I have been watching a lot of True Blood lately. Normally I don't like vampire/fantasy things, but something about this show appeals to my weird side. I was particularly intrigued when Tara, a bitter adult-child of an alcoholic, goes to a fake exorcist to expunge her personal demons Essentially her personality is so abrasive that no one can get close to her. Now, I don't really believe in the devil or demons or things that can take over your soul. But I do believe in evil, and I also believe that a person can have something so powerful inside them that it takes over their spirit. It causes someone to suffer and battle inner turmoil and changes their personality and that is what I am going through right now.
I have alway held the phrase "Better to light a single candle than to sit and curse the dark" close to my heart. So that is what I am going to do. I am going to shed light on some of my personal demons in hopes that the light will wash away the dark. It may not be pretty and the writing may not be fun, but I am guessing a lot of people who read this blog have the same demons inside them that I do and might have some insight that I don't have. So here goes....Demon #1-Working out.
I hate to sweat. I hate being hot. When I was in high school I joined the swim team because I wanted to take part in a sport, but I didn't want to sweat. I walk my dog early in the morning or late in the evening because I hate that muggy, clothes sticking to your skin feeling. I am a snow-bound midwestern born woman who just happens to live in the south because of love of a man, not the love of the land. So when my life gets busy and my time gets short, the first thing to go is working out. I look for excuses not to work out.
The flip side of that coin is that I am very embarrassed by how far I have fallen in taking care of myself physically. So embarrassed that for a whole year I refused to go the Y and have the trainer set me up on the weight machines. I didn't want anyone to actually see how weak I had become. But when I turned 40 I promised myself that I wasn't going to make excuses anymore. A 40 year-old woman should have the right to stand up and say enough. So I did. At the beginning of this summer I went to the Y and had a big, muscle-bound man put me into the computer and I began working out again. My fear of this moment was so bad that when the trainer left me halfway through for just a few minutes to help someone else, I started to shake and almost ran out of the building. But there was a church member there working out who had seen me and I didn't want to have to explain where I went, so I stayed and made it through.
For the past 5 weeks I have diligently gone to the Y and worked out 3 to 4 times a week, only missing one workout when Hubby and I went out to the bed and breakfast. I have gone when I would rather have taken a nap. I have gone when I felt bad. I have gone when I had 12 thousand other things to do and really didn't have the time to go. One day it was so bad that I actually started crying in the middle of the workout, not because it hurt, but because I felt like such a blob working out. Correction, I felt like a WEAK blob.
But what really sucks is that for all of this working out I have done for the past 5 weeks, NOTHING is happening. In fact, I have gained weight. I haven't eaten more, I haven't splurged or been bad with food and I still have gained weight. I don't feel stronger, I don't look slimmer, I don't feel better and I am heavier! This does not motivate me to continue working out. In fact, every ounce of me screams to just stop torturing myself and go back to being a sloth. Just give up and let the fat take over. Let my blood pressure continue to rise and eventually develop weight-related diabetes. The demon is strong within me.
However, I have an 8 year old daughter who, if not for her athleticism, would have my weight issues and I need to set a good example for her. I have a family that wants me to be around for many more years and I know, or at least I tell myself, that even if I am not losing weight, I am protecting my heart and helping my body. I know that eventually the weight will come off if I just keep going. But it doesn't feel like it right now. All I hear is this loud voice in my head that just says I am not good enough and I should just admit it and quit. But this time I won't. This time I have a therapist on my side, my Hubby pushing me forward and not letting me give up, and my own 40 year-old self that says it is time for this demon to go away. I have carried this demon around for so long, I really want to know what it feels like not to have that weight on my shoulders (or my hips as the case may be.)
So back to the Y I will go.