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Monday, January 26, 2015

Moving It

I've never been a gym person. As a matter of fact, I've really not exercised much my entire life, which has led to just having an average, lately mushy, body type. Just like most people, I get inspired at the beginning of the year or if I hear about a new fad. Last year I tried a low carb lifestyle, not diet, and stuck with it religiously for a few months and lost about 8 pounds, but then slacked off, and I didn't combine it with exercise. I still don't each much bread, but my downfall is cereal. It's actually supper a day or two each week at times. husband has been going to the gym for the past couple of weeks while I've been working in the evening (boo!), and he said the gym has acquired a few new toys since my last visit, namely rowing machines. So, since I was feeling the need to move this weekend, we took off for the gym together this past Saturday.

After the obligatory 15 minutes on the treadmill to get my heart rate going, I then attempted rowing. It's intimidating at first, so my husband set it up for me. I started rowing and was thinking, why is this so easy? Do I have it set to low? And then I just kept going and going. I was amazed! (The only problem I did have was my right hand going to sleep, but this may have been from holding the handle too tight). My husband was on the stair climber looked over at me and couldn't believe it. He assumed I would not last as long as I did (and I'm always pleased when I'm stronger than he thinks I am). I was sweating, and my muscles were burning. I believe this is the first time I've ever surpassed what I thought I could do physically without actually giving up.

Do you know that feeling? It just makes you want to KEEP going! Have I found the holy grail of exercise (for me)? We shall see.

This is not me below, but this is the exact machine at our gym. After reading the article below, I realized my technique was not exact (which may have led to the numb hand) but I can feel that it was effective.,%20happy%20you.)&utm_content=Google%20Reader

The fact that I went back to the gym on Sunday is testament to how much I love this workout!

And I think that's the key. We're all different, and we have to find what works for us. If we can find a way to move out bodies and enjoy it, we'll stop making so many excuses not to do it.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

It's a New Year again!

Oh wow, Happy New Year! When I read my last post from January of LAST YEAR, I can actually see a bit of change in myself. I suppose that's the most we can hope for is that we can grow in a positive direction from year to year.

This year has started out rough with sickness. I'm not the type that usually gives in to the crud, but it has knocked me for a loop this time. It started with a glob in my throat that gave me laryngitis for three days. Thinking I was getting better instead of worse, I did not go to my Dr. in between the holidays. By the time it had moved into my chest and then back up into my head, it was Jan. 2 and her office was closed. Riding it out one more day with new over the counter meds didn't help, so by Sat. morning I was first in line at the neighborhood express clinic. They were wonderful, and with some new antibiotics for bronchitis, sinus infection, and conjunctivitis (the sinus infection affected my eyes), I'm feeling much better 24 hours later. Now though, my sweet hub is a few days behind me with his symptoms and although he also went to the clinic yesterday, he seems a bit worse off today. Its damp and rainy anyway, so we'll just hunker down one more day and nurse ourselves back to a somewhat healthy state.

As usual, the new year has brought on thoughts of getting into shape. I said last year I'm heavier than I've ever been, and I'm at least in the same place or a couple of pounds ahead of that now. As it does when we get older, the fat "shifts" into different places and this is what has made me most uncomfortable. When I see someone jogging, or a commercial for Nordic Track, I am inspired, but when it comes down to doing it, I'm just a big blob. Today will be dedicated to putting together a food plan for the next week so we can focus on eating better, so that's a start. I don't think it's so much the volume of what we eat, but the poor choices. Also, I sit a lot with my work and this doesn't help.

For Christmas, I bought my husband a Fit Bit. He loves it, and tracking his steps, sleep patterns, and what he eats has been so easy with this. I think this would be helpful for me as well so I may add this one more purchase to the after Christmas budget.

On another note, my grandson has grown to a precious 15-month-old bundle of cuteness...

Oh, just look at that gorgeous kid! I see so much of my daughter Ashley in that little face, but she had dark curls when she was his age. The blonde comes from his daddy. I sure miss being with him, but have also learned over the past few months to give up the stress I was putting on myself by trying to control my daughter with too much input when it comes to raising him. She and his daddy are completely capable, and my role is to be a supporter when she needs me. Hey, he's my first grandchild and it just took a little time to find my place, even three hours away.

Wishing everyone a blessed and positive start to 2015!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Resolved to Resolve

I am consistently inconsistent.

I would love to be on an even keel. Are there people out there that really are, or do they just look like they are? I can't fake it.

As much as I try to focus on my faith and pray and do all the things I know I should, I find myself questioning where I am in life and what I'm doing. Maybe it's a New Year's thing. And then I feel guilty because maybe I'm not trusting God the way I should.

I always have the best of intentions. I want to get in shape. I want to further my experience in my field. I want to become a better volunteer, better cook, better wife, etc. but I rarely follow through for long periods. My attention span has me jumping from idea to idea when one of them does not satisfy. But will anything satisfy if I'm working towards the wrong thing?

I'm now menopausal and severely lacking in energy. I'm heavier than I've ever been. I've heard of women going through all of this but never thought it would affect me the way it has. But, is this truly the problem?

I started reading a book last year, I think it was called The Happiness Project, and the main idea is finishing what you start and you will be happier. I really think I could benefit from this, but I haven't finished the book. See a trend?

My heart feels pulled in different directions. My dad passed last year and my mom is still struggling, and my grandson was born last Sept. They're all in GA. I always thought when I had a grandchild that I would be able to keep him or her while Ashley works. I love my husband and my home, but I also want to be three hours away.

All of this leaves me feeling ambivalent about my life. I'm unsettled and uninspired when I want to be filled with joy and working towards a goal. I want to know that I'm doing what I was meant to do. I'm almost 52 and it doesn't feel like I am.

My (thankfully extremely supportive) husband and I have talked and he feels that I take on too much of the stress of others. I worry for my mom, for my daughter and her family, and for my own life here. It just becomes too much.

So, if I'm supposed to be at peace and not worry and put everything in God's hands, then how come it is so hard for me? There are times that I feel close to God and others when I feel so far away. This makes me anxious and depressed at the same time.

So, this week I am taking a step back. So far, I've done very little and have tried to read and pray and get my thoughts in order. Ashley and Brooks are coming for a visit and I hope this will lift my spirits.

I read something at the beginning of the week that makes a lot of sense: "Honor God. Serve that single objective and everything else will fall into place". So, that's my only resolution this year - since that one should take care of all of the above.

Lord, I pray for clarity in my thoughts and peace in my heart. Help me to see what I can do each day to honor You, so that You will point my footsteps in the right direction. Amen.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Ramblings from the Heart

I've never been a secure person, especially when I was younger. I might have looked sure of myself, but it was only a fa├žade. Behind it, I was scared to death. I put up a shield of protection and was very aloof. This shield and my fear kept me apart from others. I had difficulty making friends.

Part of my anxiety is that there is a part of my body that is different from anyone I've ever known. Because this difference was pointed out by school mates, "friends", and even in disgust by my paternal grandmother (as if it was something I had any control over), this only intensified my insecurity. It's exhausting living life trying to hide a part of your body.

I looked for attention in all the wrong ways. I felt shame and didn't like myself very much as a young adult.

As I got older, I focused on advancing in my career. I thought this is what I needed to help me to feel better about myself. I would puff up with all of my accomplishments and tried to find my worth in what I did, when I needed to find it in who I am.

It's only been in recent years that I've truly been able to understand my true worth is based on. It is not my job, the shape my body is in, how I dress or how my hair looks, who my friends are or how much money I have. My worth comes from my relationship with Christ.

I've learned that God loves me no matter what. I don't have to do anything to earn this love. I am His child and He loves me, and that will never change. When I sin (I am human - it's inevitable), He doesn't love the sin but still loves ME.

I've had a hard time accepting this because I haven't always felt lovable. I've made mistakes in the past and didn't understand how God could love me. I used to think He sat in constant judgment of me and rained down punishment for my past sins.

Instead, I'm learning that we worship a merciful God. A never changing God who I believe is GOOD, and I believe the promises that He has made to all of us.

1. He promises to supply every need we have.

This does not include the multiplicity of luxuries that we have come to think of as needs. We have to learn to be happy with what He provides, and allow Him to work in our lives and bless us with more if this is what He desires for us.

2. He promises that His grace is sufficient for us.

He has made provision for our salvation by His grace through faith. It is through obedient faith that we have access into the grace of God.

3. God promises that His children will not be overtaken with temptation.

He assures us a way of escape will be provided. No matter what situation you might be in, there will be a way out. Save yourself heartache and look for it. Put your relationship with God and what He wants for you above immediate gratification.

4. God has promised us victory over death.

He first resurrected Jesus by way of assuring our resurrection.

5. God has promised that all things work together for good to those who love and serve Him faithfully.

It may be difficult for us to see and understand how this is accomplished at times, for instance when I watch my mom suffer over the death of my dad, or how two of my friends are watching their grandchildren suffer with cancer. But only HE knows what lies ahead. We only see the here and now. He sees the big picture. He promised it, and He will deliver.

6. God has promised that those who believe in Jesus and are baptized for the forgiveness of sins will be saved.

Baptism is the outward expression of our inward transformation.

7. God has promised His people eternal life.

This life is only temporary. I believe our real home is in Heaven.

I'm 51 years old and I'm still a work in progress. My emotional self is learning to be submissive to the spiritual.

I'm still insecure, but not as much. I reach out to people more easily now. I try not to focus on what is wrong, but what is right within me. I still have bad moments but they don't last as long as they used to.

Being a Christ follower doesn't always make life easier. Bad stuff still happens. For me, at least, it makes the inconsistencies of life easier to handle when you put Him in charge. In the spirit of the season, I am thankful for this most of all.

O Lord, You are so good, so ready to forgive, so full of unfailing love for all who ask for Your help.
Psalms 86:5

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Just call me Mimi

Brooks Harold Gillespie
9 pounds, 8 ounces
20 3/4 inches

Proud mommy and baby Brooks.
Isn't she gorgeous within hours of a C section?
Well, life since 9/23 hasn't been the same!
I feel like I'm in a constant state of flux, wanting to be at home with my husband yet wanting to be with my daughter and grandson, too. There is such a draw to be with them, but they are three hours away. He's six weeks old now and so far I've been maintaining an every 2-3 week schedule. I'm SO looking forward to being with them again tomorrow!
The past couple of weeks have been a little rough. We thought at first he just had gas, then reflux, but I believe now it's full blown colic. I hope the newest remedy he started yesterday will be effective. Ashley and JG are quite the parenting team, although their confidence wanes when Brooks is inconsolable. Between me, the in laws, my mom and my sister, they have lots of support around. Even so, I know Ashley prefers her mama, and I love that.
From what I understand, he's starting to smile and coo a lot. Until now, he's been such a serious little guy.  
Here are more pictures through the weeks:

Everyone thinks he looks just like his daddy, but I see his mommy in him, too.
Mimi to the rescue!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Waiting for Brooks

When a child is born, so are grandmothers  ~ Judith Levy

So, on Monday I will finally be a Gramma!

Buy Buy Baby, Babies R Us, TJ Maxx, Ross and WalMart have benefitted greatly from this status change.

Ashley and JG have been married for seven years, so we've been waiting a while for this.

His name is Brooks. We've seen him on 3D ultrasound so we have an idea of his little face, but I'm so anxious to see what/who he really looks like. And we're all anxious to know how much he weighs. Ashley jokingly says there's likely a betting pool between the doctor, midwife, and sonographer since he's been estimated at everything between 6.9 lbs. - 10 lbs. I think it will be toward the 10.

I fully expect him to be a little chunk just like his mama was.

I'm excited about seeing my daughter and son in law become parents. It took Ashley's maternal instincts a while to kick in, while JG has wanted to be a daddy since year one of their marriage. They are both going to be awesome. I have enjoyed watching my daughter blossom into the nurturer I knew she would be, and I love hearing her call her baby boy "buddy".

Ashley is having a C-section. This has been expected all along so it was no surprise.
She is small boned, and her pelvis is much too narrow to birth even an average sized baby. A couple of her friends have had them so she's been getting lots of advice.

I told her when I was in labor with her and on my way to the hospital, it occurred to me that I hadn't given much thought about HOW they were going to get her out of me! I must have had pregnancy brain and never really focused on how the baby would actually get here. And in 1982, there just wasn't as much information as there is now so other than what my mom told me, I didn't have much to go on. I was SCARED! (And btw, I had her naturally with NO drugs! GO me!)

Well, Ashley has reached that point now and is starting to get nervous. The one thing about it being a C-section is that I won't be in there with her. JG has a weak stomach, so I hope he'll be able to remain upright :) I know there will be lots of tears (and not just from the baby!)

I'll be staying with her for at least a week after she gets home, and I know those are going to be the best days ever. We live three hours away so I won't be able to be with her constantly after that. We'll be doing a lot of Facetime on our iPhones, but I'm sure we'll both be back and forth a lot.

Life as we know it is going to change. I'm ready!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Believing a Lie

Don't believe the lie that YOU can't make a difference - Perry Noble

For almost a year, I volunteered in our church office working with the production crew. I was responsible for inputting the words to the songs to be projected on the big screens every Sunday morning, and I loved it. I was able to hang out with a lot of the really young and creative people there and it made me feel good to contribute with the gifts God has blessed me with.

But, there was always that voice in the back of my head that said I wasn't needed and wasn't appreciated. Even at the age of 51, I still fall victim to Satan and his tricks. I was believing the lie. This made it easy for me to back off when my dad died, and I told them I just wasn't going to be available regularly anymore in order to do this.

This wasn't all together true. There was a three-week period of time that I was wrapped up in helping my mom, but lately it's been more sporadic and something I can schedule. It should still allow me to do something I love for my church. But, I was afraid to ask if they wanted me back.

I know in my heart and head that if I put these things in God's hands, He will take care of it. As it turns out, the person who was supposed to take my place never showed, and a busy production employee was handling the task. When I finally got the nerve to ask about it, I was told they would "love" me to come back.

I've just felt all along that this volunteer assignment was for me. At my former church was where I first learned about production. I had hoped it would lead to an opportunity at NewSpring (my current church) and it did. And as much as I loved doing it, I still became discouraged. I think they understood when my dad died that it threw me into a tailspin. But still, that wasn't 100% of the reason.

I'm thankful to be back to my Tuesday volunteer routine, and I pray that I can learn from this experience and not listen to the negative whispers of the enemy. I know if I persevere, God can use me in more ways than one to accomplish His purposes through this.