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Monthly Archives: January 2014

#Empowered

A few lifetimes ago, I gave away my power.  Not intentionally, not all in one swift blow, but slowly, bits of me broke away like an iceberg, trying to find out who everyone wanted me to be.  Too Loud?  Ok… I’ll be quiet.  Too quirky?  Ok… Boring is easy.  Too Smart? I can play dumb REAL good.  Relationships, Friends, even family in their own unaware way.  Instead of struggling to find our who I was, I was struggling to be who “they” wanted me to be.  It became very easy to transform, to easier to tuck away the real me and become who I thought I was supposed to be. Before I knew it, there was very little of the real me left.  Instead, I was a chameleon.  One way for one set of friends, for coworkers.

I come from a strong line of women (and men for that matter).  Chipping away at the real me like that, it ate at me. And as it ate at me, I ate at everything in sight. I grew up with hopes, dreams, plans for an incredible future.  At 21 I had a job I loved, an apartment of my own, living in my favorite city and suddenly…. I was moving back into my parents’ house, pregnant, alone, battered and bruised.  I felt powerless.  I had lost control, if I had ever had it in the first place.

I was scared.  I ate.  I was lonely.  I ate.  I was ashamed. I ate.  And for brief moments, I felt in control. I could control what I ate.  (You know the pattern, right?)  I was suddenly responsible for this little life, and I couldn’t even tell you who I was, let alone who I wanted to be for this baby.  I felt powerless.

Fast forward 6 years.  Not a lot had changed.  I was in a relationship with someone I knew wasn’t faithful to me, who took every opportunity to make himself seem smarter at my expense, but my friends seemed to like him and most of all he enabled me.  Want to eat junk food and lay around on the couch doing nothing? He was your guy.  Want to stay inside and hide from the world? No problem.  I knew how this game of “Who Am I” went, and I was going nowhere fast.  The numbers on my scale however were flying through the roof.  One night, talking to my best friend oceans away, he heard something in what I said that I hadn’t even heard myself say.  He said to me “If you’re happy, tell me and I’ll drop it” and for the first time in a long time, someone was asking me… the real me… how I felt.  He saved my life that night.

It’s been 5 years and I’m still trying to figure out who I am exactly.  That same best friend who saved my life that night 5 years ago is now lovingly known as “The Hubs” and unfortunately for him, he’s left trying to help me put the “Sharon Puzzle” together.  The good news is he’ll call me on my crap, pardon my French.  When he hears “I don’t know, what do YOU want to do” or “I don’t care, whatever you want” he doesn’t take it as an answer. But as great as he is, as supportive as he is, this problem, it’s all mine.

I crave food.  It gives me comfort.  When I’m lost, not sure which Sharon is supposed to be “On”, food never tells me I’ve made the wrong choice.  When my heart is aching for a dream long gone, food soothes the hurt.  When I’m nervous, food offers me a distraction.  When I’m bored, food offers something to focus on.  One of the women in our small group personified her craving as a lover.  Seductive.  Calling to me.  Offering me the world.  I get it.

But this week… something was different.  I couldn’t tell you if it was the knowledge that 40,000+ women were walking this walk with me, if it was the sudden realization that I was turning to food instead of God when I was at my weakest, if it was a recent reminder of how food affects our health, or if it was a combination of all of the above.  Whatever it is, this week I feel #Empowered.  I can do this. or to be more exact, through God, I can do this…

 

 
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Posted by on January 23, 2014 in Babies, Blogging, McHubby, Prayer, Relationship

 

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2014

It’s the time of year where I say “I don’t make resolutions” and then proceed to come up with some other way to phrase my “hopes and dreams list” or some other silliness. I don’t know why I have such an aversion to the idea of resolutions. Maybe it’s because I know so many people end up breaking theirs that it seems like a recipe for disaster. Maybe it’s my deep rooted fear of not succeeding. You’d think, with my OCD being what it is, I’d embrace the chance to plan out my year 365 days in advance.

This year, I’m looking at it as my to do list. I work well with lists. In fact so well, that I may try on at least a weekly basis to convert The Hubs into a list person. I’d say it’s a work in progress.

So… In no particular order, and for the accountability of the 4 of you out there that read this, is my to do list for 2014;

– Take better care of the body God has blessed me with. How’s that for an outlook change? I’m not in the shape I want to be, very far away from it, in fact. But 2013 reminded me over and over to be thankful, and I cannot start anywhere else but being thankful for being alive, for having the full function of my body. What I’ve done to it… That’s all on me. I own it, I know it, I can change it. And I plan to.

– Not be afraid to ask for what I need. Have you seen the commercial of the woman who can’t sleep? She’s flopping all over the bed and at one point (In her mind) yells at her husband “How can you be sleeping?” That’s me. That was me a lot of 2013. And 2012. I get so caught up in a certain way I expect things to go that I will be stubborn enough to wallow in the way it “Should be”. An example of this? I have caught myself sitting next to To Hubs thinking ” I wish he’d reach out and hold my hand” or ” I could use a hug. I wish The Hubs could sense that and hug me” and then the me who spent too many years in bad relationships will sit there, wondering if I sigh long enough, or look doe eyed at him, he’ll read my mind and know what I need, and if he doesn’t, that poor little girl with baggage that I carry around, she will go without rather then ask. You see there are some days, the poor guy can’t win, and he doesn’t even know there’s anything going on. I know expecting him to psychically know what I need is irrational, but you’d be surprised the number of arguments that have broken out because I needed something and didn’t ask. So this year, if I need something I will ask. Or better yet, I will give. If I need a comforting hug, why not go and give him one? I know I will get one in return. (I know you just read that and uttered an eloquent “Duh, Sharon!” But this honestly is a new revelation for me.

– Speak More. When The Hubs and I were dating, and found ourselves in uncomfortable situations, we’d often remind the other to be “Loud and Proud”. I am a woman who’s faced adversity. A woman who’s stood between a pimp and “his girl”. A woman who’s sat at the bedside of women who’ve lost family, friends, everything they’ve owned, and vowed to protect them. I’ve literally jumped in the middle of fights to break them up. Stood strong while staring down the barrel of a gun. Attended too many funerals for people when it’s been just a few of us shelter workers and the funeral director. I’ve designed programs that change lives. I’ve helped negotiate a union contract (Some of you will know the fortitude THAT takes). I am a strong, smart woman, and it is time to start remembering who I really am. 2014 will see me … Or rather hear me Loud and Proud.

-Talk less. Yes, there is a difference. The hubs and I were in bed not 30 min after watching the ball drop in Time Square. While settling down, and for no reason I can think of, I made a biting comment about someone we both know. Not 30 min into a new year! As soon as the words left my mouth, I looked at him and said “wow!” I knew it wasn’t nice. I knew if they had heard it, it would halve been hurtful to them. I could tell you that this person and I don’t see eye to eye. That I’d been on the stinging end of some of her remarks. But does that matter? Does that excuse my behavior? I cannot say that it will not happen again, but I can say that right now I am making a commitment to stop talking just for the sake of talking. To take seriously gravity of the words I use.

There are other things. Re-focus my daily Devotional time. Read the Bible cover to cover. Unplug more. Drink more water. Laugh more. Be spontaneous. Love harder. Skype more. Be a better friend. Trust. Focus. Change.

Hold on… It’s going to be a bumpy ride!

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