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Eating Grief and Stress

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

My family on our Disney Trip September, 2012

Weight Loss. It's a never ending battle for some of us, huh? But here's the thing I've only figured out recently(despite hearing it a million times). The battle is really and truly all in my head.

And that's one of the reasons I decided to come back to Spark People, there's been a lot of stuff in my head lately. Painful stuff that needs working out and this blog feels like a safe place to do that. So forgive me if I ramble for a bit...

The past five months have been the worst of my life.

In September, after returning from a wonderful trip to Disney World with my husband, brother and parents, my mother went into the hospital with pneumonia...a pretty bad case of it. Not long after she was admitted and released, my father...who was battling cancer...was admitted to the hospital and spent a couple of weeks there.

Dad was released only to be put back in the hospital about two weeks before Christmas. This time in the intensive care unit. He was released on December 23rd, but sent home with hospice care. We were blessed with a wonderful Christmas Eve...Dad was sick, but happy and home.

Four days later my mother was admitted to the hospital with pneumonia again. This time, however, it was life threatening. Hours after being admitted, she was taken to ICU and put on a ventilator. Her doctors honestly didn't think she'd live. But God stepped in and gave us a miracle.

She was released from the Hospital on January 4th.

The entire time she was in the hospital, my father was home, unable to visit her due to his worsening condition. They were only able to speak to each other via FaceTime(thank God for that). Despite his own life threatening situation, he spent nearly every single hour that he was awake praying for Mom's recovery.

By the time Mom got home, Dad's condition was much worse. He was admitted to the Hospice Wing of the hospital and we lost him a few days later, on January the 8th.

Those few months are a blur for me and for my family. It was like waking up from one nightmare and immediately entering another. I spent countless nights at the hospital with both parents. I slept of the floor of Dad's room in the ICU and spent more nights sleeping on a couches in the ICU waiting room while Mom lay helpless on a vent. And I worried. And fretted. And stressed. And grieved. And grieved. And grieved. Not just for myself but for every person I love the most in this life.

I know that although he is no longer with us, my Dad is rejoicing with my brother, his parents and siblings and our Heavenly Father. That fact gives me more comfort than anything else, but that didn't stop the hurt and suffering that accompanied his loss.

What did I do with all that stress, worry, and grief? I let it consume me. I lay with it day after day and night after night. I let it take away every ounce of joy from my life. And I ate it. All of it. And I've eaten myself to the heaviest weight of my life.

I didn't stop eating it until this week. I've realized that non stop eating and laying around is doing absolutely nothing to help the people I love who are still with mom, my younger brother and sister, my nephew, my husband. It certainly isn't working for me and it is in no way honoring my father. He would not want this added misery for me. Not at all.

So I'm putting an end to it. For my loved ones, yes. But for me too. I realize that I am worthy of being fit and healthy. I am necessary to a lot of people and I want to be around for them for a very long time.

Will there be days when I slip and let that grief and fear creep back in? Definately. But I can't let that stop me. I will face it. I will deal with it. I will remind myself that I can survive and that there IS still joy in my life. And I will honor my wonderful dad by losing the weight that I've let hold me back for so long.

I start again. Here. Now.

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Know that you are supported on this journey. After the loss of my dad, and then being consumed with caretaking of my mother, I also used food for comfort and forgot to make myself a priority. Yes, honor your loved ones and honor yourself by choosing to be healthy and happy. What a great step you have taken...
    1797 days ago
    My sincere condolences on the loss of your father. It was wonderful you were able to have one last family vacation to add to the many good memories you must have.
    1797 days ago
    Well, you got it out on paper, and owned it and now you know because you said it yourself if you do not take care of yourself that would not be honoring your Dad. I'm sure he loved you very much no matter how much you weigh, but I'm sure he would want you to take care or yourself to be healthy and to be here for the family that loves you and is still here around you. Of course there will be day when you will grieve and you will slip again, we all do, we are human, but to not try to turn it around would be wrong. I'm sure it is still all very raw and there will be days that will be very hard, but be strong. Your Dad will always be with you encouraging you every step of the way. Listen for his voice to lead you. You will be successful. God Bless emoticon
    1797 days ago
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