Sunday, November 08, 2009

Healthy Mind, Healthy Body, Healthy Soul

In order to be the person I was created to be, and the mom I want to be, I have realized the most important thing to do first is take care of me. This includes being physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually strong. There are some areas that come easy for me and some that don't. As some of you know, exercise is something I enjoy and I look forward to. It is my time away and time to chat. I am working on eating healthy. I try to take time each day to read my scriptures and to write down my thoughts. I can tell what a difference this habit does for me. Emotionally, it is very important for me to connect with my kids, my husband, and other adults. Sometimes I go into my own little world, and then I realize I truly need people. Mentally, there is not always much stimulation. I enjoy working a few hours a week at the Y and answering questions about health and fitness. I especially enjoy teaching an 8 weeks to wellness class. These keep my mind active. I have been thinking a lot lately about the things I bring into my head. With my ADD, the more I fill my head with, the more easily I can be distracted and lose sight of my goals. My awesome aunt sent this forward today. Although I am not always a huge fan of forwards, this one made me think:

The Stranger

A few years after I was born, my Dad met a stranger who was new to our small Texas town. From the beginning, Dad was fascinated with this enchanting newcomer and soon invited him to live with our family. The stranger was quickly accepted and was around from then on.

As I grew up, I never questioned his place in my family.. In my young mind, he had a special niche. My parents were complementary instructors: Mom taught me good from evil, and Dad taught me to obey. But the stranger...he was our storyteller. He would keep us spellbound for hours on end with adventures, mysteries and comedies.

If I wanted to know anything about politics, history or science, he always knew the answers about the past, understood the present and even seemed able to predict the future! He took my family to the first major league ball game. He made me laugh, and he made me cry. The stranger never stopped
talking, but Dad didn't seem to mind.

Sometimes, Mom would get up quietly while the rest of us were shushing each other to listen to what he had to say, and she would go to the kitchen for peace and quiet. (I wonder now if she ever prayed for the stranger to leave.)

Dad ruled our household with certain moral convictions, but the stranger never felt obligated to honor them. Profanity, for example, was not allowed in our home... Not from us, our friends or any visitors. Our longtime visitor, however, got away with four-letter words that burned my ears and made my dad squirm and my mother blush. My Dad didn't permit the liberal use of alcohol. But the stranger encouraged us to try it on a regular basis. He made cigarettes look cool, cigars manly and pipes distinguished. He talked freely (much too freely!) about sex. His comments were sometimes blatant, sometimes suggestive, and generally embarrassing.

I now know that my early concepts about relationships were influenced strongly by the stranger. Time after time, he opposed the values of my parents, yet he was seldom rebuked... And NEVER asked to leave.

More than fifty years have passed since the stranger moved in with our family. He has blended right in and is not nearly as fascinating as he was at first. Still, if you could walk into my parents' den today, you would still find him sitting over in his corner, waiting for someone to listen to him talk and watch him draw his pictures.

His name?.... .. .

We just call him 'TV.'

(Note: This should be required reading for every household in America !)

He has a wife now...We call her 'Computer.'

So, I am planning to cut out as much TV as I can. When I have downtime, I am going to choose to read a book or play a game with Jeff. I will also be picky with my books. :-)

The other aspect to my physical health is getting enough sleep. So, that is my other focus.

What are everyone else's thoughts?


bedelia said...

did not see that coming! In one of my singles wards the Bishop challenged everyone to read their scriptures for 30 mins a day. I stunk at this. Didn't do it. Then a home teacher asked/said something about why it was so hard to do and gave the excuse that we all had busy lives, blah, blah, blah. And something clicked in my head, I responded that busy-ness was a crock. At the time my roommates and I didn't have TV but every week I made sure I was at someone's house to see my favorite show but for some reason I couldn't come up with 30 mins a day. And so I gave up TV, I decided I wouldn't watch TV until I'd established the habit of reading since that was really what I wanted to be. Anyways, we currently don't have TV. We have a TV for movies and frankly, we mostly watch kid videos that the worst thing is words like idiot and stupid. I love it. I don't ever want to have TV. I get so sucked in and waste so much time watching TV when we have it. Now I just have to kick my computer habit. Yikes! And I always read your blog, I'm sorry I'm a lousy commenter. I really enjoy your blog.

Emily Laing said...

The best thing we did was get rid of cable. Sure, I miss the food network and HGTV, but if I really must see an episode of Ugly Betty, then I can find it on the internet. My children are not as materially driven, as a side benefit and they are definitely more creative. We also have our computer in the kitchen, so no one can hog it and it is monitored. Good for you. It's hard to stick to. We had to go cold turkey. Yes, we own a tv but get no reception, just movie night is a big deal for us.

Ranell said...

I definitely wonder how much more productive I could be without the TV. I would gladly get rid of the TV, but what do you do when someone else in the house (not a kid) relies on it heavily and thinks it would be silly to get rid of it? Well, I do what I can do, which is not watch it during the day, severely limit how much the kids watch and do my best not to veg out for hours in the evenings.

Rach said...

I totally guessed that one! It's so true. I'll admit I have my shows that I watch, but we really try to limit our TV time. There are just so many better things we could be doing together. You sure make me feel lazy when it comes to exercise. =) I used to be so good at it, but I can't seem to get back in the groove. Want to come and get me fit in 8 weeks???