I had a breakthrough this week. I looked in the mirror, and despite a few extra pounds I have not been able to shed, despite the fact that I am rounder than I was at the end of the summer, I actually saw my reflection in the mirror and was able to look beyond those things and pay myself a compliment. "Hello reflection of me...you look strong!" This might seem like a minor experience, but for me, this is big step forward. I was actually kind to myself.
I looked at myself and was able to take myself as I am right now and be completely content. This is huge for me! I know this sounds pretty sad, but there have been very few times in my life where I loved me for me. I have never felt good enough, always felt that I have to fix this flaw or that imperfection, but I am finding that more days than not lately, I am happy with myself. I am healthy, I am strong, and I am a pretty tough cookie when it comes to pushing myself to my limits. I am proud of my progress and I plan to spend more time in 2015 being kind to myself.
Today all my running buddies took on Surf City for my 23rd half-marathon. Emily, Kay, and my husband Sean ran the half marathon, and Mark ran his first full marathon, with Gabby and Joe doing the full as well. It was wonderful to have all my morning running support there with me, but we were without Kay's husband Jim who continues to fight and recover from his throat cancer treatments. Today we all ran as Team Mueller to remind Jim and Kay that they are not alone.
I think a big part of why I have grown so much over the last few years is that I have been forced to put things in perspective. It is important to keep myself healthy, but life is too fragile to focus on the superficial. How I look is so very unimportant in the scheme of things, and I hope that I can encourage others to remember to be kind to yourselves and accept who you are as you work to improve your health, because if you aren't kind to yourself, then who will be?
This week I could hardly wait for my box to arrive. I was able to order more of those watermelon radishes, another package of those Japanese mushrooms, some blood oranges, and along with a few other goodies, I ordered something I have never before eaten--Jerusalem artichokes also know as sunchokes. Now I am a huge artichoke fan, but these are completely different. They look like a ginger root, but tastes like a potato, but much nuttier. I roasted it with a little olive oil spray, salt, pepper, and a dash of ground thyme. I can't wait to experiment more with these because they were delicious--they had a caramelized skin and sweet flesh that went well with our baked chicken breasts. I do need to find a way to cut them more uniformly so they roast evenly, because some where just slightly underdone, but still tasty. Here is a link to a recipe for roasting Jerusalem artichokes.