Wednesday, August 25, 2010
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Tuesday, August 24, 2010
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Monday, August 23, 2010
Friday was supposed to be an oasis at the end of a busy and chaotic week. It turned out to be a desert island. I had a personal training session scheduled at nine and a massage at one and the rest of my day had been cleared so I could get ready for a labor seminar I am teaching Monday-through Wednesday in Nashville.
My personal training session went great until five minutes before it ended. I got very sick to my stomach and thought for about five minutes I was going to pass out. Usually I have two meals in me or a meal and a light snack before my workout. Friday I had only eaten breakfast and a light one at that. Not only did I feel embarrassed but I physically felt crummy. But there was hope!!! I had my massage at one and I felt wore out and drained when I arrived. The massage didnít help much. As she explained when she finished, massage often thins the blood and since I had almost passed out that morning I was going to feel a bit crummy. By Saturday morning I felt great, but Friday at two I felt like a large boulder had landed upon me.
I went home and sat in the living room staring off into space. I started questioning everything I ever did and wondering how in such a short period of time it seemed like everything I touched crumbled apart. (Read any of my blogs over the past few days. You will get the picture.) Two of my friends here had written really insightful and open blogs about being ďpeople pleasers.Ē That weighed on my mind as I sat there. They were describing me to a tee. As bright, witty and handsomeÖÖÖ.. Okay you might argue about the handsome partÖÖ. as I am there is no real reason for me to feel as insecure as I do at times. I have a really hard time relaxing and feel that if I am not busy I am pretty worthless.
I am reading a book by Joyce Meyer and itís about her road to health through diet and exercise. One suggestion she makes is that when you are faced with a dilemma you canít figure out or your willpower is in short supply, ask God to do the ďheavy lifting.Ē So I did. Be careful what you ask forÖÖÖÖ
I was thinking about my kids. They are great. We are proud of all of them just like you are proud of yours, no matter what anyone else says. Theyíre your kids!! I thought how I donít tell them that often enough, how proud I am of everything they do and then I got that queasy feeling again. It has to do with stuff I havenít dealt with.
In a nutshell my mom and dad have never told me they were proud of anything I have ever done in my life. Now the rub is that they never told me I was bad, they just told me anything I ever did could have been done better. When I started losing weight and was featured in our local newspaper my mom wanted to talk about how my brother had lost weight also. Not one word of praise. I hadnít seen my mom and dad since Thanksgiving. They are getting older; they are both in their eighties so if I get a chance to see them I take advantage of it. Last Sunday we drove to Milwaukee from Chicago to spend the day with them.
When my mom walked in here was her first comment. ďWhy isnít Paul, (our son) getting married by a Catholic priest.Ē No hello, no hug, just that. I just sort of looked at her. My dad says ďWhen Mary and Joes kids get married I know they will marry Catholics and be married in the Church.Ē (Mary and Joe are my brother and sister.) Geena is Lutheran, her dadís a deacon in their church and thatís where they want to get married. Thatís my life. Whatever I do there is usually something wrong with it. Donít get me wrong, this is not a bash my parents blog. I was clothed, fed and generally taken care of. I was just never affirmed as a human being.
So as I am sitting in my living room Friday and I begin to realize why I had become such a people pleaser. I always felt I had to better to be equal. I always felt the whole world felt like my mom and dad did. No matter what I did, it was never good enough and once we started having kids it transferred to them. Let go on record by saying I donít think I was really terrible growing up. I did normal kid stuff but no real biggies. I am different from my brother and sisters in how I think and mu opinions. My parents also believe I donít have a ďreal jobĒ because I work from home, etc. I moved away from Milwaukee when Joan and I married, my brother and sisters kids attended five star universities while we always told our kids the most important thing in life was to be happy.
As all this whirled through my mind I cried. I cried because I was hurt, because I was mad, and because why couldnít I have seen this sooner? It was a crummy weekend. I felt like I was detached from everything and everybody. In one respect I had ďseen the light.Ē In another I kept wondering why they didnít love me as much as they did everyone else.
I was angry. I was angry with me because I hadnít seen this sooner and taken steps to fix it.
When I woke up Sunday morning I realized the only feelings I could control were mine. I went to the gym and I proceeded to run a 5K on the track. I had never run that far in my life. I cried the last lap. Bawled like a freaking baby, and they were tears that cleansed me. They were tears that were happy tears. I did it!! I posted my accomplishment on Spark and on Facebook. One of my Spark friends has also become a Facebook friend and she sent out congrats as many of you did on my accomplishment. But then a funny thing occurred. I started getting congrats and accolades on Facebook from people I donít even know. For a while they were exploding my cell phone. Gosh it felt good.
You take recognition, you take love, and you take praise where you find it. It may not come from where you want it to come from, but love is love and if it comes sincerely, itís equal to any other. You start to realize you are not alone and that now that you understand the obstacles in front of you, you can work to remove them. Itís all mental. The picture in your mind has to match the one you live. Itís a struggle for sure, but one thatís worth it in the long run.
Thanks to my two friends who got the ball rolling by having the courage to be open and vulnerable about themselves. You helped give me the courage to open up too.
Sunday, August 22, 2010
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Friday, August 20, 2010
In thirty six years of marriage there is only one thing about Joan that ever really irked me. Her side of the closet is a mess. She has a ton of shoes and they are sort of piled there with some belts and some boxes and only God knows what else and well it just drives my anal retentive, well defined sense of order up the wall. Did I tell you I was toilet trained at 18 months? My mother sat me on the commode with a book and I sat there until I produced the desired result. To this day I canít use the rest room without having something to read. But I digress.
Joanís closet is the perfect metaphor for how I feel right now. There is so much crammed in there that none of it makes a lot of sense. Ten pounds of sugar in a five pound sack. More on my plate than I can eat. You pick one and you wonít be far off.
We got personal training, power pump, C25K, and then I went out and got the ten minute workout for Wii. $14.95, what a deal!!! I am reading three books, trying to write one myself, juggle some new clients, and work on a DVD that will launch the new training program I am rolling out. There are three blogs published regularly, my web master graduated from college and shut down his server. I am designing a new web site, and looking into a business Facebook page.
On top of that my massage therapist thinks I am her therapist. What do you do though when the woman could snap your neck with one twist? I havenít been to church in about five weeks and if you try to point all this out to me rationally and reasonably, well itís like trying to explain heaven to a bear!!! Is it any small wonder that I believe I am eternally stuck on a seventy four pound loss? I am not happy. I am not sad. My mood swings like a trapeze!! Happy one moment, sad the next, no ability to focus on anything. The harder I try the slower I move. I am failing.
My closet needs cleaning. I am doing too much and as I wade through this mess called my life I realize that nothing good happens when you are trying to get into or out of a room and canít find the door simply because you canít see the door.
Sometimes I just want to be normal. I want to be like those skinny people on TV who drink wine, eat caviar and wear size zeroes. So I push and I pull and I get damned impatient when it all doesnít happen overnight. It all comes from this massive misperception I have of myself. I have always felt that in order to be equal I had to be better. You run a 5K then Iíll run a 6K. You exercise an hour a day I have to exercise two hours. If I'm not better I am not loved.
I was a mess until this morning. I get a daily meditation via email thatís titled God Calling. Iíd like to share part of it with you because it spoke to what I am feeling:
ďAnd so to My followers today, as then, there come the shame and remorse and contempt of themselves, of the weak selves. They meant to be so strong and brave for Me. And then I have to protect them with a shield of love, or never could they have the courage to fight and conquer. But this facing of the real self has to be .
That is a stage in development, but only a stage. What use the glad wings of a butterfly if it remained Earth bound, weighed down with the thought of its contemptible past? And so now today I say to you , that you are not to dwell for one moment on your sins, and mistakes, and faults, and bad habits of the past.
You must be as one who runs a race, stumbles and falls, rises and presses on to the goal. What avails it if he stays to examine the spot where he fell, to weep over the delay, over the shortsightedness that prevented his anticipating and avoiding the obstacles?
So with you, and I lay it on you as a command -- no looking back. Give yourself, and all you have ever met a fresh start from today. Remember no more their sins and failures, or your own. The remembrance is a current of disappointment that hinders the swimmer.Ē From God Calling
Tomorrow Iíll sit down and clean my closet and put things in some workable order. Iíll reflect on my successes and realize that well, if you donít love me, there is not a damned thing I can do about it, so worrying about it isnít going to change it one way or another.
Have a great Friday. Time to clean out some closets.
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