Strolling my daughter on Lincoln Blvd, we cross the street into the the fancy “North of Montana”neighborhood surrounded by beautiful homes, grassy yards, and exotic gardens. I was feeling discontent, irritable and just a bit “off”. When I feel uncomfortable, my old m.o. was to eat something to feel “better”, which only added to the discomfort. As a former binge eater and bulimic, I still want to eat outside of stomach hunger, but it’s easier for me to pray now instead of eat because I know the discomfort is a hunger for the peace only God gives me, that food never did.
The thoughts that come and go that create an uncomfortable wanting for more are, “Will I ever be able to afford a house with a yard and bedrooms for both of my children”. This is a dream that I long for and a goal that positively motivates me to work hard to achieve. But it’s a problem when it becomes obsessive. The theme is wanting more and thinking that when I get the house, that will be the end of the wanting. What I realized was, whenever I want more than what I have materially, just as when my stomach is already full and I want more food, it’s really uncomfortable and I’m rarely satisfied. There’s no peace in that.
What gave me immediate relief as I turned on Alta Avenue was the intuitive thought from God that if I never get anything more in my life, if I never have any more career success, and if we never move into a house with a yard, I am more than blessed with what I already have. I actually have more that what I even need. What I have is more than enough. I’m full already. The relief washed the wanting away and I felt graced with humble gratitude.
I kept walking feeling so grateful for the relief from the wanting – to eat and for a house. The next thought that flashed before me was “Oh Amy, people probably walk past my apartment, pushing their baby, thinking, “I wonder if one day I’ll ever be able to afford a place like this, a few blocks from the beach. If only we could live in Santa Monica and see the ocean every day”. The reality hit me of the blessings in my life and how fortunate I am that it stopped me in my tracks. I literally stopped on the sidewalk overflowing with gratitude for what I have right now.
I walked for about 20 more minutes feeling so full and completely content, with no thought of wanting chocolate to feel better, when God gave me the grand finale. It flashed before me that I was the Mom pushing her baby 5 years ago in front of the apartment we now live in, thinking “Oh God, what if we could actually live in an apartment here, and easily afford it and were lucky enough to get it. If only we could live in a place like this…” That was me. It’s overwhelming to be reminded that I’m already living where I hoped for, thinking it would be too good to be true. Where I am and what I have is more than enough. Knowing this in my gut, there is no room for even a thought of wanting more food than my stomach needs. I am full, content, and at peace.