The deaths of two police officers here in Westerville is hanging so heavy in the air. Lives snuffed out in a senseless moment of violence.
I was already thinking about death this week for two reasons.
One, I watch the show This Is Us, and [spoiler alert] we saw how Jack dies this week. But what we really saw was the aftermath, both the night he died and twenty years later.
Randall and his perfectionism.
Kate and her food addiction.
Kevin and his drugs and need for attention.
Two, this past Friday was February 9th, and my dad died on Friday, February 9th, 1979. Thirty-nine years ago. I was aware of the entire evening this year. Some years pass with very little recognition of anniversary dates. I wasn't particularly sad, I was just very, very aware.
I think, after all this time, I am actually experiencing a deeper level of healing from that loss, in part due to the show This Is Us.
I can see how Kate would blame herself, but I can also see how that's not true at all, and she had no control over that situation.
I can see how Kevin zoomed in on the fact that their last words were a disagreement, and that he wasn't there, but I can also see how that doesn't mean what he thinks it means.
Those have been thoughts of mine in various forms over most of my life, about both my mom and my dad.
I guess what this has to do with fitness is this.
I don't think I would have changed my life, gotten healthy, dropped my victim identity, or lived a life of purpose if I hadn't dealt with all of that. I couldn't pretend it wasn't there and go about my business. I couldn't keep covering up the thought that IF ONLY I had done/not done this or that, if only I had been there, if only my last words were different, then I would be OK.
Sometimes things start to arrange in my life through divine movement of puzzle pieces, so I can see the picture more clearly. That's happening right now on a deep, healing level. Thirty nine years later.
My encouragement to you today is this. Healing always has another layer. More truth. More freedom. Less guilt. Less shame.
For me, trying to force myself to exercise and eat better while having all that guilt and shame slithering around in me would have been impossible.
It would have been a white knuckle experience of trying to hold onto some sort of manufactured self-discipline, unable to hang onto it for any length of time, and eventually ending up right back where I started.
For some of us, getting to the root of our out-of-balance life means dealing with the hard stuff. Not even deaths necessarily. Losses, pain, guilt, shame, disappointment.
The incredibly good news is once you go there, and it starts to heal, the lies start to be replaced with the truth. Over and over and over. You might even think you are done, and a TV series comes along to show you that there is more freedom to be had. More light to be shone in the dark. More peace of mind and peace with your past.
My prayer to you tonight is that you are set free from disappointment, guilt and shame, and you claim your health, fitness, joy, peace and purpose.