Sunday, October 09, 2011
I lie in bed last night and I began wondering about all the things I won’t think about. Maybe you know what I’m talking about? They are the thoughts that usually end with “But that’s the past and the past is the past.” Or “Let’s not go there……….. Boy I really messed that one up……………Lets think happy thoughts!” So I stuff them down, forget about them, move on to something else because they are things about me and my life that I’d rather not think about or remember. Then I notice my jaw clench. My legs get a bit tight and I toss to the left and turn to the right. “Happy thoughts, John, happy thoughts.”
Two dear friends recommended the same book to me in the course of three or four weeks. You don’t have to hit me over the head………… Well maybe you do but not really often. The book: A Course In Weight Loss by Marianne Williamson. The book came in the mail Friday and I prepared to be inspired. I said inspired, right? I didn’t say disconcerted or mildly uncomfortable, right? Good, just checking. Her opening salvo goes like this: “Your body itself is completely neutral. It causes nothing; it is completely an effect not a cause.”
Okay Marianne, tell my back and shoulder that; could you please explain to me why my legs only work right about fifty percent of the time? My body is neutral? AL righty then………… Did I mention the part about being hit over the head with a hard and dense object? My chiropractor suggested increasing my meditation time to help relax my muscles and reduce the spasms in my lower back. I have practiced meditation or creative visualization or whatever term you choose since the late 1980’s. I teach it in some of my seminars and with a few coaching clients. What could I possibly learn that I didn’t already know?
Friday evening I stumbled upon a meditation called “Resting In The Source.” It’s from a group called Meditation Oasis run by Mary and Richard Maddux. I’ll tell ya it’s a long one………. Close to twenty six minutes and the first time I went through it I got really confused. I just couldn’t figure out what I should be focusing on. That ever happen to you?
Last night, while relaxing and getting into the right place and space a small voice whispered in my heart, “Resist nothing.” As I listened to Mary’s gentle voice in my head phones I began to have a kinds of feelings, some pleasant, some not, bubble up. I unclenched my jaw, followed her instructions and let those thoughts pass through me. I had an image that I was lying at the bottom of a pool and these thoughts and feelings were bubbles floating out of me and to the surface. As they left my body and mind they were replaced by the love and light of my source. I didn’t shoot up and dance or scream. I simply drifted into an amazing calm. That’s when I put it all together.
As long as I allow them to do so, my thoughts, feelings and beliefs about myself and this world I live in, will hold me prisoner. They will always have me coming up short, they will place value on the meaningless and subtlety hold me back from living within my true self.
I woke up this morning as was conscious of what I felt. Some thoughts were pleasing and some not. My first inclination was to quickly brush away the “bad” ones and replace them with something more pleasant. I didn’t. I unlocked my jaw and just let them float though and by me and I sorta waved at them. Then I got brave. There are two things from long ago I could kick myself in the butt for doing. I try not to think about them. What is you knew? You might hate me, or think less of me or OMG………….” This morning I didn’t let that happen. I let them rise one at a time and just felt them pass through me. In my mind I kept repeating ‘resist nothing.”
I’d like to tell you they were gentle bubbles that went up and away. It was more like large chunks of the Titanic broke away and bobbed up and down really hard. The feelings were so massive and dense that they not only overwhelmed me but frightened me. They hung there, dense, nasty and full of accusation. Eventually they floated away, out of my emotional field of vision and they were replaced by a huge void. The void is neither good nor bad, only a void.
We all have those holes. Those things we rid ourselves of only to find something missing. In truth we are looking for our Source. Refer to it as God, as The Universe as Your Source. The older I get the more I realize finding it, not naming it is what’s important. If it seeks to control you, if it puts restrictions upon your spirit and uses guilt to inspire you then it is not your source. It is your minds creation.
A worthy goal, to resist nothing that floats before me. From now on I blog from the seat of my soul. Come with me?
Tuesday, October 04, 2011
I hung around mostly in the back ground the past week. Part of it was fear, part panic and part realization that if I didn’t do something soon and quick, I would have regained ALL the weight I’d lost in the past two years. I’d ballooned to 303.8. My starting weight two years ago was 326.0. At my best point I’d weighed 251.0. I was within twenty five pounds of my initial goal weight.
It’s been difficult to exercise the past three months after I injured my back so I aestheticized myself with food. It would have been nice if it has been the right kind of food but alas it wasn’t. Mostly carbs and sugar, mostly all day every day, mostly seeing everything I’d worked for slip away. It was and is depressing, to say the least.
I was ashamed, LOL, to put my weight on the tracker two weeks ago. I was over 300 pounds again. Me, Mr. Freakin’ Spark. Talk about your downward spirals. So I took a mini break, got reorganized and dealt with reality.
Reality One……………. Right now any cardio is out of the question until I get my back straightened out. It is what it is and crying about it to anyone who will listen, accomplishes nothing. I have to concentrate on my intake.
Reality Two………….. A fruit and/or veggie at every meal really do help.
Reality Three………….. If you don’t track what goes in your mouth you won’t know what goes in your mouth.
In a nutshell I went back to what worked. When I weighed yesterday afternoon I had lost 9.6 pounds. Yes, I’m happy. Yes I’m motivated. Yes I am back on track.
It’s the day to day stuff, the often dull and boring stuff that gets us back on track. A huge thanks to those who have hung on with me. I love ya, I really do.
Monday, September 26, 2011
If we are not careful, wisdom and bliss will team up, hunt us down and infect us with their own unique brand of mirth. I’m not quite sure what will happen then but I can imagine, just from my limited exposure, it will be a good thing.
Last Thursday evening, a group of seventh and eighth graders proudly and with a perceptible amount of nervousness walked in front of sixty or so adults to sing a medley of tunes. They were our “entertainment” at the Optimist International Banquet. They smiled, rolled their eyes, wrung their hands and other wise did a really good job. During their last song I noticed a girl in the back row. She was tall, and her head poked up above her school chums. At one point in the song, as it grew towards a masterful crescendo she closed her eyes, threw back her head, and SANG!! The smile and expression on her face told the story. She had touched the fringe of bliss and just for that one, pure and sweet moment, everything was perfect. Lord, it touched my soul.
Yesterday I read a posting from a Spark friend who had taken a “break,” to reorganize, focus and other wise get her stuff together. She realized after a few days that she needed the love and support but had found she’d become caught up in what I call the Spark Rat Race. I’m paraphrasing what she wrote because I felt as if she had tapped into my soul.
How many of you feel guilty if you don’t respond to every blog posting, Spark Goodie, Spark Mail, or friend request? (Please visualize me raising my hand) How many of you rush to your PC every morning, log on to Spark, spin the wheel and swear to all that is holy, the points are rigged. (I had a friend who actually charted this on a Excel spreadsheet for a month and swears there is a conspiracy. I myself don’t think it’s fair that my streak of logging in was broken by the fact I was in a remote area fort one day and couldn’t log in!!!) Will you listen to me? Holy cow!! Lost somewhere in my desire to ascend the Spark ladder, accumulate fitness points and the scared and treasure Goodie points, I’ve stopped having fun. I came here to get healthy (Another word for bliss.) to reclaim some semblance of balance in my life and instead I seemed to have lost focus.
So my Spark friend touched a nerve or struck a chord inside of me. Many days I do all the right things for the wrong reasons. Many days I come here to feel secure and reassured and not to do the things that make me healthy. It’s all about perception and Thursday night the young lady, head thrown back, angelic smile on her face reminded me it’s all about seeking that pocket of bliss in our lives we so richly deserve. I do deserve to be happy and healthy. I am worth every bit of effort I put into myself, but it doesn’t matter much does it, if I am Spark Community Member of the year and my health suggests I am morbidly obese. Like my Spark friend suggested, sometimes we lose track and a slight pause helps us regain our bliss.
I am grateful for the wisdom and now if you’ll excuse me I am going to find a street corner to sing on so I can regenerate a bit of bliss.
Thursday, September 22, 2011
Awhile back someone crooned “The blues don’t care who’s got em’” I’d be lying if I told you I bounce out of bed each morning with a grin in my face and a song in my heart. Most days it’s a bit of a struggle. My mind fills up quickly with everything I need to do. I stretch, pop my pills, struggle into my clothes, head for the pool. It seems as if I’m marking time. Where’s the joy? What did I do to deserve all of this and why are all of these people putting such huge expectations on me? I am just one guy. What happened to the life I always dreamed of? Why can’t I track my food, spend six hours exercising, become Sparkie of the Year and sit at my PC all day sending out Goodies to everyone who crosses my path? You see, some days you just have to take what life gives you. It may be a gift card to the store of your dreams or it may be an expired coupon to McDonalds. It would be nice to accept it with a smile on your face and a song in your heart, but you and I both know, that doesn’t always happen.
Most days we just deal with life. We pay the bills, change the oil in the car, listen to a frustrated co-worker, clean up after spouses and kids and somehow hold it all together. We start our day with the best of intentions and suddenly everything comes unraveled. We scratch our heads, wipe away a tear and just keep moving onward and upward. No one will ever write our biographies. We’ll never be on The Today show. We, you and I, are quite simply the threads that hold life together. We are the “great unsung.” We are the people who set the example, not by loud words and clanging cymbals. We are the folks who lead by our lives, our love and our commitment. It’s not always fun.
I recalled training for my first 5K. Lord, I hated every moment of it. It sucked, I ached and running 3.2 miles seemed far away. I remember the first time I did it. Being the large ball of emotion that I am, I was crying. Poor Rebecca, the trainer on duty at my gym, didn’t know what to do so she hugged me. I remember the first race I ran and how the deep sense of accomplishment flowed through me as I crossed the finish line.
I hold those things in my heart and know that when I let life come to me, rather than trying to bat it away, that around a corner or over a bend, there is a cheering finish line waiting just for me.
Peace to you this day.
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