I've been fasting for 29 days. There are only 11 days left on this particular journey, and I have some very strange mixed feelings about that. Obviously I want to be done. I want to eat food. I miss it like it was my most favorite pet dog and someone came along and kidnapped it right out of my backyard.
But I'm a little nervous about eating again. I have made significant progress in the past month. I'm not as skinny as I'd like to be, but I haven't weighed this little since before E was born. I can wear all of the pairs of pants that I have held onto for years just in case I could ever fit into them again. I can! And I don't want that to go away. I just don't.
See, here's the deal. I have been unhappy (not miserable, but definitely sort of "ugh") about my body for years. I complained about it. And while I would eat right at times, or work out at times, I never did both of them together. I chalked it up to being "built to be big." I have broad shoulders, thick arms, and am stronger than a lot of women. But I've secretly wanted to push myself for years to see what my limits really were. Could I ever be really fit? Could I ever really be a runner? What about having toned arms or tight abs? Could I even do that? But I answered my questions quickly. No I couldn't. And then went about my day.
But here's what I've learned over the past few years of my life. There's the life you have. And there's the life you want. And there is only one person on the planet who has the power to make them look the same.
For me that meant many different things. It meant going back to school to become a therapist. It meant coming up with the courage to leave a
horribly abusive marriage. It meant looking God in the face and asking for another
chance without deserving it at all. It meant choosing to fall in love again, even when it was the scariest emotion to let myself feel.
I did all of those things. And life was so good. But I had never conquered the physical. I still had those "can I do this" questions dancing through my mind. So in November, I made a decision to begin working out regularly. Some days I didn't want to. It was hard. But I stuck with it, and started to feel better. I started to take charge of my mind, and began to realize that I had a real choice to make for my physical life.
And then this fast started. And on Day 7, I thought I would never make it. It was my hardest day. But there was a reason I was called to do this. God was using this process to do something big...for other people...and for me. I didn't know what it was going to be. I just knew I wanted whatever He was ready for me to have. So I kept going. And all of a sudden, I woke up and it was Day 29.
I thought the fast would be about the spiritual. I expected God to turn me inside out. I even feared it. But instead, He has used this process to challenge the mental and the physical. He has shown me how to dig deep, deeper than I've ever tried to dig before. He is teaching me how to take my negative thought processes hostage before they rob the progress from my life. He is showing me that through HIM, anything really is possible, and that anything doesn't have to look like a miracle. It can look like challenge. It can look like perseverance. It can look like the mundane, unremarkable things that other people have already done, but I have never let myself dream of. He is changing me.
I'm committing myself to a half marathon. There is one in Nashville in late April, which gives me plenty of time to train and get in shape. It's something I've always wanted to do. I'm a dreamer. I am forever dreaming up scenarios in my mind, usually where I am doing something awe inspiring with a seriously upbeat "she's like Rocky only prettier" soundtrack in the background. I will be 31 in a few days, and it's way beyond time for me to seize my moment.
Today I ran 3 miles in 32 minutes. I told myself when I started that I could have 3 walking breaks during the run. I took one. I still had the negative thoughts galloping through my mind. "I can't do this. I'm going to die. I need a break."
A month ago, I would have listened to them.