fallen off the wagon



It’s time. Renewing what has for me been the never ending struggle to get the monkey off my back. My monkey doesn’t hold a bottle of Jack, a hit of coke, meth, weed, or a bottle of prescription drugs out in front of me like the proverbial dangling carrot. He doesn’t try to get me to blow money at a table or slot machine. Or point out some super stud to seduce or be seduced by.

My monkey simply whispers to me or points me in the direction of something to eat. Yes. So, un-Superman (and, sadly, un-Christ-) like, my nemesis is that four letter f word: food. I don’t really wish I was a heroin addict or a pill popper. But, sometimes I wonder if fighting the temptation in an ease of access way wouldn’t be easier than food.

When I go to a baby shower, there aren’t lines of coke on the table. When I go to a church related get together, there aren’t vast quantities of booze. Heck, being of the non-denominational evangelical tradition, they won’t even spring for Two Buck Chuck for communion wine. They use grape juice and water it way way down. Most of the weddings I go to there aren’t even cigars to be had let alone weed. But depending on the mood, the challenge, the day, the lack of sleep- chips and guac become as strong a draw as a needle of heroin. An awesome lasagna more dangerous than cryptonite. But it’s not just carbs and bad stuff. It can be apples and almond butter. Raw kraut. Chicken and broccoli. Even health food isn’t healthy when you eat too much.

Do I really wish I had one of those addictions as opposed to a constant challenge with over eating and binge eating. No. Heck no! But, I do at times resent the lack of understanding of folks one knows when the effort has been made to politely communicate a need to lay off and there is the continued push to have you eat just one more serving of ______ or to try _______ in addition to everything else one has on one’s plate.

I realize that it’s folks just trying to share the abundance of sustenance in a good-natured way for the most part. More painfully, I realize the problem is mine alone. But, if folks were pushing more Bud on a guy they know has been hitting the AA meetings it would be viewed quite differently.

But the relenting ongoing struggle when one has been fighting this fight since late grade school gets wearying. Many say things like “Oh, you’re just big-boned.” Or “A girl your height can’t lose too much weight.” Etc. But I know how my body and mind best function. And how they feel good and have the most energy.

When my socks and flat shoes are on I am at least six feet tall. So I can wear the extra 20-30 over ideal weight I typically carry and still fit in clothes below the current American female average size 14. The goal is not merely a size 6 or 8. The goal is fitness and energy. The skeletal structure that navigates this meat suit around is very petite. Too little a hanger for the outfit it currently carries.

But what to do? After taking a two month break from CrossFit to see if a seven month old left ankle injury would finally heal and stop hurting, I returned Monday. H-u-m-b-l-i-n-g. For one who has usually ridden the short bus to CF it’s like starting all over again strength wise. At least I remember how to do most of the movements.

The monkey doesn’t just point out or screech things my mind interprets as a call to eat, binge, stuff. It also whispers: It’s always been the same. You’re not good enough. You can’t do it. You’re not strong enough. You’re not coordinated enough. You’re different. You always blow it and have to start all over again.

The monkey isn’t really on my back. It’s between my ears and behind my eyes. Once I’ve latched onto one of these or am exhausted, or sad, or hormonal, or stressed, or all of the above. I will go eat something. Sometimes a lot of something or somethings.

Then there’s the guilt. The yucky physical sensations. The tell-tale bump up on the scale which may not show up for three to four days later. More guilt and P1050322self-disgust. Not as bad as in the past. I am finally starting to get that I am just a human. And like a lot of other humans, I don’t just need to buckle down and get on it. I also need to extend the same love, grace, and forgiveness to myself that I do to others. That grace is so hard to get. And that cruel condemning critical voice is so hard to silence.

Having been a Christ follower since about third grade, why haven’t I gotten the upper hand on this yet? I have been wandering in this wilderness for so long I might as well be out with the children of Israel under a weary Moses.

So why am I posting this now? Public accountability. Started back to CrossFit this week. Starting a Paleo challenge Monday. Going to do some radio fasting, internet fasting, and Bible binging starting Monday as well. Going back to Proverbs 24 again: “Though a righteous man falls seven times, he will get up.’ Getting up …again. Gave up coffee (with an allowance of one cup a day if desired.) Drinking more water. Gonna feast on the Word and silence. (I am scared of the last one!)

May not be around here as much. Or, if good time is being made and leads to true inspiration … may be here more. Getting back up on the wagon. Not gonna drive the horses mercilessly. Gonna whisper to them. They say you get more flies with honey than vinegar. …But keep is under 29 grams a day sugar’s worth. And horses aren’t flies there needs to be balance. Horse whisperin’ Word feasting fitness quest. Ya’ll may or may not be interested. So, in the event you’re not, this post is a mile marker for RH. If you are: wagons ho! Peace.


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