So now lets delve a little deeper into Kate- Who is she? Well, I can tell you a little, because she happens to be me. I can tell you that over the past few years I have been trying to make a big change, a change in my health and habits.
It was probably a decade ago that the first medical professional told me I should lose weight. Not just because I was overweight, but because I was overweight with a family history of medical issues which were affected, aggravated or possibly even brought on by being overweight. I agreed and I signed up to be able to use the employee fitness room at the hospital where I was working, as part of that I had a fitness evaluation done, I remember I weighed 190 pounds and I had about 35% body fat. I was AMAZED! A few of my coworkers signed up at the same time as me and we all met in the morning before work and walked a few miles, 2 or 3 times a week. It worked. I got down to about 175 pounds and I was happy with my progress. I managed to maintain a weight around 170-180 for a few years. In those years I got married, and I stopped going to the gym before work, or after work and I got back up to 190 and then eventually found myself at 202. It was at this point that my doctor not only told me that I should lose some weight,( I was bemoaning the fact that I wanted to have a baby but couldn't seem to get pregnant.) but he also gave me a little magazine called "Weigh to Health" that gave tips on how to go about losing weight and getting healthier.
And that is where I was a few years ago. Ken bought me a Treadmill for Valentines day that year- because that is what I wanted. And I once again started to walk a few miles every other day or so, then I started to run a little, eventually I was able to run 3.1 miles. I lost about 25 pounds. I ran my first 5k and and we got pregnant! I gained 60 pounds during that pregnancy, and after it was all over I found myself once again staring at a scale that seemed to be stuck between 190 and 202. I would lose, but then I would gain. I knew there had to be something more I could do. I changed our diet a little, more vegetables, less meat. It helped, but I still was kind of stuck. I started running again and had some success, I got down to 183 pounds and then I found out I was pregnant!
By 26 weeks I had gained 40+ pounds, well on my way to gaining 60 pounds again. Then I found out that I failed my second Glucose test. I had Gestational Diabetes. I had to change, for the good of myself and my baby. I was told that if I didn't lose weight after this baby was born I would have a 90% chance of having diabetes withing the next 5 years. And you know what, that was enough for me. I don't know how it all worked, but I am pretty sure God's hand has been mixed up in my adventures over the past year. He gave me the opportunity to change my diet while I was pregnant- an opportunity to learn new things about food and about myself and what I could do if I had a good reason to do it. I also believe he changed my body somehow. I am able to do things now that I had previously tried and couldn't do. It took me 6 months of trying to be able to run 3 miles without stopping. After B was born, and I could run again, it took me about 2 months to get back to 3 miles, and then I went out one day and ran 6! Just like that, no problems, I was even pushing a jogging stroller, and not only did I run it, but I enjoyed it. It was MIRACULOUS! How in the world? There was no reason in the world, it was a blessing, I like to think that God gave me my little baby B as a way to bring about a miraculous change in my body. Someday I am going to ask him about how all that works, for now I am just grateful.
Here is the part where I talk about Identities! Just in case you were worried that I would never get to the point. So i am sitting here in my new pants and if I look down at my legs, I really don't see much of a difference. I see my legs, my belly, they look pretty much the same to me. I do see subtle changes in my face, I see more muscle definition in my legs and arms, even a little in my abs which is kind of cool. But I don't look in the mirror and see a stranger, I see me. I am still the same person, just because I've lost 25% of myself doesn't change me for the better or for the worse. I am Kate- I am a precious Daughter of God, I am a beloved daughter of Al and Billie, I am the silly wife of Ken and the frazzled mother of J and B. I had the opportunity to spend time with a friend who has been struggling with some horrible things that happened to her while she was young. She, like many people, sought to control her life in anyway possible and eventually she developed an eating disorder. She then struggled with the eating disorder, got better and recently relapsed into the old habits. I was allowed to be part of her life while she was doing her best to change those habits. I tried to let her know how much I loved her, how very much of worth she was and that I fully supported her. I hope she still knows that I believe those things and that I still pray for her. We once talked about being comfortable with who we are and I got to thinking that she and I might be having similar experiences, both struggling to be healthy, knowing that there was a good chance that once we got to "Healthy" we might not recognize ourselves. I am starting to realize that I do recognize myself, because I was not my weight, my body is part of me, but it is not all of me. I think this is something very important to remember, as we look at ourselves and as we look at others. We are very complex creatures, God wouldn't have made us any other way, we are not one dimensional begins, we are more like the most intricately cut gems you could ever imagine, with millions of facets. Each facet could represent a different part of our life, a lesson learned, a trial endured. We are brilliant in our beauty, if we allow ourselves to be polished and shaped by God.
So that's my secret identity, I'm Gorgeous, just the way God made me. It has nothing to do with how I look physically from moment to moment, day to day or year to year. But is has everything to do with knowing myself, knowing who I am and why I do things. I am still the same person I was 16 years ago when I asked God if he was really there, and if he really cared about me. He answered my prayer then, and he has allowed me to get to know myself little by little since then, any changes I make to my physical appearance don't seem to change ME. I am grateful for that. I hope I can help my children, and all my other loved ones, come to know WHO they are as well. So that someday, when we are all together again with God we won't be surprised to see ourselves as he sees us, because we will be comfortable with who we are, we are His Children.
Well, thanks for reading, thanks for supporting and loving me. I have to go finish my chores now!