Sunday, April 24, 2011

Lenten Reflections, part 2.

After forty-seven days spent worrying about how much I worry (this is slightly ironic and slightly true) I'm honestly feeling better.

The obsessive thoughts have been cut back.  I don't think I'm in a cycle as often as I used to be; I think I spend less time over-analyzing past events and over-preparing for future ones.
I still get very shaken by and obsessive over confrontation, so that's something I'll still be working on for the coming months.

I had an anxious moment shopping at Cub this week.  Kristi and I were trying to find a particular spice and not finding it, and some other shopper decided she should help us.  I did not want help.  I was kind of rude, to be honest.  Then I felt my skin flush and my temperature rise, and recognized the onset of a panic attack.  And I said:  "No.  I have shopping to do.  I will do the shopping."  And it took a few moments but I calmed down and didn't have a meltdown in the store, which seems like a silly thing to be proud of but I know it was a step forward and I'm proud of myself for that.

One thing I'd like to add to my work is morning yoga & strength training.  I think if I was better in tune with my body, I'd be more aware of it as a house for my soul and less as a burden to bear.  I've done morning yoga off and on, and I'd really like to be always "on."

I do recognize, though, that even in my best shape (high school, sophomore year, 140 lbs, able to run a 7-minute mile) I wasn't happy with how I looked.  Getting more in shape isn't going to fix my body image issues.  The issues persist, although they're to a lesser degree than they were before the Lenten project.  The key thing is not for me to become more beautiful, but to recognize the beauty already present in me and celebrate it as is.

One really helpful thing is how supportive everyone's been.  Kristi, of course, has been amazing.  Second to her, my school friends (particularly the "babe seminarians") have been the closest witnesses to this process, and they have been likewise amazing.  It's anxiety-inducing to talk about anxiety, but I haven't had a single experience this Lent where anyone was less than supportive, loving, and encouraging.  Everyone has been (and is) a huge blessing to me and I'm just deeply grateful for where I am right now and who I'm surrounded by.

1 comment:

  1. I am clicking the "SUPER LIKE" button... Love you tons, Em!!

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