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Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Starting improv classes at JesterZ

I’ve been dieting since I was eight years-old.  I've been overweight most my adult life.  I’m maxed out with “You can’t eat this” and “You can’t eat that.”  But, now that I’ve been practicing intermittent fasting for eight months, now that I’ve had so much healing, God’s helped me realize my inner strength and my relationship with food has improved, am I mature enough to take my eating patterns and health to the next level?  In other words, can I give up my stash of M&M's?  If I do this, if I take on healthy-eating the part of me that’s a victim, who has self-pity, feels sorry for herself, “it’s not fair” that girl cannot be present.  So much of my personality has been redefined this past 8-months.  I’ve developed new habits.  I’ve wrapped my arms around my slowly dissolving belly fat and instead of my usual resentment and self-loathing, I’ve told it “I love you.”  I’ve recognized I have a negative body image and combat it with pointing out the good I see in my body (this one will still take some time). 

 “You carry the weight of the world on your shoulders,” my husband, the counselor said to me the other night. 

I know this.  I carry a lot of weight.  I need to lighten up.

It’s time to give it to God.  He never asked me to carry it.  He knew it would be too heavy.  My faith needs to be bigger than my worry.  My passion needs to have action.  My fast-offering of $1,000 to Rising Star Outreach was a good first step in helping the girls of India.  Attending the first ever Prolife Women’s Conference in Dallas was a great big step in helping women and children.  Journaling with my boys, teaching them how to write their feelings – again, great things, but I still struggle with how I feel about my body.  Shouldn’t it be easier to fix how I feel about myself than to do all these things?  Even after losing 30 pounds, I guess not.

One thing I’ve learned about myself is I have a huge appetite for life.  If I don’t have a 16-hour fasting window every day, I will feed that larger-than-life appetite with food instead of ideas, love and discipline.  I need intermittent fasting like a child crossing the street holds onto her mother’s hand.  So what am I going to do?  Can I take on some eating restrictions, a “diet” some might call it (ugh!!)?  This is what I’ve been trying to avoid and I’d hoped intermittent fasting could do it all, but it’s time the M&M’s go.  

Until I fix me, until I really see me, until I believe in all I’m capable of accomplishing, I’m only giving at a certain level.  I've always wanted more, more energy, more ideas, more opportunities and yes, more babies.  I want to sponsor 100 girls from India.  I want to help countless mothers understand the amazing worth of their unborn children.  I want to teach schools of children how to write and journal, but I need to take care of my body and how I think about myself.  Healing me will help me become more.  This is what I want.  Intermittent fasting and healthy eating, huh?  Is this the next step?  I feel it is, but I can’t take all this too seriously.  I can’t let the word diet “doom and gloom” me, so I have to take on a fresh perspective.  I need more joy, light and humor.  I need to laugh.  I need to be forgiving of myself and “go with the flow.”  I need to listen to my heart and take care of myself.  I have so much to learn and I need to know I’m worth it.  How do I get there?  How do I continue to change my perspective and develop the attributes of what I’m in need of? 

When the idea came to me, I knew it was the right step. 

I started an internet search for improv classes in the Phoenix area when I found JesterZ.  They are a local comedy club that offers family-friendly entertainment.  Perfect, because I couldn't handle listening to profanity, dirty jokes and self-degradation.  I ain't no Amy Schumer.  I emailed the director and asked when classes start.  His email response was both satisfying and terrifying.

“The eight-week beginning course starts next Tuesday night.”

You mean the same Tuesday night I drive kids to baseball, basketball and swim practice?  The same Tuesday night I help kids with homework, make dinner and chase after a one-year little boy who is literally into everything!  If this was going to work, I would have to do something I haven’t done for a really long time.  I would have to put my needs first. 

Alright carpool angels, frozen dinners and lifelong dreams, please step up, use all your resources and make this work and you know what, it did.  I started last Tuesday night and it was amazing.  The people in my class are brave and cool.

Sidenote: my degree is in communication.  I took advanced public speaking at ASU.  During my Mormon mission on Temple Square I was a tour guide, translation:  public speaking.  You'd think I could do this, but I'm a writer now, you know hidden behind a computer screen with plenty of time to think out my thoughts and get all serious.  Comedy is impromptu and spontaneous and just what I need (huge sigh).  Did I mention there is a free PerformanceShowcase: Tuesday, November 8th 7:00 p.m.  Yeah, that's terrifying.

Here's to the next level of confidence, self-love and talent-development.  I can do hard things.

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