Sunday, November 4th, Day Sixty-One, Vision
If you would like to join me in this journey from the beginning, please start with Day One.
I have completed sixty days so far in this journey. You can navigate sequentially through the blog using the side arrows.
Today I discovered that my vision statement needs revision.
The weather is starting to look like winter. Halloween is past. Thanksgiving is approaching. Today is Sunday. I will let my husband know I need a break from visiting him at the rehab facility. It seems that no matter how much I visit him, he wants to see more of me. I am glad he appreciates my attention, but I cannot give it to him constantly. Other things need my attention right now. I need a clear vision for my future.
Jacque, my neighbor, invited me to church. I have not showered or fixed myself up. I think I need to attend to that first. However, first I need a prayer.
I am grateful I have a warm place to sleep at night, and I am grateful for a bed to sleep in. In less than one month though, I must be out of here. I am also trying to lose weight, which seems impossible to do with my current lifestyle. I want to get settled somewhere and re-establish the routines and rituals that work for me. However, I am running into roadblock after roadblock.
What advice can you give me about what to do? I thought of going to church, but the stress on my ears bothers me, and I am not fixed up to go. I have been spending so much of my time at the rehab center; I cannot take a shower there.
Lately, I have not even had much time to pray, though I have had one in my heart. I read Psalm 139 to my husband. He liked it, but I have not had the time or focus to memorize it.
No Time or Energy
I have not had time to prepare my food well, nor time to read. My meditation practice is suffering. My Insight Timer is lonely. I have been inconsistent with JV Life Tracker. I am neglecting Cronometer.
However, can I keep doing all that while running back and forth to the rehab center and still keeping my book/blog current?
Yesterday, I was invited to play the piano at the rehab center, but when I invited my husband to listen to me, he said he was too tired to go downstairs. I was too tired to persuade him otherwise.
Day of Rest
I think I need to stay home today and make it a day of rest– take a shower, log my food, meditate, do JV Life Tracker, read the Bible, possibly visit with Jacque, and maybe even go to brunch with her. I think I need to start with a shower. Let me return when I am done.
Wow, I am wet, but feeling a bit better. Most importantly, I got my eyes shampooed, so I can control the blepharitis infection I have had for so long.
Vision Statement, Relationship, and Big Four
Lord, what can you tell me? I am hearing, “Read something,” and asking what? Should I read my vision statement?
Okay, I will. It sounds more like what I was in the past. Should I aim back at that, or should I start from scratch and form a vision of where I can go from here?
Let me ponder on that for a while, because that is a very good question. Should we stick with the vision we had for ourselves in the past, or does there come a time to revise our vision for ourselves? In my vision statement, I did not have anything about getting married. Now my husband is a big part of my life. My vision statement now should have a vision for my relationship.
I do need to revise my vision statement. I cannot continue to do things exactly as I did when I was single. Maybe even my Big Four, (Cronometer, meditation, JV Life Tracker, journal) is too much for me. I keep thinking there will be a day when I can go back to doing all the things I did when I was single. I need to let that go. At least, I still have my writing. That is a big part of my vision for the future.
The night before last, I called my old mentor, Michael, who is now living in Hawaii. He was happy and engaged with life as he has always been. I told him that instead of writing him every day, all day, I was now writing and posting to a blog every day. He thought that was a very good transition.
Where do I go from here then, Lord? Give me some vision. Let me ask about my Big Four. It seems like too much for me, but until recently I was doing a fairly good job of keeping all four things going. Should I focus back on my Big Four or give up? I hear, “No, don’t give up.”
Then perhaps I should write a new vision statement, focusing on my relationship with my husband and these four activities. Will that work for me? I hear a, “Yea,” and I feel a warmth inside. I can get that new vision statement written today. Right now, I can meditate with my own success meditation.
Lord, thanks for encouraging me to do what works for me, even though right now it is really hard to keep it going. Thanks for letting me let go of that busy vision statement from the past that is only partially relevant now.
Now, Lord, I need some help with my weight. The goal of this journey is to lose fifteen pounds without sacrificing my mood or energy. Let me not lose sight of that vision. Lately, my weight has been creeping back up instead of down. My body feels uncomfortable because of the weight I have gained. This may become an ongoing challenge because soon my husband and I will live in separate places, and I will be traveling back and forth all the time. It seems like I have trouble with my weight when I am on the go. Since a lot of people have this challenge, it would be wise to figure it out. Give me some guidance about how I should go about dealing with this.
I considered going to Sunday brunch with Jacque today, but last time I did that, my table companions persuaded me to go through the dessert line. I ate several selections. Even though I did not gain much that day, it got me into the bad habit of eating sweets again.
Yesterday, I even discovered yeast overgrowth in my body, which results from eating sweets. I cannot afford to let candida albicans take over my life again or I will not have good mood nor energy, and I will gain weight. What should I do about Sunday brunch? Is it too big of a temptation? Or will the socialization make it worth it to me?
I hear, “It’s not worth it, sweetie.” Then I will not go today.
Clean My Plate?
I still need to break the iron-clad rule in my head that I must clean my plate. That might work when I control how much gets on my plate, but when that control is given to others, that rule is self-defeating. I tried tapping (EFT) for that, but I need more work. I find myself cleaning my husband’s plate as well! That is doubly self-defeating. The residents of this retirement complex deal with food overload by leaving a lot of food on their plates. I have a hard time doing that! I am from a family of fourteen, where there was just enough food to go around. We could not afford to waste anyway. What can I do?
Lord, give me a vision of myself defeating my self-defeating behavior.
Should I start by getting rid of all the food in the fridge that is getting old that I am not likely to eat anyway? What other strategies will work? Do I need a completely different mindset? Another related habit is that I tend to read books from cover to cover. Perhaps I should not do that anymore. I do not need to ‘clean my plate’ in my reading either. I do not always have time to read a book from cover to cover. Just reading the table of contents may be sufficient.
Eat a Fraction
It seems that in this society, food establishments always serve more than what I actually need. One reason for this is that men and probably most people need more calories than I do. Also, no one wants to leave you hungry. I understand that restaurants do better economically if they serve large portions. I am not going to change this. All I can do is train myself to eat a fraction of what I am served. Sometimes that is a rather small fraction. When my eyes see more though, that is what I want, not the amount I need.
How can I train myself to eat less than what I see, even if I have to pay for the full amount? Even if the leftovers have to be thrown away? That is what is hard. When you have to pay for it all, you want your money’s worth.
You would think that at age fifty-seven I would have this mastered, but I do not. I have coped by trying to always control what’s on my plate. That strategy currently is not working for me. Maybe I should buy a book and read only the table of contents.
Lord, let me see a vision of myself overcoming this.
Somewhere, in my gigantic list of goals, I have the goal for minimalism. Lord, you have been kind to me by giving me plenty of everything. I have had to become wise enough to choose only that which benefits me. When I married my husband, I had several boyfriends. I had to pare down my relationships.
I have more things than I can ever manage. When I think of bringing everything to Colorado and sorting through it, the thought becomes overwhelming. I have more than I need. I read a book called The Power of Less by Leo Babauta that I really liked. It was a great book, and I probably did not need to read the whole thing. However, its message is well taken.
Lord, please guide me on what else I can do. I am not powerless. I created quite a stir at the rehab center when I wrote a review that lowered their overall rating by .2 points. I softened it later, but I still have the ability to edit it again. My husband even suggested lowering my rating from four stars down to three or even two.
Email to the Rehab Center Social Worker, Asking for Her Help
I just wrote an email very similar to this one to the rehab center social worker, asking for her help.
Dear Social Worker:
Thanks for being involved with my husband’s care from the beginning. Thank you for getting him some clothes. I have brought him a few, but not many.
Soon my husband will be going home. That is good. However, as you may already know, our executive director has asked me to leave the community because I am too young to become a resident. Since my husband is slated to get more therapy here once he gets out, that will force us into separate residences by the end of November.
I have found a condo I like where I could live and where he can possible live as well, once his therapy is completed. It has handicap access and is on the ground floor. My husband would like to see it, so we can possibly purchase it. We planned to visit the condo Saturday, but Mike said that therapy had not cleared him for a field trip. We had to cancel a trip we had arranged with a realtor.
Is there a way we can arrange a future trip, in the near future, before the condo becomes unavailable? I would like to do it early this week. If my husband returns home first, is he going to be allowed to make field trips while he is in therapy? I have become greatly concerned about my future.
Anything you could do to help us would be appreciated.
Continuation of Prayer
I have turned to Alina, the social worker, for help. Where else can I go? Should I write Denise, the clinical liaison from our retirement community as well? I had planned to call her, but she may be hard to reach; I have her email.
I did write her, and I will try to call her tomorrow though I could also text her and direct her attention to her email. I was not impressed by the way she bullied my husband into accepting outpatient rehab services at the retirement community without presenting them as an option. The rehab center made this doubly difficult because they will likely not release my husband unless he does accept those services. We were forced into treatment, and that treatment will keep us from living together for perhaps months.
Work with It
Instead of getting angry about it though, Lord, I am going to work with it. My husband probably does need the therapy. If it helps him to live more independently, it will help our marriage. I have written Alina and Denise. Is there anyone else? I also called to leave a message to my husband that I will be there tomorrow.
Lord, Alex Emrick sent me a text last night that he was sorry he missed my call. He asked if we could talk tomorrow. He is as good as I thought. It was just yesterday that I started putting quite a few names into my blog. If my blog ever becomes popular, I could talk about real people, and it would be like writing reviews on them. I wonder how that would affect how people deal with me if they knew I am writing about them?
I want to mention my past mentor, Michael Miner–his real name. He is a business owner and a video photographer. His business is Levitate Online. His influence on me has been transforming. He always helped me to see a bright vision of the future. Talking to him the other night, I realized I could still do the Landmark Forum, if I chose. I gave Landmark a deposit years ago, but I did not complete the forum because I was afraid I would fall asleep at the wheel, driving home after 10:00 PM.
Now the Denver Forum is right here. I could easily get to and from there via Lyft. I would just need some time away from my husband to take the forum. Would Landmark give me further transformation? Michael thinks it would. He credits Landmark for much of what he is today. He was actually homeless at one time. Landmark could totally rewrite my vision of the future and help me achieve it too.
Now, Michael lives life pretty much on his own terms. He does not worry what people think of him. He is highly creative and says he can do anything. What he says he wants to do he does. He is less concerned about what is ‘right’ and more about what works. While walking anywhere, he sings. I love to sing too, but I worry about what people think. Much as I would like to be more like Michael, I am stuck being myself, with all my hang-ups and self-defeating rules. However, there are some redeeming things about myself, and I am starting to ditch those self-defeating rules and create a positive vision for my future.
I have kept my distance from Michael since my marriage until last week. However, I think I need his influence to really sail in life. I do not need to contact him often, but I think I want to at times. Michael can pump me right out of a depression. He understands me better than my own mother.
Lord, would it be okay to contact Michael as often as once a month?
I got the go ahead. I may not call him that often, but I want the okay to do it that often. If I do Landmark, Michael will definitely want to know. Michael encouraged me to write a book about transformation. The pre-published pdf is Joyful Vibrance: Transform Your Body Image, Energy, and Mood, which you are free to enjoy and comment on. He also encouraged me to work on my Android app JV Life Tracker. I used to email him parts of the Java code. He could not understand it, but he was impressed.
Alex called and talked to me about acquiring the property. I told him we were working at getting my husband to see it. My mother got involved in a real estate investing company that picks and manages properties for you. I was uncomfortable with the idea of buying property I had not physically seen before and could not walk around on all the time. Is that just another self-defeating rule? Alex reminded me today that there would be other properties if we lose our chance on this one. He would know. I just need to trust him.
Currently the Home Owners Association for the property is in an arbitration dispute with the builder over the stucco. Though I can see nothing wrong with the stucco, it could be expensive to fix and ultimately raise the HOA assessment, if the builder does not have to pay for it. The arbitration has depressed the price on the property and kept it on the market longer than normal. My husband was encouraged because he thinks we could possibly get the property at a cut-rate price. If we really want it, the arbitration could work in our favor by keeping the property from being sold before we have a chance to act on it and depressing the price.
It is just a matter of whether we want to take the risks involved. What do you think, Lord? Is this property worth going for or should we pass it by?
Before getting an answer on that, let me think it through. If the builder is found at fault, it should pay for the stucco, of course. If intelligent people find otherwise, perhaps it should be repaired under routine maintenance and paid for by the HOA. I do not think it would have to all be done at once. The buildings do not look bad at all. The complex as a whole is very attractive. It would seem that stucco maintenance should be budgeted for anyway. The cost will be spread over all the homeowners. If it costs the home owners more than they expected, that is the price of having a nice building.
That is kind of how I see it. There is a good chance that the builder will pay, but if not, perhaps the other parties will admit that maintenance is part of the price of doing business. At any rate, the HOA assessment would have to multiply by more than ten to exceed what we would have to pay in fees for this retirement community. Lord, let me ask that question again.
It appears that if I am okay whether or not the HOA wins their dispute, then the property is worth going for. Like I said, it may stay on the market just long enough for us to purchase it. If not, there are other properties. Lord, do you think it would work well for us? It appears that it would. Let me think that through as well.
First, and foremost it has handicap access: 1) a ramp to the front door from the street, 2) an elevator from the basement, 3) ample width on all doorways, 4) hardwood and short-haired carpet that a wheelchair can easily cross, 5) regular-sized tubs that are easier to step into and out of than jetted tubs, 6) no stairs within the apartment, 7) a way to get my husband out of the building without using the stairs or elevator in case of emergency.
Second, for me it has wired Internet access for my desktop computer; granite counter tops; tall cupboards in the kitchen for extra storage; a place for a digital piano; at least two places for an armoire for clothing; an extra bedroom and bathroom for guests or storage, storage in the basement; indoor parking, close access to many businesses, including our bank; central air (I hate maintaining evaporative coolers); a nice refrigerator, washer, and dryer I do not have to move from Utah.
For my husband, a nice patio on which to catch the sunset, no yard work to worry about.
It sounds like a dream, does it not? Lord, what can I do to bring it about? Give me vision.
Sunday Evening Christian Fellowship
I went to the Sunday Evening Christian Fellowship with Jacque. A vibrant Christian speaker named Charlynne M. Boddie spoke. Even though she is overweight, she dressed handsomely, wore jewelry and makeup, and looked great. She is African American, about 56 years old, and very energetic. She had her own Hollywood show, ministered to Oprah Winfrey and gave her a Bible, served as a press officer in the White House, served a Christian mission in Greece, served as an advisor to top generals in the U.S., and is serving as a minister in the UK for the police and prison systems.
As a minister and author, she spoke of faith and her experiences of praying for and anointing sick people and witnessing their healing. In Greece, she followed the Still Small Voice and found crowds of people waiting for her ministry arranged by people she did not know who had seen her beforehand in vision. At one time, she sold all her possessions and went on a mission, an act Jesus recommended in the Bible to perfect oneself.
Seeing her successfully following the Still Small Voice and healing people throughout her ministry is an example I am looking for. I have always believed women could heal people, but the religion of my birth excluded women from giving blessings of healing. Charlynne confirmed my decision to become a Christian, and encouraged me to follow the Still Small Voice, much like I have been doing in this book chapter/blog entry. I desire to participate in healings myself. I pray that opportunities for that will be in my future.
My weight went down by 0.8 pounds last night. I am relieved but still need to be vigilant. Not being on the road yesterday made a difference. I envision being able to manage my weight no matter what my circumstances are. I can defeat my self-defeating behaviors and allow bacteria and animals to have some of my food.