Wednesday, May 27, 2009

When nothing satisfies you

I'm having a rough time. I think it's hormone related, but regardless of the cause, I'm in a frame of mind where I feel there's a hole that I just can't fill.

My daughter's leftover birthday cake & ice cream didn't fill it. A bowl of cereal in the middle of the night didn't fill it. A shopping spree (which I have so far avoided but am lusting after) won't fill it. Even my run in the soupy air yesterday afternoon didn't fill it.

It's not an unfamiliar feeling. I've been here many many times in my life. I know I just need to wait it out & try to limit the damage I do to myself.

But the question is, how do I do that?

I've been listening to Jennifer Knapp songs on my iPod lately. She's a Christian singer, & I have 2 CD's from probably 10 years ago. (I'm not current with new music, in any genre, with the exception of American Idol.)

The past couple weeks I've run a few times with no music & just meditated & prayed. When the weather is nice & I feel good, the running prayers have been remarkable. It's amazing what happens when you don't have any TV or music or books filling your brain. That's a state I don't spend much time in.

But when I'm in a don't-wanna mood or the weather is crappy or I'm on the treadmill, I need music. So I added Jennifer Knapp's CD's to my iPod, and viola! I've got great music AND I've got prayer time.

One of her songs is called "When Nothing Satisfies You." It hit me yesterday on my muggy run that this needs to be my theme song right now. A few of the lyrics:

when it rains or it shines on this pillow of mine
i will lift up my head to the sky
so i have chance to see
where my hope has come from
know there's nothing that i can't abide

send forth Your Light Lord,
and send forth Your Truth
let them guide me to Your Holy Place
then will i go to the Altar of God
to my Joy, my Delight and my Strength

why are You so downcast o my soul?
why so disturbed within me?
put your hope in God
my Savior, my King

when nothing satisfies you
hold my hand

So there's the answer, in her lyrics.

If you've ever heard of Gwen Shamblin of the Weigh Down Workshop (one of many diet plans I have tried), you are familiar with her idea that we all have God-shaped "holes," & if we don't fill them with God, then we will fill them with other things--like food, shopping, money, sex, sleep, whatever. We fill & we fill & we fill, but we are never satisfied. Because we aren't designed to be satisfied by anything but God.

As a Christian, I can fully appreciate this idea; if you aren't a follower of God in one form or another, then you probably think this is a bunch of hooey. But I'm guessing you've still experienced that "nothing satisfies me" feeling.

Unfortunately, just because you know the answer to your problem doesn't mean everything is hunky dorey.

I'm still struggling. But at least I can name what's going on with me & try to focus on filling myself with healthy stuff instead of junk--and I'm not just referring to food.


Anonymous said...

Hi Laura, I'm so sorry you are in a slump. You're right, we all have that void we can't fill from time to time. No amount of food, shopping or late night hot baths by candlelight seem to help. It is a strange place to be. I praise you for your running, you're already miles ahead in the race for health. Give yourself a pat on the back for that. When I get down, I force myself to put on uplifting dance music, pick a small task to do (that I've been avoiding) and surprisingly enough, within a short time, I'm feeling better. I like your personable writing and enjoy your blog which I now have added to the sidebar in my blog. I would love it if you would add my blog to yours. Look forward to your next post and I am sending good energy your way today. Linda

Jill said...

Oh Girl. How I feel your pain! I'm in the same place - not satisfied with much of anything right now. There's a song out right now from Carolina Liar called "Show Me What I'm Looking For" - it fits us both perfectly I think. Search for it on Youtube and listen to the lyrics - simple yet so true.
You and I must be on the same cycle! Too bad we don't live closer so we could console each other with chips and margaritas (and a run to burn off all the chips and margaritas of course!)

Vickie said...

are you logging your days (all your days) with some type of system - like a 1-10 number scale or something? Watching the trends. Putting your cycles in there too.

You are going 'up and down' a lot.

I can't remember what happened with your meds - ???

debby said...

Amen, sister! It is amazing to me that as Christians we can do the same thing--trying to fill that hole with so many things. I identify that in myself in so many ways. I wonder if it has to do with the addictive personality. Nah, its most likely just the human condition.

One thing that was really amazing for me was memorizing large chunks of scripture on my walks. I guess when you are concentrating on those words, it blocks everything else out. And the words come to have so much more meaning than when you simply read them.

Doc Manette said...

Very powerful post Laura. Sorry about the hole needing filled - sounds like you have found an answer.

In my old life, I never went to church (used excuses like "I'm too fat" or "I'll cry" blah blah) but about several weeks before "the incident", I started reading a chronological bible that had been sitting around collecting dust. I had no idea why I was reading it or what drove me to pick-it up!

On the fateful day that vileman called me, the first thing I saw was that bible and at that moment, I knew I wasn't alone.

LG said...

We all have hours, days, weeks or longer periods like this. I know where you're at today (Friday) and I wonder if that is a part of it?

I admire how you have found so many things to strengthen your resolve.

Helen said...

Laura...sorry I missed this earlier this week. As usual, we are often in the same place at the same time. What you describe as your prayers when running is the exact type of satisfaction I get when deeply into my yoga practice. Whatever we choose to call "God", it's the same thing. And, when I was deepest into my practice, I was the happiest. I long for that sometimes. With the way life's daily stuff overwhelms sometimes, lately I just get glimpses of that. And I'm afraid that's not enough. I often wonder what that hole is that has to be filled...going now to read your later post...