Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Grief and Gratitude


 
This is my second attempt to write this.  I wrote the first draft from Denver, Colorado and was ready to add photos, links and proofread.   When I got home and tried to finish it, I found it, made some edits and watched it disappear.  For those of you who have poured your heart out in writing I am sure you know how this feels.  I am not sure that this will be as good as the original.  It is kind of crazy, it’s like I completely erased the details from my memory as well.  Maybe I just needed to pour out my emotions, for me, but not share them with everyone. 

In my last blog post I recapped 2012 with a Top 10 List of the Low Carb Blessings I received over the past year.  I had made it to Onderland and was hopeful for the New Year.  In fact, after writing the blog I continued to think about the future and became very excited that I would make my goal weight in 2013.  When I started on this journey over five years ago, I had set a goal to lose 200 pounds.  On January 1st, I was 9 pounds from that original goal.  I decided that I would like to lose another 25 pounds…34 pounds from goal seemed doable for the year.  

I have tried to clean up my diet by cutting out processed foods and purchasing better quality foods.  I decided to join in Balanced Bites,  21 Day Sugar Detox.  Although, I had not had real sugar in a very long time I was a still using artificial sweeteners.  Diet soda, sugar free chewing gum and low carb sweets have been hard to give up.  I knew this stuff was full of crap and was determined to get to goal, so I needed to give it up.  January 1st I began my first official Paleo challenge; giving up all sweeteners and dairy.

On January 9th, all the excitement for 2013 vanished.  My husband of almost 12 years, passed away.  Suddenly, the future was hard to see.  For the first time in my life, I didn’t want to eat over my pain and emotions.  Funny thing when someone dies, everyone wants to bring you food…you know the carbage…deserts and casseroles.  I said no.   I had an excuse to eat whatever I wanted and no one would blame me, but I didn’t.  Steve would have not wanted me give up after all my hard work, especially because of him.  So I continued the Sugar Detox, although I really didn’t eat much the first week or so.  At the end of the 21 days, I stepped on the scale and I had lost exactly 200 pounds and weighed 180.  It was a very bittersweet moment, to reach my goal, but not having him here to celebrate with me. 

So since that time, I can’t say things have been easy.  I am grieving and I feel like I am in a fog.  I know I am not only grieving over Steve, but the old me.  I have good moments and bad.  Have I stuck to my low carb way of eating?  Yes, but I noticed I was snacking quite a bit and eating more and more.  I was getting lazy, not keeping track and my clothes were getting a little snug.  I realized this and got back in control.  I did a few days of fat fast and stepped on the scale for the first time in weeks, still 180 pounds.  So now I am 25 pounds from my next weight loss goal.  I would love to lose another 10 pounds, by the time Low Carb Cruise sets sail in May.  I am not going to stress about it, just take things one day at a time.

I want to thank all my family and friends who have shown me so much love and support during this difficult time.  I am especially humbled by the outpouring of support from my friends in the Low Carb Community.   I truly appreciate all the prayers, messages, emails, texts, phone calls, cards and gifts. 
 
 
Grief can awaken us to new values and new and deeper appreciations. Grief can cause us to reprioritize things in our lives, to recognize what's really important and put it first. Grief can heighten our gratitude as we cease taking the gifts life bestows on us for granted. Grief can give us the wisdom of being with death. Grief can make death the companion on our left who guides us and gives us advice. None of this growth makes the loss good and worthwhile, but it is the good that comes out of the bad.
Roger Bertschausen
 
Ecclesiastes 7:2
 

10 comments:

Anne H said...

Love ya!

Shari said...

((((((((HUGS))))))))) Sweet Lady! Glad that post is done, and yes forward we go. The good thing is having truly awesome friends and family to help along the way. LY

Nickie said...

Very sad newsletter, yet so full of accomplishments! I know that I told you that already, but hats off to one strong lady - that's you, Susan!!! See you on the cruise!

Love ya!

Amy Dungan said...

Much love and prayers to you Susan. Looking forward to seeing you soon!

Lisa Coker said...

All my love and best wishes for your bright future. You are a powerful inspiration for us all.

Demetria Phillips said...

Thanks so much for sharing! You are such and inspiration!

Ailsauk said...

Love you, you have come so far and you are continuing your journey! Well done :-)

HEALTHY AMELIA said...

I am so sorry for your loss. I am in awe of your resolve to stay on track during this difficult time. I am sure your husband is extremely proud of you.

Laurie Rosen said...

You are strong, not just in mind & body, but in spirit and faith. You are an inspiration! Can't wait to see you again in May!

lanie craig said...

Susan your success on your weight loss journey is nothing short of a miracle.You look wonderful and you just glow!!! I wish you nothing but the best on the rest of your weight loss journey and in life.Your true honest ,caring spirit will carry you far in this world.Much love my friend.