Survival Mode Thrivival Mode

The view - so lovely.

Wow! I just survived ice storm, what is it, Dion?  Something like that.  Funny how they have started naming our winter weather storms. That could get out of hand but hey its easier for us old folks to remember than the year.  "You remember that big ice storm, Dion?" "Yep, that was the storm when granny froze her britches to porch swing!"  You get my drift...

My mother-in-law had an unexpected health scare last week that landed her in the hospital. She and my father-in-law live in the north central part of Arkansas and have three lovely pets and lots of wild birds they care deeply for.  I was here in Memphis but when I heard bad weather was coming I booked it over to Arkansas to take care of the pets so they had one less worry while staying an unspecified amount of time in the hospital about 75 miles away.

I arrived pre-storm to a house full of puppy love and as we do in Arkansas, headed out to Walmart for "I may be stranded for a week but I'm acting like its a month" supplies.  I do not purchase milk and bread like the mob. I heard one guy tell his neighbor "yeah they're outta bread, I had to get hot dog buns" (Why not try a wheat tortilla? I bet there's a whole stack of those left...) I purchase vegetables and lean meats.  I don't care that we may lose power.  I'm not really interested in sandwiches and cereal. I get back "home" and watch the storm roll in from up on a mountain, in a house with huge picture windows. Sleet comes down in sheets all night and transforms the hillside into winter wonder land which usually equals ... loss of power. 

Arkansas should be called the Tree State.  We have a huge abundance of trees and they are beautiful but under a heavy blanket of ice they become weapons of destruction.  I held my breath and waited for power to go out. But there was something bubbling inside me and it had started before I left Tennessee.  Its kind of like dropping Pop Rocks into a soda, you put one or two in and get a little fizz and that's so thrilling you start adding more and more and soon the whole soda is erupting in sugary glory. So what was creating my fizz?  Survival mode.  The sense of danger and a need to create a path of survival. 

I started to think differently. Thinking more spherically instead of one dimensionally.  I am thinking ahead - Cook the chicken, make something hardy for the crock pot so if the power goes out I have food prepared.  Fill the wood box and start to build a bed of coals in the fireplace to cook on if needed or boil water on if the county falls under a  boil order because of lack of power.  All the nerves on high alert, planning, scheming, pointing like a bird dog at a covey of quail, stealthy and focused on how to accomplish my goal.  I loved it.  I was never in imminent danger. We never lost power but the thought of it kept me high on adrenaline for days.  My whole life focus came down to making smart, thoughtful decisions. (I made some mistakes too but not going there today)

Somewhere in there I began to wonder if I couldn't/shouldn't apply part of that approach to weight loss and healthy eating.  What if I looked at each shopping trip and every food prep or exercise outing as an integral part of my survival.  It really is you know?  And not just my survival but my thrivival.  Hahahahaha - spell check disapproves of my new word but I don't want to just survive - I want to thrive!  Healthy in my days on earth, how ever many there are. I want as many cooking adventures and hiking adventures and all kinds of other adventures as I can pack into this life.  I want to sail on the wings of the hawk, high on adrenaline - high on life, sharp, focused and determined to survive and do it well, with grace and strength. 

I love the challenge and thrill of "survival mode".  I realize that if I was in true, imminent danger it would have changed my perception greatly.  I was only lightly challenged while some people have found themselves in grave danger.  I do not mean to cast any lightness on their struggles. I am merely pointing out that heightened awareness develops from even the smaller challenges. I want to use that type of energy and relate it to my current goal of weight loss and my healthy living pursuit. With my health improving and my weight dropping I see clearly where I was.  I was dying a faster death than God intended.  I was killing myself with food and stress and more food. I was in imminent danger and didn't want to admit it.

But now, I am focused on surviving and not just surviving - I am focused on thriving! 

That's all ~ Thanks y'all!

Now where did the grass go?

Playing on the ice wears you out!

Ice weighing down the pines.

One of my little charges.

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