My pendulum theory
This is a theory that I have had since before hubby and I met. In fact, I distinctly recall “coining” this in my mid-teens and I still wholeheartedly believe this theory to be true and accurate. Especially since I have now started to read about this theory in books and on blogs – promise you, I was there first:-).
Anyway, the pendulum theory is quite simple – today I hate Justin Bieber, tomorrow I love him. You see, the pendulum has swung. Okay, not so simple or as clear-cut, but let’s try this for an example – today I am poor, tomorrow I win the lotto and I am rich. The pendulum has swung. Or for the last six weekends, we had functions and activities planned for every weekend, but thereafter nothing. You see the pendulum has swung – weekends filled with lots of activity, then nothing for months. And it will swing back again.
And so it is in life.
You see, hubby and I have always battled financially and I believe the pendulum will swing in our favour eventually. And I believe the reason why the pendulum swings is what you sow into your life. For some people, they may never experience the pendulum swinging in big ways, because they do not sow into their own life in a big way. Let me give you an example, Mr Joe Bloggs goes through the same cycles of life that we all. For a couple of months he is so busy, he can barely keep up with all the social functions he needs to attend. Then for the next couple of months, he has nothing to do. And this is all well and fine – a natural cycle of life, but what Mr Joe Bloggs needs the pendulum to swing for in a big way is to combat alcoholism. You see, Mr Joe Bloggs loves to drink. And drink. When he gets home from work, the first thing he does is to have a whiskey. Or two. Or three. And Mr Joe Bloggs doesn’t care. He doesn’t care that he is a raging alcoholic and doesn’t see why he needs to stop. So, the pendulum is hanging in favour of alcohol, but will never swing back the other way, because Mr Joe Bloggs doesn’t want it to.
Now, let’s compare Mr Joe Soap. He also loves to drink and drink and drink. In fact, he is the life of the party and everyone loves to give Mr Joe Soap some alcohol. In fact, they strongly encourage him to drink, because then the party is so much more fun. However, in Mr Joe Soap’s case, there is this little voice in the back of his head telling him that this is wrong. And that he actually doesn’t want to live his life as the party drunk. And he does care. Somewhere, deep down inside, he cares about his life and what happens to him and being drunk all the time is not where he wants to be in life. So, he starts going to AA and starts to get his life back on track. For the first couple of years, he really battles. The constant desire to want a drink almost drowns out any thought or reason in his life. And although he is almost tempted to give in a number of times, he doesn’t. He carries on battling against his addiction, until one day the penny drops and it all just clicks together. And he feels on top of things – that even though this is a lifelong battle, he has finally reached the stage of “getting a handle on things.” It has taken him many years and many battles and much help from family and friends, but you see – Mr Joe Soap is finally winning the war.
And what is the difference between Mr Joe Bloggs and Mr Joe Soap? Why has the pendulum swung for one and not the other? Quite simply because Mr Joe Soap has sown into his life the desire to want to get well. He cared. And his family and friends cared. And he fought the battle. And now is winning the war. And with alcoholism it may be a war he’ll fight his entire life, but he will succeed because of what he has sown into his life.
Mr Joe Bloggs wants to be an alcoholic and he doesn’t care. The pendulum may never swing for him.
So, hubby and I have always battled financially. Oh, we have made it through from month-to-month, but we have always battled and have never been totally flush, but I believe the pendulum will swing in our favour. Why? Because we are constantly sowing the seeds of wealth, success and prosperity into our lives. How? Well, by working hard, making the contacts and getting a business off the ground. It is hard work, but that hard work and sowing the seeds is exactly what is needed for the pendulum to swing. How long will it take? Who knows? But I do believe that the longer it takes, the harder it swings – the more beneficial the reward. Maybe I’m just being optimistic, but I like to have faith.
And even with our marriage. The first nine years – before coming parents – were easy. In fact, they created a solid foundation for us, and people thought we were on honeymoon long after the event was over. However, since becoming parents, things have been stressful (you see, the pendulum had swung). Now, money worries take on even greater significance because we have a little one to take care of, the lack of sleep, the stress in trying to get all done around the house and to raise a child without a support system has made things a little hectic. And as a result, we don’t really have the time or energy to focus on our relationship. And of course, trying to sort out family feuds and politics didn’t help much at all. But, in that, the pendulum seems to be swinging back again.
There was a time in my daughter’s early life where everything was a blur and we didn’t have much time for each other at all. It was hectic – and no sleep was, well, let me just put it this way: I can quite understand why they use lack of sleep as a form of torture in the war. But, all the way through, where we could, hubby and I kept sowing into our marriage. And I think the pendulum is finally swinging back – our little one is sleeping better. We’ve both realised that awful lack of sleep phase was just that – a phase and we’re talking (or emailing) and trying where we can to connect and to reconnect. And we’re trying to focus on each other and fulfilling each other’s needs. Raising kids is flipping hard work and I admire people who do this two, three times over. But, I believe that what we put into our marriage, although we may not always see the results immediately, the seed has been sown and we will reap the benefit thereof. If not now, definitely in years to come.
I have sown many fat seeds into my life by always worrying if I’m going to eat and if I’m too skinny. And I believe the pendulum will swing for me as well as I am constantly sowing seeds of being fit and healthy into my life. I have joined Curves and really trying to eat healthy and better without freaking out about it. And I believe I will reap the benefit of it in time to come.
The key though – for me – is to care. And to never, ever give up.
7 Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. 8 Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. 9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
Submit Yourselves to God
4 What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? 2 You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. 3 When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.
I’ve taken the whole day to sum up the courage to write this post – you see, I had to make sure my motives are pure. But, as the day has progressed, I’ve realised that not only are my motives pure, they are in line with the will of God. This is what I pray for:
- First, and most importantly, for God to renew, restore and strengthen my marriage. Because God has given marriage to us as His gift of love and security. Proof of this can virtually be read throughout the whole bible.
- Secondly, I am praying for our finances. Jesus came that we may live life in abundance, and we are definitely not doing that now. In fact, we are barely scraping by.
- Thirdly, I pray for our little daughter – that she may grow up strong, secure and confident, because she is a child of God.
- Fourth, I pray for this anxiety, panic and fear to be taken from me, because God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind.
- And finally, I pray that I may make peace with my weight and with the idea of losing weight and that God will help me and give me the grace to achieve my goals and breath into me the desire to want to lose weight, because this body is the temple of the Holy Spirit and should be looked after – that as with Ezekiel and the dry bones, that God will breath into me the desire to be fit, healthy and strong – and not worry about losing weight. That I can leave this whole issue behind me now and not pick it up again (even when I lose my appetite or don’t feel like eating – actually, especially then…).
I pray all these things in Jesus name, because by His death, I can approach God in His throne room confidently. But, I also know the bible says that where two or more are gathered in His name – so I ask that you pray with me. And then I ask for God’s grace to leave all of the above with Him that He may work it out in His time, according to His good works so that all that is happening in our lives may work towards our good – for me. For my husband. And for our little girl.
Please pray these things for me and with me.
I know that all of this is in God’s will – I don’t know how I know, I just do. So, I am asking – so that I can have. As His word has said.
Keep Your Vision Alive!
‘…We grope…feeling our way like men without eyes…’ Isaiah 59:10 NIV
The Pilgrims who founded America landed at Plymouth Rock full of vision. The first year they established a town, the next year they elected a town council. In their third year, the town council proposed building a road eight kilometres out into the wilderness for westward expansion. But the townspeople criticised it as a waste of public funds. Amazing! Once they had been able to see across oceans to new worlds, now they couldn’t see a few kilometres down the road. What happened? They failed to keep their vision alive. How can you keep that from happening to you?
(1) Keep your vision before you at all times. ‘Write the vision and make it plain…that he may run who reads it.’ (Habakkuk 2:2 NKJV) Your vision is the road map for your life. So write it down, read it regularly and keep it before you at all times. (2) Make sure the vision is yours, not somebody else’s. In the name of being ‘sensible’ or ‘practical’, many of us ignore our God-given desires. We undertake a career to please our parents, our spouses or others. That may make you dutiful, but it won’t make you successful. You cannot fulfil a vision that is not your own! (3) Believe in yourself even when others don’t. You may succeed if nobody else believes in you, but you will never succeed if you don’t believe in yourself. No matter how old you are, always stay young at heart. Pearl S. Buck said, ‘The young do not know enough to be prudent, therefore they attempt the impossible, and achieve it generation after generation.’
I need to let go of the “What ifs”? You know… the “what if’s”?
- What if I die tomorrow and there is no-one to look after Baby Girl and Hubby?
- What if I lose my appetite and never eat again?
- What if I have a panic attack? Another one? Again?
- What if I don’t love my hubby as much as what I think I do?
- What if he doesn’t love me?
- What if I get sick?
- What if I can’t work?
- What if we battle financially all our lives?
And people want to know why I battle with anxiety. Yes, seriously. It is these negative thoughts that haunt my dreams and my mind. Things that I cannot control. Things I shouldn’t even try to control. Dr Phil always says, if you’re going to play the “What If” game, you need to play it through to the end. So, well, here goes:
- What if I die tomorrow and there is no-one to look after Baby Girl and Hubby? Well, while of course they will mourn and life will be hard, they will move on. Life goes on. That is the sad reality of death. And all I can do is pray that a woman will come into Baby Girl’s life that will mentor her and look after her and give her guidance and advice and pray for her when she’s feeling scared and lonely. I can never control my own death, but I can look after my health and pray that someone will fulfil that role for me for Baby Girl – IF this should ever happen. And as for my hubby – well, it kills me to say this, but I would want him to meet someone. I don’t want him growing old alone. But, it would have to be someone who will love him and his past with me and respect that I am his first love. And someone who will adore Baby Girl. See – I’m not even sick and there is no need for me to even worry about this, but already I am making plans. The point is, that even though this fear may happen, in the long run, Baby Girl and Hubby will be just fine.
- What if I lose my appetite and never eat again? This is a long and ongoing fear of mine. From years of abuse regarding my weight, I’ve developed a sensitivity to not eating that has seen my grow in size and become rather, uh, large… What if I don’t feel like eating now? Am I going to die? NO – I’ll probably eat later when I’ve calmed down enough to swallow. Its nothing to fear really, but for me it is such a big fear. But, no-one just stops eating unless they are sick. Even people who lose their appetite under huge strain, eventually do start eating again. Even anorexics start to eat – sadly, though too late, but they do try. People have this innate need to survive. So, really, a what if I should never bother to fear. And if I can make peace with this fear, I can lose some weight and start being healthy again.
- What if I have a panic attack? Another one? Again? Seriously, I have been through this more times I can count and I always, ALWAYS come out fine. A bit shaken, a bit nervy, but fine. And if I get my mind right, I can move on from these panic attacks without allowing it to affect me too much. Once again, nothing to fear, nothing to worry about. I have to learn to take the fear out of these panic attacks, because while I still fear panic attacks, it will always have a hold over me. Not fearing panic attacks, frees one to just go on and enjoy what you’re doing. If there is nothing to fear, then I’d probably wouldn’t have another panic attack. But fearing them makes them all too real. And frightening and that fear that holds so much power over me is what brings on these panic attacks in the first place. For me. For you, it may be different. But for me, I know this to be true.
- What if I don’t love my hubby as much as what I think I do? Well, I can’t control what may happen tomorrow. But, for now, I can control how we manage our relationship. And what I feel for him now. And I know that now I love him with all my heart. And I know that underneath all the fear and anxiety, he is the only one for me. So, why fear something in the future that may or may not happen? Who knows – I pretty much fear anything and everything. My point is I only have now to worry about – how I manage my relationship NOW. How I react and love my husband NOW. What type of family life I create NOW. All of this will dictate and pave the path for the future, but I can’t control that outcome – I can only control now. And now? I love him with my whole heart and if I nurture that and maintain that, then this fear will never be realised.
- What if he doesn’t love me? I know how important I am to him. I see all the little things he does for me. How he puts up with my anxiety. How he has stuck with me through all the financial heartache we have experienced, through the lack of support and a baby who cried solidly for the first year of her life.
- What if I get sick? Well, what if I do? We’re on a good medical aid, with some amazing doctors, so what if I do get sick. Or, what if, just for a change, I focus on the fact that I am healthy now. And perhaps I should focus on losing weight and getting fit because then if I do get sick, my body is fighting fit.
- What if I can’t work? Well, hubby and I have already been through so many financial issues that this is almost a no-brainer. Yes, we need both salaries to survive, but we have made it through some really tight financial messes already, I have no doubt that we will find a way to make this work.
- What if we battle financially all our lives? Well, we’ve been battling the last seven years and we’ve been doing okay. In fact, we’re going to send our one and only to a private Christian school, because we both feel that it is just the right school for her.
So, all I have proven is that there is nothing to fear in any of my fears. At all. The trick now is to learn to live all this out. So, that in truth, my life is not governed by fear, but rather by the freedom to enjoy life.
The Anxious Mama