Thursday, December 22, 2016

Comfort and Joy

Comfort and joy were in short supply a couple months ago when I was watching my weight steadily climb up the chart. I was feeling anxious and sad, and would have given anything to find comfort and joy again. 

On a four hour flight from Chicago to Vegas back in October, I took advantage of the time, and read most of Lysa Terkeurst's book Made to Crave. When I first opened the book, and read the dedication, tears ran down my cheeks. The seeds of hope were planted in my heart, and I determined to figure out how I could loosen the grip food seemed to have on me.

Made to Crave dedication, Lysa TerKeurst

A few weeks after I finished reading that book, on November 22, 2016, I admitted to you that my weight had gotten out of control in The Number Which Shall Not Be Written. I couldn't even write the number numerically; and told you I had hit "two-oh-two. Point six." I promised myself I would be publicly accountable in a month's time. Today's my day of accountability.

Here it is. One month later, I weigh 193.8. Almost nine pounds gone in four weeks. To see my weight moving in the other direction gives me so much hope. I was beginning to think I just didn't have it in me to change my habits. 

But here we are. I've concentrated my efforts on dealing with emotions in constructive ways: taking care of myself, writing, visiting with friends, talking to Chuck, and talking to God. I can honestly say I haven't turned to food for comfort this month.

From Thanksgiving until Christmas, I have been trying to take care of myself better. Instead of relying on food for anything beyond my nutritional needs, I've been trying to find simple things that bring me comfort. Yep, and joy. Focusing on things that lift my spirits makes it a little easier to stay the course when it might be tempting to slip back into my old habits. 

I have taken comfort in deeper conversations with Chuck, trying to understand my husband and myself better. I have sought solace in prayer, and have found not only that, but a strength that is not my own. I have found both comfort and joy in so many small things.

What makes you feel comforted? What brings you joy? I will share some of my favorite things, in the hopes these might help you remember the little things that might comfort you during these cold, winter days.


Soft socks and warm blankets. 

Yummy herbal teas and favorite movies.

Writing. Writing to yourself in a journal, or to a friend in a letter.

Making time for friends; 
inviting another couple for dinner, 
Facetiming faraway girlfriends, 
having a friend over for coffee, and
having young adults at the house. 
Positive people recharge me with good energy.

Enjoying the company of  the little ones in your life.

Yes, we made chocolate-dipped pretzel rods, and I gave them all away.

Enjoying things that make you feel young.

Laughing all the way...down the sledding hill at the park.

Baking things for others that aren't a temptation for yourself.
I love to bake, and it makes me happy to share from my kitchen.

Focusing on nutrition. 
Most days begin with a spinach-protein smoothie. 
Quick snacks include veggie sticks, protein bars, and

Making time to move: yoga inside; walking outside. 

It's not all about restriction, though.
Small indulgences, planned in advance,
give me something to look forward to.
I don't tell myself I can't have foods I like.
I allow myself to enjoy whatever I want,
in a small portion, on special occasions.
I waited two weeks for this brownie.

Feeding your spirit in meaningful ways.
For me, that includes 

prayer, reading, and meditation. 
What would feed your spirit?

As this holiday season approaches the new year, 
I hope we'll all find more comfort and joy in the little things. 

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!


  1. Merry Christmas, D. May our Father in Heaven continue to bless you with comfort and joy. Love you! Kathy

    1. Merry Christmas, Kathy! Thank you so much. I love you, too!

  2. Great update! I hope you continue to find comfort and joy.

    1. Thank you, Denise! Merry Christmas. You have been in my thoughts and prayers this week. Christmas will be so different for you this year. I'm so glad you have your big family to lean on.

  3. I think friends far and near give great joy and encouragement. I love how you have handled your food interaction. I think you may have found your management of it. May your Christmas be merry and bright and your new year full of new joys.

    1. I have wonderful friends. I wonder if you and I will ever be able to meet. I really appreciate teh way you give joy and encouragement. Thank you so much, Stella. Merry Christmas!

  4. Oh bless your heart - My weight also has been creeping north - since my August gallbladder surgery. I am planning the official ATTACK this new year.

    1. Happy New Year, Debby! Wishing you peace and happiness.


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