Friday, May 04, 2007

I was watching Oprah a few days ago, as I do fairly often now that I am a stay at home mom, and there was a woman on that I've seen on the show several times before. Although I can't now remember her name, she is the spit fire woman who used to weigh 500+ pounds and her life has been chronicled on the show for the last few 20 years, through the weight struggle, through a bypass surgery, and now through the new struggle of her new body, image, and self-confidence. She lost something like 400 pounds. In looking at her you can tell she still has a lot of loose skin, but regardless she looks amazing. She has a glow and a joy. It was also very obvious to me that she has gained immense wisdom of life and people. Whenever someone goes through a struggle, or a hard time, they come out (if they come out) with a new perspective and new found wisdom for life. She said something on the show that was one of those things that when you hear you know you should probably write down and remember for the rest of your life. She said, and I'm paraphrasing, that there was one thing piece of advice offered by people who had gone through her similar journey. The difference between being a regular person and an obese person is that when a regular person eats a huge meal or binges on ice cream or whatever the next day they just move forward, forget it happened in a way, and they step back into their regular life and regular eating habits. The mind of an obese person says however, when they have a buffet dinner and eat way too much food, the next day they fret over that and it "eats" away at them (so to speak) and they feel guilty and that guilt causes them to binge again and again. More a mindset of - well, I've already failed so I might as well give up and just let myself go. So, the advice being to get back up - so, you've failed. Okay, what next. Make amends and keep moving.

I was reminded of this women last night while listening to a talk by Elder Holland. Les and I went on a road trip for the weekend to visit his Brother's family in Arizona and also his Sister's family in Vegas. Les has downloaded on his ipod lots of church talks so in trying to stay awake at 1:00am last night we listened to several of them. Although it might seem contrary, Elder Holland, to me, is engaging enough to keep me awake while driving in the middle of the night (even when Les promises he won't fall asleep and he does anyway :).

He was telling a story of Winston Churchill - the speech he gave to parliament as they were waging war against Hitler Germany ...
"We have before us an ordeal of the most grievous kind. We have before us many, many long months of struggle and of suffering. You ask, What is our policy? I will say; "It is to wage war, by sea, land and air, with all our might and with all the strength that God can give us: to wage war against a monstrous tyranny, never surpassed in the dark lamentable catalogue of human crime. That is our policy." You ask, What is our aim? I can answer with one word: Victory - victory at all costs, victory in spite of all terror, victory however long and hard the road may be; for without victory there is no survival."

"I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat."

The thought came into my head how this women's advice applied to life in so many different ways - but mainly how it applies to sin. I have a great friend who is plagued over the bad choices of her little sister. She made a few choices - dumb choices - but small. She was too ashamed and embarrassed and guilt ridden to turn them around. So she kept making bad choices, again, and again, and they became bigger. Soon she was carrying around a lot of extra weight - not from donuts. She thought she was in too deep - she thought she couldn't fix such a big mess. The lesson is simply that even if you are carrying around 550 pounds of extra weight, it's not ever too late.