The New Normal
I’ve had an epiphany. These last few months Selah’s been traveling non-stop. I’ve been home one weekend since mid-August. It’s been crazy. On one of my exhausting weekends where I took a Thursday night red-eye out of SFO, landing late morning in who-knows-where, I was attempting to sleep for a few hours in a hotel room and as I was laying there, restless, exhausted but unable to sleep I began to think about my weight. Again. It seems I’m always thinking about my weight. And as I lay there, I wondered how was I ever going to get this weight off. Again. When am I going to be normal; and then came the epiphany? What is normal? And why do I want to be it?
You see, I realized that my entire life I looked at thin people as “normal” and myself as not. And if I could just diet enough, I could diet myself into a place of being normal just like them. In my mind, being normal meant that I could eat what I want, exercise if I want, or not and be thin. So every diet, every exercise program, every calorie counted was working towards one goal: normal. As I lay in that hotel bed I also realized, there is no such thing as normal. As I mentally cataloged my thin friends and family members I began to realize that none of them eat what they want when they want and don’t exercise. None of them are just thin because they’re normal. They’re thin/fit because they work at it. My sister limits her carbs and walks or hikes 6 days a week. My brother runs. My thin friends at church eat clean and go to the gym. THAT is their normal. Normal is having a healthy eating and exercising regimen that keeps them at the body they desire.
Then I realized: I don’t want to be normal. Normal for me is overeating, being exhausted all the time, too exhausted to exercise and keeping my schedule so busy that I can’t even bear to cook some nights. Ordering pizza once a week is my normal. Sitting while my son plays at the park is my normal. Crying because my size 22 pants are tight is my normal. I’ve been living my life completely lazy hoping that I could find the right diet that would allow me to continue living lazy and be thin. THAT is my normal and I’m over it.
I’ve heard my entire adult life that I need to make a lifestyle change, not go on a diet. I’m so sick of hearing that phrase. I live in hotels, tour buses, airplanes and airports. That’s not changing. I have a toddler at home who is very challenging and a husband who is amazing and works a lot. That’s not changing. I have a church ministry I love and enjoy devoting time to. That’s not changing. I love my lifestyle. I love my life. I don’t want to change it. I want to figure out how to live healthier within it. I want to change how I deal with the fatigue that comes with my lifestyle and give myself more rest and better food options instead of landing at the airport and immediately ordering a pizza because I can’t stand the thought of going to the grocery store, buying something healthy to cook and then taking the time to cook it. I’ve spent so many years on diets, I know what’s healthy and how to cook it, I’ve just been so preoccupied with how to get around it. I don’t need a new lifestyle, I just need a new normal. I don’t know what it looks like yet, but that is my goal. So now it’s time to take everything I’ve learned about food and put into action for my NEW NORMAL and I am so blessed to have people in my life to help me figure it all out.