Tag Archives: stress

Setbacks & Holdups

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On October 25th, I weighed myself in the morning and just stood there grinning.  I hadn’t seen a number under 130 since early 2011, and there it was on the screen of my digital scales.  I had lost 17 pounds since July 26th, but I had only lost four pounds for the month of October.  Then I encountered setbacks in the form of increased stress with my husband out of town for two weeks, hormone-induced cravings that conquered my self-control, and exhaustion that prevented me from waking up early enough to work out before school.

I have been too busy with school and the kids’ activities that I haven’t had time to write this post for the past two weeks.  I took all my measurements and photos on the first, and they’ve been sitting in my phone, waiting for me to share them.  I don’t really have time to do this right now, but I am in need of accountability to get me through the next two weeks of this month.  I am holding steady between 129.5 and 130.5.  I knew this leveling-off would happen eventually, but I have also been eating too much.  We have too many sweets in the house, but I think I have finished off just about everything that I enjoy, so it’s time to get back on track. 

My official weight on November 1st was 130.4, only three pounds less than on October 1st.  However, I lost just over an inch each on my waist and my hips, almost an inch on my thigh, and a half-inch on my arm.  Below are my photos from July 26th and November 1st.  

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My strength is in His name

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My husband recently spent three weeks away from home running a shelter for a non-profit organization. Keeping our four children fed, bathed, educated, disciplined, and healthy without him was quite a challenge. Beginning before he left, the children passed RSV (respiratory syncytial virus) back and forth for a solid month, with the twins continuously being sick through the first half of their daddy’s absence and Big Brother having RSV a second time while Daddy was gone. I eventually started sanitizing everything every day in order to rid our home of this nasty, cold-like virus.

I had planned to host two parties at our house before we found out Hubby would be out of town. The first one was an appreciation party for my team of volunteers at church, and we had already rescheduled once due to conflicts several of the volunteers had with the original date. The other was our fifth annual Easter egg hunt party, and I didn’t want to disappoint my children or the friends that had already been invited. Fortunately, my mother-in-law was able to help with the babies leading up to both parties and kept them outside during the volunteer party until it was their bedtime. They had finally recovered from their prolonged illness in time to participate in our Easter party.

While driving home one day, I heard the words to a familiar song in a new light. Chris Tomlin’s “Whom Shall I Fear (God of Angel Armies)” was playing, and the words, “My strength is in Your name,” caused me to reflect on my situation and the stress I was feeling. I love to find the scriptures from which lyrics evolve, so I searched for that phrase and similar ones until I found Psalm 124:8 (NIV).

Our help is in the name of the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth.

I realized that I had been trying to do everything in my own strength and not relying on God to help me get through each day. I had been praying for my husband who was working 100 hours per week without taking a day off for 21 days. I had been praying for the children to be healthy. I had been praying that I wouldn’t get sick. I had been praying for nice weather for our Easter party. But until I heard those lyrics, I hadn’t prayed for God to give me the strength and energy I needed. I hadn’t relied on His name to help me when I was feeling stressed. I began to pray differently and to whisper His name when things felt out of control. It gave me peace to know that my strength and help are in His name.

I was also reminded that God is in control even when my life is in chaos. The simple affirmation that I’m not supposed to do it all on my own allowed me to relinquish what little bit of control I thought I still maintained and ask others for help. Big Brother and Big Sister helped me get the house ready for both parties, sanitizing door knobs and anything else we could think of that the babies had touched. My mother-in-law shopped for me, kept the babies every evening, and put together the little gifts for my volunteers. My mom came early for the Easter party, diced fruit, and stuffed more plastic eggs with prizes she brought. Friends helped take my son to his baseball game, brought ice for the volunteer appreciation party, and helped with the Easter party activities. I couldn’t have done it all without dear friends and family.

The volunteer appreciation party was a success. All of our children recovered from their illness, and I didn’t get sick. Our Easter party was fun, and the weather was beautiful. My husband made it home safely and was compensated for his hard work. God is still in control. My strength is in His name.