FFAQ winner + check in + random photo

Hi guys.

Yesterday’s FFAQ had a very clear winner (voting closed this morning, btw. If you tried to comment and don’t see it, that’s why). The question that I’ll be answering on Friday comes from Kaela Frame. She asks:

We all know you served a mission, but you’ve never really expounded on your experience living with a male companion 24/7. You once mentioned that you gained weight because you were so stressed about it. I’d just like to know a little more about your experience and where you stand when it comes to serving a mission and if it’s a good choice for those with same sex attraction.

I really love this question and am excited to answer it! Thanks Kaela.

Okay, and now it’s time for check in. As always, the rules:

1. Do not say “good” or “fine”. The Weed
2. Check in spiritually, physically and emotionally.
3. Make a realistic and achievable goal for yourself (which you can update us on next week.)
4. No cross talk. This means that while you might be moved by someone’s check-in, it is inappropriate to give feedback on what someone has shared (unless they specifically request it).
5. Remember, this is just for entertainment and is not  a supplement or replacement for therapy or other support from a mental health professional.

Aaaaand go.

Physically: I feel awesome. I’ve lost 5% of my bodyweight in the last little while, am back down to the 180’s (again), and am going strong. I have been doing Body for Life workouts, which I enjoy. I feel healthy, stronger than ever, and like I’m going a good direction. My eating has been both simple and really effective. I feel pretty great physically at the moment.

Emotionally: Mixed bag. I feel kind of weak and even fearful at the moment in some ways, but in other ways I feel very in control and on top of things. I feel supported by good friends. I also feel sad because I’m visiting home and seeing my parents is hard with my mom’s illness. (I’m not ready to talk about that yet, but I have a post mostly written about it. I’ll post it when the time is right.)

Spiritually: Connected. Hopeful. Strong. Secure. Grateful.

Goal: I will have written 10,000 words in the memoir by next Saturday.

All right. Your turn. If you’ve never seen this before and want to see other examples, here is a good past post.

And in advance, thanks for sharing pieces of your lives with me. I really, really love getting a glimpse into your struggles and triumphs. It’s very powerful. I’m grateful to you all (even those who read and don’t comment much.)

Completely random iPhone photo of me and Lolly! Added bonus: open fridge in the background!


  1. Physically: Kind of sore, but not horrible. But very tired.

    Emotionally: Just sort of drained, not in a bad way. Just like I'm not feeling at the moment.

    Spiritually: Not like there is a big gap between me and heaven, just a little one. Should be easy enough to breach.

  2. Long-time regular reader/lurker here! I understand if this is not something you're interested in discussing on your blog, but I love the check-ins and I'm curious how you can tell how you're feeling physically. I have even taken classes about getting more in touch with the body (yoga, movement classes, etc.), and aside from pain/illness, I just don't understand how to sense or evaluate physical condition.

  3. Physically – Good! Going for morning walks with a friend, and sleeping earlier.

    Emotionally – EHH. Cried my eyes out after a really long time yesterday, but I think feel better for it now. I feel so up and down. Sot bi-polar up and down, but just really moody.

    Spiritually – I feel like I'm cheating on my conscience due to some of the things and people I've been associating with. I feel like I'm spitting on my karma.

  4. Happy Saturday!

    Physically: Could be better. Sinus headache most of the day, and an upset stomach. But also? Could be worse, so there's that. Still – I need to make a few tweaks or I'm going to get run down.

    Emotionally: A little disconnected and sad. I think I need a nice break from schoolwork and work work to spend with a good friend, just talking. I'll take this emotional clue as a nudge to schedule that.

    Spiritually: I came back to the Church (Catholic) after a lapse of almost 3 years. Going to confession and getting spiritual direction from the priest was like having a burden lifted. I feel love, not dread, now, when I go to Mass.

  5. Physically- getting better. I've avoided getting the flu or stomach bug that my coworkers got and instead I got cellulitis on my ear. I also feel like my body betrays me but that's mire emotional than physical.

    Emotionally- I push down a lot of my feelings because I don't want to spend hours crying about things I can't change. My Dad died almost a year ago and I don't let myself cry because I'd cry all day. I had a total melt down after I found it I had cellulitis, so scared at the thought of another potentially serious illness with serious complications and potential hospital stay and I fell apart. I don't get just headaches or ear infections. I get meningitis and cellulitis. It's not fair.and it's not fair that some men have heart attacks or strokes and recover but my Dad was alone and help was too late.

    Spiritually- I feel more at peace with my beliefs than I have in ten years. And it's comforting to know that even though we didn't discusses spirituality much in the past, my husband and I agree in a lot of ways.

  6. Physically: I am afraid I may have that stomach bug going around. I feel like crap.

    Emotionally: Its been a rough week, but I used my experience to help a friend last night, so that made it all worth it.

    Spritually: weird. I think my move to the primary has thrown me off a bit. it some ways I am learning a lot, but I also spend so much time running around doing stuff, it doesn't have time to sink in

  7. My first check in…

    Physically…not to bad actually. I have been focusing on improving my eating choices and that is going well.

    Emotionally…not so good. I'm in pain but I don't know what to do about it.

    Spiritually…this is the biggest problem of all…what to do when your faith tradition does not help with your pain, and your faith community is oblivious to your needs. I honestly think another church would be more understanding and yet I believe what is taught in my own. Sigh…

  8. Physically– improving in general spurts 🙂

    Emotionally– a little up and down as I have to re-investigate so much that I have always held dear.

    Spiritually– I feel closer to the Savior and feel more confident in my ability to receive direction for my own life. I feel more compassionate, stronger, gentler, more loving, and less judgmental than any other time in my life.

    Goal–be patient with individuals who are not currently being taught the same lessons that I am.

  9. physically – fine. my knees hurt from moving boxes up from the basement.and my back hurts from painting, but my husband is taking good care of me.

    emotionally – on edge. my parents are divorcing after almost 40 years of marriage and my (bi-polar) mom already has a serious boyfriend. it stresses me out to think of how hurt i would be if my husband betrayed me in that way and how hurt my dad must feel. we're trying to move closer to my husband's family (because they are awesome and great support for me in particular) but moving is stressful and i'll miss my friends and church.

    spiritually – stressful times always drive me to the Bible, so i'm feeling pretty connected. our church is focusing on living as a disciple everyday; i'm feeling very encouraged to rely on God and keep moving forward in my faith. i'm also trying to memorize Luke 1:46-56 with my friends and its going pretty well.

    goal – feel free to laugh at my tiny goal… i'm going to eat no sugar on wednesday. it will be tough, since i'm a sweets addict, but i want to know i can do it.

  10. 1. physically… really great. moving in the right direction.
    2. spiritually… doing well. moving closer to God and taking time for him.
    3. emotionally… it varies. one second i am up, the next i am down. right now, i feel good and i think i am at least going in the right direction with it all… got a good counselor and blogging out my feelings. rock on, me.

    goal: work on my anger this week. really focus on not being angry and pray fervently for help with it ALL DAY LONG.

  11. Physically: I am recovering from having a baby so I don't feel great. I feel out of shape and I need to start exercising.

    Spiritually: I feel closer to God than I have in the past. I have gone through a lot in the past few months and that has led me to pray more and seek Him out.

    Emotionally: lots of ups and downs lately, but I couldn't be happier in my new role as a mom.

    Goal: to eat fruits and veggies everyday this week.

  12. Physically: Not bad, knee a tiny bit sore but not too bad.

    Spiritually: Survival mode. I feel like I'm being carried right now. Not feeling as in touch spiritually as usual but at the same time I feel protected.

    Emotionally: A bit of a mess. But at least there are moments of peace.

  13. Thanks for being so very "real". I love real people. My husband is a therapist and has ADD (but not SSA) — I often chuckle as you talk about your ADD moments — I can envision them so well! Love reading your blog!

  14. Physically: Great. Been working on my diet and and am within 5 pounds of where I was in June. Feeling pretty good about that.

    Spiritually: I feel like I learn something new everyday. I am trying to find time to study the scriptures each day. Every time I do find time I feel like my day goes better.

    Emotionally: was a little sad this week and found my energy lagging, but that feeling left today and I accomplished a lot. Adult session of Stake Conference was very uplifting.

    Goal: Find time to scripture study most days of the week, and find more balance in my day.

  15. Physically: Lazy. Been staying up too late and then feeling super groggy in the morning. Not exercising much (read: at all), but still somehow losing weight (???).

    Emotionally: About middle to lower end of the happy-sad spectrum. My ups are mild contentment and my downs are plummeting rockets of dooooooom. But I think the ups have been slowly increasing in frequency in relation to increases in my spirituality. Still feeling anxiety about building my career and general hopelessness about my social skills. bleh.

    Spiritually: I've been getting a lot more connected. Reading my scriptures more often (semi-succeeding at every night), reading good books, going to church activities, prayer.

  16. If "fine" okay if it stands for

    Freaked Out
    Neurotic &

    Everytime someone says they're "fine" mr brain hears that acronym. Alarmingly accurate in most cases.


  17. ___ Morning,

    Physically- Craptastic, tired and catching one of the sicknesses flying around, still not gaining enough weight, and I just want to curl up and sleep instead of going to Church, but that sets a bad precedence.

    Emotionally- Bouncing between happiness at being back in school with friends and tired of the same. Of late I have decided that if I want to get anywhere in life I am going to have to come out of the closet, but not sure to whom. Don't know if I trust anyone enough. I'm also getting tired of people asking me why I don't date and trying to get me to… and then there is the stress of taking too many classes, none of which I have studied for and I have a mid-term on Thursday… fun!

    Spiritually- Getting better, taking Institute classes, reading the scriptures, having meaningful prayer, and in general on better terms, which is to say closer, but still a ways off from where I want to be… so I'll get on that.

    Last Goal: Since I haven't done a check-in in over a month, I'll go with the last goal I set myself, which was to start reading the Book of Mormon in Spanish. I am doing a fantastic job, so I can feel pleased with myself.

    Goal for this Weed: Identify someone in the area I trust enough to come out to… wonder how well that will go. Also, get back to reading the D&C in Portuguese and study for my mid-term this week (that might not be the best goal, I never manage to bring myself to study…).

  18. Physically- Better than earlier this week. I got BF's cold.. and I don't get sick very often. At least I sound like me again, and I don't have a raging headache. At least there's no puking or body aches with a cold. Sadly my super sedentary job has taken its toll in the lats 6 months. I haven't gained enough for others to notice, but I've noticed.

    Emotionally- Again, better than earlier this week. An old BF contacted me. I love him, but he didn't love me back, so I broke things off with him. Problem is, I was ok until he told me he missed me and has been wondering if he should have asked me to stay. He still doesn't love me which brings up self-doubt stuff- what's deficient in me that I can't inspire him to break down the walls around his heart enough to love me in return?? Yeah, there was crying and heartache in that one! I still sometimes feel on the verge of tears about it.

    Spiritually- I don't know, to be honest. I know the truth, but sometimes (more often recently) I struggle to feel much of anything. I know what I probably need to do to get there, but.. *sigh.. kind of in a funk.

    Last Goal- Aw, dang- I don't remember 😛

    Goal- Get some things done for work and for my CC permit papers. Apply for a second (and also more active) job. Get active.. do SOMETHING.. maybe with the weather warming up a little, me and the dog will get out a couple times this week?

  19. My first checkin.

    Physically: I'm back to the resolution I made a couple of years ago – if I'm going to be fat, at least let me be strong. I've been keeping up with my exercise bike three times a week and walking the dogs 5 mornings a week. Sinuses today seem under control. Digestion today seems ok too.

    Emotionally: Well, this will sound weird, but it is how I feel. My dad was really sick the last three months after 12 years of cancer and 10 of a heart condition. He was getting physically weaker and weaker and his dementia was getting worse and worse. It was heartbreaking ans scary. I felt like I was living in one of the scarier episodes of the Twilight Zone that just wouldn't end. It felt like no matter how hard we tried, we couldn't get the right care, enough help, be there for him in the way he needed. I felt like I was living in some sort of parallel universe. My dad died just a month ago – we just had the shloshim (in Hebrew that means "30") where you go up to the cemetery and see the stone (perhaps it is called an unveiling?), say specific Psalms (that are full of verses my dad would have especially liked). So now I'm officially in mourning. Now I'm supposed to feel weird, supposed to have mood swings, supposed to have waves of feeling and ups and downs and EVERYONE is perfectly supportive and understanding of this. Sorry for all the words, but basically, as hard as it is, it's so much easier that it was. Also,knowing that Dad is NOT suffering now.

    Spiritually? Well, spiritually. Hmmm. Well, living with a sense of closeness to the creator of the universe, with a sense that life – in this world and most likely in the world to come – is complicated and almost all of the time beyond my understanding. Having faith in the goodness of creation. Living with hope. A bit isolated at times feeling that I'm walking a path alone, but hugely comforted by the words of Parker J. Palmer in "A Hidden Wholeness" about how hard living true is compared to living virtuous. Though I allow myself the occasional shot of virtue because it really can be heady. I just try to remember that it's alcoholic and to not get carried away (the "I helped someone! Aren't I terrific!" kind of carried away. Also I keep thinking about Odetta singing that song "He's Got the Whole World In His Hands" and imagining just what that might feel like.

    Goal: Unclutter work area.

  20. So I know the rule about not commenting on someone's check-in, so I am indirectly, ie not replying directly on her check-in, saying that I want to hi-5 the gal with the goal to eat no sweets on Wednesday. It's specific, measurable, realistic and plain awesome.

    Now for my check-in, which I have not done for a while:

    Physically: Rockin! I have lost a total of 38 lbs since March and I feel good. I still have 30 to go, and I'm at a bit of a plateau the last few weeks, but man I'm encouraged. I rode my bike the three miles to work last week instead of driving. I went ona four-mile run/walk and signed up for a 4.2 mile run with my bro-in-law in April. I am happy with the progress.

    Emotionally: happy. Very happy. I am getting lots of positive reinforcement on my physical progress (see above) and thus I am being emotionally boosted. The young women from my last ward (in which I was the advisor to the 14-15 year old girls) came to a movie night in my new ward and made me feel special and loved. I am finding great joy in working with the youth. They are uplifting and a joy to be around.

    Spiritually: room for improvement. I had set a goal to read the Old Testament cover-to-cover by the end of the year and I am way behind! Need to get back on that wagon. I haven't been as diligent in thanking my Heavenly Father for the great progress, joy and happiness I feel as of late. I don't feel guilt, but I feel like I miss Him. I miss the constant connection. I've been so busy I've missed the one-on-one.

    Goal: daily prayer and finish Genesis this week. And be ready to teach on Sunday!

    Josh, thanks for the check-in. I love reading everyone's comments because I find strength in their expressions of joy, struggle and everything in between.

  21. My second comment ever, and my first check-in.

    Physically: Obese and all that comes with it, but have been exercising an hour a day most of the month (DDR).

    Emotionally: weepy and put out. Gotta be a bigger person (ha ha, I know — when I'm already almost 100 lbs. overweight? :D) and get over it.

    Spiritually: have read Book of Mormon every night w/o fail for three months after years of not at all. Weird thing is, I can't see that it's changing anything. If anything, my testimony feels weaker. Am I being too open to say this in a blog comment? 😛

    Goal: have the courage, focus and follow-through to update my resume and apply for this perfect-sounding job I found a couple days ago. 😛

  22. Physically- Blah. I have been trying to lose some weight by watching my calories and walking more. Last week I didn't do so well, and I went up a pound. It's really frustrating because my husband has already met his goal weight and it's not even the end of January! I'm considering giving up gluten for Lent to help me get back on track.

    Emotionally- Pretty darn good. I had a mild anxiety attack yesterday, but I was able to go about my life normally in spite of it. I am also feeling very hopeful about making some friends after going to two meetups last week.

    Spiritually- Awesome! I finally found a church that I think I can call home. This is really for the first time in my life. I am so excited about it. I am really feeling stronger in my faith than every before.

    Goal- Be under my calorie goal six days this week and get to 10,000 steps twice.

  23. PHYSICALLY : I have this idea in my head, persistent, constant, that I'm 19years old. A time in my life that I was at my physical worst -or close to it. A time in my life when 6months of steady work brought me back to the best shape of my life. I feel there. As if just a few months of dedication & motivation will have me back to "go".

    Its been 10 years. Not 6 months. This MAY be as good as it gets.

    10 years of dedication, motivation, and…. Cripes. This must be what it means to be old. Thinking strength & grace is just around the corner, when the truth is that lithe and capable is just a memory carried around like a security blanket. My bones are rebelling. They sit at odd angles, complaining about their relative positions. My flat belly and thin arms DO exist, just in a world without mirrors. Speed. Dexterity. Joy in movement. Lost to time. And I know, in the quiet recesses, that in 10 more years, Ill look back at now… And weep for the memory of it. Of feeling how I do now. And in 10 more years, of how I felt then. If I were only 10 hears younger. This is what I have heard my entire life, from men with white hair, and sometimes white collars. This is getting old. Feeling 19 forever. Being… Indescribably not. And, in all fairness, not even ASKING for 19. Just 10 years. Just 10.

    EMOTIONALLY : Stubborn. Darnit.

    Humming : Every little thing, gonna be alright. Rise up in the morning. Smile at the rising sun. 3 little birds. Is at my door step. Singing sweet songs. Of melodies pure & true. This is my message to you. Singing dont worry. About a thing. Cause every little thing gonna be alright.

    SPIRITUALLY : You're okay, kid.

    Reasonable Goal : Groceries & Calendars.

    – Grey

  24. Physically: Pretty good. My knees don't like all the high-impact stuff I've been doing, but they're only bothering me a little bit. My neck has been aching and has a burning feeling. Time for a visit to the chiro. But working out 5 times a week, and at least getting close to the sleep I should be getting. Main problems I need to work on: eating junk food Every.Single.Day. And staying up way too late when I need to be waking up at 6. Midnight doesn't cut it.

    Emotionally: I had been feeling a little burnt out, but finding some motivation again to deal with all the things I need to do. Special needs kids can be so exhausting.

    Spiritually: Feeling somewhat distant. Need to do better with saying prayers and reading scriptures.

    Goal:To make some improvements on this mess of a house.

  25. Hmm, I think I'm ready to do my very first check-in. I've been an avid Weed reader for months but I've always been hesitant to do a check-in for some reason (may have something to do with my fear of rejection.) But I feel like I could use one today.

    Physically: A little tired and out of shape, but mostly healthy.

    Emotionally: Exhausted and overwhelmed. Like I need a LONG break from it all. Frustrated, confused, lonely, and disconnected.

    Spiritually: Loved and cared for thanks to some recent cool experiences. I have faith these trials are for my eternal good even though they are sure hard now.

    Goal: Get together with a friend!

  26. Here's my first:
    Physically: It's winter. That means I want to sleep all the time, BUT, my husband and I registered for the dirty dash in June so I have to be able to run 4 miles by then… I think I'm at 1 block right now.

    Emotionally: It's hard to be happy during winter in the Pacific Northwest and I don't like going to work in the morning, BUT, I've been making little plans here and there to get myself excited about things- even if it just means looking forward to mommy play group. It's gotten to the point now where I'm not sad nearly as much after my Dad's death 1 1/2 years ago from cancer. And, I'm anxious about just starting my private practice… everyone tell all your friends with speech impediments!

    Spiritually: Starting to get better. I felt pretty numb ever since August 2010 when my dad was diagnosed, and continued to feel that way throughout his illness and after he died, but had faith that if I just kept going on the right path I would start to feel that connection again, and this past Sunday I had a wonderful spiritual experience just sitting and listening in Relief Society.

  27. What up Weed posse! An old friend forwarded this blog to me (I'm gay, my friend is straight….friend is trying to relate). I'm happy to see this blog opening new doors for folks who are engaging in (hopefully, usually, mostly) meaninful conversation. Here's my check in:

    Physically: A lot of parts of me ae SORE! I've been hitting the gym to get stronger knees before hiking season begins (and to melt off the lbs I collected over the holidays). Trying to be push myself within comfortable limits, which can be tough to gauge without injuring oneself.

    Spiritually/Emotionally: I'll lump these together to sum up one of many thoughts that have been on my mind lately. I've been pondering what I currently do as a side job/volunteer work….more specifically, where my efforts would be most valuable to the community at large. Also known as, where I'm playing it safe in life. My second job (a very part-time, practically volunteer teaching gig) is pretty small but takes quite a time commitment beyond what I'm paid to do. It's relatively safe and doesn't pull at me internally to go above/beyond in what I can offer to people or expand on my own personal growth. I know that I want to do work that MATTERS, specifically with QLGBT youth at one of the local community centers. I know I want to make the transition from my full-time job to a volunteer position where young'uns get the pieces of me and hearing about my experiences that can really make a difference to them. I'm firm on the intention, but feel a huge black hole of a vacuum with new administration at the second job to make a smooth transition (that is to say, I don't want to bail on big projects I started and now lead). It will have to be a gradual transition, which is honestly a little frustrating. I'm engaging in conversation about how to make this work, and am seeking a little patience with myself.

    Goal for the week: Hit the gym at least 3 times this week. Also, prioritize my To-Do's daily to hit milestones and keep my goals(personal and professional, current and future) on track. Also, make at least one phone call related to my job/volunteer transition…gotta keep that ball a rollin'.


  28. Psychically – Feeling a little fat. Looking at my face and feeling like a double chin is growing. I know its all in my head but I am having a difficult time shaking it this week. My body feels strong but its my mind psyching me out.

    Emotionally – Doing good. Feeling well put together and feel like the sadness is slowly leaving my body. If it wasn't for the damn mirror this week I would say I was in fine shape.

    Spiritually – I have my beliefs which make me happy, but recently I feel like I am being pulled in another direction. One that I have not explored in a long long time. I am dipping my feet back into that water and although I feel very at peace with that, I wonder where that is going to leave my other beliefs, as they are very very different from each other. I also wonder if I cross over where my sense of self is going to be. I am foundering.

    Goal – Continue yoga three times a week. Add in some meditation.

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