The times, they are a changin…
Living with hidden disabiities has necessitated many changes in our family. Many of these changes seem to take effect in the next week or two.
In order to eliminate the travel of my previous job that was taking its toll on my family and on my husband’s health, I started a new job in a completely different industry. Today was my first day, and my head is swimming!
My kids start public school next week…3rd grade, 6th grade, and 8th grade. We no longer have the finances for them to attend the private christian school where I’ve worked and they’ve attended faithfully for the past several years.
I am not one to second guess my decisions or regret the what-might-have-beens. But the sheer volume of changes in our life is overwhelming.
However, the biggest, most life-giving change of all, the one I am most eager to share with you: I took my therapist’s suggestion and started an exercise program. I don’t think I could handle any one of these other, larger changes without the physical outlet of exercise.
I want to shout it from the rooftop: “I feel better!” In the midst of a crazy, unpredictable season for both me and my children, I have regained some control and significantly helped my mood through exercise.
Who knew that it would be this easy? (don’t kid yourself; it hasn’t been easy at all!). But who knew that it could be this simple? I am not writing this blog post to gloat, to motivate others, to make anyone feel guilty (been there), or goad others into cheering me on (though you can if you wish).
In fact, I am ending this post with a letter to MYSELF. A letter to remind myself how to handle changes, big and small:
I am writing this to you on the cusp of your forty-fourth birthday. You have had a rough year. Hidden disabilities and life’s continual changes have left you feeling battered and bruised, overworked and exhausted. You have sought relief in food, in friends, in family, and in therapy. You have tried multiple medications to “manage” your moods and your shifting hormones. But here is the clue … you consistently feel better when you exercise. Nancy, you say you have no time. I know that you are busier than everyone you know. And I know that you don’t particularly like exercise. You don’t like to sweat. But the truth is, you FEEL BETTER when you exercise. You are less depressed. You feel stronger. You feel more in control. YOU ARE ABLE TO WORSHIP GOD more fully.
Keep it up, Nancy. Exercise. It will clear your mind. It will clear your heart. It will position you to love the Lord your God with all your heart, strength, mind, and soul. It will position you to move faithfully in a season of many changes.
As our family moves into a new season of changes and firsts, new environments and changing relationships, I am thankful to God that I can strengthen my body and strengthen my mind to help prepare me for these many changes to come.