For the past month, I have stuck a little plastic-like film to my lower stomach. Replacing the sticker-like patch every 3-4 days, leaving an outline from the clothes fibers that accumulate around the border. I wash my skin of the residue and do my best to scrape the fibers from my delicate skin.
It has been one month of Estrogen seeping into my body and I am not in love with the side effects. Unfortunately, they hit me where I am the weakest and most intolerable. The acne breakouts continue and my mood swings happen, but it’s the gaining of weight that is the most uncomfortable. Although most people may not be able to tell, I can feel it in my skin. It’s as though I have been injected with water solution and my skin grows tighter, resisting expansion. My legs, back-side and stomach have an extra layer that feels unshapely and bloated. The majority of my pants do not fit and the ones that do, are tight and rub up against my body, reminding me of the lack of space between skin and cloth.
I am grateful that I know this is just water weight. I know this because of how healthy I eat and how regularly I work out. I know this because of how much water I drink and how little I am going to the restroom. It feels as though the majority of liquid that I consume is filling my body like a retention pool, growing more bloated by the day.
The weakness of weight stems from my younger years and my personal journey and struggles to which emotions which seem like old acquaintances being resurrected after laying dormant for many years. It’s as if my nerves are exposed, sensitive to rubbing and irritation.
It’s not about what other people see, it’s about how I feel and what I think. Feelings are not facts. So although I feel fat or feel gross, the fact is my body is receiving extra hormones to help me become more healthy. This is a good thing. My temporary discomfort can lead to a lifetime of health and may even lead to a life changing opportunity to bare a child. It’s this temporary discomfort worth the long-term possibility? I would say so. Now, I must practice getting comfortable, being uncomfortable.
Key word for me to remember is temporary. I will not be on these patches forever and I can go off them anytime, this is a choice I am making. What’s hard for me though, is I wish I didn’t have to make this choice in the first place. I wish I could just be normal, like other women who just get pregnant and have regular monthly cycles. Why do I have to go through this? It doesn’t seem fair and I am pouting. Not only am I not ‘normal’ with my female ‘stuff’, but I have to take extra medication that causes side-effects that make me uncomfortable which stirs up emotions and negative thoughts…
Where does this leave me? I didn’t have the option to choose how my body is formed or how it works. I don’t have control over that. What can I control? I can choose the mindset I want to have around this situation.
A) I can stay in the yuck and blame and frustration, continuing to throw myself a pity-party, which essentially leads to fear of me not getting what I want, how I want it or when I want it.
B) I can be grateful, faithful and trusting in God and the path that I am walking down.
When I choose the former, I stay stuck and bitterness and resentment forms. When I choose the latter, I am able to list a whole gamete of things I am grateful for which slowly changes my perspective and softens my irritation for my weight and discomfort. As I list the things I am grateful for, I can use these truths to combat my negative thoughts. When a statement disrupts my thoughts, tempting me to go down the rabbit-trail of sorrow and dissatisfaction, I insert a gratitude nugget and my shoulders relax and I’m able to take a deep breath (breath in faith, breath out fear).
I recently watched the video below on the topic of fear and faith and wrote about it in my other blog. You can read more about it here.
These feelings I’m experiencing are not going to hurt me and I can see this as an opportunity to learn and grow within myself and my faith. Choosing to be on the patch to see what happens in the near future is worth the temporary ‘yuckiness’ as I feel I am walking in step with my next action. God is good, he is guiding us and he is here with me, next to me, as I sit in this season of discomfort. He is always with me and it is in my weakness that he is strong (2 Corinthians 12:9-11). I get to be with him to sit and watch how this story plays out. I just get to show up each day and do my best with what I have in front of me to do. Today, it’s about turning to gratitude.