February 5, 2009
This morning I was basking in the glory of my alarm not going off. It was wonderful, curled up against a big ole pillow, feeling slightly guilty and slightly happy that I didn't get to the gym this morning. I turned on Good Morning America, thrilled to not be watching from the elliptical. If I'm being honest, though, I was also thinking about my meal last night, the lack of much (any) nutritional benefit from it (La Fonda did go ALL out and put 4 whole shrimp in my quesadilla- nice. thanks), and the fact that I MUST MUST MUST go to the gym this afternoon to pay for that cup of cheese dip Stephanie made me order. Sadly, this line of analysis is not unusual. And it's bad.
So while watching GMA and berating myself for the lack of veggies on my plate, I tuned into a segment from Dr. Oz talking to the female crew of the show. Most of the women needed to change their lifestyles in one way or another. But before he began talking about heart disease and breast cancer, he talked about self-esteem. Ears perking up. He said that as mothers, these women cared more about their children and families than they did their own health- some of them knowing that their health absolutely translates into their families' health. He said something that I hope I remember forever.
Your children will not treat themselves the way YOU treat them. They'll treat themselves the way you TREAT YOURSELF!
Hello!! AHA MOMENT. I can give you 20 examples of how I know this is true in people I know. Especially with daughters!! I am aware of how much energy I expend trying to be this person I've made in my mind of who I should be. And the size of that person is the least of it. But if you asked me this second what I'd wish for any future children, it would be CONTENTMENT IN WHO GOD MADE THEM, CONFIDENCE in themselves to achieve their dreams and the KNOWLEDGE that they are LOVED simply because God made them.
I do believe that I can tell my imaginary children they are loved and valued all day long. But if they don't see me loving and valuing myself, trusting in God's unconditional love for ME, they are not going to get the message. So in addition to showering these fictitious children with love, I am going to get a head start on doing the same for myself. I'm going to exercise and eat healthy (ier) because it is what my body needs to do whatever work God lays in front of me. I'm going to read my Bible more because every answer I need lies in there. I'm going to accept my own faults and failings because God accepts them. I'm going to walk with confidence and self-assurance because I have everything to be confident in~the least of which are family, friends, faith, community, vocation. I'm going to serve others because Jesus tells me to, and for the warm fuzzy feelings only that can bring. And one day, when God makes me a mama, my kids are going to see a flawed but faithful woman, sure that despite how many hundreds of times a day she messes up, she is lovable and valuable. And maybe maybe maybe, they'll grow up and believe that they too are lovable and valuable.
Time to get to work. If you need me I'll be in the self-help section of Barnes and Noble!