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Monday, July 20, 2009

I was watching a Lifetime movie tonight... my husband made me turn it off. He thinks all those girly movies (especially Lifetime) are a huge waste of time. He told me to turn on something that was less a waste of time like Spongebob. What? Seriously?

I believe it was almost a couple months ago now when Michael J. Fox's "Adventures of an Incurable Optimist" first aired. I recorded it on DVR and I chose to finally watch it tonight instead of Spongebob. Good choice, Sarah. Like I don't see enough Spongebob every day with my kids!

Well, for anyone who hasn't seen this documentary it was very uplifting and very true. Being optimistic is a state of mind. He took us through farm country, the remote country of Bhutan, talked to Lance Armstrong, interviewed Cubs fans and more... all on the topic of optimism. At one point, Michael was playing golf with Bill Murray and he said something along the lines of, "If I could do everything then there would be no reason for hope."

Right after he said that it made me think of a song we sing in church. It's actually my pastor's favorite song... and when he really likes something he has a tendency to totally wear it out. So, needless to say, I've gotten to the point where I barely hear the words to this song anymore. I know that sounds terrible... I'm just being honest. Anyway, the song is called Through it All. And the last line of the verse is similar to MJF's quote about hope. "I thank Him for the mountains, I thank Him for the valleys, I thank Him for the storms He's brought me through. For if I never had a problem I wouldn't know that He could solve them, I wouldn't know what faith in God could do." If we could do everything we set our mind to - perfectly, the first time - why would we have a need for hope? If I never had a need or a problem, why would I ever go to God in faith to fulfill my needs - to give me hope, to give me joy, to give me strength?

Am I an incurable optimist? I like to think so. Just because someone is an optimist doesn't mean they don't struggle or have bad days or even get crabby at times. We are all human. But I do believe that I expect great things - from myself and from others. I believe in myself and others - even when they don't believe in themselves. My husband frequently tells me that I believe that the impossible can still be done. He says he's a realist. I say that's actually a pessimist. How in the world did the two of us end up together? lol. Cuz he needs me! I'm the one who's always pulling him out of a hole when he feels down - all need to do is give him a very convincing speech about what he can do and how I'm here for him and how if God is FOR US who can be AGAINST US... the encouragement is usually just the thing he needs. My life is like this in so many ways. Sometimes I do believe that impossible things really are possible. See, many times when something is labeled impossible it's only because other people deemed it that way. Why?

Did you try many times before SP to lose weight? I did! Have you maybe fallen off the wagon a few times SINCE coming to SP? I have! Or maybe you're even hanging off the back of the wagon right now - being dragged through the dirt by a rope... and it's ready to break... and you'll be left behind. I have BEEN THERE. So why am I here right now? I believe that since God is my strength and He has given me JOY UNSPEAKABLE that I can continue on no matter what. This allows me to keep on going and be optimistic even when the odds are against me and no one else believes I can do this. WE ALL CAN DO THIS. It's just a matter of how hard you are willing to work for it and how badly you really want it. I can hear the grumblings of some people right now... "I have _____ and my doctor said I won't be able to lose weight or it's going to be really slow." Well to you I say - Know what? Three years ago I went to a reproductive specialist because I just KNEW that I had Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome and that it had contributing to my weight gain - and it was causing me to have trouble losing weight - and a whole host of other health problems. That doctor told me that my best bet was to get gastric bypass because I was not going to be able to lose the weight on my own. He took away my hope. I really believed what he said and it caused me to allow myself to gain even more weight. Last July I put aside those words and allowed hope and optimism to swell up in me. Well LA-DI-DAH - here I am at 40 pounds down and I am not giving up for anything. Even things that SOUND impossible can be done!!!

So, are you an optimist? Whether you are or you aren't, let's keep this in mind.
"If I could do everything, then there would be no reason for hope." Nothing positive ever came out of being negative. Be hopeful, be optimistic. Some people like to show optimists in a bad light. But I say to you, without hopes and dreams - how will we ever get anywhere in this life???

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    GREAT blog Sarah! Thanks for writing it! My hubby is more pessimistic and I am more optimistic, that is just how it is sometimes. I truly believe that with God, ALL things are possible... now I just need to start living my life like I believe it!
    4388 days ago
    Keep on believing, sistah! Remember, when Mary was faced with the angel's report in Luke, it says that all things are possible to those who believe. And, in Isaiah 53 it says, "Whose report do you believe? I will believe the report of the Lord!" We can use what others say to us as barometers to where we need to work, but we should never take a fatalistic attitude and just accept the negative. Instead, we need to be like eagles and use the storms of life as launching pads to catapult us to greater heights! Hugs!
    4389 days ago
    Spongebob? OMG I can feel my brain atrophy when I watch that show! Good for you for finding ANYTHING else to watch!

    As always, I love your optomism. You are so perky and so bubbly and you are so inspirational. You always remind us not to give up hope. You are fantastic!
    4390 days ago
    This was a great blog - thank you for helping me to start my morning out on such an OPTIMISTIC note! You have become a great inspiration to me!
    4391 days ago
  • CAROL_
    4392 days ago
    AMEN sister! What a great blog!!!
    4392 days ago
    WOW... Thanks. I just might try to find the MJFox thing thanks to you! Keep it up!
    4392 days ago
  • no profile photo LIFES*2*SHORT
    Great blog! How come didn't I get any credit? haha... just kidding! You are definitely an amazing person!! And you WILL win this battle (even if it IS a few steps behind me haha)!

    4392 days ago
    Thanks for sharing this Sarah. I'll have to try to catch the show and look for a copy of that song. Thanks for reminding all of us, never to give up hope!
    4392 days ago
    I need to see if that special is available on dvd so that I can rent it. It sounds tremendous. I know that when it first came out, I didn't watch it because I was skeptical about it being heavy-handed and too much of the poor-me stuff. I have heard tremendous about it and now regret not watching it.

    You're right. We're never going to be the completely eternal optimist, but we can be optimistic and keep our focus on the hope that anything is possible.

    Tremendous post.

    4392 days ago
    Sarah, keep up the good work. I don't know about you but I love proving people wrong who have a whole bunch of degrees hanging on their walls. I know we are a whole lot alike. The word can't is not in your vocabulary either. emoticon
    4392 days ago
    Sarah this is an Fantastic blog....I am an optimist where my hubby is too analytical of things and more of a pessimist ... lol. They do say opposites attract.. Michael J Fox's quote is awesome...I am going to add that to my sparkpage...Luv it!! Thanks for reminding us to keep the hope alive!! emoticon Blog!!
    4392 days ago
    It sounds like the dynamics between you and your DH are similar to mine. My husband even called my Pollyamy (a play on Pollyanna). Unfortunately, I think over the past 18 years together, some of his pessimism has rubbed off on me and I'm not as optimistic as I used to be. Your blog reminded me of where I want to be. Thanks.
    4393 days ago
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