I’ve been working hard on my health for about a month now. I’d gotten a little discouraged because I wasn’t seeing the results. I made some pretty drastic changes and felt frustrated that the results weren’t immediately noticeable.
Blueberry Cashew Smoothie
But holy moly, I’ve been eating so many veggies that I’m practically turning green. I’m even putting greens in my morning smoothies! Snacks are things like unsweetened Greek yogurt with blueberries or raw almonds. No sweets at all. No regular bread. Tonight I ate acorn squash. Acorn. Squash.
I’ve been exercising fiercely, classes with names like Afterburn and Industrial Strength. I’ve been on the treadmill and bike, using weight machines, and medicine balls. I’ve probably sweated more in the last month than in the combined 11 months before.
It didn’t seem like anything was happening, but recently something changed. I went to the greenhouse and bought plants and flowers and bushes. I went out in the morning and started planting all those things. As I worked, instead of feeling worn out and anxious, I felt energized and empowered. I had a big smile on my face. I took a lunch break and went back out to finish. I was sweaty and my back hurt and I didn’t care a bit. It felt GOOD.
Working up a sweat
Last summer we didn’t plant anything. Our lonely garden lay barren. Our flower beds were just piles of dirt. We were too busy surviving to take the time for beauty. I was too busy taking care of my baby to take care of myself. The kids spent many days at their grandparents' house. I sat in a chair holding the baby and crying, lonely and sad.
But this year is different. The baby is healthy and growing. As I planted the flowers, my parents marveled at how mobile Redmond is, playing hard with his toys. As I dug holes, my older children rode their bikes and ran around the yard. When I got to the front sidewalk, my 5-year old daughter jumped right in to help. She wanted to do it all, so I taught her, and she loved it. Rick and Charlie got mulch and spread it, threw away trash, and watered the new plants.
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I worked all day. When I finally stopped for dinner, I was wonderfully tired and achy. My skin was pink from the sun. I ate a healthy dinner and slept deeply, feeling accomplished and satisfied. My yard is a celebration of gratitude, happy and beautiful. We are full of life and health, joy and peace. Bright colors reflect bright hearts.
A month ago I would not have had the energy to do all that. I may not have even tried. But I’ve been increasing my daily step count by 1000 steps a week, increasing my endurance from an average of 2000 steps per day to 7000. I have a goal to get to 10,000 steps per day within the next month. I’m digging myself out of a hole and finally starting to see some progress.
It meant a lot to me to beautify my home this weekend. It meant a lot to me to work beside my daughter and teach her a lifelong skill. It meant a lot to me to know that I have the freedom and strength to go outside and be productive. I loved creating something that brings joy to our family and makes things pretty. I loved knowing I was able to do it – with joy.
When a family has been scrambling to get back from the jaws of death and can finally see some distance between them, feel the ground under their feet, and take some time to have fun and not worry, it’s something to celebrate. Just to not feel worried… To not shake in fear… It’s worth every single kale smoothie, detox soup, collard green wrap, and acorn squash. it’s worth every burpee and squat, every step.
The scale is moving a little, much more slowly than I’d like to see, but these non-scale victories are enough to keep me pushing forward and keeping the most important things in mind. Getting healthy isn’t just about recognizing myself when I look in the mirror. It’s about having the energy and strength to enjoy life and be a great wife and mom. It’s about allowing the outside of my body to reflect the joy of the inside, the strength that has come with these challenges I’ve faced. My heart is full of praise that I’m able to focus on health right now and my body is capable of doing these things.
I can’t wait until it’s all in full bloom!
I’m documenting some of my journey to dig myself out of this hole on my Instagram account. You can follow me at @Kimberly.Wyse. You’ll see photos of my healthy food choices (insert Rick’s eye roll here. LOL), exercise, and other daily life stuff. #diggingmyselfoutofahole