I am a pocket girl. Sure, of course I carry a purse around with me most of the time. Any self-respecting woman needs a cute bag to complement her outfit and house her snacks, wallet, and that lipstick I never seem to remember to wear. But the important stuff; my keys, my phone, my MTA card, and my cash always seem to hitch a ride in my pockets. Each time I leave the house I have to execute a full out search and rescue mission through all of my recently worn pockets for the items I need to take with me. In retrospect, keeping these items in a purse would be a far more user friendly method. It isn’t my method though. I like pockets.
I also like that moment when you pull a forgotten jacket or pair of jeans out of the closet and come across a $5 bill or an unused Starbucks gift card. Items once intentionally in your hand, shoved into a pocket, and then forgotten until you stumble upon them coincidentally, when you least expect it, weeks or months down the road.
Life is kind of like that too I have found. There are things I grip onto and focus on intently. They are important, valued items I do not want to lose, then life happens, priorities change, seasons change. I get busy and slowly that jacket gets pushed farther and farther into the closet, the contents of the pockets sitting untouched and unmissed, forgotten.
I started my blog just over a year ago. As its popularity has increased over recent months more and more people have asked me how long I have been writing it and why I started. Over the last few weeks I have answered this many times, which has me reflecting on where my life was one year ago. I was desperate to feel better, at the end of my rope in battling my health and feeling like it was time I take what I could into my own hands. It was time to stop working against my body and instead learn to work with it. I overhauled my diet, I started to exercise, and I created an outlet for myself of the all the thoughts and reflections I previously left bottled up in my head.
I took all of these goals and I stuffed them in my pocket. For months I took them out and brought them with me, placing them into each day’s pockets, always having them with me. I prioritized my diet, for the first time in years I prioritized exercise again. And then one day it seems I left them in a pocket and forgot. Summer happened, a big move, a new city. Way too many food options to stay gluten free, and just enough joint pain to push exercise completely off my list.
Last year I started this all by talking about intentional change but what about unintentional regression? Now, almost a year later, I am exactly where I started. Well, maybe not exactly. I have gained perspective along with other great outcomes from the blog in general. I am more content in my life today than I was a year ago, but the thing that matters maybe more than any of that is that I am at war with my body again. I am frustrated that I hurt, I get angry when stairs cause pain in my knees or I drop drinks out of my stiff and clumsy hands. I am eating whatever I want and feeling frustrated at the junk I am putting into my body as well as the way it makes me feel.
I woke up today after a serious chocolate covered pretzel and peanut butter M&M binge, reached into the closet, and pulled the desire to work with my body again out of a long forgotten pocket. I took the yoga mat out of the basket in my bedroom that has kept it safe for months now. I did push-ups and sit-ups, I did squats, and even stretched. I made plans with a friend to take a barre class next week. I threw out last night’s left over cold pizza and plan to find a reasonable middle ground for my diet again. One that fills my body with everything it needs without forcing it to do more than it needs to.
Do you have goals and plans in forgotten pockets? Something that once excited you, something that you were passionate about or excited for, a goal that was a lot of work but also made you feel good until life got in the way and you forgot? Maybe you can work with me on this. A new season is coming, so pull your winter coat out of the closet. I may need some help with accountability to empty my pockets each day, perhaps I can provide the same for you.
4 thoughts on “Forgotten in a Pocket”
Yep, as a fellow nurse (ing student), I am all about the pockets. Well intentioned plans to eat better, exercise, meditate, etc…jotted on a note, transcribed onto a post it, copied into a tablet reminder…..stuffed in a pocket.
I believe in one small step a day. No punishment, no failure, one small step. Which is hard for us global folks who have a whole concept map down of what to do about our condition. So, eat one healthy thing, do a healthy activity, meditate for 5 minutes, maybe repost here for accountability and a cheery pat on the back??!!!
Your insight and eloquence are incredible…
Very nicely written and the perfect sentiment to how I have been feeling lately. Thank you. I am also a nurse and I am a Paramedic. I too live with daily pain and KNOW that the best way to feel better is to exercise and yet I have drifted back to a place of nearly sedate. I like the phrase you used to explain this: unintentional regression.
Hello, Kateri. I’m Tenille. I just wanted to let you know that approximately 2 months ago, I started that same journey, just not as intense as yours. I work two days a week in an ER, but also teach PALS and ACLS four times a year. On my off days I exercise at least one hour a day, only cardio at this point (too much weight to lose). I’m trying to eat better, but those night time munchies do get to me. So far, I’ve lost 30 lbs. I hope to continue on that path for a long time. I’m hoping to make this a life style change. I’m 34 years old and want to see my children grow up and raise their children. My grandparents did not have longevity on their side.
Thank you for your blogs. I really enjoy reading them. I do hope you start feeling better soon.
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