Our habits are hard to break and even harder to unlearn, especially if they have been with us since childhood. We at times reject that it was something we learned, picked up, or chose to do, but rather we focus on convincing ourselves and others it was how we were designed, how we were made.
Here's the thing though, there are parts of us that are predesigned in utero for us. Our gender, our hair color, eye color, any chemical imbalances, chromosomal abnormalities, diseases, it is just how we were made. It just happens.
We at times confuse what we were born with and how we were raised with what is natural or normal for us.
My mom has to see a dietician tomorrow. She is less than thrilled to say the least. She knows she needs to eat better and exercise more but has a hard time doing so. Let me make it clear, my mom has quit smoking, she rarely drinks, and has lost weight since her initial heart attack in 2005. That is huge. You may not think it is, but truly it is amazing when someone attempts to redesign who they are for a better future.
In between 2005 and now, my mom has had other health issues. Diabetes problems. Circulatory problems. Chronic back problems and pain. Limited exercising and walking. A year and a half in hell of memory problems that turned out to be thyroid issues. Another heart attack.in 2011, pacemaker in 2013, and learning what to eat while on coumadin. Chronic allergy and sinus issues.
Needless to say we focused on other things not necessarily her diet. Her doctor made her an appointment for a dietician tomorrow and my mom is dreading it.
We filled out the paperwork yesterday and....well...I learned a lot. Seriously.
We had to list my moms medical history and medications which was a breeze. But then there were some questions that put us in the uncomfortable category.
There was some self-esteem questions, questions about goal weight, portion control and a diary to fill out for one day to see what a normal menu is for mom.
I had no clue how uncomfortable my mom felt in her skin, with her weight, until I started filling out the questionnaire for her. I had no clue how much she really wants to lose, how much she has to lose and how she thought it was damn near impossible.
I would have never thought that. My mom is loud, outgoing, confident and always a cheerleader and supporter for others. I had no clue she was filled with doubt. She seriously is one of the reasons I have stuck to my weight loss and healthy eating goals, I felt ridiculously disconnected to her in that moment.
Sometimes I forget the strong people, our elders, our parents have doubts too. I forget we have to take them off the pedestal or out of the role of superhero and realize they are humans too. Fragile, sensitive humans.
She believes she was just made this way. Her dad and mom were overweight, so naturally she assumed she would be. She enjoys heavy foods and big portions and thinks that is what she should consume, because that is what she has done the majority of her life.
But it is not impossible for her to meet her goals. She is such a strong person, she is a fighter, an innovator, a cheerleader for everyone else it broke my heart to see how deflated and embarrassed she was answering the questions.
I believe she can do it. I think she can break her eating habits and work in some more exercises. But before she can redesign herself, before she can commit to a better lifestyle, she needs to believe in herself.
Sometimes we get caught up in how we have been living for so long that we forget that we can live a different way. We forget we have the power and control inside of us to change.
We have the power to design the kind of life we want. It may take time, we may fail many times before we get it right, and it will probably be hard.
But living the life we do not want full of regret and shame is much harder.
We talked for a while after finishing the questionnaire, and my mom was surprised I would believe in her. I was surprised she thought I would not. I took my time and explained all of her strengths that I have seen in her that she was overlooking.
She deals with chronic pain on a daily basis, refusing pain pills as it causes so much havoc on her body. She has quit smoking after being a heavy smoker for over 40 years. She rarely drinks alcohol. She has a positive attitude and has a deep.strength and bullheadedness inside her that is second to none.
And she was forgetting, that she had an annoying daughter who would be her cheerleader every step of the way and who wants to see her make it to 80th birthday party.
With those words, with those reaffirmations, those reminders of her strength I think it reignited a fire in her soul that erased some of the self-doubt, as she looked me dead in the eye and told me, "Damn right I'm making it to my 80th, and you're going to make sure I have strippers there".
Todays blog is a Sunday Confession about Design hosted by the Hot Ash from More Than Cheese And Beer who showed up this Sunday despite not feeling well. Please stop by the link up and check out the other bloggers who joined in and show Ash some love for showing up and hosting when she should be resting.