Skip to main content

Fast On.

For 21 days, we are joining our church family in the Daniel Fast (we started Monday, so this is day 3). If you aren't familiar, this fast involves eliminating meat, dairy, animal products, sugar, coffee, tea, leavened bread and more. You basically eat fruits, vegetables, and nuts and drink water.

Historically, people have fasted for many purposes: clarity, peace, closer relationship with God, an answer to a prayer and so forth. My fast is about surrendering deeper to God's call on my life. I didn't make New Year's resolutions this year for several reasons. First, resolutions feel a lot like rules, and I don't like rules. In fact, I have spent a good part of my life breaking them. And second, I have quit all the things I want to quit, and I don't intend to take up any new bad habits. If I do, then I'll rethink this next January 1st.

What I do, however, is start every day with the promise of being kinder, more patient, more compassionate. I really believe turning 40 changes you, and I feel now more than ever that I can really be in the moment. I no longer get all worked up about a stain on the carpet or a broken glass or any other sort of material loss that would have unhinged me before.

Things aren't as important anymore. I used to want new furniture and new clothes and new stuff (we did just get a new car, but that was a necessity not a luxury), now, I am outrageously happy with what I have. My kitchen table scarred with glitter, nail polish, paint, and more. My sofa worn from three kids bouncing on it. Our house and our stuff is more than good enough.

And in that same vein, so is my body. This morning, when I looked in the mirror, instead of seeing hair that desperately needed to be washed, I saw little fingers twisting that hair to fall asleep at night. I saw the one perfect curl that falls beside my face every morning because my husband twirls it around his finger when he falls sleep. And I am enough. My unwashed, uncolored hair is good enough.

Instead of thinking what new exercise I could pin (yes, pin, someday I will actually do them, maybe) to flatten my stomach, I remembered the three times that same stomach had been stretched to outrageous proportions as my most precious gifts grew inside. My not-as-flat-as-it-once-was stomach is good enough.

I looked at the lines on my face and thought not of what new wrinkle cream would come in my Birchbox, but instead of all the experiences etched in those lines. I might have considered the wrinkle cream for minute; give me a break I'm in process. I thought of eyes that winked at my little athletes so they knew I saw their play and lips that had kissed so many boo boos and feverish heads. The face in the mirror doesn't look the same as the face in my mind. The face in the mirror doesn't look the same as it did 10 years ago, but it's good enough.

In my 20's and 30's, I wanted to take pictures and make scrapbooks of every single moment (not that there's anything wrong with that) but now, I just want to live in those moments. The memories are all ready captured in my heart and my mind.

So today, hungry, 15 pounds away from my goal weight, with dirty hair and a cold, I'm good enough. Good enough for my beautiful husband, my amazing little loves, my friends, and most of all for God. So, if you are looking in the mirror and seeing flaws, please stop. Look at what's right. Be as kind to yourself as you are to your best friend. See yourself as the person who loves you the most sees you. You are more than good enough; in fact, you are wonderful, and you are loved.


  1. I LOVE your new blog design. It's more than good enough. Some of the fonts are wonky, but I think of the monks who died creating those fonts and know they would want me to love them. So I do. Because they are good enough.

  2. Beautiful and true words Mary~ Love it and the 40's!

  3. The people who truly love us appreciate us for who we are, and not an ideal of what we should be. And loving ourselves is truly part of this as well...

    1. Absolutely, Irving. Thank you for reading and commenting. Hope that you and your family had a wonderful Christmas and best wishes for many blessings in 2014.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Did I Love Him Enough?

I just started reading a new book. It's called Weight Loss for People Who Feel Too Much by Colette Baron-Reid, who I discovered on my current favorite podcast: This is Fifty With Sheri and Nancy. It is blowing my mind and showing me that some of the extra pounds I'm carrying don't even belong to me. Seriously. This is yours, this is his, this is hers, and oh wait, THAT? That belongs to a person who isn't even part of my life anymore! Great. Take your shit back.

More on that later. But, listen to the podcast. Seriously, you will love it!

Anyway, while in this super zen, grown-up, boundary-setting, higher self head space, I need to tackle an issue I've been avoiding for about 18 years but really strongly avoiding for the last 6 months. My son is growing up. He graduates from high school on Sunday, and in a few months, he's moving to Columbus to attend THE Ohio State University.

Can I tell you a secret? I used to LOVE everything about THE Ohio State University, bu…

Why Didn't I Report It?

When I was 17, I went with friends to a party at a boy's house from another school. I drank too much and passed out. I don't remember much about the incident, but I woke up with my friend screaming at a boy, pulling me up and dragging me to the car. She told me that she came looking for me and found me passed out. The boy had his penis in my face. I don't remember it. Thankfully.

I never told my parents who would have said, "How stupid could you be? You shouldn't have put yourself in that position." They would not have said, "No one should put his penis in your face without your consent."

A few months ago, I saw a picture of that boy on social media. He's a man now. With a beautiful family. He probably doesn't remember that night. I wondered: What might have happened if my friend didn't walk in and tell him to get his dick out of my face? Were there were other girls whose friends didn't come looking for them? Did they ever tell anyone…

Before and After

We all have defining moments...instances when something happens--good or bad--and you know from that point forward you'll measure your life in terms of before and after that event. Of course there are sometimes more than one, but there is nearly always one.

For me, it was my brother's death. February 5, 1989. There have been others. A dear friend's death in 1992. Another brother died in 1997. My dad died in 2011. But February 5, that was the one for me.

I started to think of and look at things in terms of before Chris died and after.

Before Chris died, I believed in magic. In God. In miracles. After, I believed that you should never let yourself get too comfortable or trust happiness because it would be ripped away from you.

Before Chris died, I often felt special and love and cherished. For too long after, I felt pretty worthless.

Before Chris died, I believed that I was brave and strong. After he died, I felt weak and afraid when I needed to be brave and strong.

Before …