‘I lounged on the couch, eating fried food and Oreos. I binge watched TV shows. To be honest, I disappeared from the normal world.’

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“Can I be honest?

Ever since my breast reduction, my cancer diagnosis, my husband accepting a new job, packing up the house to move, staying six months and moving right back…

I have not wanted to run an inch.

The truth is, I haven’t even wanted to MOVE.

Mind, body, and spirit were not here for it. I simply didn’t have the reserves.

So, for the last several months, I lounged on the couch, indulging a steady diet of fried food and Oreos. I binge watched TV shows. I FaceTimed friends. I read 4 books.

To be honest, I disappeared from the normal world.

And for a season, it was glorious.

But this week at church, my ADD got away from me and I found myself googling Bible verses instead of listening to what the actual pastor was teaching.

I mean, at least I wasn’t on Facebook.

(Sorry, Jesus.)

Anyways, I stumbled across a scripture. It talked about how there are seasons for all different things.

It is a powerful scripture—very Lion King a la ‘Circle of Life’.

And after reading it, a thought popped in my head. It was rogue and unexpected, and it felt divinely inspired:

‘I want to go for a run.’

Just like that, my season of rest was over.

Tonight, I had to dig out some extra-large running shorts. That was a little bit of a bummer. But the Oreos and resting cost me a few pounds, and it was a price that I needed to pay.

I stretched in my driveway, I turned my music up loud, and I stepped out into the afternoon rain.

I smiled.

Then, I slowly chugged forward.

I am not mad at myself for gaining weight. I am not mad at myself for being paralyzed, needing rest, and getting my mental health in order.

I cannot resent the choices I’ve made over the last four months with the cards that life has given me. I did my best, and it was a hard-freaking season.

That’s what we are all doing, isn’t it?

Trying our hardest with what we’ve been given?

I want y’all to know that there will be seasons in life when you will wear medium jogging shorts. When you will choose the salad, and parent your children gently and intentionally, and all in all, you will kick butt at life.

But there will also be seasons in life when you need to wear pajamas, sit under blankets, and wonder how you will ever get through it all.

Seasons when you lose your temper at your toddlers and feel like a yucky human being, and maybe need a pill and a therapist to keep above water.

Sometimes your outward stressors will overwhelm your inner strength, and you’ll be tired.

But that does not make you weak.

It does not make you a failure.

And it does NOT make you unlovable.

Believe me, friends, when I tell you that there will be seasons again, when you pull up those extra-large running shorts, step out into the rain, and reclaim some semblance of the normal life you once had.

Give yourself some time. Give yourself some grace. Because the truth is that throughout every single season, you are still YOU.

You are strong.

You are worthy of love.

And you are doing the best you can.

Be kind to yourself. Be kind to others.

You never know which season of life they are in.”

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Mary Katherine Backstrom. Follow Mary on Instagram here.  Submit your story here, and be sure to subscribe to our best love stories here.

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