Tuesday, October 30, 2007

A Little Soul-Bearing Honesty

Lately, I have been in a pit of despair and I was beginning to be fearful that I would never come out. I won't go into a lengthy explanation of what causes these things to happen in my life, but it all ends up back at the feet of the fear of rejection and abandonment. I guess that things I have been hiding away in my soul need to be spoken aloud so that I can start to heal from them. So, this may turn into a really long story that maybe only needs me to say, and not necessarily to be read by others. If you choose to continue reading it, I hope that your opinion of me does not become jaded.

Anyway, back in 1995 I was going to college, waiting on a missionary who I believed was my absolute destiny to be with forever, and basically just having the time of my life and trying to keep busy. I would spend all my free time with my friends at the LDS Institute and loved going to YSA dances with my roomates. My then boyfriend was serving his mission in Talahassee, Florida in a Vietnamese speaking mission. Well, it just so happens that a close friend of his (and our student ward Elder's Quorum President)happened to have also served in a Vietnamese mission and therefore knew the language very well. This guy became my translator for the letters that my boyfriend would send home for me in Vietnamese (I think he just liked showing me how well he was mastering the language). The EQ president and I spent quite a bit of time together as friends, and then there was a day that I think changed the course of my destiny forever. We had been in the basement of his parents home watching movies or something and his demeanor became something unfamiliar to me. Suddenly he was on top of me tearing at my clothes and taking me into his bedroom. I will spare you the details of all that happened, some of which I think I have blocked out because I simply don't want to remember. That happened on a Friday......on Sunday I went early to church and asked to speak with the bishop. I had informed him of what had gone on, explained that this was in no way a consentual deal and I was wondering what he inteneded to be done. The bishop told me that the Elder's Quorum president had already come to him the night before and "confessed" everything to him. The bishop felt that what had happened was not a reason to release this man from his calling. I stood up, walked out the doors of the church and never went back. I cut all contact with my missionary, figuring I was too damaged that he wouldn't want me anymore. I left everything about the church that day. I guess I didn't realize that I left God there, too.

He has tried so hard to maintain a relationship with me, but I keep getting wrapped up in the hurt of things all over again and I've been holding Him off. I don't want to be vulnerable. I don't want to be hurt again. I don't want to feel. In the process though, I've flung the door open and let the enemy whisper things into my ears, heck, sometimes he's flat out screaming at me. I'm sure you all have been there? What all can he say? Everything that contradicts the true essence of who God is, but laced with enough truth to make it believable. For 4 years it was easier for me to be angry and blame the church as a whole for this terrible injustice. After the birth of my first son, I started going back.....little by little......a week or two here and there. But I never again have fully immersed myself in the church and the gospel. It's just too hard. I've been so long away, that it has become easier to stay away. But today the tide turned. I am uncertain what happened, but I had a really nagging pain in the back of my neck today, so I took a nap and when I woke up, I was done. D O N E letting SATAN have his way with me and ready to let GOD have his way with me. Then a friend of mine gave me the link to this video. It's 5 minutes and 32 seconds that will bring tears to your eyes and remind you of WHO is truly on your side. Please don't give up if it seems lengthy or you don't like it at first. It is powerful and the end is well worth it. It is my life portrayed on stage and it even shows my victory. I know it's not an LDS video.....but it still dropped me to my knees in prayer when it was over. I hope that means that this is a changing day in my life. I'm ready to heal. I really am.


Sunday, October 28, 2007

My Personality Type

Your Personality is Somewhat Rare (ISFP)

Your personality type is caring, peaceful, artistic, and calm.

Only about 7% of all people have your personality, including 8% of all women and 6% of all men
You are Introverted, Sensing, Feeling, and Perceiving.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Just a Freakin' Cool Quote

I love this quote, and just wanted to share it. Sometimes it's something we all need to remember.

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others." Marianne Williamson

Monday, October 15, 2007


One of our deepest needs as humans is to belong. God created in us a desire for relationships, but unfortunately in our human form, we tend to mess things up. We don't carry out our friendships well or we let people down, or we get let down. Any way you look at it, humans in a relationship will inevitably hurt one another at some point. The heart may not be to hurt anyone, but where the spirit is willing, so often the flesh is weak. As a result of these hurts, over time we often build up a fear of rejection or abandonment that hits us to our very core. I know that I struggle very deeply with these fears. I don't have very many people inside the inner sanctum of my heart in an effort to keep me from getting wounded there, but it still happens.

Something occurred to me this morning though, and I'm not quite through processing it, but the key point is.... how often does my rejection and abandonment hurt my Heavenly Father? When I'm wounded and feeling alone or vulnerable, I withdraw. I don't spend time with Him. In fact, I avoid Him. How often has He been hurt because He wants to be there for me but I've shut the door and held Him out? How often is my hurt prolonged by my own behavior? Do I think I'm any different than Adam and Eve trying to hide their nakedness? He's the Master and Creator of the universe. He knit me together in my mother's womb and He even knows the number of hairs on my head. HE KNOWS MY HEART. There isn't anyone in the world, no matter how close they are to you, that can know you as intimately as your Father in Heaven. He wants to love you. He wants to love me. He wants to let you know that He values you and He wants to spend time with you. He longs to hear my voice and yours. There is nothing too big or too small or too boring for Him. He is the alpha and omega, the beginning and the end. Why are we holding onto these things when He's sitting there just waiting for us to give it to Him? Why do we treat Him the way we hate to be treated?

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

The Anomaly of a Long Lasting Marriage

As I sit here looking at the calendar on my wall, I can't help but smile. Tomorrow will be our wedding anniversary.....our 10th wedding anniversary. Some days I'm astonished at how quickly time has gone by, an amazed that when you peel away the layers of our life.....it really wasn't that hard.

Of course, we've had some insanely tough days in our marriage, but to be able to last 10 years almost seems like a record by the worlds standards. For those of you who don't know....I guess I'll give you a little backstory on Ross and I.

We met in the spring of 1996. My parents had convinced me to give up on a boyfriend that was not helping me be the wonderful person that they figured I could and should be. So,I took a job at a hotel in one of Alberta, Canada's most beautiful National Parks.

I had fun, met a LOT of new people from all over the world and basically wasn't focused on "relationships and dating". One day, I took my lunch break from my job at the front desk and went back to sit in the staff dining area. There was a boy sitting there who was about 12 or 13 years old eating penny candy out of a brown paper bag. I sat at the table behind him. He turned around and offered me some candy and I obliged him. He asked me my name and if I worked at the hotel. I answered him. He then asked me if I knew who his father was. I looked at him and said "No". He then told me, "Oh, well my dad is the chef here.......and he could kick your ass".

I looked at him in stunned silence for a minute, trying to decide if he was attempting to threaten me or if it was just for shock value. I have a little brother who is the same age as this kid and he will sometimes say things just to see what he can get away with. I then asked him why his father would want to do that to me, since I was a complete stranger. Suddenly this tall, and rather intimidating man, dressed in kitchen whites came out from the kitchen and said to the boy, "That's enough, Christopher. Leave this girl alone." He then proceeded to apologize for his son and we got to talking.

Now, I should rewind and say that while I was in Waterton (the name of the town), my life had taken a few turns to where I was no longer active in the Church and was not adhering to the words of wisdom or the law of chastity. (My reasons for leaving the church are a completely different story altogether that I will save for another day). Anyway, this guy asked what I was doing after work and we decided to meet at the hotel bar (the only place in town that had music and entertainment)for drinks and some games of pool. We had a great night and spent every evening after work together for the next three months.

At that time, the summer was coming to a close and many of the staff were being laid off from the hotel for the season. Not wanting our relationship to end, we decided to move to Calgary (his home town) and make a go of our relationship. Two months later, I found out I was pregnant with our first son.

Now you also have to understand that we were under pressure from both of our families with regards to our relationship. My family didn't like the fact that he was 10 years older than me, was not LDS, was a smoker, was twice divorced and had a 12 year old son. His family thought I was too young, unstable, flakey, and the whole "Mormon" thing about sent his Catholic mother over the edge.

But we persevered, and 6 months after our son was born, we were married. In fact, I recieved the engagement ring on my 21st birthday and we married 12 days later. It was nothing fancy. Which again, goes back to the things in my life I regret. We were married by a Justice of the Peace in her garage. No family, no party, no dress, no cake......nothing that was anything to do with the wedding of my childhood dreams. But, I guess, at least it was official and we were man and wife.

SO 10 years and three wonderful children, I don't think I would change much about how we've gotten here. Of course, there are the small things that we take for granted, or the pet peeves that we each overlook because we love eachother dispite our faults. And, although I don't care much for poetry, this one pretty much describes my feelings about us.......

I Carry Your Heart With Me
e.e. cummings

I carry your heart with me,
I carry it in my heart.
I am never without it.
Anywhere I go you go, my dear;
And whatever is done by only me is your doing, my darling.
I fear no fate,
For you are my fate, my sweet.
I want no world,
For beautiful you are my world, my true.
And it's you are whatever a moon has always meant
And whatever a sun will always sing is you.
Here is the deepest secret nobody knows;
Here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
And the sky of the sky of a tree called life;
Which grows higher than soul can hope or mind can hide.....
And this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart;
I carry your heart,
I carry it in my heart.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

The Little Things

There are so many times that we try to find money to take extravagant vacations or to prove to our kids that we love them with money, when it's the small things that they will remember. Will they remember great vacations? Yes, but they will also remember playing in the rain, baking cookies with Mom, running through the sprinkler, having blanket forts and smores.

I wonder how often we sit back and wait on God to wow us instead of taking the time to notice the small things that He has done for our enjoyment. The joy of a summer rain, the perfect spots on a ladybug's back, the smile on our child's face. We are so self absorbed in today's world that we often forget that we don't need to be wowed. There is nothing that He owes us, yet we expect so much. How often do we take the time to be thankful that when we are feeling quiet and bummed that He's sitting right there with us and is willing to listen if we want to share, or to just be there with us through it. We sell Him so short. We hold onto bitterness, anger, frustration, wounds, etc... and keep ourselves from enjoying all He has to offer.

This morning I found myself watching my son with his Go Diego, Go fleece blanket sitting on my couch watching Backyardigans (his favorite show). He actually thanked me for letting him watch it. Then as he sat there with a smile on his face and snuggling his "blankie", I realized why the Lord so wants us to be like a child. They take the time to enjoy life. They don't hold onto all of the crap that we do. Ooooooooooh how I want to be like that. I want to be like my little Ryker.....free to dance in the rain.

Easy Ways To Be Happy

In the monotony of daily life, chasing after happiness can seem like an endless, really big project. And sometimes, it is. But sometime...