Protein shakes, counting calories, pushing myself at every corner to achieve a new physical milestone and then hitting a wall so fast, and so hard it sent me reeling. It only took about 6 months to loose 96.2 lbs, thanks to having a sleeve gastrectomy, eating strictly and exercising like a mad woman. And then I hit a wall where nothing seemed to work to push even one more pound off, alueding not only the 100 lb mark, but totally missing the other 60 pounds I have left to shed. It is about exercise and eating less calories, right? Bull; it is just not that simple for everyone. And the old Crystal, the fat i-d0-not-care-just-give-up Crystal gave me a smack down.
So, after an 8 month weight loss stall, I quit. I started to become afraid of every angle of the eating/exercise continuum. Nothing was going as planned…I could feel defeat rear it’s ugly head. I was sick of it all! I was by no means bingeing any more, but I also stopped paying much attention to calories/protein or exercise. I just simply told myself, “I am just taking a break from it all.” Yeah…
First, I gained back about 8 pounds. No shock, but just added to the pain. What was the point if all my effort seemed in vain anyway? Next, the energy wained, and I was already battling having far too little. Then the sleeplessness, anxiety, and sadness dug in. Lastly, the headaches returned and the tummy problems returned fiercer then ever. I had a headache every single day for a week and a half.
Then I remembered…
this was life in the pit. This was the foretaste of what believing the lies led to: a prison. I promised I would never go back to that and there I was like a pig sitting in their slop, wallowing in self-pity. We choose our hard, and I was once again choosing the hard of life in the pit. It had not changed, it was nauseatingly familiar….and so was the pain.
Oh, how glad I am to know that I serve a God who loves me so dearly and is so abounding with grace that he will never be ok with me choosing life in the pit.
In a time of quiet before God, I heard the question once again that God seared onto my heart months ago. Do you want to get well?
Honestly, I just wanted my own way at that point. I wanted to see results. I wanted to know that once again I was in control. I wanted to not be afraid of what it meant to loose even more weight. I wanted it to no longer be hard or feel impossible.
And then it hit me. Did I really just find another idol? Nope God, move on over, you are not going to be on that throne…I am. I want it my way, in my time, and I know what is best. But I CAN NOT EVEN FIX THIS! So, clearly, under the light of truth and all things good, I make a horrible god. Oh, how easily I can loose sight of what is true.
The truth is that I am in the best shape of my life. The truth is that I have come a very long way on this journey. The truth is that there is NO way in HADES that I am staying in that stupid pit. And the truth is, I was going to give it all back to God. I was made for freedom!
Two days later, my husband said he wanted to do this crazy detox program called Whole 30. I thought, clearly, I could use a detox in every sense of the word, so why don’t I join him? That was 7 days ago for me. No protein drinks, no counting calories, no more giving up. My only “cheat” has been a bit of honey. It has truly been incredible. Because it turns out that the one autoimmune disorder I still have to deal with, PCOS, has caused about 80% of my “wall.”
It took just 24 hrs for the headaches to go away. In about 36 hours my intestines were happier then they have ever been in my adult life. Not to mention I am having some of the best sleep I have experienced apart from anesthesia. Oh, and the energy, the energy has been wonderful. And the added side note? I broke the “do not weigh yourself rule” out of morbid curiosity, and I have been shocked to find that I have lost almost 8 pounds in the last seven days.
I will admit that the first couple days the withdrawals were pretty crazy, and well, my mood may have been less then sweet. But man has it been worth it. With 23 official days left of my “detox”, I have already learned that there are simply some foods that freak my body out and make it sick. I will have to grieve the loss of how life was, and move on. I have also learned anew just how much junk is in the foods we consume on a regular basis, and so much of our diet is permanently changing. The plus side? The food is incredible! Just look at this dessert I made tonight:
So, if you find yourself ready to quit, or maybe you have already quit and you need to hear it again: Do not be defeated. It is not too late. Press on toward the beautiful, marvelous, precious gift of freedom….no matter what your mountain is.
Love and grace!