Monday, December 28, 2009

Rediscovering myself...

If you were to ask me who I am now, I would most definitely be able to say I am not the same person I was 7 years ago. I have changed in so many ways, that I feel I am actually having to rediscover myself. This rediscovery has forced me to look back on the girl I used to be and decide what is worth "bringing back", saving and holding on to, and what needs to be dropped like a bad habit!

One of the most obvious ways I have changed is physically. (sigh...and maybe even a tear or two.) Growing up, I was blesed with a high metabolism and a long/lean body that maintained a healthy weight without a whole lot of effort. On top of that though, I have always enjoyed eating healthy and exercising, so a six-pack (not beer!) was very easy to obtain. Chad used to gawk at my abs after a work-out...he couldn't believe how quickly my muscles showed. Looking back, I can see how much I took this for granted! Don't get me wrong, I learned to enjoy my figure once I got to college and realized there were actually men out there who were TALLER than I was! lol! But, I never fully appreciated my cellulite-free legs, toned arms and flat abs. (insert second sigh...)

Fast forward 7 years, and 3 kids later...bye-bye cellulite-free legs, toned arms and flat abs! I have to confess, there have been days where Chad has asked me what's wrong b/c I was obviously "in a funk", and I had to admit that I was struggling to deal with my new body. Not only is the lack of energy discouraging, but my body is currently down-right disgusting...at least in my mind. Somehow I managed to save my figure after the first two pregnancies, but the third one has done a number on me...and I'm afraid it's permanent...at least to some extent. For someone who found much of her identity in being physically fit, this has been a hard pill to swallow.

So, not only am I 30 pounds heavier than I was 7 years ago...I'm also a much different shape! My waist is larger...and so is my chest. Everything is softer and "jigglier". ha! I avoid the mirror after getting out of the shower and want the lights out when I crawl in bed at night. Sound depressing?...well, it kind of is.

I'm determined to once again be proud of my physique...I'm also determined to gain my energy back without requiring 4 cups of coffee a day! But how to go about that??....not sure yet. Anyone who thinks getting to the gym w/ three kids in tow, five days a week is simple or easy, does NOT have three kids!! I will say though that I've come to terms with the fact that I'll never again have that college body...I'm ok with this. Really. My three children have been well worth the phsyical sacrifices I've made...and honestly, I think this rediscovery has taught me that my focus needs to be more on HEALTH rather than vanity and merely having a "hot bod". ;)

Despite all THAT,...amazingly, I'm much more comfortable in my skin today than I was 7 years ago. What I mean is, I'm more grounded and confident,...I've learned what my strengths are and how to capitalize on them rather than drowning in my weaknesses. And as far as rediscovery goes,...I've realized that in pretty much every other area of my life (excluding physicality of course), I've changed for the positive. The trials and hardships we've experienced have grown my character, faith and perserverance. I may have more wrinkles than the avg 28 year old due to all we've experienced, but I also have more blessings and a much fuller life than the avg 28 year old. For that, I'm thankful!

I'm a far cry from where I need to be, so notice I used the word changed...not perfected! But, I feel like I'm on the right road...I have to continually check myself though to make sure I'm not veering off the path. It's so easy in this world to become distracted by things that don't/shouldn't matter. I'm more relaxed in my role as a mom and wife. Something I learned this year was that it's ok to have dirty dishes in the sink occasionally and I don't have to appear perfect or as if I have it all together...my true friends and family will love me regardless. This discovery has allowed me to sit back and live in the moment and has brought added peace to my life and marriage. I've also learned that although friendship brings many blessings,...family is more important. And on that note...I've learned that family isn't all that matters in life nor will they always be able to meet your needs. God is the only one who can fulfill me. And HE is the one I need to be seeking after more than anything else. So, I guess you could say I'm getting my priorities lined up as they should be. :)

So, as 2010 comes closer, I'm thanking God for all the ways he's grown me up over the past 7 years...I'm asking Him to continue to mold me (physically - ha!, emotionally, spiritually and mentally) in to the woman he wants me to be, and I'm praying He guides me and my families paths next year!!

Happy (early) New Year!

7 comments:

Jenny said...

Lindsey,

I'm sorry that I never take the time to comment on your blog. I love reading your posts and usually that is all I have time to do.

I read this one tonight and it made me realize that my priorities are all screwed up. Here lately all I have been focused on is my family and me. I want for this next year to be a great one and I must be focused on God for that to happen.

The working out part cracked me up since I had just finished working out before I read your post. And that is the first time in over a month that I have worked out. I about died to say the least and now it has made me really hungry, so I may never lose all of my weight from my 3rd baby.

Ok, sorry I should have e-mailed you this comment. It was so good to see you guys over Thanksgiving. I wish that you lived here so that we could hang out all of the time.

Have a great night and thanks for sharing your life with us.

love,

Jenny

Hicks Family said...

Very motivational! A lesson I needed to hear myself!

Michael and Hannah said...

That's one blessing of not being genetically blessed... I don't struggle with the changes in my body as much. I was born with cankles and short thick legs, and I swear I had cellulite at 12! I had to learn at a much earlier age to find something different to make me feel good about myself other than my body. I've definitely noticed that the more gorgeous the girl, the harder they take life's little changes. My mom has friends that just MOURN the aging effects on their bodies, and they were all knockouts and used to getting attention for their looks. Mom and I, well we've just never had that! So we roll with the punches. Just know that you a truly in a minority for enjoying such physical beauty in your lifetime, and above all that, you have inner beauty to boot! I personally haven't noticed a change in your physical appearance since college (but then again, I haven't seen those abs up close and personal!). I still think you are blessed with both physical and spiritual beauty. I do admire your dedication to health though, which is something I need to take more seriously. I've never been a healthy eater and while I've always exercised, I've never reached a point where I can honestly say I enjoy it. I enjoy it being finished! Would love to have an ounce of your drive!!!

Marie said...

I loved reading your thoughts. Each year I vow to loose the baby weight, and many of those years it was just having the baby to get rid of the added weight. Matt and I were talking the other day (and being that I am one month away from baby #4, I am rather large) and he made the comment that I still look amazing. I laughed and then realized he was serious. :) I have never been one who had to work to maintain my weight, but having kids has definatly reeked havoc on my body. I have come to terms that I will not have my former body back, but as you have said, I truly don't care! I would not give up one of my children to have my body back. There are a few places that are larger than I would like, and I plan to work out more, but now it is about being healthy as well. I want to be healthy no matter what weight that is at. I want to be a good daughter of God, wife and mom (in that order. I can't do it alone and that is what I have to work on now, making sure that my life with God is where it needs to be.

I do have to admit that I am certainly glad that I am not the only one who has struggled with the "bod"! :)

Sara said...

"the Change" is not easy, but know that we all go through it and wow....aren't we so blessed to have that change? I have no doubt in my mind that your body will bounce back in time. Remember it takes 9 months to grow a baby, to even think that your body would bounce back before a year is just crazy. It will come, Lindsey. And your right, beauty fades. And you are one of the lucky woman that realizes that beauty doesn't define who you are! Your beauty inside is such an inspiration to us all!

Page said...

I, too, am 30 pounds over and it is SUCH a difficult thing to lose!! It's frustrating because I feel confident in nearly every area of my life except when it comes to putting on a pair of my old jeans! ha! I'll be blogging about this soon, but what you wrote was really inspirational!

Sarah said...

Love this. I identify with so much of it, the body stuff especially these days, and taking the old and new and figuring out who I really am. It's a process, isn't it!