Tag Archives: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Thoughts

It’s been a while since I’ve sat down and written. I try to keep my posts upbeat, or at the very least positive in nature and it’s been rather hard the past few weeks. I have found myself missing my Lizy so much that sometimes it’s excruciating and I have to remember to breathe. But, while I miss her, I also find and have joy in my five wonderful, living children and my most amazing husband.

To say life these last two months has been a roller coaster ride is a bit of an understatement. Paul is starting a new job – it’s wonderful, an answer to prayers. He will have better hours, better pay, more vacation, more holidays, better benefits. Such a blessing, and the change will be a good thing, especially for him, helping him to take another step to “moving on”.

I have a new calling at church – I am the Young Women’s president (that means I work with the 12-18 year-old girls at church- planning activities, etc.). While I am a bit overwhelmed, and feel completely inadequate, I love these girls. I can’t help but think, while Heavenly Father had to bring my Lizy home to him, he gave me eleven beautiful young women to watch over in her place. I will be busy, and busy is good.

Lastly, my father, who has been battling brain cancer, passed away this past Friday. I will miss him, I already have been missing him these past few months, but I know he is with Lizy and so many more family members. I smile as I picture the joyous return and reunion he must have had. I am grateful he didn’t suffer longer than he had to. I am grateful family has been able to be there to help him and my mother through this time. And I am so grateful to be going to Oregon for his funeral. It will be the first time in 13 years (do to geographical locations) that all of kids will be together.

It’s hard to describe how I feel about things. So much has been happening, life altering things and I go from being happy one minute to in tears the next. But one thing I do know, and that is that we have a loving Heavenly Father who is aware of what we are going through and showers us with tender loving mercies. I saw a saying recently that I have come to love:

“Sometimes God calms the storm…sometimes God lets the storm rage and calms His child.”

I feel at peace. I feel His love. I know families are eternal and that while the years ahead will be hard without Lizy and my Father, I know I’ll be with them again at length. Some might say life is unfair. That too much has hit our family. I say life isn’t about fair or unfair. It’s a series of challenges that will help us to learn what we need to know and to develop the strength we need to prepare us for the next stage of our eternal existence. Each of us is different, and our challenges and tests are different. Only He knows what we need to reach our full potential. I think often of this quote by C.S. Lewis:

“Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of – throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace.”

The challenges we are given are uniquely fit for us, and just because ours may be more visible than others, they are no more important than the many trials and challenges faced by others. Heavenly Father will give us all the strength we need to overcome our personal challenges in life, no matter how unbearable they feel. We can learn from them and find beautiful things admist the thorns. Each of us has the potential to become that beautiful palace if we let the Master do His work.

And, even in the dark hours, there are many beautiful things. Today is Paul’s and my anniversary. We have had fourteen wonderful, marvelous years together and look forward to so many more. Paul is my rock, my strength. When I flounder and feel weak, I can lean on him. He loves unconditionally, and is a marvelous father to our amazing children. I love him with all my heart and admire all that he is.

Even in the hard dark moments, I am surrounded by many beautiful things –

namely my family.
I am SO blessed.
Every hour.
Every day.

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Filed under Child loss, Family, Opinion, Philosophy, Religion

Because He Knew What I Needed

I like to think that typically I have a good attitude about things, but on occasion I can be downright snarky. Especially when it comes to certain things. When my husband heard about Time Out for Women and asked if I was going (he thought it was some Stake or Ward meeting) my snark meter hit the roof.

After a scoffing laugh, I said,

                       “No.” 

The kind of “no” with the silent

                               “duh”

attached.

He raised an eyebrow – well I think he raised both eyebrows, but if he could only raise one, he would have, so in my imagination he rose an eyebrow.

I groaned and answered his silent question. “It’s not an actual Relief Society meeting, is a conferency thing put on by Deseret Book.” I noticed he still had the brows raised so I continued with what I thought was a deal sealer:

“You have to PAY to go.”

He remained silent, just looking at me with those, “well, go on” eyes. So I went on, satisfying my snark meter’s demands. “It’s like paying someone to have a spiritual experience. I’d rather go read or re-watch General Conference, I can be spiritually uplifted for FREE.”

I’m sure during my entire tirade my husband was silently praying not to be struck by lightning, and Heavenly Father was thinking,

“This one needs an attitude adjustment.” 

Paul very sweetly said nothing and dropped the topic.

A week later, the day before Time Out for Women Cincinnati, I received a phone call from a friend. After we exchanged pleasantries, our conversation went something like this:

“I was hoping I’d be feeling better by this weekend, but I’m really not doing well. Would you like my tickets to Time Out for Women? Catherine is going and you could ride down with her.”

“Ummmm…

Well, it would be fun to hang out with her, but Jacob has a soccer game Friday, and both he and Em have their last games on Saturday. I’ll talk with my husband and let you know.”

I hopped off the phone and waited for Paul to arrive, all the time thinking that while I might not be that interested in Time Out the opportunity to hang with a good friend would be fun.

My head battled things out.

The snark meter went crazy,

the guilt ramped up

what kind of mom ditches her kids on the LAST games of the season (even if they have attended all the other games so far)?,

and the slight PING of excitement about getting out and away for an extended period of time snuck in.

The snark meter and guilt winning, I pounced on Paul the minute he arrived, most certain he would axe the plan for me and save me from having to make a decision.

After I told him about the available tickets he said, “I think you should go, but I have to work on Saturday.”

I couldn’t believe my answer was SO easy! “No problem, I don’t mind, and I’m sure someone else can use those tickets.” I turn to bounce into the house when he spoke again.

“Wait, wait, wait. I didn’t say no. What time are the games?”

“Tomorrow’s is at 5, Jacob would have to miss it altogether. Then Em’s is at 10:30 and Jacob’s at 11 tomorrow. ”

“Hmmmm….

Jacob can miss tomorrow’s game. I can go in to work at 6 in the morning and get my hours in before taking the kids to the games and then if I need to I can work from home.”

“Are you sure? That’s an awful lot of running and juggling. Besides, Liz and Dot have done SO much babysitting, I’d feel bad making them do more so I can go.”

My million dollar man insisted, to which I replied, “Okay, but only if Liz and the girls are okay with the extra babysitting.”

I called the girls together and explained the situation. My incredibly awesome girls said, “You should go mom, we don’t mind the extra babysitting.”

My decision made for me, I called to say I could use the tickets. I was excited about getting out, mostly because of the time I’d spend with a good friend, a little because I thought I’d have fun, and a little in hopes of proving my snark meter right. My excited friend bubbled over how much fun I’d have when I told her it was my first time to ever go.

Well, my snark meter was proved

WRONG!!!!!

From the moment it started to the moment it ended I had the time of my life. I haven’t laughed that hard in ages, and I was spiritually touched and changed.  I felt inspired, uplifted, and motivated. I received answers to long sought after questions, comfort for discouragments and excitement for forging on. I felt like every talk was pointed right at me. It was as though Heavenly Father was saying,

“Listen up kid, you need this”

followed by a huge

                           hug.

So, I swallowed my pride this weekend, and it never felt so good. I thought I was sacrificing so much by missing my kids games, when I sacrificed nothing and received everything. They sacrificed their time for me, babysitting and not minding if I missed their final games. Paul was up at 5:15 in the morning on a Saturday to get his work done in time.  I am so blessed to have the amazing family I have. I was uplifted, enriched, and humbled…. and the next time Time Out for Women is in our area I will most likely be in line to get tickets if I can.

Heavenly Father knew what I needed and I am so grateful he insisted even when I was being snarky and difficult.

I know He loves us and I am so grateful!

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Filed under Religion