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Monday, August 19, 2019

New Mercies

Lamentations 3:22-23 (ESV)

22 The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
    his mercies never come to an end;
23 they are new every morning;
    great is your faithfulness.



© Paloma K.

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Leaving a church... not The Church

What a busy time this has been! And in this point of life we are finding ourselves going through an indescribably painful moment as a family as we have left the place that we have called "our church" for  exactly 8 years... so get ready because this is going to be a loaded post....

In this period of time where I go from disappointment to sadness to anger to zeal to thirst and hunger for justice, to numbness and denial and feel like I am almost in a loop ... I cling to God and cling to people who I have found through this process that are also believers in God... not in man... people who thankfully see what we see... feel as we feel and have too been convicted with the same convictions and it makes it all more endurable.

But there is something I have found and I feel the need to talk about (well.. in all honesty there's so much that I feel the need to address but all in due time) I find myself often thinking of  the verse that says:

"Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry,  because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires." (James 1:19b-20) 

I don't always succeed with the slow to become angry.... so pray for me there!

So today I want to talk about:

Reasons for leaving a church:

What are the reasons to leave a church? Well... we are free... (while at the same time being bondservants of Christ and submitted to Him)...  of course as believers we should have a strong commitment to the Body of Christ and realize that The Church IS God's answer for the World until He comes back... we are never going to leave The Church.... but we are not necessarily tied to a local church in an unbreakable covenant that we cannot leave because that would be a cult... not a church... but something I have heard a lot, lately is the

"as long as the Word keeps being preached you should stay" 

or 

"as long as the Gospel is being proclaimed you shouldn't leave"

and it made me think of how sadly I have said those same phrases in the past... without any biblical foundation... is that the only reason to leave a church? if the Word of God is no longer being preached? I mean... if it got to that I hope you of course know to identify it and leave it... if the Word of God is not being preached please, I don't think you need to read an article to tell you that is not the church... at all...

but...  I am going to dare to say the following... You can leave the local church you attend when:

- It changed so drastically and dramatically it is no longer the church you joined. 
  I mean... what would the difference be then between that church and another one? If you can't even recognize it? again... we are not in a cult, we are in local churches where if you leave it doesn't mean you are telling those people you no longer want anything to do with them... I am sure those that are close to you will continue to be close even if you leave. I guess what I am saying is ... if you want to stay you're free to do so.... if you want to leave... you are free to do so too... I know it's a weird concept to understand but sadly sometimes it seems that those that those who changed EVERYTHING expect everybody to be in agreement... and if anyone wants to leave for that they're mocked like they're not strong in the faith or something... and those leaving end up being attacked just by their preference... Many say it's bad to leave a church because of music preferences and lights or worship styles... and while those might not be the deepest reasons or holiest sounding reasons the truth is that we all usually attend a place where we feel free to worship even with our personality styles... some people wouldn't like to worship dancing inside the building, some would, some wouldn't like tambourines, some would, some wouldn't like music that is extremely loud, some would and that is all ok... we can still love one another and decide it is no longer the place where we want to worship... That is OK! So if you leave a place for those reasons... I'd say how happy for you... because ... at least you're not going through terrible heartache.... It's not a division or a deception or a horrible conflict... it's just a matter of preference... it shouldn't divide anybody... some like to worship one way, some another and it doesn't make those who stay or those who leave better than the other.

Paul and Barnabas are a good example of brothers that parted ways over a disagreement that was not a doctrinal issue... (can two walk together if they don't agree? ) The rupture involved a personal dispute based upon a judgment call. neither Paul nor Barnabas let the conflict distract them from their efforts of spreading the gospel... and it didn't mean one hated the other. 

But...  the other thing... and maybe deeper reasons to leave would be:

2 Tim. 3 But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive,disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.


So.... what about the preaching of the Gospel? Well... the Bible also says:

You Will Know Them by Their Fruits

15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits.Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? 17 Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit.19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Therefore by their fruits you will know them.
And the Bible also says that we can honor God with our lips and yet our hearts are far from Him!

Another one:
“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’

So... honestly... the whole "only leave a church if they stop preaching the Word of God" doesn't hold much water if by "preaching" or "teaching" we are referring to the words that come out of their mouth.... we might be far away from what the Word of God actually says!

So... what about all the pastors that have abused children and were at the same time "preaching the Word of God"? Should we stay "as long as the Word of God is being preached?"

I have to remember that the devil himself knows Scripture and quotes it and has tried to deceive many (including the Son of God Himself) with the very words in that Book throughout the history of humanity... (from the very beginning).

Just recently I had an encounter with someone I thought I knew and now I realize I never really did.... some leaders in our churches expect us to follow blindly the one in the front because he is "being led by the Holy Spirit" ("don't you dare question that or I cannot longer talk to you!" is the response)... do not be deceived brothers and sisters... you and I have the Holy Spirit as well... (or what do they think we're following?) They trusted us for a voting when we had no real information except our trust in them when they were the designated group looking for a pastor... and now that we actually start to discover what the plans were all along (and which were never disclosed to the whole church) they are offended if we question it and I guess we're no longer Christian in their eyes? or the Holy Spirit somehow left us?... It's us... THE CHURCH! SAYING... THIS IS NOT FROM GOD!

If only one person or a certain group of "leaders" has that access to God then again... it's not a church with the Holy Spirit indwelling each believer but if He seems to reveal himself only to the one getting paid for it... that is not The Church... it is just a weird cult of our own making.

Also... if you can't even question what's going on.... and you're met with bullying tactics... if you can't even ask anyone what's happening and they demonize anyone for questioning... . When people in leadership abuse members because "that's how things are done whether people like it or not" when people are fired because we are pursuing trendiness. When they tell you they can't say more because they don't want to bash anyone (like that's not precisely BASHING them just by saying that). When there is so much secrecy that that's exactly what creates rumors and divisions, when the hearts of our brothers and sisters are being broken behind close doors but in public we make it appear as "we are all ok, let's pray for their faithful ministry", when we sound more like a wordly corporation than the church, honestly... shame on us if we let it continue... I am sure many will still continue... even after knowing the truth... and that's ok... but everyone should at least have the chance to know what really is going on!

I used to sell self defense tools... I mostly care about sharing the information for women, children and teens to protect themselves against abuse and sexual violence and there is one thing I learned..


ABUSE LIVES AND IS PERPETUATED BY THE SILENCE OF THE VICTIMS


Abusers always have one MO they tell their victims that it would be best for them to not speak to anyone else about it because "you don't want to hurt others" ... the shame is put in the victim, they make them feel guilty and even responsible for the pain "they're going to cause"...

But in many of our churches you will hear how approachable they are and "If you need to talk to someone talk to your leaders" well, isn't that convenient?... it's like asking the victim to talk to the abuser to "address her fears" ... 

The molester tells the little girl to not tell her mommy because her mommy will be devastated

the husband tells the wife to not tell anyone because he also can say things about her.... and her shame is enough to get her quiet...

Abuse happens... in churches too... not always in ways that make the headlines but I have witnessed it now from up close happening...

in our churches sometimes it's wolves telling the sheep to stay quiet for the sake of the unity of the flock...

when it's them ... who are devastating and ravaging the flock

When can you leave your church?


When not only can you leave but it would be wrong for you to stay?

When the Word of God is being preached from up front and stepped on with the actions when nobody else can see... When the Body of Christ is being dismissed for age or style, when the Word of God is being used for personal gain and to form a personal kingdom rather than to extend the Kingdom of God... When there is deception and lies!  Where can we find a good church? Not a perfect church because hey... we're not perfect... but if the Word of God is being preached and there's no blatant deception, abuse, demonzing those who dare question... when you feel like the music is extremely loud even.... thank God that if you are in Christ you are never leaving THE CHURCH....  you and I are family even if I have never met you... then You know HIS voice and follow it.... if you are not making a dime and you stand up for your brother and sister... if injustice, money hunger, the Word being deceptively "proclaimed" makes you want to scream "How long o Lord? How long? until your Bride is safely forever with you and free from those who want to ravage it pretending to be shepherding it...."

I am sick of the corporation or club... what a stinking waste of time if that's what we are doing on Sunday mornings!!! I would rather stay in bed! I do not covet "a position in the church"  what a dangerous place to be in... I am sick of the hired consultants to tell us what our vision is... it's ALL IN THE WORD OF GOD for crying out loud! Someone even told me recently that the church in the United Kingdom died because they weren't willing to change...

absurd! churches die because they look for man made strategies to keep them alive rather than going the The One who sustains it! How spoiled, self centered, self sufficient and arrogant have we become to believe that we can plan for "the success of the Church"? HIS CHURCH! THE KING'S CHURCH! ... when it is God the One who adds the ones that will be added... when "The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds." 

It's not about up to us to "make it succeed"... yes... many of our churches are "successful"  (apparently) because of their many activities and strategies and because of the ruthless leaders taking them "higher". We have pastors that no longer suffer for Christ and somehow convince us that this is their "calling" (In many cases a six figure calling!)... I wonder if they knew their lives as pastors would be like Paul's was if they would feel the same way about this calling!

"24Are they servants of Christ? (I am out of my mind to talk like this.) I am more. I have worked much harder, been in prison more frequently, been flogged more severely, and been exposed to death again and again.24 Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one.25 Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was pelted with stones,three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea, 26 I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers. 27 I have labored and toiledand have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked. 28 Besides everything else, I face daily the pressure of my concern for all the churches."  

And yet Paul wouldn't be hired by us .... because He probably didn't have the looks, the money, the "influence" the "leadership skills"... He wasn't a "visionary" or young enough...

 And here we are ... running like headless chickens... choosing to have our churches led by strategists, visionaries,  CEOs and consultant groups because it's easier than a life of prayer... they seem to have it all... they grow and grow and become the biggest, the greatest in the eyes of men.... I wonder if we could see with God's eyes where that most successful church is... is it meeting in an old building? Does it have really bad music but a heart of worship? Is it in a quiet home with the prayerful family? I wonder.... I just know that we sadly buy into the deception

And then... the whole "everything happens for a purpose" phrase has infiltrated our churches  who then give more permission to those running the show to take advantage... I wonder how many of our leaders are actually God's judgment and not God's blessing... like in the days when Saul was crowned king... that God's people wanted a king so badly that God gave them exactly what they wanted (even if it was bad for them) ... and then we tell the victims to find "God's purpose" behind what they're going through... and How God is "doing all this" we sound insane! not in a good Biblical way just insane.... God is not behind sin... He is not behind the abuse... He is not the cause of the deception... and Yes... He will not waste these momentary tribulations in their lives... but Woe to those who were willing and happy to be the cause for His children's pain and suffering.

When do you leave a church? I don't know about you... You tell me...

Just don't say "when the Word of God stops being preached"  if you only refer to the words that are said out loud. Because the evil ones hear you and this allows them to keep preaching the Word of God with their lips but with their actions they deny it.

I just can't stand to be on the side of injustice... Because even if I lose any leftover reputation I might still have, or lose the "friendships" of some that I now know never were, I'll also lose the comfort of having the place that was my my other home, fun activities, a place to go to... I do it for what's correct... not without pain... and I rejoice to join in the pain of those who have been unjustly treated, I rejoice (in tears) to teach my children that following God is not always following the majority, that it hurts at times, that if I can't endure this then if any days of persecution come I won't be able to endure that, I rejoice in the fact that The Church can't be divided and I am a part of it... I rejoice in the fact that God is faithful and He never changes... I rejoice while it hurts... because God will comfort me from that too!


"Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean." Matthew 23:27


© Paloma K.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Fat again and again but never quitting

Hello everyone! It's been a while since I last posted anything here... Life has been busy, beautiful, chaotic, blessed and filled with smiles and moments to treasure... it has also been pretty fattening for me... Let me tell you a little background...

I've struggled with my weight for a long time... At first it was more of an imaginary struggle, I was the teen that just wanted to be skinny and petite... even when that just wasn't me.... I liked a guy who liked skinny girls so even at a healthy weight I started to obsess about it... that's when my love/hate relationship with food began....

I submitted myself to pills, crazy diets, shots in the "problem areas", etc... I would always lose weight and then I'd gain it all back but then some.... and that... that's exactly when the problem started... every time I reached my goal weight then I'd gain it all back but with additional pounds that weren't there to begin with... and at some point the imaginary issue became a real one... my eating was deeply connected to my emotions... I'd lose weight out of "spite", I'd gain weight out of sadness, I'd lose it to prove a point, I'd gain it because I didn't know how to stay thin! it was crazy...

Fast-forward many years... to 2011 (a husband and 2 beautiful daughters later) I started to change my life for my health not just for the way I looked... I had two girls to care for, to play with, to enjoy life with and to live long for! I wanted to be healthy and enjoy outdoorsy activities with my wonderful husband, life was good and I no longer wanted the quick fix or to impress someone... I wanted to live a good, healthy life and set a good example to my children... I started walking a lot and then running, I counted calories obsessively (not really knowing how food works or anything about nutrition) and I managed to lose 50 pounds... I was on top of the world... But ... I still wasn't happy ... I still wanted to lose weight and I started to realize that after months of intense exercise and watching my calorie intake more than ever the weight just wouldn't budge... I went to doctors who said "well, eat less" (how??)... I was becoming increasingly discouraged and frustrated... what was going on? A doctor even prescribed a low dose of thyroid medicine (Levothyroxine) and mentioned I had thyroid issues... the medication didn't seem to make a difference (except that I just didn't feel quite right)... back then (and as you'll be able to see on this blog) I was an avid baker... I loved sugar, butter, flour! I enjoyed baking often throughout the week and while I didn't eat what I baked I was giving it to my family because well... they didn't have a weight issue... in my desperation I started to read medical books, researched about thyroid and started to look into different eating plans... That's when something clicked! I now learned how food can heal you or make you sick... it's not all about counting calories... especially if what you are pursuing is HEALTH... I also learned how your body "gets used" to a certain level of exercise and you have to "switch things up" a bit for it to work... I loved all this and I now realized that I was hurting my family by feeding THEM sugar and flour.... (I then learned butter was fine! I always thought I had to eat everything LOW FAT! LOW CALORIES!) ... I started to see food differently.... as a source of fuel! I also learned that I am not a slob! (hahahaha).... I learned that while society sees all fat people as undisciplined, lazy cows... we sometimes are the most disciplined of all.... submitting ourselves to painful and even dangerous procedures, diets and medications... many of us are willing to *lose our lives* on an operating table to MAKE THIS FAT GO AWAY! I ALSO learned that while I had read books that made my fatness seem like a spiritual issue IT WAS JUST NOT THAT! I didn't need someone telling me that I was fat because I wasn't going to Jesus when I craved cupcakes!

******
I want to make sure I am clear on this... I am not saying that having a relationship with Jesus won't help you through it all.... I am saying that YOUR WEIGHT AND MY WEIGHT can't be blamed on our spiritual lives. Because if "you go there" and you tackle your weight issue as a spiritual issue then ... when the weight doesn't budge or when you "gain it back" now you'll be discouraged for being a double failure... not only in the physical but in the spiritual area too... and I think that's dangerous.

*****

When we have a weight struggle we all try to find the ONE REASON behind it... the ONE THING that will do the "trick" to help us lose the weight and keep it off.... the truth is that there are SO MANY FACTORS BEHIND IT ... I learned that many of them I CAN'T CONTROL.... and many of them I can.....

Girlfriend, if you're reading this and you've tried everything let me tell you YOU ARE NOT ALONE... I have been there... If you, like me, have gone through phases where you start posting pictures on social media of yourself because you finally start to feel comfortable with the way you look and then at some point there are less and less pictures where you appear and then there is just NONE.... I get it! I've been there! It breaks my heart when I start to see less and less pictures of the people I love and I know have struggled with their weight... because I want to give them a hug and say "I KNOW! I know! It hurts!" I know exactly what they're feeling because either I have felt it or I am feeling it right at that point.

So.... back to where I was.... Like I said... I started to learn about nutrition and exercising... seeing it all differently... and through it all I kept working... pushing through... and I joined a gym I think in 2015 (Life Time Fitness) .... I started to train everyday by myself and occasionally with an amazing trainer... (Aaron Miller)... He taught me about different things I could do and introduced me to strength training.... I had never understood "weights" and now I was using them and actually enjoying them... I started to see my body changed... I lost weight but now that wasn't my only metric... I started to see my body fat go down and my muscle increase...it was awesome! For the first time in my life I felt STRONG... stronger than ever... I wasn't pursing skinny... I was pursing health, strength, muscle definition... I started to understand how with age you want those muscles to protect your joints and bones... Now the whole food=fuel thing made sense... I was eating to fuel my body, to restore, to replenish, I was eating with a purpose... Protein and carbs they all had their place in my life... sugar wasn't even tempting any more... I did things I never thought... it helped me even overcome some fears and set goals not even weight related... My goals were now go climbing or get on a zip line (which I did) ... I felt young! (even at 37!!) and in my "I'm so young" feeling hubby and I thought "let's go for another baby" ... (I am so happy for that!) ... I got pregnant right away... it was 2016 and I thought this would be the easiest, healthiest pregnancies of all ... it wasn't ... somehow I developed gestational diabetes... WHAT??? .... I managed to keep my numbers controlled by not following the doctors' recommendations and diet... I armed myself with a glucometer and my knowledge of food... this would be my chance to prove what I've been doing... and it was! I tested following the doctor's diet... low calories, low fat ... and my sugar went through the roof... I followed my own knowledge of food, how things work... and my numbers were perfect... My doctor said he had never seen such great numbers.... I was ecstatic that regardless of a medical condition I could protect my baby now with my knowledge of all these years of studying and researching....  I then had my baby... a 3rd. C section... things weren't easy inside the operating room.... The doctor was amazed (scared) at how thin my uterus was and how it miraculously didn't rupture... he said "had he known this, there would've been an emergency c-section way sooner" ... he managed to close the uterus... (he explained what he had to do but I won't bore you with that) ... I was recovering and hoping after the delivery I would, naturally, lose weight... but it wasn't the case.... after having my 9 pound 8 oz. baby I went to the dr's office for my 1st check up and huh... I had gained 5 pounds... HOW? 1 month later I was another 15 pounds heavier (than my heaviest at pregnancy!!!) and then I continued to gain.... I went back to the gym trying to give it my all... I went back to my knowledge of food and it just wasn't DOING IT! I continued to see my reflection get bigger and bigger... what in the world happened? My body wasn't doing what it was supposed to....

I have a friend that I work out with and she said "Paloma, I see all you do! I think you should go to the doctor because this isn't normal" she was right... But doctors had disappointed me so many times before... could they help? I decided I would go back to Mexico to see a doctor there.... The private medical practice in Mexico is outstanding... the service is personal, they care to dig to find the real source of the issue.... and an aunt of mine recommended an endocrinologist there... (I thought it had to be my thyroid just like the endocrinologist here in the USA told me)... I set up an appointment....

As I waited for the day to come to go back to Mexico I discovered some classes in my gym.... I started to attend Strictly Strength, Pilates, STRIKE (kickboxing), Life Barre, Barre Fusion and  Zumba. It was challenging for me... My body was against me.... I felt embarrassed, self conscious and just disgusting...

Have you ever felt like you have to explain to people "trust me! I am not a lazy fat person! I really try!!!"? I felt like that.... while other people were doing crunches and planks I was sweating just trying to lift my head from the ground because of the massive body I was trapped in....

One day I hit a new low.... It was a day in July this year (2018) right before my trip to Mexico to see my doctor...

It was my second times trying the Pilates class... where thankfully the lights are dim... and as I sweated and puffed trying to do the challenging movements I started to cry... I could've started sobbing uncontrollably but of course I wasn't going to... I was surrounded by people... thankfully I was sweating so much that you couldn't tell there were so many tears.... but inside of me I was yelling... screaming at every move! Wondering how in the world someone so dedicated like me got to this? I have helped people change their lives around... I have blogs and facebook pages about nutrition, I have held nutrition classes in my home, a friend of mine not only lost weight but her consistent headaches were gone following the tips I shared with her.... and yet... here I was .... reaching the morbidly obese title all while I NEVER STOPPED FIGHTING!!! I didn't deserve this! I should be able to do the movements! and yet... I am an ungraceful mass attempting to do Pilates. I should just have a cheeseburger!

I am letting you in my deepest feelings..... I was hoping nobody could see me.... I was hoping I could just disappear and yet I felt like "the BIG center of attention" ... I reassured myself and told myself "don't worry... it's just your mind! I'm sure nobody notices" ... As the class ended I wanted to run out of there... I picked up my mat and bolted towards the door... when I saw a lady I know... she's sweet and her intentions are good... but given my state... you understand how I felt when I saw her...

She's graceful and slim, she's very outspoken about nutrition and healthy living.... I can't see an ounce of extra weight on her....  She doesn't really know me that well so of course she doesn't know what I've been through....

She stops me... I am in pain inside....

She encouragingly tells me "Paloma, you did a great job... "

I want to disappear

She tells me "We're all in different places in our journey..."

I want to run.... I start to explain... I want her to know... My journey is long... I am not a beginner... I should look like her... not like me....

The worst happens....

I start to cry.... UGH!!! I even start to explain I am going to see a doctor!

She starts to pray for me (I told you ... she's sweet! I just didn't feel I could go through that... not in that moment) ... People are passing by us because we're close to the door..... I didn't want anyone to see me and here I am... being prayed over out loud by the door.... with the mixed feelings of thankfulness for her taking the time to pray for me and try to encourage me and sadness and anger that I am seen LIKE THIS!

I thanked her and disappeared... I couldn't get to my locker quickly enough... I picked up my kids from childcare and got in the car.... now to cry even more.... I got home, wiped my tears away and started cooking lunch... hubby came and I started to tell him... now sobbing....

Praise God for my husband.... He's so good through all of this, encouraging and always tells me how much he admires everything I do... So he just listens while I sob...

And so we started our trip... As I saw the doctor I explain to him what's going on... he sees my lab results (of all the tests he ordered) and tells me there was no way I was going to lose the weight ... I needed help... it's insulin resistance... It is different for everyone as not two people are exactly alike... In my case I just couldn't lose the weight and on the contrary I continue to gain...

I explained my frustration... he listened... I asked all the questions I needed to ask about food/exercise and since his wife is a nutritionist he understands all my questions about proteins and carbs and fats... and when he suggests me to watch the fat intake (for now)  I ask him about the ketogenic diet (which at some point I attempted) and he explains why and how it just wasn't going to do anything for me... finally a doctor took the time to listen and had the full knowledge to answer... He prescribed some medication (metformin) and I explain how I don't want to be on meds my whole life... He tells me I won't have to because if I put the work I say I do ... the time will come when I will be able to continue on my own... I don't want to get my hopes to high but I leave his office with answers and it just made sense...

I continued with my normal routine of exercise and tweak my food intake a bit.... (didn't really change much but I was less wary of carbs) ... And I started to see results....

God has put people in my life that have been amazingly NEEDED in this process... not only my doctor has been helpful through this all, my husband, my beautiful children, my friends, the person who prayed when I felt like hiding, my siblings, my parents but also my instructors... I am going to say particularly Annika!

That short girl that is fiery as nobody else... She deceives you into doing "just one more" (don't trust her though), she pushes you, challenges you and gets you to do what you thought you couldn't do....

It was through her STRIKE (kickboxing) class that I knew I needed her in my life.... As I went to her first class and I heard her speak... I wondered if everyone else was feeling like me... Each class is like a breakthrough session... like a therapy through physical movements....  I wondered who else was facing their demons through her class as she yells "punch him in the face!" ... because as she says... "your enemy might not be a person" ... And every time I am in her class I do... I punch my fears, my I can'ts, my insecurities and my negative self image, I punch the guy that followed me and my girls at a store and took pictures of us, I punch the voices of people (or a person) who once put me down.... and I get goosebumps and as the class ends I get the feeling of being a winner... I get to lift my arms in victory because regardless of it all and everything you've read... I am a winner... hey ... not everyone "sticks with it" after years and years... I am no quitter, I am stronger than I might appear on the outside... and like my oldest daughter once told me "mommy! You just never stop!"

Because while my body might not show it... My girls have seen it... and while I don't look like the "example of health" I AM the very example that I wanted to set for them... to fight, to not make excuses, to overcome and to keep going no matter what...

Have I felt like quitting? Many times!!! I am far from perfect and if it wasn't for the support I have I probably would've quit already.... There are times where I have actually thrown in the towel and eaten what I shouldn't  but then I pick the towel back up and keep going. Not because I am special.... Everyone can do it.

I told my doctor it's hard to continue when I see no results and he said...

"oh but you do see results! If you weren't exercising and eating the way you do you would be diabetic right now.... because of what you do you're NOT"

See... eating healthy and exercising and taking care of yourself is never without reward... You deserve it!

I have so much to say... And while I am thinking of writing a book or starting a group or a page or something... For now I tell you...


If you have weight issues it doesn't mean...

You're lazy
You're not disciplined
You're less spiritual than...
You're a failure....

Just like not every skinny person is hardworking, spiritually "there", disciplined or a success....

We can't generalize.... ever... Your issues are not my issues... I can't pretend to understand exactly what you've done, I can't say "you're fat because...." and simplify it into ONE thing ... it might be even outside of you....

Genes, leptin, fat cells, age, etc... all play a role... in my case that last pregnancy, at my age, with my medical history, hereditary factors all caused the perfect storm and at some point no matter what I did I still needed something external to come in and interfere....

And right now... while I have lost 30 pounds (since July 20th 2018) and I strive towards losing many more.... (many many) and while I hope to be able to keep all the pounds off I know it will always be something I struggle with.... for me (like my doctor said) it will always be an uphill battle... and I know for many people it is the same way...

Do not get discouraged... keep fighting...

You're not alone in this! Don't compare yourself to others... If keto doesn't work... You're not doing something wrong... it might just not be for YOU. Remember... When it comes to weight loss and health NOT ONE THING works for everyone... What might be good for others might not be fore you...   you might have to tweak things a bit for yourself... Are there plans I recommend? Of course... My favorite ones are:

Trim Healthy Mama
The Fast Metabolism Diet
The Paleo Diet
The Whole30

And if you want to get all into it (like I did) and learn about the science behind it all... I absolutely recommend this book:


Hungry Gene: The Science of Fat and the Future of Thin


You'll learn so much from all these books ... But again, take your time with it all... Be consistent and see what works best for you specifically.

And here's a picture of me.... still with lots of pounds to lose, still far from where I want to be but celebrating the fact that I am healthier and never quitting... and the fact that I entered these jeans again!



Thanks again to everyone who has been supportive through all my stages... thanks again Anikka for being MY trainer... because if you go to her class.... she's YOUR trainer (no matter how PACKED that room is!).

If you're trying this alone... Don't do it... Surround yourself with support! I'm here for you! If at least as comfort to know that someone "gets it".

© Paloma K.

Disclaimer: This post contains may contain affiliate links. Which means that if you follow a link a buy a product I get a small percentage of the purchase. It doesn't cost you more. I am not paid to recommend any of these products, these are my actual, real, personal opinions.