so much more here. The teams that I am on have become vital to my day to day life. The friends that I have made here, despite never having met "in real life" are important to me and I love YOU. My weight loss has been stalled for a long time now but I accept that I am the fault. I have allowed stress to derail my efforts and am committed to making some serious changes. I am grateful for the articles that I read and the information that I get through Spark People. I am grateful for the blogs that I read and the stories that you share. I am grateful for everything that is Spark People and the PEOPLE of spark! Thank you for all that you give to me and to this site. Thank you for sharing your journeys here. We ALL need one another.

Bright blessings to you all. I am so grateful. I love you. Dawn

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

VEGGIE_VIXEN 12/31/2011 12:48AM

    Isnt it something that as younger people we do not truly appreciate or understand fully what it means to be GRATEFUL??
I was just thinking about myself when I asked that question.
It was not until just recently that I asked myself what I am grateful for in my life! Your listing and naming just a few gives me an idea to post mine on my Spark Page as well.

Thanks for the inspirations and for being YOU!

~~Marci~~

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HONEYBEADS 12/30/2011 5:57PM

    We are grateful for you, too!

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ENUFF81020 12/17/2011 8:29PM

    Wow, that fall was a doozy. I did one myself the other day at the grocery store made quite a scene. I am bruised and have found places that hurt that are surprising me. (I blogged about my fall too.) I am thankful that I am still able to walk and that I didn't damage the hardware in my knees and back. If I still had another 140 pounds that are gone, I think I would have done a great deal more damage too.
I always love to see thanks for SP. We have found a lifetime keeper in this site and I am blessed to be able to go and touch base with so many good friends who are around and available when I am free to say "hi!"
Merry Christmas to you and all of your family!
Gentle hugs,
Sylvia

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MELLYBEANS0919 11/19/2011 4:14PM

    I am so sorry you hurt yourself, but thankful it was not as bad as it could have been in the past. Take time to heal. Rest. And I am thankful for YOU and your positivity that abounds. You really show me how to look at life.

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MMRB7111 11/6/2011 5:52AM

    Dawn, I am so glad you did not hurt yourself as badly as any fall can cause. Get lots of rest and take care of yourself during this recovery.



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GRANDMA_SANDY48 11/4/2011 10:50PM

    So glad you weren't hurt more badly. It could have been so much worse. I also admire your blog - I have read this one and today's. I will add some things to mine that I am grateful for - and try to do the same each day for the challenge. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BESTCK 11/4/2011 8:30AM

    Another fine example about different ways to look at a situation. I'm glad you were able to work things out and that you have such a wonderful, trustworthy mechanic.

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BE-THE-CHANGE 11/4/2011 5:28AM

    I am grateful for you and your friendship.
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DETERMINDCHICKY 11/3/2011 9:26PM

    I am grateful for finding you Dawn. Your adventure continues to inspire me. Hope you heal quickly!



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DYNAMICDEB53 11/3/2011 7:12PM

    HUGS!!!! for your soreness that it will be feeling better soon and just for Dawn exiting in my world and being my friend.
Yes I am grateful to have you!
Smiles and love
Deb

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TEDYBEAR2838 11/3/2011 6:13PM

    We all have so much to be grateful for. I'm so glad you shared them with all of us. You have had so many challenges and you come through them all with head held high and a RIGHT ON ATTITUDE!

YOU ROCK!

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SUSUSUZZZIE 11/3/2011 4:02PM

    I am so grateful for finding your blog today. What wonderful gratitudes you have to share. And thank you for sharing how much you love your job - I really-really needed this as well!

I'm sorry about your fall and I hope you mend very-very soon.

Thanks you for taking the time to share!


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LYNDALOVES2HIKE 11/3/2011 12:32PM

    Thank you so much for sharing your gratitudes - and I'm sorry about your fall, but hope you heal quickly!
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TRAVELNISTA 11/3/2011 10:50AM

    You constantly amaze me how you consistently make lemonade out of the lemons life has handed you.

Mend quickly my friend and thank God you didn't hurt yourself and more than what you did. Also praying the repairs to the window and screen don't cost that much as I know money is tight further adding to your stress. I know it is the least little thing that can push us over the edge. I had a mini meltdown over money this morning and that one little thing which was big to me pushed me right over.
emoticon emoticon

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LINDAKAY228 11/3/2011 10:48AM

    I am so glad that you weren't hurt more seriously. I liked reading through your gratitudes. I also have grandkids that live a few states away and hardly get to see. I have a 5 year old granddaughter I've only seen once a few years ago and a grandson a year and a half I haven't seen at all yet. (I have seen pics of both but it's not the same as being with them, talking to them, hugging them) I have 2 others in another state that I haven't seen in almost 2 years. that's the way life is sometimes. Money is tight and I haven't been able to send them things like I would like or travel to see them. But you are right about the ways to try to stay connected and let them know we love them.

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STARSAPPHIRE57 11/3/2011 10:36AM

    I too am grateful that your injuries were not worse! Wonderful blog-thanks for sharing! Blessings, Pam

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RAYLINSTEPHENS 11/3/2011 10:14AM

    Wonderful blog!

Sorry you fell but thankful too that you didn't get as hurt as last time!



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DEBRA0818 11/3/2011 9:15AM

    First, I'm sorry you had a tumble and best wishes for a speedy recovery. Those sudden injuries can be quite disruptive. Second, great connection between a lower body weight and less risk for injury. It is one of my great motivations considering that when I had surgery a year ago I was very aware of how every extra ounce made the surgery more difficult and the recovery extra uncomfortable. I don't want to be there again!

Cheers, Debra
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OPALMOON 11/3/2011 9:04AM

    Brilliant blog, Dawn! I hope that leg gets better soon. How wonderful to be able to see the positive things in your life all the same - good on you, you are such an inspiration. I too am so thankful for the support from my Spark friends!
Take care, hope you heal soon.

Hugs and blessings, Nattacia



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SIMPLE_IS_BEST 11/3/2011 8:16AM

    We all have so much to be grateful for! I'm grateful that you were not seriously injured when you fell. Be careful out there, and have a good day!

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BESTCK 11/3/2011 8:07AM

    Owch! Dawn, that sounds terrible, but I know what you mean. It could have been so much worse.

Your blog is inspiring. I wish we lived closer so I could attend your lessons. A teacher that feels this way about what she does is a blessing.

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SECRETMUSIC 11/3/2011 7:52AM

    Hope your injuries heal quickly, Dawn!

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BARBARAROSE54 11/3/2011 6:49AM

    Ouch, hope you are okay. Love your grateful list emoticon

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WISLNDR 11/3/2011 5:22AM

    Falling Down and Getting Back Up - isn't it awesome???? Wonderful blog, I'm grateful for you!!

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PAULAAUTUMN 11/3/2011 4:19AM

    So pleased you are not seriously hurt you sound like a caring person see you at the Chair exercise team take care of that leg emoticon

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SA9CHI 11/3/2011 1:35AM

    Thank goodness nothing is broken! Take care of yourself and give yourself time to heal. emoticon

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GRINGUITA 11/3/2011 1:01AM

    I'm glad you were not more seriously hurt. I, too, am grateful for firiends and I am grateful to call you one of those friends.

Bev Anne

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SUSIEPH1 11/2/2011 11:26PM

    So Sorry Dawn!! That sounds like a bad fall !
I hope you have not done any lasting damage I am so glad you are happy in your life.
Your Job sounds just awesome!
Take Care ...
Hugs Susie emoticon

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DONNA_VT 11/2/2011 10:49PM

    Glad to hear that you were not seriously hurt. You always find the positive . . . I love that about you my friend. emoticon

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LVMAMAW 11/2/2011 10:45PM

    What a great blog!! Thank you for sharing! Praying for your healing. So sorry to hear of your fall. So glad you are mostly okay. Take care. emoticon emoticon

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ANNEBURNELL 11/2/2011 10:20PM

    Wonderful expressions. Thank you for sharing, and I do hope that you are icing your bruises. Yikes!

xo,
Anne

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BRIGHTEST BLESSINGS on September 1st

Thursday, September 01, 2011

September is normally BACK TO SCHOOL month.... truthfully, my grandchildren all went back to school in mid or late August, but I always went back to school just after Labor Day. We looked forward to the end of the school year because we wanted to enjoy the FUN of summer... then by the end of summer.. we looked forward to Labor day for the big family cookouts followed by BACK TO SCHOOL. Despite my advanced years and having long since stopped going to school, I always feel nostalgic about getting back to the old grindstone and furthering my education.

THIS MIND SET has sparked the idea for my 50 Pound Challenge Team's September Alternate Challenge. It's my idea that we get back to basics...Using our Food & Water Trackers daily, Using our Fitness/Exercise Trackers daily... and then BLOGGING 1 time per week about how we are "furthering our educations" through Spark. I am hoping that folks will use their imaginations and share their experience, strength & hope with all of us. We can learn by reading one another's blogs. We can learn by reading articles here on the SparkPeople website. We can learn be reading the posts of our team members. Remember...it never hurts to try new things, experience new foods & fitness techniques, ask questions, share ideas. OPEN YOUR MIND and expand your program. We're NEVER TO OLD to learn!!!!

August was a very VERY busy month for me. It was stressful & difficult but it was also BLESSED. Paul is still unemployed but has been job hunting daily. He did get approved for unemployment benefits AND he has a job interview on Saturday morning for a full-time position. (Please keep him in your prayers) We were blessed because his boss at AutoZone DID give him an extra day per week so he has been working part-time 2 days a week instead of 1 and that has helped. Becca, my DIL, is still working full-time at her new job and is liking it. She's been up and ready every day and despite the fact that I've been having to get up really early to drive her to work (before 6am daily) it has been a real blessing that she has been working all month AND helping with the bills. The YMCA Child Watch program has just started back up and those hours will help replace the summer outdoor pool hours that I will be losing this week. This is a BIG blessing because every hour counts and I am so blessed to have a job that I LOVE so dearly. The Y has truly saved my life on so many levels. Michael, my son, is not working but has been being "MR MOM" and helping around the house. I have been babysitting Aurora (the youngest granddaughter) daily when I get done working at the Y and that has been a blessing too. She is keeping me young and shows me more spontaneous love than I have ever received. She has definitely got my heart with both hands! The other grandchildren are all back in school & we are back to our routines of meeting the bus, doing homework, playing at the pool and just having fun being together. Despite the stress of all the running around sometimes.... my grandchildren are absolutely the greatest blessing in my life. Savannah, the eldest... was baptised last Sunday... Aurora, the youngest... was dedicated last Sunday... all of my "Martinsville" family was in church at the same time & THAT was amazing.. and followed on the footsteps of a week that included an earthquake AND a hurricane in VA. Speaking of the Hurricane.... I have a son, 5 grandchildren, and my best friend & her family all living in Tidewater VA which was very hard hit by the hurricane. ANOTHER BLESSING is that everyone seems to be safe & sound with little damage that I have heard about. I haven't heard from a couple of them, but I am believing that no news is good news.

It's September 1st. August is behind us. Summer is all but gone. Have I lost weight? NO. Have I worked out daily? YES. Have I tracked my food & fitness? YES. Have I drank my water & plenty of it? YES. Have I Sparked to the best of my ability? YES. AM I HAPPY????? YES YES YES AM I BLESSED? YES YES YES!

My PMA (Positive Mental Attitude) is soaring! I am counting my blessings. I am focusing on doing BETTER and trying harder and letting go of my worries and stress. Thank you for being here for me my friends. WITHOUT YOU... my life would be "less". YOU... my family of choice.. are DEFINITELY counted among my greatest blessings! I LOVE YOU ALL!

Bright blessings to you all, Dawn

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LINDABENEDICT 10/12/2011 7:43PM

    you are just AWESOME !!!!!

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WALNUT5612 10/6/2011 3:08PM

    ....'My PMA (Positive Mental Attitude) is soaring!'....That's great!!!

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SUNSET24 9/26/2011 7:32AM

    MORE Blessings to you as well sweet angel , hugsssssssss

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MEOWMAMA3 9/25/2011 11:08AM

    Hi Dawn, I think about you so often girl, but my life is awhirl as well and the Sparking time is precious. Glad to hear you're mentally and physically in such a happy place. You are a wonder! Spark on sister! emoticon

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MOMKAT4310 9/9/2011 9:31PM

    I am glad to read that things have been positive. I read many positives in your post here. Having been there many times, I know there are worse things than having lost a job in the family. Blessings to you. And many thanks for your inspiration.

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TRACYZABELLE 9/7/2011 8:08AM

    Sept is back on track time for me with my daddy returning to Fl! ahhhhhh

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2BEHEALTHYAGAIN 9/6/2011 4:56PM

    You are such a wonderful inspiration! No matter what the difficulties you always find the positives and make me realize that I'm blessed, too. I'm especially blessed to have you for a SparkFriend!!

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CATEECHER 9/5/2011 12:55PM

    Blessings to you also! Labor day is always the "start" for me, much more than Jan 1. It is always a coming back to center, to routine, to normal. I enjoy having my summer time but I do like to get back to my normal. Hope september is filled with love, laughter and fitness for you. So very happy to hear you talk about your PMA!!! Warms my heart.

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EUPHRATES 9/5/2011 6:52AM

    You never cease to amaze and inspire me lady. :)

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1BEACHWALKER 9/4/2011 10:06PM

    emoticonDawn! Glad things are on the up and up for you and your family. Hopefully your husband will get that job and all will be even better for you! I love that fall is on the way-my fave season!! Now I can start getting out and walking outside more, once it starts to get into the 80's more and not be 117 heat index like it has lately!
I am so glad to have found SP for so many reasons and reading blogs is what really keeps me motivated-especially when I read ones like yours! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 9/4/2011 10:07:02 PM

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LYNDALOVES2HIKE 9/4/2011 6:19PM

    What an inspiration you are - thanks for sharing yourself with us!!

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IUHRYTR 9/3/2011 8:13PM

    Dawn, you are a sterling example of a person who recognizes that life's positives do not necessarily have to be huge ones. Many people sadly miss out on feeling blessed because they fail to focus on all of the small positives in their lives. Good going! -- Lou

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CELIA1975 9/3/2011 2:36PM

    I love it that you count your blessings and you are truly grateful for the life God has given you. Continue to use your gifts to help others and to inspire. I feel uplifted after reading your blog. And though I am thankful for my life and I communicated that to God today, your blog made me even more thankful for my blessings.



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DYNAMICDEB53 9/2/2011 4:16PM

    Dawn yes remember the big Labor Day weekend and then back to school. Weird today for most kids.
I do your back to basics challenge especially blogging on how we are continuing our healthy education.
I am glad that your family and friends are safe. Keeping good thoughts and prayers for hubby and the job hunt.
You are just wonderful and love to read about your life and your enthusiasum with life. I am so glad you are here.
HUGS AND LOVE
Deb

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LINDAKAY228 9/2/2011 9:34AM

    Kids seem to go back to school earlier and earlier. My grandkids went back August 10th this year. It used to be more around the 20th.
Glad that you're feeling so positive and in spite of some trials you've had so many blessings too. The Lord really does take care of us!

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RAYLINSTEPHENS 9/2/2011 7:09AM

    You are such a blessing to all of us, here at SparkLand and wherever you shine your inner glow!

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WISLNDR 9/2/2011 7:05AM

    So many thing to be grateful about!! I'm happy that things are looking manageable for you and that you've had some nice family times. Good times, keep 'em coming!!

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MS_SWEETHEART 9/2/2011 1:11AM

    Love that positive attitude! Congratulations on all of you and your family's blessings, and I wish Paul much success on his interview. Stay positive, and have a beautiful weekend. emoticon

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AMYISSUCCEEDING 9/2/2011 12:42AM

    Love your positive attitude. Keep my fingers crossed that your husband gets that job. Have a great Labor Day Weekend.
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-ICANDOIT- 9/2/2011 12:27AM

    I love your attitude!
You are an amazing person- and a blessing to so many of us!!
Happy September!

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YATMAMA 9/1/2011 9:09PM

    I am so thankful that the whole family is safe. Thank God!! I love, love, love this time of year, settling into school routines, leaving for the pool at 7 every weekday morning, football games to watch on the weekends, and hopefully, eventually, MAYBE some cooler temps. Please, God! lol What an incredible blessing to have your grandbabies baptized and dedicated, and with the whole family together, no less. That is AWESOME!! I pray the doors open for Paul's new job quickly. Thank God for the unemployment relief. I know that helps a bit. Love you bunches, my friend!!

*hugs*

Missy

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MMRB7111 9/1/2011 9:01PM

    Dawn, i am happy members of you family are working. I will be praying Paul interview go well and an job offer.

I

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TEDYBEAR2838 9/1/2011 8:58PM

    You definitely are a bright light in a negative world.!

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TEDYBEAR2838 9/1/2011 8:52PM

    Thanks for having such a positive outlook!

Richest blessings are wished for you.

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BARBARAROSE54 9/1/2011 8:40PM

    emoticon

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DONNA_VT 9/1/2011 8:33PM

    So happy to see a blog from you today . . . .I have often wondered how you are doing but didn't want to pester you . . . glad to hear that you are still smiling . . . good luck to Paul this weekend! Miss you on our team!

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SUSAN134 9/1/2011 8:19PM

    I love reading your writings Dawn. Your *PMA* is contagious and shines through every word. I always feel better after one of your postings. We are so blessed to have you here on Spark People!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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TRAVELNISTA 9/1/2011 8:12PM

    You always find the positive in whatever curveball life throws you. That is why you are so inspirational my friend. Happy to hear things are looking better. Praying that Paul does get that full time job. Sending hugs and prayers your way. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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4-1HEALTHYCYNDI 9/1/2011 7:50PM

    This really made me smile. I hope things continue to go so well and even get better.

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GINILEE4 9/1/2011 7:44PM

    Your blogs always make me smile Dawn. Your family is finally working together to help your family survive. I am so glad you are at the Y and I just know your DH will find more work very soon. You deserve a blessed life and I believe you have one.

Gini

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NPA4LOSS 9/1/2011 7:43PM

    emoticon for all the positive thoughts. Let's keep positive thoughts about leaving our plateaus behind! emoticon

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NO_SNOW_BODY 9/1/2011 7:22PM

    Enjoyed the blog. Glad you have a positive attitude.

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CTUPTON 9/1/2011 7:22PM

    You are the bright dawn that shows up regularly! emoticon


Chris

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BE-THE-CHANGE 9/1/2011 6:53PM

    Great blog, Dawn! I am looking forward to weekly ones from you!

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WELCOME AUGUST

Monday, August 01, 2011

July was a rough month for me. I spent most of the month overstressed, overtired, run ragged, depressed and frustrated. TOO MUCH DOING & not enough "being". I used to have a therapist who would remind me that I needed to spend more time as a Human BEing and less of a human DOing. I've spoken before about my feelings that if I keep moving "they can't get me"... whomever they may be.

The worst of July was the HEAT combined with the fact that I spent 5-nights a week sleeping in the van in Stuart where my DH was working. It was really dragging me down. I was hurting all the time & it was getting worse. I was having to use my cane all the time again. Much prayer was lifted up that I would not have to continue to make that long drive & sleep in that van.....

Be careful what you pray for..... Thursday my DH lost his job. On the bright side.. I no longer have to make that long drive & I don't have to sleep in the van anymore! emoticon That is DEFINITELY prayers being answered. The fact that I now have to figure out how to support a family of 6 on less than $800 per month adds to stress... but after only 3 days of sleeping in my own bed, I am already hurting less & able to leave the cane alone more and more.

The positives in my life for July....

I had 4 grandchildren celebrate birthdays! Mallory, Lilianna, McKayla & Aurora. That's something to be grateful for!

My friend Ruth, who also celebrated a birthday in July, came out of the coma that she was in & while she is suffering from pretty extensive brain damage, she is doing much better than was expected. More answers to prayer. I got to visit her on Saturday at an assisted living facility where she is now staying. We had a wonderful visit & she DID recognize me while I was there so that was special. I made her a photo album through the 25 years of our friendship & she & I spent a long time going over and over the pictures... sometimes she'd recognize folks and sometimes not. I hope that it will help her. I am so grateful that she is doing as well as she is. It is a GREAT blessing to remember July for.

I didn't lose any weight in July but I didn't GAIN any weight in July. Another blessing considering all the birthday parties & the stress I have been under.

MY THOUGHTS ABOUT AUGUST.....

1. It's still hot so I am concentrating on drinking plenty of plain clear water!
2. Fruits & veggies are plentiful so I am enjoying them to the fullest!
3. The outdoor pool is still open so I am spending as much time there as I can enjoying the fun & fitness I find there.
4. I am saving gas by not having to drive to Stuart!
5. I have the opportunity to get better & MORE sleep. I am going to TAKE THAT OPPORTUNITY & try to let this old body do some healing.
6. I have put my foot down & told all the ADULTS in my house that they need to get JOBS! I am going to keep that foot down.... or perhaps I should put on a boot and apply it to some bottoms!
7. I am remembering to be grateful for all the many blessings that I have... a great job, family & friends that love & support me, grandchildren who are all healthy, a house to live in, a vehicle that is drivable... life is GOOD!
8. August is going to be the month that I break this plateau. I AM DETERMINED!

Bright blessings to you all. I'm committing to posting MORE blogs and to doing more Sparking. Let's ROCK August! Love, Dawn

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FURBALLDTH 8/27/2011 9:01AM

    I'm glad I read this. I've stopped everything. This will inspire me to get going again. I'm back to square one out of breath by the end of the driveway.
Have you tried changing the locks on the doors and locking them out 8am to 6 pm. That way the grand kids have a place to sleep but the adults can't lounge around all day. Baby birds would never leave the nest unless the mama bird pushes them out...lol.

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ENUFF81020 8/24/2011 1:01AM

    Hi Dawn,
We share many of the same issues or "demons." As usual, you have said it correctly as we are human beings rather than humans doing. I believe you can do this--I suspect a "plateau can be of our charged efforts needing time to recharge. I think you are recharging now and you will get back to the place you are craving to be. Again, I am on this same path.
You're the best!!
Sylvia

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CATEECHER 8/18/2011 12:18AM

    Thank you thank you thank you. Love to read your thoughts and, yes, I am working on August being somewhat better as well. Today is looking good!

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QUIETUDEAGAIN 8/15/2011 12:03PM

    Thank you for being a great inspiration. I often give up and leave SP for awhile but then I start to miss YOU and so I come back. That's how much you mean to my life. I am sorry that your stress level has risen but I know the old story of women from the 50's, everybody else comes first, it's so difficult to break that habit but I'm glad to see that you are acknowledging that you operate within in it. Now, all you have to do is break it, LOL, ya, right! LOL. I don't know how you slept in a van for a week at a time, I would have gone home and told my hubby he was on his own. Well, actually, that's what I did even though he stays in a motel room I now stay home. It's so much easier. Enjoy the rest of your summer.

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DEEDAYE 8/15/2011 10:26AM

    YOU ARE a bright blessing!!!!

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NANASAMM 8/15/2011 2:40AM

    I'm sorry about your husband's job loss but I'm glad you get to sleep in your own bed. And grandchildren are definitely a blessing especially during times like these. I will keep you and your husband in my prayers for better times ahead.

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PATTILYNN224 8/14/2011 12:35PM

    Praying for work for some of the other 5 that live with you.

Also wanting to comment on how great a friend you are by going through old photos. What a great way to stir up memories and help with recovery. You are an inspiration Dawn!

Happy for you too that you don't have to sleep in that darn van anymore.

Happy August!!

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CANBDONE 8/13/2011 8:20PM

    You have not had it easy...and that makes your indomitable spirit even more inspiring! May this month be easier than last. emoticon

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NO_SNOW_BODY 8/13/2011 5:02AM

    I hope that things have changes a bit since you wrote this, like you I count my blessings.

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AMYISSUCCEEDING 8/13/2011 2:45AM

    Dawn I don't know how I missed your blog. I am sorry you had a rough month of July and hope this month will be better for you.
I will pray that your husband finds another job. Have a great weekend and do something special for yourself because you deserve it.
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MOMKAT4310 8/11/2011 11:36PM

    Thanks for this blog Dawn. Hope things are looking up or at least not down. I read this post much earlier but came back to add a note of thanks and support.
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KIKI0531 8/10/2011 11:07AM

    Sounds as though you plan on August being a much better month for you !! I think that is great. Stay strong and don't waiver and if you feel the need to do a little more bottom-kicking ... go for it !!

Quick story: My cousin was out of a job staying with my aunt and uncle for a few months and he started to get a little less interested in pursuing employment ... lol. Well, my aunt woke him up every day at 8am and handed him the classifieds/want ads until after about 2-3 weeks he got so tired of her doing it and being reminded of his lack of JOB that he ultimately found himself one real quick !!

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CTUPTON 8/9/2011 1:40PM

    Dawn, You are so inspiring. But you also should be able to lean on others. Lets' hope those adults get jobs and do their part! I have 2 in my family that are the same way. I don't get it. Where is their self motivation!

Stay cool in the pool! Praying for your situation! Chris

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1BEACHWALKER 8/7/2011 10:22PM

    Hopefully your husband will find a job real soon and August will be even better than ever! Happy to hear your friend is doing better! And good to hear you are feeling better too!!! Keep going! Never give up! emoticon emoticon

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LGAR519 8/7/2011 7:46PM

    So sorry you had such a stressful July. It wasn't my best month either. I'll be praying for you and your family.

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QTEALADY20031 8/7/2011 11:08AM

    Dawn, I am glad that July is behind you. I am sorry that your husband lost his job but hopefully he will find another job close to home and you will not have to sleep in the van.
I know there is quite a challenge these days with finances.
I hope you continue to feel better physically and please know that you and your family are in my prayers for special blessings. emoticon June

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GINILEE4 8/6/2011 2:16PM

    My friend Dawn. You are an amazing woman. I agree with you about putting the boot to some bottoms. We had to do the same in July. This IS the month you break that plateau by changing your exercise. Find a way to use your YMCA to help you make the change that your body needs. Take a zumba class OUT of the water. Yes, I know you ae the local mermaid, LOL But change will help you get that ticker moving.
Keep the faith and I know you will be cared for. Know you are loved by many,

Gini

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MMRB7111 8/5/2011 11:16PM

    WOW July was a busy month for you, no wonder you were stressed. I hope August is a lot better for you.

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NPA4LOSS 8/5/2011 9:12PM

    Your therapist sounds like mine. Her favorite saying was " You're running on empty. You need to take time to fill yourself up." Take care my friend. Don't let others take advantage of you, even your own family. Glad you are back to walking better again. emoticon

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FUNGRANNY72 8/5/2011 6:21PM

  It sounds like you and I have a lot in common. I have suffered from depression for most of my adult life. I will usually just wallow in it for about a day and then I start talking myself out of it. I have also gone through therapy and even tried to commit suicide once. I didn't even do that right thank goodness. I will never do that again. So just keep putting one foot in front of the other and we can keep trucking along.

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JAMER123 8/4/2011 11:10PM

    I am so glad for you that July is gone forever and is the past. You can now look at the present and keep that positive attitude you have, going. I know you are a strong person and this to shall pass. Your prayers are being answered and we are all sending the up yet for you. I am thrilled your friend Ruth is doing so well. It is such a blessing for her and you. I will continue prayers that the adults in the house find jobs and help with the finances, that you begin to heal, that Ruth continue her improving health. God bless you all. My thoughts are with you!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GOTTALUVPINK 8/4/2011 10:41AM

    Wishing you a successful August!!!
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ROSAMARCELLE 8/3/2011 3:25PM

    Sorry your DH lost his job and hope he gets another quickly, which doesn't mean you driving so far and sleeping in the van. Hope August is good for you and the plateau breaks. It's miserable when that happens. emoticon

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SA9CHI 8/3/2011 1:48AM

    It was a BLESSING in disguise! emoticon

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LYNDALOVES2HIKE 8/3/2011 1:02AM

    emoticon

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TEDYBEAR2838 8/2/2011 5:40PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

My life seems so NORMAL after reading about yours!

Love & Hugs

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NO_SNOW_BODY 8/2/2011 5:33PM

    I am sorry to hear about your hubby losing his job, that is a hard thing to take. I can relate tpo having adults living in the house that do not work, but want all the benefits of living at home. I am lucky my hubby is working overtime, we would not make any bills any other way.
It is great to hear about your friend Ruth, that is a miracle in itself. Prayers asked and answered. She is lucky to have your friendship.
I will keep praying for you and adding a few of my own for other situations that arise.

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DYNAMICDEB53 8/2/2011 5:19PM

    HUGS!!!!!!!! I am sorry you are dealing with so much right now. I know that there are good things happening too.
You and yours ane in my thoughts and prayers.
Sending you love and smiles
Deb

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BESTMEICANBE51 8/2/2011 4:12PM

    It seems when we are at a low point in our lives we can always look around and find many ways that we are blessed.

May God keep sending Blessings your way.

Sending prayers your way.

emoticonDale

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YATMAMA 8/2/2011 1:28PM

    Oh, honey, I'm so sorry to hear about the job. I am praying for doors to open for a new job that will have better pay, hours, and benefits for your honey. What blessed news about Ruth. You are such a good friend to make such a special gift. Peace, lovie. I pray for you to have peace through and through, that blessed rest that comes from knowing that, just for today, you can resign as general manager of the world and let God carry the load for you. I love you so much.

*hugs*

Missy

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MARYHOLMAN 8/2/2011 1:14PM

    You have such a positive attitude for a person in your situation. That's great.

Wow! How are you ever going to support your family on $800? Can your husband collect unemployment? Can you get food stamps in your state?

Get those kids out working so at least they can foot their own expenses.

I feel for you emoticon

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SUSAN134 8/2/2011 12:31PM

    Dawn, here is to brighter happenings in August. I'm sorry that your hubby lost his job, but am glad that you are now back in your own bed! And yes...the older people in your house should definitely be out looking for employment. If they could all contribute a bit, it would take a lot of stress off of you. Dawn, you have such a wonderful attitude about life and that (I think) will see you through this tough time.

Sending you lots of positive thoughts and wishes for 'mass' employment for your family!

Hugs

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BIBS4664 8/2/2011 11:10AM

    Sorry about DH's job loss. I am glad your friend is improving. Love and friendship and the Divine love can bring changes. Best wishes on your journey. May the healing waters cleanse your soul. We will get there...Onward!!!

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JOSEPHINE1231 8/2/2011 10:50AM

    So sorry to hear about the job loss. But it will be good to not have to make that trip, and hopefully he will get unemployment to help.

Hugs.

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LINDAKAY228 8/2/2011 10:41AM

    So sorry your husband lost his job. Hopefully he'll find something closer to home and where you don't have to sleep in the van. I'm glad you're feeling better and keepng a positive attitude. Something will work out. Good for you for putting your foot down with the family. Take care of yourself and have a great day today.

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SECRETMUSIC 8/2/2011 10:20AM

    I'm sorry to hear about your husband's job loss. My thoughts are with you, and I'm pulling for all the adults in your home to be successful in finding paying work, which would certainly lighten your load!

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LOOZINITNOW 8/2/2011 9:52AM

    So sorry to hear that your DH lost his job. I'm happy that your friend is doing better than expected. You are a great friend for spending that time with her. Hang in there and I will be sending up prayers for you! emoticon

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TRAVELNISTA 8/2/2011 7:57AM

    I am so sorry that DH lost his job. Sending you plenty of emoticonand emoticon. I am happy to hear that you put your foot down as far as the others getting a job in the household. I know that was some tough love but hopefully your son got the message. If everyone got jobs that would make the financial stress go way down and perhaps the scale may start moving again. Stress and sleepless nights work against weight loss.

Hoping August really changes things for you on so many levels!
emoticon emoticon



Comment edited on: 8/2/2011 10:05:45 AM

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BE-THE-CHANGE 8/2/2011 7:52AM

    Sorry to hear about DH. My DIL was laid off from her teaching job in June. Sounds like there is a lot of that going around.

I love your positive attitude about the whole situation. If anyone can make it work, you can!

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DONNA_VT 8/2/2011 7:35AM

    Now that July is over I am hoping for a better August for you. You certainly deserve a great month or 2 or 3. emoticon

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BESTCK 8/2/2011 7:04AM

    What an inspiration you are. To find all that positive energy in a month that probably would have had me curled up in a corner with my blankie!! So strong. I will pray that August brings blessings to you and your family.

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GEORGIA_KAY 8/2/2011 5:55AM

    July has been a rough month for us all. I'm sorry that your DH lost his job. My son did as well. We're all struggling to make ends meet. You do it with a grace I can only envy.
Good job on not gaining any weight, and also for your wonderful attitude. You are such a nice person, Dawn. I wish I knew you better :)
emoticon
Here's to a better August!

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DIFROMWYOMING 8/2/2011 12:30AM

    Sorry about DH losing his job, but I am experiencing the same here and neither he nor my son home from college have found work yet. Not easy, but we move on. July was not a great month for me at all, that seems to happen sometimes. I know you will keep that foot down....or you WILL put the boot on! Keep taking care of you, I love you.
Hugs, Di

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PRINCESS1959 8/2/2011 12:16AM

    My prayers are with you and I am positive there are more blessings to come. Stay cool and keep your 'Foot down'

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BARBARAROSE54 8/2/2011 12:06AM

    Hoping your August is a much better month emoticon

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LVMAMAW 8/1/2011 11:05PM

    I like your August plan!! I so agree August is the month to break plateaus! I am with you!! Praying for you and your family and jobs all around!! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BAYBELIEVER 8/1/2011 10:57PM

    Will pray for jobs for everyone, close to home! My thoughts are with you and your family! And, I am with you! Let's make August the month we break plateaus! This is getting ridiculous! But, we are still here, still doing well, and you are awesome! Just BE this month. Let others do some of the DOing! (yeah, I need to listen to that too...)
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NOTABOUTHEFACE 8/1/2011 10:52PM

    Sending good vibes out to you and yours and hoping August is the best month ever!

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Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

Tough Questions... Tough Love

Monday, July 04, 2011

A water aerobic student/friend of mine, whom I admire very much for being very fit & in shape, asked me a tough question after class yesterday . She said that while she has heard my story & knows that I have lost over 100 pounds, she wanted to know HOW I LET MYSELF GET THAT BIG to begin with. Good question. Tough question. A question that I have asked myself over and over through the years as I have gone up and down the scale.

I really didn't know how to answer. I gained a lot of weight when I stopped drinking. In 12-step programs we call that transfering addictions. It's just another excuse. How does any SANE person get to weigh 450 pounds? Reality for me was/is what I call "DEATH BY SPOON". Self abuse. Self loathing. Emotional eating. Stress eating. It all boils down to negativity in the long run.

Someone I really love & admire made a comment to me back in the fall. It has been eating at me ever since. He said that I had a "martyr core". GOSH. Is that right? In 12-step programs we are told that when something bothers us it must ring true & it is something that we need to work on. That statement has been gnawing at me since he said it. I don't know what to do with it. Is the stress of that partially responsible for my plateau? I have only lost 9 pounds since Jan 2011. Am I punishing myself again? Do I need to head back to the therapist?

This is NOT supposed to be a negative blog. Today is July the 4th. In America it is the celebration of our Freedom! Today I am celebrating the freedom that I have found from the bondage of uncontrolled emotional eating! I am a survivor! I haven't come this far to give up now! I am NOT going to commit DEATH BY SPOON! I am NOT going to give up or give in. It doesn't matter what other people think about me or assume to be true about me. I am what I am and who I am and I will lift my head and celebrate it. I will try harder & beat myself up less. I will STOP giving in to negative thinking! I will NOT allow others to define who I am. Let Freedom Ring!

Yes, I suffer from depression. Yes, I have a lot of stress in my life. Yes, I need to be tougher and to use tough love on many of those folks in my life. Yes, I could do better. TODAY... I proclaim here & now that I am NOT going to give in to negativity! I will not allow darkness to envelope the Spark that I have found. I will nurse that Spark along until it blazes brighter than ever and I am able to find my way off this plateau & out of this "funk" that I have been in lately. I will make better choices for myself & I will stand up a little bit taller every day. I am worth it. I deserve it. SO DO YOU!!!!!

Today... take a look at yourself and your life. Embrace the freedoms that you have. Most importantly, remember that you have the FREEDOM TO CHOOSE! Choose good health! Choose to eat healthy & to exercise. Choose to track your food & fitness. Choose to spread the spark instead of hiding in the darkness of depression & despair. LET FREEDOM RING!

Happy 4th of July everyone... thanks for asking the tough questions! Remember to count your blessings! Love, Dawn

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GRANDMA_SANDY48 11/3/2011 2:42AM

    I have just read your blog which was linked from the Chair exercise new magazine. Thanks for sharing your story.

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QUIETUDEAGAIN 8/28/2011 3:09PM

    Remember, there is no "should". "Should" is a negative, guilt-trip word. The phrase is "If I wanted to I could" which is followed by "and I will" or "and i don't feel like it".

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MOMMYTO5CUTIES 8/19/2011 9:36PM

    Thank you, what a great blog :)

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ALIENANGEL 8/19/2011 11:07AM

    I am also in 12 step programs and have had a lot of therapy. I still remember when my therapist told me I was suicidal. I did not think so because I had never tried to kill myself.

he was like yeah right. I was anorexic and on all sorts of drugs, but i had not tried to kill myself?

Love those moments of clarity.

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MCHILSTR 8/15/2011 10:54AM

  What I liked most about the bolog is your openess to a question tht was hard to hear - but appears to have been asked from a loving place. YOu could have gotten defensive - but instead chose the opportunity for self reflection. emoticon



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THEIS58 8/15/2011 5:56AM

    emoticon emoticon

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RAYLINSTEPHENS 8/14/2011 5:01PM

    WTG on this being a Popular Blog - it certainly deserves it!

You are one totally awesome person and I am fortunate to be able to call you my friend!

Bright Blessings Dawn!!

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LEELEE1964 7/31/2011 11:40PM

    Good evening Dawn! Wonderful post!!

I can so relate to how you feel. I remember earlier this month when I was suddenly taken ill and had to go to the ER and the scales said "325". It threw me a bit. I asked myself, "How have you let yourself do this?". It is a hard question. I have been heavy all of my adult life. Food has been my drug of choice for quite sometime. And for the past six months prior to being introduced to SP, I didn't even enjoy the food anymore. I was just miserable all the way around. I referred to my eating habits as "slowest suicide". I have since decided, I really do not want to die. Not like that. Not for a long time after I have learned to enjoy this life I am blessed with now.

Thank you so much for sharing!! Thank you for being you!!!

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CTUPTON 7/29/2011 6:24AM

    I think Sylvia hit the nail on the head. Fat is obviously seen by everyone and "our" reactions to problems in life show for all to see.

There is a fish, damsselfish, that turns dark from a beautiful bright blue when it is frightened. Most people can hide their feelings and addictions from the world. We can't. I wish the woman who asked you that could answer for her self-destructive tendencies.

Chris

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SMYLEERED 7/27/2011 3:12PM

    Thank you so much for sharing! As a compulsive overeater myself I understand how difficult it would be to answer that tough question because we don't exactly know the answer ourselves. Our quest is to find out through the Steps and try one day at a time to stay "clean". Huggssss ~~Red

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BIBS4664 7/27/2011 1:31PM

    Let freedom ring. We are divinely guided. Keep on keepin on..
Blessings and miracles fellow sparkler.

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SUNSET24 7/25/2011 11:23PM

    wow talk about balls... that person who asked you that question had a LOT of nerve! where does she get off trying to go into your personal business? ugh!

sorry sis, just got pissed for a second.
A person bothers one of US spark people and it affects us all.

hugssssssssssssssss

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ENUFF81020 7/25/2011 7:03PM

    Hi Dawn,
i really think that the person who asked you that question had a lot of nerve. You didn't ask her about how many traffic tickets she ever had or how many times she bounced a check or how many times she yelled at someone in her family or how many smokes she had had... You get the idea. Some of the things in our lives aren't great. Some of our personal behaviors are not perfect. However, with weight, it is out there for everyone to see and some people seem to think they can stick their nose into anything that they want. The real deal is that you chose to make it better. Hooray for you!! Not only have you lost over 100 pounds, you have inspired others and supported many others who are doing well and losing weight with your help.
if she were to have asked me why I let myself get that way, I am not sure I'd have been so kind. Again, here's another positive about you and the kind of person you are. I'm glad that you share your kindness with us. You are the best, my friend!! emoticon emoticon emoticon
Gentle hugs,
Sylvia

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SALSACHIC 7/24/2011 9:59PM

    Hello Dawn, great blog. Instead of getting defensive you thought about how those comments affected you. I love the tone & perspective of this blog. Sometimes the insensitive comments of others will push us to the next level. Your best is yet to come and I look forward to reading you about the next level in your journey along the way.

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WILDLOTUS16 7/17/2011 11:04PM

    Dawn, this is a very lovely blog. It's great for you to take a stand and say "I'm worth it!" So many people say this in vein.( I do) I firmly believe that when you think it you believe it. I admire you very much I always have!!!


Kathy

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DEBRAC219 7/15/2011 12:55PM

    Dawn, what an inspiring blog! You've come so far and done such a wonderful job of taking back your life. And you're so right, we DO have the freedom to choose. We choose our life with every day, either by consciously making the choice that is right for us or choosing an unhealthy life by refusing to choose that which can make us whole. I'm with you, let's continue to choose health and freedom! Thanks so much for your inspiring words emoticon

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RUBYCLAIRE 7/12/2011 7:03AM

    What an awesome, inspirational blog, Dawn! I am so very proud of you! You CAN do it and what's even better is that you KNOW you CAN do it!!
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I'm here for you kiddo, don't let a plateau wipe out all that you have already accomplished. Keep that strong positive out you showed in this blog. Keep it & make it even stronger. With love you, Dawn, you can do ANYTHING!
Let's see what you can do with this challenge. GO FOR IT!!
Love you, Kiddo!
emoticon

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CT-FL-SNOWBIRD 7/10/2011 9:12AM

    Half the battle is knowing the cause of your problem. And you have that part taken care of. You are a strong willed lady who won't let a plateau get you down. I know you'll never give up.

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2CATS2LOVE1 7/8/2011 4:15PM

    Dawn, you hit the nail on the head when you said: "I will NOT allow others to define who I am." Sometimes people say cruel things but remember: opinions are like noses, everyone has one. You have done remarkably well in your weight loss and continue to inspire all of us w/ not only losing weight but your joy and smiles!! How did I ever get to be over 200 lbs? That's not the issue what we weigh BUT WHAT WE ARE DOING ABOUT IT!! Keep on keeping on...
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ASHLEEWEBART 7/8/2011 12:40PM

    I am so glad you are writing about a variety of issues we do face when we are on this journey. You are to be commended for your success, and for being our friend, so constantly.

For so long you have been able to remain focused on your program and the priorities in your life. Thanks for sharing your thoughts along the way!

Ashlee

Comment edited on: 7/8/2011 12:50:28 PM

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JAKEANDNELLIE 7/7/2011 10:56PM

    Dawn,
I've decided that life is just one big learning curve! We learn more about ourselves and why we do the things we do to ourselves by reflecting upon and thinking about those comments that "stick with us."
Someone asked me a question the other day that really helped put me back on track. It was a simple question but I've been thinking about it for days - have come up with several answers but am still searching for the definitive one. The question was "Why have you lost faith in yourself?" It stopped me dead in my tracks!
Stay positive!
Sheila

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CHATTIECATHY10 7/6/2011 11:58PM

    this is awesome...you are amazing and you can do it...you don't have to do it for anyone but you. I love the inspiration that you give us all. Keep on keeping on...you are worth it. emoticon you are emoticon

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QTEALADY20031 7/6/2011 10:28PM

    Dawn, this is an excellent blog. I admire you very much for facing your addictions and moving on them to make you the healthy person you are at this point in your life. You are quite an inspiration and example to many of us on Spark people. There are not too many people that have overcome what you have and managed to come out on the other side. You hold your head up high. You have every right too. God bless you for being the person that you are to all of us.
Hugs & Smiles, June emoticon

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CANBDONE 7/6/2011 3:59PM

    I know she's your friend...but really, HOW RUDE can people be? I honestly don't think they realize how their words hurt! I'm blowing on your spark..get that flame burnin' hot! Sure wish I could come to your aquasize class. I jogged for 40 minutes in my pool today.

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DYNAMICDEB53 7/6/2011 12:40PM

    You are strong and learning to love ourself is not easy. You are making great strides and although a plateau is not fun and can cause downward sliding you have not let that stop you. Yes stress can cause all kinds of havoc in our health. You are growing and learning.
We do need to keep negativity out of our lives as much as we can, but there are times we just cant, then we have to deal with it and learn and find a way to not let it hurt us. I know you are working on all of that.
I am so inspiried by you and your journey, always have been. I see you and hope to one day be able to shine are brightly as you do, even if you dont see it yourself.
Love you dear friend and keep sparking and the light will only grow brighter.
Love and hugs
Deb

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FUNGRANNY72 7/6/2011 1:17AM

  I am so glad to see you facing your problems head-on. I have a 66 year old brother who has multiple problems. Everybody knows this. He is the only one who does not know this. It really is sad to watch. I have tried to talk with him, but all it did was make him mad. CONGRATULATIONS!
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YOUNGNSMYLIE 7/5/2011 9:36PM

    This is a great blog. You are very strong, and you're right on target for addressing those comments that are gnawing at you. I admire you so much for sticking with your program, re-evaluating your progress, and vowing to move forward. That's what it takes to succeed, and I am going to follow your example. Thank you for your inspirational words. emoticon You will succeed. emoticon

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NPA4LOSS 7/5/2011 9:16PM

    My dear friend, You were one of my first Spark Friends when I joined Sparks almost 2 years ago. Do remember your guidance when I was trying to find a trainer at the Y and the first one walked off from me to talk to a sexy young thing and refused to even show me around?
We have come a long way. Our stories have brought us here and helped others because we shared. Many people do not understand that especially if they have not walked in our style of shoes. WE are strong. WE have made it through some very bad times. I can't relate to the alcohol because I have not walked an addictive path but believe me I understand struggle to overcome adversity. You are emoticon and don't you forget it!
Continue to heal and strive and keep your Spark to light the way for those of us who love and respect you! emoticon Nola

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LINDAGRAVEL 7/5/2011 8:40PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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IUHRYTR 7/5/2011 8:36PM

    Let's not use the word "only" when talking of our weight loss. You have lost nine pounds so far this year. Be proud of that and think of all the people who would love to be able to lose that much weight. And, you have kept off what you had already lost. Be proud again and hang in there, day by day, sometimes minute by minute. emoticon -- Lou

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LOOZINITNOW 7/5/2011 8:25PM

    Love this blog! Celebrate you because you are worth it! emoticon

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MARYHOLMAN 7/5/2011 3:40PM

    Maybe you should question your friend about the "martyr's core" comment. I mean sometimes such a person could be respected. If it's bothering you that much, you should clear it up.

You have come very far--just managing the addiction is an awesome accomplishment.

I think everybody should make an occasional trip to the therapist, especially when you think it will help you.

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PENNYAN45 7/5/2011 2:50PM

    You are right to feel proud of your accomplishments.

I would be willing to bet that you are not the same woman who put that weight on in the first place. That woman is gone.

It seems only right that it would take a few months to hold your weight in place - especially after losing so many pounds. It's just a little time-out to adjust to this new permanent low weight.

Soon, when all is ready, you will begin to drop the pounds again.




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JABULONESTAR 7/5/2011 1:57PM

    emoticon You have a fabulous attitude! Yes we can :) Keep fighting the fight because you are worth it! emoticon

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PATTILYNN224 7/5/2011 1:47PM

    I have noticed as I reflect on the past three years in my own walk that I was also working on death by spoon. It's take some work but I have been able to address most of the issues that put me in that place. Your blog has reminded me where I was and where I've come to. Thanks for that.

As for the "martyr core" - can you ask your friend for some clarification? He may mean something different than how you have interpreted the comment.

Happy 4th of July Dawn. Happy Freedom Day!!



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_KATHY 7/5/2011 12:00PM

    You have said it all Dawn, and said it quite rightly. Regarding that gnawing thing, you're right, it has to be addressed so you can then let go of it. You might find that, in this case, things don't need to be fixed, they just need to be accepted. And in acceptance, serenity returns. 449
Hugs
Kate

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SRHALLIN 7/5/2011 11:37AM

    Somehow, I heard a raccous musical score toward the end of this blog. Sort of like that timid music during the president's speech in Independence Day? :D

You're inspiring to so many others every day. It is important to remember that we must also be inspirations and motivators for ourselves as well.

So, yes, down with the negativity and up with the positivity. Take in the light of those around you and those whom you've given light to. You are smart enough, loving enough, and deserving enough of your goals.

If you're on a plateau, review your diet. See if your needs have changed. Think about how your clothes fit. Is it that you're the same weight, but some of it is less fat and more muscle? A pound of fat and a pound of muscle is still a pound of either. It just feels different inside of us.

Sometimes we aren't so much not 'losing' fat, as we're not aware that the fat is going away and the muscle is coming in.

Of course... it could just be a shortage of fiber... emoticon

Just sayin'...

Best wishes! Hope you had a positive and brilliant 4th.

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DONNA_VT 7/5/2011 10:18AM

    Good thoughts for many of us to ponder. I wish you well my friend and hope that you find the success you deserve soon.

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LIGHT1112 7/5/2011 9:08AM

    I love your honesty and the integrity you show by asking yourself these questions! You are an example and an inspiration. Thank you

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WENDYLEE15 7/5/2011 8:47AM

    Wow!! I love your determination.You have come so far.You are doing emoticon....

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1BEACHWALKER 7/5/2011 4:33AM

    I know the reason I got overweight and it was emotional/stress eating abd then loving the food too much! You are so right! No to negativity! Choose to be positive and know we are going to beat this and win! Win the battle of the bulge! Whatever it takes-we will do this! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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QUILTINGB52 7/5/2011 3:06AM

    Emotional over-eating isn't just about negativity, it's also about celebration.

More important it's how we over-come and find substitutes for EOE!!!

We must be on the same wave length ~ as I blogged about this earlier today....

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YATMAMA 7/5/2011 12:27AM

    Tough questions, indeed, and good ones. I'm not sure I have the answers, either, but I suspect that it has a lot to do with what we feel we deserve. I hope we discover the answers together, my precious friend. I love you.

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DEVORA4 7/4/2011 9:37PM

  I hope your blog wins and I voted for it. That was a tough question thatm she asked you. You a a tough lady and you took it on the chin graciously. emoticonI know you will!

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LVMAMAW 7/4/2011 8:01PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
I have faith in you!! Yes you can! Yes WE Can- together!!!!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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WISLNDR 7/4/2011 7:06PM

    Here's my thought for today (it was thought of for me but I'm happy to share.)

Have you ever heard stories about women who could not get pregnant and once they adopted a child, THEN they got pregnant? (There was something about not stressing about babies anymore after the adoption and they were finally able to conceive.) I wonder if there's a lesson there for us who are stressing about not being able to lose weight.

Enjoy the rest of your holiday!!

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TEDYBEAR2838 7/4/2011 6:46PM

    You are right and are on the right track. You won't let this beat you down.
You will be, you are stronger than the spoon. We are all not perfect, none
of us is. We just keep going, day in and day out & we WILL WIN! emoticon

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JOLOVESRUM 7/4/2011 6:37PM

    Dawn, Stand tall, You have done so well, heck you are an aqua fit instructor. How many BBW (big beautiful women) can say that. You have your own fan club here on spark people. One person to how many on your fan club rooting for you.

I love and believe in you and we have never met. Your past no matter what was in it, has made you the woman here on sparkpeople that we all look up to.

You are a special women, friend and roll model.
thank you for being here.

If and when you find the answer to that "how did you/we get there?" question, let me know. I have been looking for the answer to that same question for about a year now. I have yet to find the answer.

Look after yourself,
hugs Jo

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TRAVELNISTA 7/4/2011 5:09PM

    emoticon emoticon

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MRS*RADISH 7/4/2011 4:49PM

  The true spirit of Independence Day...I absolutely love it, Dawn! The FREEDOM TO CHOOSE...

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