I hate diets.
I’ve lost some pounds over the last 10 years, and done so with such repugnance that I found them all again and brought along some friends to spite the diet that I had used to lose them in the first place.
Diets don’t work for me. The main reason is because I have just a small percentage, almost undetectable some might say, of Rebel Blood in me. I mean, I’m mostly a go-with-the-flow kinda gal. But tell me I can’t have the slice of cake and I’m all up in your face with the other ¾ of the entire cake hanging out of my mouth, icing in my teeth and crumbs cascading down my shirt. Because you told me I couldn’t.
I’ve learned something from all of this. I struggle against the DON’T statements. I do better with DO statements. I do better if I’m attempting to drink 4 bottles of water in a day than if my rule is to not drink a single Diet Mountain Dew. Not drink Diet Mountain Dew? What are we, animals?
But, I’m going to set physical dieting aside. Because tomorrow is Thanksgiving. Only evil people discuss dieting the day before Thanksgiving. I’m actually thinking about the concept of dieting in relation to gratitude and positive thinking. I haven’t done myself any favors here. And I keep thinking things like, “I’ve got to stop thinking this,” or “I need to not complain about this thing,” or “I shouldn’t use sarcasm anymore.” Etc. But that puts me in my rebellion against diets zone and I fight against that.
Instead, I need to go down the DO statements road. I need to spend 10 minutes a day listing the things I’m thankful for. I need to season my speech with grace (Colossians 4:6) by looking for kind things to say or ways to build someone else up. I need to take my thoughts captive and make them look more like unicorns and rainbows than CNN’s reporting on the 4 year old that stabbed his cat to death.
I can choose what goes in, for the most part. I can’t choose what I hear crossing a parking lot, but I can choose my movies, my reading materials, my news outlets, or my friends. And I can choose to lasso my plumb donkey foolish brain into working for a good cause.
Instead of noticing the bloody molar that Jenna pulled out and dropped onto the porch table, I choose to be thankful she didn’t ask ME to pull it.
Instead of noticing the EXTREME noise level of 7 rowdy children, I choose to be thankful for my ear buds.
Instead of being grumpy that the guy at the next table in Fuddrucker’s had clearly not showered in well over a year, I choose to be thankful that Fuddrucker’s still exists in Texas. And that I was able to escape to a table across the restaurant. That was a life and death situation. I am not kidding you. Not even a little.
This went off the rails. So I’ll just end with this.
It’s been a YEAR for my family. And James Dobson’s people haven’t called me once for an interview on any of their podcasts. And I’ve had to restart my positivity regime 17 different times. But standing off in the gravel as I get up and brush myself off to get back on the rails are a host of friends and family. People that love me in spite of the fact that I am winning all the wrong awards. People that are happy to put their boot against my backside and push me back into the game. Who somehow make failing at life fun. For this, I could not be any more thankful. For these people and for the God who put them on my path, I raise my forkful of cherry pie and my can of Diet Mountain Dew, and I say a sincere and heartfelt thank you.