Friday, December 17, 2010

The Provo Tabernacle...

Chill biting wind blows against the cheek as you to step to keep up with the crowd.The doorways are congested with the throngs of people so I rush around to find another entrance, the front doors are locked, despite the cold I admire the woodwork, the beauty of the edifice, the carved stone and brass handles. I run toward the now vacant turret doorway and I pull open the heavy door and step inside the historical scent assails the senses, the quiet murmur of the congregation, I breathe it all in, soak it in as I ascend the stairway. Narrow and steep, I tread carefully on the worn carpet and marvel at the feel of the thin wood rail I grip to, which is somehow out of proportion to where it needs to be to comfortable grasp it. I stop at the window well and once more feel of the atmosphere of the pioneer spirit, I ponder that if I just turn the next bend I will come across the ghost of the pioneers. As I reach the top I look out over the balcony, how many dignitaries and prophets have walked these grounds, look now at the congregation and I look for a spot to sit, clear across the balcony an empty spot is apparent so I make my way there, holding onto my baby girls hand lest she escape, or fall. I run my hand over the woodwork, taking in the plain utilitarianism of the benches, yet they are beautiful. I take my seat, and hold my daughter next to me and little son, and I search for my older children, down in the choirs, they are there awaiting there turns to sing. I let my little ones crowd next to the railing as their brother and sister sing, I crowd there too and take pictures of my children as they sing. How joyous I feel, how proud. Such nostalgia as I remember sitting here, sitting over there, and walking through the edifice for Stake Conferences and performances past. Even ironically that I sat there one cold winters night behind a girl who tormented me at school while I was growing up... I wondered then what she thought, and if she turned would she recognize me? I imagined myself as a young mother sitting with my oldest son as a baby, how I tried to help entertain my little brother and sister as my dad sang in the choir.As my young son asked for water I carefully walked down the stairs to the restrooms, cramped an inadequate as the quarters were we all loved the atmosphere, the building...

And now it is gone, burned in the night

I've walked past and admired the quiet beauty, my cousins invited me to be part of a pageant on the lawn many years ago, though I declined I still remember... I was proud of the Tabernacle, my grandparents worshiped there, my ancestors helped to build it. My heart held a place for it... and now my heart is broken for the loss. I'm sure we will rebuild, our craftsmen and dedicated members will all want to help... it will just never be the same...

Sunday, October 31, 2010

A Short Chance to Write

I haven't been writing much. I've felt words escape me as I've been caught up in a whirlwind of disorganization and as I've been trying to keep up with the expectations of my manager at work.

For some reason the things that I love and care about most deeply get buried in the back of my mind when confronted by such chaos.

I think of things to write, structure them in my mind and then sigh at the knowledge that my thoughts will soon be lost. Left to flit away because I'm so preoccupied or tired.

Then the blankness of the screen when I bring it up to write mocks me, and I lament the emptiness of my blog which symbolizes to me the emptiness of organized thought that I came to revel in when I had more time to jot them down here.

Interestingly enough this space has been a free medium for me to write than that of my diary which I am afraid that my children might find at some future point and complain to me of my pedantic thoughts and my blunders.

I've been battling these many months (during my blogging inactivity) the apathy that comes with exhaustion, the souls cry for what cannot be, the emptiness of the future when it has been ripped from the standard modality and even the shame of my situation. More especially the abject poverty that we were in and the struggle to break loose of it and the thoughts of poverty.

One thing I have noticed is that it is difficult to maintain a sense of what you do have; the blessings, the things material and immaterial, when you are battling the void. When poverty strikes the sense of loss can sometimes turn into a desperation to fill it with things, and there is the danger because the sense of things can be gained and lost so quickly.

I've been battling with loss, the loss of my marriage, which has still been dangled before me off and on over these many past months since my husband has put on this great show of things, ah and now he walks into my house like it is his own....

The perverseness of it is that though he is to most people and most of the time seems to be a simple guy who is just trying to do the right things in life, though he helps me sometimes around the house, though he has ceased to be (in many ways) the great negative and angry influence in my kids lives... still

and I don't know exactly what to say, it is difficult for me to place blame or talk negatively about people... and he's here playing with the kids, showing them a $5 dollar bill, throwing Roxie in the air, telling Sione to wear nicer clothes because it is Sunday and all... perhaps this is all innocently done, no prerogative... and I recall the rituals and routines of our previous life and think (or have thought in the past) that this is how life has been and is supposed to be. That he's the father of my children and being with him is how my life is supposed to be. At this point, I want to scream... it is the thought of what should have been and the thought of what is.

For I know of his perversity, I know of my sisters pain and her ruined life. I know how capable he is of lying and how deceitful he has always been. Then as he talks in his jolly way I am irritated by seemingly innocent things.... and it has been going on in this way for the past year. It's been since last March when I first filed the papers, and then July I believe when I updated them with all the information that was needed and I got his signature. Yet we are still not divorced, and why? Because he won't go take a class that the state requires! So I'm pulled on a string, where I know the boundary and the hidden subcontext but where I'm constantly held to the past and the present is but a tortuous moment where I'm trying to define what life I should be leading. We are not told what to establish when we are getting a divorce, and the lines we are told to draw get blurred when what needs to be done is confused with what shouldn't be done.

I have talked with the lawyer for the state (we've been involved with a DCFS case) and he said that he can file papers and he will spend a weekend in Jail if he doesn't take the class... he has until this Thursday...

In the meantime, what do I want now? I'm looking for strength and integrity, I'm looking for order and love... I'm looking for the peace of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and a bright future...

Friday, October 22, 2010

Direction

It's dispiriting, a look at Yahoo's homepage... I keep looking, up and down, scroll left and right trying to find some meaning to it... there is none I wish I could type something in the search bar that would bring something useful up, something to give direction to these searching thoughts.

It is all a disquieting disorganization of meaningless drivel and yet I open this browser everyday hoping to find something that means something...


Yeah, I've had it... on to a different web browser... but what?

and what direction am I looking to take anyway?

Sunday, October 3, 2010

The Whole Self

I have given myself a new challenge, it is this, to look in the mirror and to not only accept what I see but to love what I see. To completely accept and love that person.

It is not as if I don't accept myself, or that I don't love myself, on many levels I love the person that I am. But in some ways I see flaws, scars, wrinkles, and proportions on my body that I wish were somehow different. So my body becomes this entity outside of myself, something that I live with, but never fully accept.

What if, when I looked in the mirror I saw a functioning, marvelous creation? A self healing and resilient presence.

Exercise has been an attack in the past, a battle against all that I cannot accept, a war against that separate entity where I have felt unfitly housed. It has been done with the greatest amount of distraction that I could muster, detaching myself from the pain that my muscles are crying out to me that they are feeling.

What if exercise is an awareness, a movement of love which is felt and carried out throughout my being, where I am feeling and acknowledging myself, my muscles, my wholeness. Tai Chi comes to mind.

I have not had the time to carry out a serious study of healing movements, but I have a few resources, I will study them today. :)

With love and appreciation

SG

Friday, September 24, 2010

Facing My Goliaths

This week/month has been rather trying, an understatement to say the least. I was put on a project at work, the person that used to handle the project was leaving and they needed someone to do it, so over the course of about a week he showed me how to manipulate the spreadsheets and put them in order.

I naively thought that I understood what to do, I was scared though that when the time came to do it I wouldn't be able to... and I wasn't, at first.

I had deadlines to meet, and I was told by my manager that she had confidence in me and I wanted to shake her and say "are you crazy woman? I haven't ever done this kind of thing before! I will mess it up and you will be disappointed and angry with me...!!"

Nevertheless she left me to scratch my head and sort it out, it was very frustrating... I had notes but for some reason they just didn't seem to fit any logical order, they were all bits and pieces to a puzzle that I was terrified of handling. So I kept asking her questions and she has been so busy that she's been giving me distracted half- hearted answers, I've figured out that she honestly thinks that she's helped even though I (and others) are still left feeling confused.

So, I just started opening spreadsheets and pulling reports. Then I randomly started formatting the reports like I had been shown... but the crux was that I needed this list of customers and their cancel dates and I had queries to pull to find them, I had had previous instruction, I had examples of past spreadsheets... but things just wouldn't work the tools that I was using to try and find the answers to my questions just wouldn't work for me... so I spent many nights and shed many tears sitting there sorting it all out.

Then there was the battle that I was waging in my mind about how much I hated all of it, how much I wished that I was doing something else, ANYTHING else. Why had I chosen accounting in the first place I HATED IT!! ARGH!!! ON the other hand I was arguing with myself trying to be more positive, trying to look at all of the ways that I was improving, trying to deal with the stress during the day with other people there who needed my help and at night when I was tired and just wanted to go home, especially when things were not working. Plus the fact that I really needed this job in the first place and how much I wanted to prove to the world that I would be a good worker and how I wanted to prove to myself as well that I could be competent... and how much I wanted to be able to know all of the things that I needed to know...

You know what, I never would have been able to learn as much as I have learned if I had had an easier time at this. I've found that to be true with everything in life... still, it is hard and I wish that I could just absorb all of the stuff I need to know and just be incredibly talented w/o the hard work... hmmm.... well, I guess I'll just have to survive the hard work... and maybe when I come out on the other side, even if I end up not wanting to do accounting in the future, I will be more talented for having faced and conquered the difficulties that I have had this past month/nay lifetime really... ;)

Hope you all are doing well...

SG

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Heart Passage

Each day, I get up and go to work and work hard. I try not to complain though I do sometimes because it is hard. My manager is busy and it is hard to be forced to hammer out difficult things without someone there to tell you you're headed in the right direction.

I'm sad in some ways, and I push myself in others. Sad that each day I go into work, to grasp at this stuff called "Accounting" to do it and do it well means that I have to call on the reserves of determination that I have built up over many years of being determined. As if, through my own force of will I can learn and conquer this beast that looms in the distance called ignorance. I suppose I fear the unknown because if I fail, if I make a mistake then that will be like stepping off the road to security and happiness and I'm very scared of a future where I just can't cut it.

On the other hand I haven't come to grips with where I want my future to be. It has always been planned with my husband by my side... well that's what I wanted, that's what I thought. Though I feared being with him as well. He betrayed me very early on in our marriage and I was never able to really let that go, to believe that he was sincere when he said that he loved me. Things were difficult in other areas as well, yet he was my husband. I loved him. I forgave him, or tried to and vowed to move forward. At some point though I completely lost faith in things working for us and I tried to leave him thinking there was someone else that was better. Yet I couldn't follow through with that, I came back and I tried again and things were starting to feel alright, things were starting to work and I could just see in him this limitless potential and I wanted so much for him to reach it and I wanted us to be together as a family and make it in this world. All of my planning, all of my hopes resided in this.

Then it was all ruined, in one desperate  year of madness, betrayal and ultimate idiocy. Then is when I started to scream, then is when nothing that I have strived for in all of my life made sense anymore and I didn't want to do it, I didn't want to excel, it didn't matter anyway.

He was at my parents house tonight, it was my sons birthday on Wednesday so we held the party today. He brought his friends sons and refereed a game of hide and seek, laughing at how funny those kids were sneaking around, and my little daughter running away from the big kids. He's such a jerk, he wants me to take him back and with the passing of time tortures me because he hasn't taken the divorce education class for parents yet and so our divorce is stalled in the courts. After that, well, I shall have to see...

Thursday, September 9, 2010

I Love Fall!

There is so much beauty in my mountainous Utah home; early dawn, awakening morning sunshine filtering over emerald mountain peaks and valleys; azure skies and crisp clean air. Little birds like to greet each other and peep as they hop in the grass looking for their breakfast.

I love it when it is stormy as well, roiling dark clouds with intermittent rain and sunshine, the dark gloaming in the streets, the fresh smell in the air. Splendid!

Then the glorious fall! How crisp the day's, how refreshing! For some reason during the first week of school you can simply feel the change in the air, it is less intense, so much more relaxed than summer. There is still some uncomfortable warmth but it isn't like the scorching heat of Summer. Each day the tips of the green leafed trees slowly take on different hues and die away, until one day you realize that the leaves have fallen and the musty smell of mulching leaves permeates the air and then one day the air holds winters bite and the season has turned again.

There is just something about the fall, I love fall!

SG

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Paying Attention

Life is so beautiful, so fragile and so hard to grasp a hold of. What do I know of it?

It has been a great teacher, each little day slipping into another, honestly at times it has been hard. Yet I would rather grasp at it and keep going rather than let it pass by.

More than anything I despise ignorance, ignorance is not something that is easy to eradicate though, you either learn from experience or you learn from searching out what others know about life and the world.

There are things that you know, from learning, from observation and then there are the things that you know in your heart.

I can't tell you that I have seen God, that I have read enough or know enough about life and history to say that all of the world can come up with a clear vision of what the reality of religion is.

I can tell you though that through all of the hard times, when I needed extra knowledge and assurance God has been there.

There is a tangible state of mind, state of feeling, state of being; that comes from quiet intentional worship.

So I go throughout my day's, it is hard but I'm trying, trying to eradicate the ignorance in my life.

Sometimes the storms of life drive away the debris that piles up from inattention...

it is when I am paying attention, to life, to my thoughts, to why I am feeling the way that I am that I really get somewhere; so I hope I can pay attention more often and hopefully I can learn to avoid ignorance.

(I just want to say thank you to everyone who's been such a help and a blessing to me as of late and I want to say how proud I am of my brother Evan, who through the recent e-mail that he has sent us has shown a great deal of understanding of life, of leadership and of the Gospel... Plus I want to thank Susan for helping me yesterday, her tips have helped a lot... though I think I will have to call on her again) ;)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Refracted Light

Today has been absolutely insane! But not terrible...

First off, I tried out a sample of this fancy expensive shampoo... result... this stuff actually sort of sank into my hair in a rough gooy spot. Then I tried to "lather" it and I was able to sort of spread it a bit... bad idea... I got my hair wet then tried to distribute it... then feeling my hair get more and more rough and resistant I decided to try and wash it all out...

Then I tried the conditioner, "Why?" I suppose I'm a glutton for punishment. The conditioner wasn't as bad but it wasn't good either. I ended up washing out my hair and grabbing my regular organic shampoo (expensive but not as expensive as the other stuff.... oh boy!) I did another wash and then put two types of conditioner on and then I found that a lot of strands of hair were coming out... so annoyed as all get out I washed my hair out then hopped out of the tub to dry off and get dressed.

Normally my morning bath is done in about 5-10 min.... today it took 25!! I was so ticked off... I had to dry my hair and rush downstairs for breakfast (which turned out to be cornflakes...) then I rushed to gather a few things for lunch and then rushed to get Little R ready and out the door... a few blocks later I realize that I forgot my phone so I rushed back home, picked it up then rushed to the daycare... then happily got her there with a decent amount of time to get to work (well sort of) got to work (sort of) on time (within the 10 min. they allow anyway) and my day started.

Then I got pulled into training right away... trained, supervised, answered questions... repeat until about noon when I realized that I had forgotten the pasta salad that I had signed up to bring (I was hoping to make one gluten free). So I went with a few others over to Wal-Mart and bought some salad stuff.

We got back, (hehe... my friend got a bird poop bomb on his neck) and then I had a salad for lunch. More Training and such... then I was able to do a little bit of sorting out on the project that I'm working on to fix installment billing issues...

Left work at 3:50, went to the DV Group... which was good, then went home (though I probably should have gone right then up to my mom's). I cooked up the lime cilantro chicken that I had pounded and marinated the night before (and it was super delicious...) then ran up to mom's to get A and R... A wanted to stay there and go to the movies with my little sis. (plus sleep over) but I put my foot down and said no since I've let her do just about anything that she's wanted to do all summer and I felt that she should be home for a while.

Then I tried fixing stuff for my boarder salad... burned the rice while looking up Karen Carpenter for A... then started cooking more rice while I tried to study Excel (learned 1 new concept! Go me!!) Then started fiddling with my ipod and mp3 player trying to get songs on one so that I could isolate informational stuff on the other.

After that I went downstairs to almost burnt second batch of rice, then I made my border salad (yummy but not quite the same as the stuff at GE). Then I cleaned up all the pots and dishes from the days cooking efforts and gave R a bath (while reading her a couple of simple books). Got Little S in the tub, then I ran out the door to walk around the block (since my plan to go to the gym was shot) came back and found that Little R had jumped in the tub and thus had to get fresh clothes and that somehow all of the songs on my ipod had been wiped off...

For the past hour I've been trying to download the songs again (because iTunes suddenly couldn't locate them) and intermitently running out the door to go around the block.

While walking I was pondering a bit, initially I ran out the door w/o contacts on or glasses... I really can't see very well... makes me wonder where my vision will head in the future. The facilitator of the group I go to is almost completely blind... makes me wonder if that's going to be my future as well.

I recalled an incident from when I was a little girl where I was sitting in the car waiting for my dad and looking at the streetlamps down the block... I marveled at the multifaceted balls of light, sort of like fireworks or blooming flowers. When my dad came to the car I pointed them out to him... there were many instances were I wasn't able to see clearly when I was a little girl and I didn't know that I had trouble seeing... that was just how the world was.

Isn't that how life is? You think that the world is one way... but often times it's not, it's another way... and from one moment to the next it's hard to say when it is that you are not seeing clearly.

Anyway, crazy day... I'm off to sleep...

SG

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Border Salad

I have an expensive confession... I'm in love with this border salad up at "Cafe Fresh" a little cafe in my fav. store "Good Earth!"

The only prob. is that it costs $10.00 an order, ouch! It's well worth it as it includes a lot of food, yet I still feel slightly guilty spending that much for lunch for just me... (well actually little R. eats the leftovers when I pick her up from day care).

So I thought about it, it is just corn tortilla chips, brown rice, black beans, corn, Jicama (a root vegetable which is slightly sweet), mozzarella, lime cilantro chicken (added to the order) and I like to eat it with a balsamic vinaigrette (which I am finding can be lovely, I need to find a good recipe and make my own). Plus they add tomato but I think I would be better off without it as I'm slightly allergic...

Actually, OUCH! It is expensive buying the ingredients to put this together... about $1.99 for the tortilla chips (or is it $2.99... haven't paid attention in a while), brown rice... $.50, black beans (from a can) $1.75, Jicama $.93, cheese $5.19 (well... for the pound anyway), cilantro $1.49, limes $1.17, Chicken (whole free-range) $17.92, Salsa Verde (can't help but throw that in...) $2.50 and Avocado (irresistible as well) $.99

Grand Total $34.43... except the cheese and the Chicken can be used in other instances (and the chips) so I'll take off about 14.00 off making the price tag to be about $20.00.

I am planning on making some curried chicken from the thigh meat and I'm marinating the breast in a mixture of lime juice, olive oil, a touch of honey, garlic and cilantro... plus I'm going to make a chicken stock as well... good soup. ;)

So, though the ingredients alone cost quite a bit I'm getting basics for about 3 meals (well... I'll need carrots, onions and celery for the soup, plus a red bell pepper for the curried chicken).

I do have some white beans that I'm contemplating, plus mung beans and lentils... hmmmm.... if at some point I can make those work in some recipes then I will have some cheap sources of protein on hand...

The issue I have with beans is that, well... yeah... plus I've only ever made 12 bean soup with them (which is delicious but I don't usually have a ham hock on hand and I've sworn off pork products for the most part anyway...)

Anyhow...

Plans, plans.... now off to study the exciting world of Excel... heck if I can make it work for me I can get a raise and that's always a good thing!! :)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

"Listen" - A Poem From Anonymous

During my DV Support group today I was paging through the binder that they had me buy and found a poem that say's just what I have wanted to say about "Listening" without knowing how to say it...

Listen

When I ask you to listen to
me and you start giving advice
you have not done what I asked.

When I ask you to listen to me
and you begin to tell me why I shouldn't feel that way
you are trampling on my feelings.

When I ask you to listen to me
and you feel you have to do something to solve my problem,
you have failed me, strange as that may seem.

Listen! All I asked was that you listen,
Not talk or do--just hear me.
Advice is cheap; 20 cents will get you both Dear Abby and
Billy Graham in the same newspaper
And I can do for myself, I'm not helpless.
Maybe discouraged and faltering, but not helpless.

When you do something for me that I can and need to do
for myself, you contribute to my fear and weakness.

But, when you accept as a simple fact that I do feel what I feel,
no matter how irrational, then I can quit trying to convince
you and can get about the business of understanding what's
behind this irrational feeling.
And when that's clear, the answers are obvious
and I don't need advice.
Irrational feelings make sense when we understand what's
behind them.
Perhaps that's why prayer works, sometimes, for some people
because God is mute, and He doesn't give advice or
try to fix things. "They" just listen and let you
work it out for yourself.

So, please listen and just hear me. And, if you want to talk,
wait a minute for your turn, and I'll listen to you.

~Anonymous

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Ahhhh Time

Well, now I'm at an interesting place in life... a construction zone of sorts. I feel a bit ridiculous because with the firmest of intentions I signed up for a gym membership... and haven't been really.

I'm an all or nothing type of person sometimes... at least with the food that I eat I've been an all type of person, I've not been like that in the past because I was deluding myself a bit that it was OK to eat "everything in moderation," ironic that I heard the same words from someone at work whom I know to be very naive. Perhaps it is that I feel safe controlling the foods that I eat, it is a personal thing, if I go too far, too extreme in loving/hating a food I can pull back and be more moderate... no ones feelings are hurt. I feel safe in this....

With exercise... I suppose it's the same, yet it's also something that takes a time commitment from me. Plus I've not felt well... part of that was Anemia, part of it was not being able to get enough sleep... I've been working on both of those issues...

Still, time, time is so fleeting right now. I feel like I don't have enough, am not doing enough, am not caring enough... enough seems to be too much right now.

At least things have been working themselves into somewhat of a routine, I think I've got an off sense of time... I think that I can do more than I can.

In fact that's part of what has kept me from blogging... I sometimes feel hesitant to write, receive responses and then not be able to respond to them. I feel like a selfish jerk...

If you've visited me at my spot lately... Thank you so very much for stopping by! I'll try to respond a bit here and there...

SG

Friday, August 6, 2010

Putting up my defenses...

I am at such an awkward situation in my life, it's so very confusing. I think I have failed myself, let down those who want to love me and basically have retreated into a place of standoffishness.

At some point (in the recent past) I felt like my sense of independent thought was slipping away. It is a terrible feeling, one that I hate.

I wish that I could fix the worlds hurts but I end up causing a lot of hurt, I'm sorry about that world, I think I need to leave you alone for a while... I'm already limping, can't prop anyone up when I'm limping.

It's been hard for me to write anything here, I've felt the honesty eating at my sense of quiet reticence; after all if everyone knows my thoughts then I feel I am not allowed to change them. In a way it was better when no one knew who this little "Strawberry Girl" was... I feel so exposed at this spot and at my other.

The words have been flowing lately but they've been stopped by a desire to hide them away from others, so I haven't been writing them down, no matter how beautiful the thoughts have been.

I wish I could be a support, a friend... hard to do that though when I don't really feel up to being more than that, no matter how much I need the love and affection that I'm craving.

I'm selfish, I know I am

I want to be loved without any expectations of a relationship of a future. I don't know why I'm feeling this way or what I can do to fix it.

Am I scarred? Tired of trying? Yeah... I don't really want to try at the moment.

I'm sorry

I need to be guided by my own light, and by the still small voice.

I've been shutting it all off for too long...

Sunday, July 25, 2010

HI

Honesty is the best policy, at odds with this though  are certain desires, desire to save face, desires to protect others, even desires to protect others from our unvarnished opinions. Unvarnished opinions that we know to be an incomplete picture of reality.

Children are honest, they tell you outright what you wish were hidden but which is not. They know when people are lying, they know when they are insincere, they know if you're sick, if you're sad, if you're hurt... yet they lack understanding, so they often will blurt out the obvious, that which we wish were hidden.

We can't really hide... it's just that when we get older we all play a game where the truth is not spoken, where you and I both know that such and such is wrong but we mutually avoid saying so.... it's more convienient.

We've all been hurt

Honestly, I care

I can see the hurt and pain

I know what those defenses are

My dad is watching an old cowboy movie, an Abot and Costello comedy "Ride em' Cowboy."

Those old fashioned shows are so beautifully simple, so idealistically easy.

I've spent my life chasing some ideal vision of myself. I wrote once that I would like to be the kind of person that was accepted. A lady, someone who could walk up to anyones door and knock, they would open the door and they would listen to what I had to say. They would see the acceptable me, there are very few people who have seen and accepted the insecure, imperfect sociatially unacceptable me.

I believe in myself now, I believe that I can usually get away with talking with people without feeling inadequate (well sometimes) yet there are still a lot of insecurities

and I let myself down, even when I've really tried. (It really hurts when this happens)

What do I need to do right now, for my own sense of self?

It is simply to live up to what I can do, what I need to do

I can't allow my little family to slip into permanant poverty! I've got to do something to fix this situation

All I can think of is to work, study, get my household schedule under control (which actually scares me the most as I am always trying to push everything that I need to get done through the little time that I actually have).

I can do it, I believe in myself

and I won't tell you that I love you unless I'm ready to make a commitment and I'm not, even if I care a great deal.

I believe in you though, cast off all of that self doubt

It hurts, I know

Just walk forward,

If you destroy yourself, then you destroy a part of me

I believe in you

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Perceptions

I am thinking today about perceptions. What I see, hear, smell, taste, touch may be completely different from what you perceive. Perceptions may change as well what may have been one day may be different the next based on a lot of factors.

Perceptions shape our thoughts and our actions, for instance, say you meet someone for the first time and think to yourself, "they are arrogant, they are shy, they are nice, they are not nice."

These are perceptions formed from a brief interaction, in many ways we need these judgements for some sort of guidance about who to develop a friendship with, who to trust and who to avoid.

Yet many times these perceptions are wrong, thus knowing this I try to keep an open mind about people until they prove quite succinctly that they are someone to avoid.

I have also found that perceptions shape the thought processes of others with whom we meet and interact, that is, what you say can effect upon other peoples ideas about themselves and life in general.

Sometimes we characterize our children into certain categories, "oh he's the smart one, she's lazy, she is just cranky all of the time." Admittedly I am guilty of this, for kids all have very different personalities.

I tend to think that these labels can be limiting, who wants to be known as the lazy one? The cranky one? I try to avoid saying anything negative about the kids in front of them, plus I try to avoid excessively praising one over the other when the other kids are in the room (It creates jealousies.)

Labels become self perpetrating prophecies, when your children hear the things that you say about them, they will act out what they think your perception of them is.

It can effect you as well, your own self talk can limit or help you.

I think, that in order to avoid ridiculing ourselves, we need to take a look at things in perspective. Look over your whole life, the opportunities that you have had, the situation that you have grown up in, mistakes that you have made. All of these things are in the past, you must accept that they have happened and move on.

Then, think about what brings you joy, what you enjoy doing. Focus on those things, and ignore voices of self doubt. Look at yourself in the mirror and smile, look into your own eyes and find acceptance. Move forward, don't dwell, move forward.

Saying all of this, I know that depression is very real. I used to be depressed all of the time. The change in my diet helped me to overcome it, though I still go through certain periods of depression.

What I find helps me is acknowledging that depression as a thing separate from myself, and pressing forward with my goals and plans despite it all. I fight it, I look for foods that I can eat to help change the chemical balance in my body (Omega-3 oils, Maca, Roobios tea are some). I exercise even if I don't particularly feel like it, and even if I think that I look like the biggest dork out on the street I keep walking anyway.

Depression brings with it different perceptions, and with those I try to make the best of the emotion by writing something. Some of the most interesting things I have written have come from the depressions that I have gone through.

Then, when I am on the other side, I am more able to feel the gladness of life and the beauty of things.

Don't ever think, if you are depressed, that it is a reflection of your true self. You are a creature of light and life, an interesting person. Not the outward shell, not the inward sadness but someone who is of eternal worth.

I am very happy today to have heard from a returning missionary in our ward, and to then go and hear from my little brother who is set to leave on his mission on the 7th of August.

He is very special to me, he was the first little creature that I mothered as a young girl. I remember reading to him the book "The Giving Tree," over and over again. Plus I remember him asking me "how do we hear, what makes sound?"

I explained to his rapt listening ears that there are invisible sound waves that travel through the air to reach our ear drum. I then had him recall seeing the vibration of things like drums and strings.

He has struggled with ADD or earlier on ADHD and being medicated with Ritalin. My parents did not know what else to do, I don't blame them it is a hard thing to deal with.

In fact my own little boy has some form of ADD, not diagnosed but I know the signs. I brought him out of school last year to home school him and have been partially successful as he now knows how to read and he's not dumb on his math facts either.

Yet he still struggles with writing things, and he does struggle a bit with the flow of reading (plus some other facts). I wish I could have done better for him, I went through a terrible year last year and the beginning of this, so I didn't teach him as much as I could have.

But at least he wants to learn and that is an important factor in life, something that being in school was zapping away from him. I have to send him to second grade though, because I need to work, I fear for the little fellow.

Anyhow, this post is long enough. I hope you all have a good and blessed day.

SG

Sunday, July 4, 2010

The Bitter Gall

In our Relief Society lesson today we talked about the Plan of Happines... Heavenly Fathers plan for us on this earth.

The teachers approach was different from the beginning.

Instead of doing an overview of the pre-mortal existence, where we chose to follow Gods plan, she started talking about preparation. Ironic since I had just been thinking about how to prepare, what my ultimate goals were and where my focus should be.

When we are preparing for something we take into consideration what we need, who will be there, and how much time things will take.

She contrasted this with the fact that God is a God of order, that we were preparing to meet the challenges that we would face while here on the earth and that God gave us the circumstances that we would need in order to grow. That if we make the right choices in this life we will be able to return to him, and all have opportunities to make choices, no matter the circumstance.

She then talked about probation, that when we hear this word we might identify it with someone who is under probation after committing a crime but the true meaning of the word involves a period of time where we are given a chance to prove ourselves whether we will meet the conditions for being there. 
pro·ba·tion (prō bās̸hən)
noun
  1. a testing or trial, as of a person's character, ability to meet requirements, etc.
  2. the suspension of sentence of a person convicted but not yet imprisoned, on condition of continued good behavior and regular reporting to a probation officer
    1. the status of a person being tested or on trial: a student on probation because of low grades
    2. the period of testing or trial

So if this earth life is a probation then what are we proving, what is the test for?

Here a distinction was made which I think is definitive, at least for me. We are not here to prove to God what we will do we are here to prove to ourselves what we will do, where we fit ourselves to be, what standards we will meet...

Another thing that is interesting to me is that God is sure of his plans, he knows he is doing the right thing and we can have assurance of that.

There have been so many times that I have made plans and then I doubt them, from my own failures I pick up a sense of doubt about whether or not I can complete the plans that I have made. So I am going to make it a point to believe in the plans that I make, in fact post a statement to that effect on my mirror if I have to.

It was also pointed out during the lesson that we all come to earth with different circumstances, that we make choices and others make choices that affect us and that God is the perfect judge. Jesus Christ knows us, he knows our grief and sorrows because he has borne them for our sake and that all of our lives will be taken into account, not just the things that you see on the surface.

Here is where comes in the "Bitter Gall." At some point I lost the way, again, about my purpose here on earth. I forgot my relationship with my Heavenly Father and with all of his children and thought that life is about "making it," "being successful." In reality, the only thing that really matters is how well I raise my children and what kind of a person I am at the end of my life.

Making enough money to support myself would be nice though. Plus being able to follow through on a couple of interests... but the ultimate goal is raising my children well and returning to him knowing that I have given my best effort at life, at being a good person, and loving those that I meet.

Finally I realized, again, that it is possible to love others despite their imperfections and that is one other goal to strive for.

SG

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Hmmmm, not doing enough?

It's finally the weekend, and I'm sitting around contemplating the universe instead of getting up and cleaning, the house could use a good cleaning too.

The thing is, I'm sort of at a loss. The only one home is my 3 year old, it has been nice snuggling with her, having a lesuirely breakfast (millet, butter and honey), reading a book on Vaccinations, watching some You-Tube videos and then having a bath.

It has been nice... yet I feel the weight of everything that I want to and don't have time to do pressing down on me and I tend to think that I'm wasting my time... letting it slip through my fingers when I could be up and about accomplishing, something...

Well, I suppose the day isn't over yet and I just need to get up and clean the house a bit. I've got plans to hang around with my cousins today so that ought to be nice... :)

SG

Sunday, June 27, 2010

"Things as They Really Are" by David A. Bednar

I just finished reading an article by David Bednar in which he discusses the dangers of allowing the internet to take over your life. To a certain extent, I've allowed this to happen to me. It was at a time when I was very discouraged with how life was going at home and when I was trying to sort through a financial mess that had been handed to me.

In some ways it was cathartic to be able to write, interact with people when I was tied to the computer, in other ways it was a strain on my relationships that should not have been.

Sometimes I wish that we lived during a simpler time... yet all we have is now, don't let it slip away.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Dandelion Wine

Dandelion Wine my friend lent me this book and I've been slowly tasting Ray Bradbury's words for the past few weeks.

It is rich with descriptive adjectives, in fact at times each sentence is like taking a slow sip of summer, and thus the reason that this book is a good one to read at the beginning of summer... but then I would like to think that it could be a good reminder of the full bodied summer air, laden with fresh perfumes, in the middle of winter.

I know I've not written on here for a long time, haven't kept up with anyone's blog and basically disappeared from the face of the planet... well I've had a lot to sort out.

I've got a job, it's going well... though admittedly doesn't pay much. I've finally got the divorce papers that I've been working on finished. My house is a mess, cause' the kids are home for summer... but I'm surviving, that's what matters isn't it? :)

Hopefully I will be able to eek out a bit of a life here in a bit... I really want to return to writing. What? I'm not sure. I guess I should just write whatever comes to mind. :)

Hope you are all surviving out there.

SG

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Finding my Why?

I had a meeting with the bishop on Wednesday and he made a suggestion that I find my why? Why do I get up in the morning? Why do I go to work? What makes me tick? What makes me happy?

The obvious why's are my children. I get up and go to work so that they will have some of their needs met, I try to be a better person and a better mother because I want them to be happy.

The less obvious why's are actually the things that I push down when I get stressed or too busy. Those have to do with writing, with researching health topics, with exercising a bit, plus taking photographs just for the thrill of capturing something precious and beautiful... and I love books that make me think, not about difficult issues but more philosophically about life and love and happiness.

I have things that I want to be able to do, like draw really well, paint... learn Spanish... really those are things that I keep wishing that I could incorporate into my life... but they are why's that take more focus than I can give them at the moment.

and that is how I work, I cannot concentrate on a multitude of interests at the same time... I really like to put a lot of energy into one thing at a time, savor it, embrace and become a part of it... if there is too much information I feel fractured and lost and drained. Though I can handle things if I compartmentalize them and prioritize them... I know, sounds like a guy... I can multitask when it comes to menial things, but for my passionate why's, I like to focus...

Anyway, my head hurts a tich from trying to see through a contact prescription that is slightly too low... I lost one contact from my new pair so I had to revert to these because I haven't ordered any new ones yet... grrrr... my finances frustrate me sometimes...

Well, have a good night blog world.

~SG

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Peeling away layers of confussion...

One of my greatest strengths is determination, and I have needed it.

My life has been like a puzzle, at a very young age I realized that something was wrong, but I couldn't explain it.

Frustration, that is the predominate feeling throughout even my earliest awareness.

I remember climbing out of my crib, how the world swirled around me, how hard I concentrated to find a way down. I remember crying because I thought everyone was talking about me, and I couldn't understand. I remember the stomach aches, lying on the couch in the living room while everyone was eating dinner I cried because it hurt so badly and my parents ignored me because they thought I was being stubborn, that I didn't want to eat my dinner.

My brother was diagnosed with Autism at about 3 or 4, at about the same time I had several seizures. They couldn't explain it, they put me on dilantin, the same drug that my brother took. They hooked me up to a brain wave monitor and tried to figure out what was wrong but couldn't.

The seizures stopped by themselves and so everyone assumed that I was fine. I guess the deceptive thing was that I interacted with people and didn't freak out like my brother did.

But I had a hard time making friends, I would have given a lot to know the secret to it. What made it difficult for me was the fact that I couldn't understand peoples motivations, and I lived in a world of dark fog that swirled around me making me feel as though the world was closing in. In medical terms it is called free floating anxiety.

I couldn't run, I remember so clearly trying to run with the other kids. My lungs would cease up, my head would hurt, I would have to walk. It was so embarrassing to me because I would lag behind everyone else, perhaps they thought I was lazy.

It was hard to stay a full day at school sometimes, for several reasons, I was severely depressed and really only a young kid. I kept wishing that I could talk to a councilor, my mom didn't understand why, I thought that it would help though.

Another reason why it was hard to stay at school was the stomach aches, the bloating, the gas... oh how terrible it was to try and sit at a desk, the edge of which was only a few inches from my hurting tummy. I would walk home burping gas that was like a rotten egg. I remember sitting in the bathroom at home, holding onto the door and just feeling so, so ill. The thought was, what is wrong with me?

The trouble was that nothing could logical explain what was wrong with me. I had gone to doctors, they always had something to prescribe, but nothing alleviated the symptoms. In fact every single remedy that doctors have ever given me has aggravated my condition and/or completely missed the mark altogether.

Case in point, Prozac, I took it one time and went into a swirling darkness where all that I could think is that I wanted to kill myself. I lay down in my closet and refused to move until it wore off, then I threw it away.

Determination has kept me going though, I have never been comfortable with the idea that I could just ignore what was wrong with me and allow my life to be dictated by the monster of ignorance.

The triggers that led me to realize that there were answers to my disorder were a combination of several things. One of which was the walnuts that I decided to add to my cereal (because I heard that they had Omega-3 oils and I thought that the only way to get those were through eating fish). At the time I had gotten very skinny on Weight Watchers, so I carefully calculated 3 points worth of Walnuts to add to my morning bowl of Special K and started to eat that every morning. Amazingly, one day I woke up and I was happy, calm and happy and all that I could contribute it to was the walnuts.

So I told everyone to eat walnuts, they thought I was insane.

Then I decided to try making more things from scratch, after all it was expensive to buy boxed stuff all of the time. I started with bran muffins, and I thought that I would have so much energy that I could help my dad plant his garden and that things would be spiffy!

So I started to make and eat a lot of bran muffins... plus I decided to become a vegan and thought I could replace meat with TVP. I became extremely ill, I tried to take walks with my daughter, but would get about a half mile out and could barely lift my feet so I would turn around. Plus the pain, oh my goodness it was terrible, I was so so bloated, oh it hurts to think of it. I went to the doctor, she couldn't figure out what I should do, she gave me enemas, told me to drink prune juice...

Eventually I became so ill that I felt I was dying, it was like an honest to goodness out of body experience. I could barley lift my daughter I could barely walk, I remember slowly making my way up the walk to my parents house, setting my daughter down and sitting at the kitchen table, observing the world pass by. My mom came into the kitchen and I told her that I felt like I was slowly dying, I felt that it was alright, I supposed that no one could control when their time came and so I resigned myself to writing a few words of advice to my little sister and resting until I passed away. I took my baby daughter home, lay down on the bed and closed my eyes, laboring to breath trying to absorb her presence. Irrationally I didn't want to go to the hospital because we didn't have insurance and it would cost too much. As a last resort I called up the pediatrician who had been my doctor from  birth and who was my childrens doctor at that time. He heard me out and decided that I probably had a condition called alkalosis caused by the change in protein (to TVP) and he suggested that I breath into a paper sack slowly... maybe he thought I was hyperventilating... 

This is when my friend, who has studied natural healing, suggested that I cut gluten out of my diet. I did and a week later things were starting to resolve themselves. The depression was lifting, the brain fog was dissipating, at one moment it was if everything became clear all at once and I sat by the mirror reflecting upon my life and crying, crying because I had been affected in so many ways by ignorance.

This was only the beginning of my journey to being well, I have bought and tried and read so much information on health and what could be good for the body that I sometimes feel a bit estranged from everyone else.

It takes a lot of intuition to figure out what is really wrong, why you don't feel good. I don't believe in any one food, or any one thing... all I know is that each person that truly wants to feel healthy has to define that for themselves and take small leaps of faith until they figure out what works for them. Plus it is expensive to figure it out as well, I've had to have blood testing (self ordered... it cost about $500 dollars), plus I've had an independent lab help me determine whether or not I was truly gluten intolerant. Then there is the cost of experimentation with all of the different foods and herbal supplements that are out there... and as you all know, there are a lot of them.

Generally, what I think will work most of the time for people is focusing on a few key factors.

Vitamin D levels
Vitamin B-12 levels
Omega Oils (Chia seeds are a nice source, but an incomplete solution)
Blueberries
Avoiding Gluten (It is estimated that 1 in 100 people are sensitive to gluten)
Adding the supplement GABA
Taurine
L-Tryptophan (getting enough Omega Oils, Taurine and L-Tryptophan are all going to help to getting a good nights rest).
Probiotics (help even out your digestive system)

I like buckwheat (which is a gluten free seed that is unrelated to wheat)
I've recently started taking Chaste tree extract to help balance out my hormone levels, I like it (so far).

Some foods that don't agree with me and supplements that I don't like (an incomplete list)

Flax seed (makes me incredibly angry and irrational)
Sesame seed (makes me high)
Beets (I am allergic)
Quinoa (a relative of beets, though good for some people)
St. Johns Wort (gave me a reaction similar to prozac... I wanted to kill myself)

Plus many, many different herbs that are good for some people but not good for me... like I said, intuition should play a big role in sorting out what works for you... plus don't think that you've settled on something because often times you can be taking something that seems to have no effect, or it seems to aggravate things and you've got to reevaluate everything basically until you figure it all out.

Good luck with your journey...

SG

Monday, May 24, 2010

Measuring Up

I am like a seive

open

yet closed

not fully letting everything out

and can only be so full

before I overflow.

So I weep

and eventually

a finer self is made.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

The Irony of Ignorance

Ignorance, ignorance has pervaded humanity throughout all of the ages. Ignorance is a disease which takes a hold of a life, gnawing at the progress that would be made without it.

I say this with irony

It is ironic to be aware of ones own ignorance; yet unable to definitively decide upon a point to begin erradicating it, to somehow be caught in its grasp is a truely ironic situation.

I am gazing upon a picture, an etching which hangs upon the wall above the computer at my parents house. It is of a little wooden cabin, with a few trees surrounding it, a few birds above it, and a dirt path leading up to it.

My thoughts are of how peaceful that little santuary looks, how simple life would be to live in such a place. Yet there, surrounded in the woods the inhabitants would be possessed of a certain kind of ignorance. How quickly could they become dispossessed of their land, if some schemer with more information decided to scam them? How tragic would that be?

Another irony is that we do it all the time, I do it all the time, out of ignorance. Yet what is the truth?

I'm going to make a global statement that most of the time we make or base our decisions upon incomplete information.

That if someone undertakes to fool a portion of society they can easily do it; with smoke and mirrors... what isn't there can seem to be.

Unsettling

I ache to be informed, yet haven't the time to do much more than glance at the headlines, dangerous!

Yet with knowledge comes responsibility

With ideals comes a certain obligation to follow those ideals

in all fairness I am idealogically untrue to myself

and thus deserve in some way my own ignorance.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Musings

My son has been on a Beatles kick lately, which is amusing to me as The Beatles were the Quintessential beginnings of my formative musical tastes during my teenage years. Simmon & Garfunkel, John Denver, the old classics have all been my favorites for quite a long time. Though there was a point where I just outright stopped listening to it all, probably during some depressive mood of mine.

Which is where I have been lately, in a funky depression.

I've found a good job which I enjoy going to, simply because everyone is so easy to get along with which makes it nice to go into work.

A lot of my time has been consumed with putting everything into order as well, it has been such a crazy spiral of a ride. Who knew life could be so insane?!

I have a terrible headache, probably from the soaked nuts that I so lovingly dehydrated earlier this week... it is amusing/not amusing to me that so many things that are supposed to be healthy for you turn out to be unhealthy... or did I just do it wrong? Did I soak those frikin nuts too long or what?! I don't know...

Just stuck with this lovely headache, a vague wish that I could write some profound bit of wisdom or at least have enough time to simple relax and read a book (sans headache...).

Hope everyone is doing well... :)

Monday, March 8, 2010

Rough Week Celiac

I feel very well today! :)

Last week was horrific, I ate some vegetables that my mom had cooked in canned beef broth... they tasted good... but they made me sick. Why? Because the beef broth had MSG in it which is in itself bad, but then it is also an ingredient which has gluten in it (Mono Sodium Glutamate) and if you've read my blog you know that gluten makes me sick.

So Monday and Tuesday I was purely sick from the gluten (which is bad enough) Wednesday I go into the doctors (and mention the problem but doctors haven't a clue most of the time) she gives me the result of the blood test that I had done last week that show I am Anemic and deficient in Vitamin D (that's no surprise as it is winter here, hard to catch much sunlight).

Actually, I've been sick for a while... I think it's related to the GF pretzels that I was munching on, they are gluten free, but they lack fiber and are made with safflower oil which doesn't agree with me too much... plus my kids have made a lot of cookies (from scratch) lately and the flour bin was by the fruit basket...

OI this is hard sometimes... anyway... on Wednesday I took the Vitamin D supplement that the doctor prescribed (50,000 IU so you need a subscription) and then a multi-vitamin... and boy did I get weak really quick! It was terrible I was fainting, I couldn't walk very far, but I had to push on and get stuff done anyway.

Then Thursday I discovered that the Multi that I had taken had beets in it and I am terribly allergic to beets, so I went to the store and bought an Iron supplement, I checked it out the best that I could (I was still faint) but I didn't check it out well enough because when I took it I got worse! The next day I was struggling really bad, even then though I still pushed on because my life is so busy that I can't take a day off.

Friday night I decided I had better go into the hospital because I felt so weak and yucky. The thing is... I know more about what makes me sick than the doctor, he was listening to me, nodding his head and going uh, hu... uh, hu... I was trying to relate to him how serious this is and mentioned that I have had 14 miscarriages then he was like, WOW! Did they ever do any tests to see what the problem could be... I roll my eyes "yes!" and then explain to him how it is related to Celiacs disease (and they wouldn't consider it because I hadn't been officially diagnosed though I've had a test done through and independent lab). So he prescribes something to "Clear" me out... and sends me on my way. I WAS HAVING AN ALLERGIC REACTION! I mentioned the supplements but they discounted those as being something that could effect me... I've been effected by a lot of herbs so I take that seriously. This episode just confirms to me how pointless it is to consult doctors sometimes, they don't look for the root cause, they are trained in diagnoses but not in prevention so they lack the intuition to think beyond the obvious.

Anyway, I felt better Saturday (well, mostly) and I was about to take more Iron (after all things seemed serious with the anemia) and I found beets among the ingredients and I go OH.... that's it! Luckily I had bought another supplement, B-Vitamins, I checked them out and they were alright (no nasty ingredients) so I took some of those and they made me feel terrific!

Sunday, I was a lot better (though still slightly tired and shaken) and today I feel fantastic! So, that was a rough week but I got through it, with a lot of support from someone who cares about me a great deal... :)

Monday, March 1, 2010

It's all in your head...

I can't remember when I last posted about the disorder that I have called a "Gluten Sensitivity" and/or Celiacs disease which is diagnosed through a scope of the small intestine, something which I haven't had done so I am sticking to the label of "gluten intolerance/sensitivity."

This is an ongoing battle which for the most part I haven't known that I was fighting, all I knew growing up was that it was normal to feel bloated and gassy, be dizzy, have brain fog, anxieties, depression...

It wasn't until 2 or so years ago that I found out that I was affected by gluten, and that because I ate way too much whole wheat and bran products trying to become "healthy" and then went into anapaleptic shock and my health has been compromised ever since, though I have been able to think more clearly and I've had less depression.

To the point, over these past many months I've been going through periods of OK to not OK falling ill every few weeks or so (or less, every week) and then determined to handle things myself I keep going.

Well I've finally decided to see the doctor, it won't be until March 22nd and then it may be a conflict with my hoped for work (I've had a few interviews and something lined up through a temp agency... but I'm not sure if that is the way to go...).

So until then I guess I am stuck eating a very "clean" diet of fruits and veggies, seeds, nuts and meat...

The thing that has been most difficult for me is that from the time that I had a severe reaction to gluten until now my family has only somewhat taken my seriously. In the beginning they were openly hostile towards me feeling threatened that I wouldn't eat rolls, bread, or gravy anymore. Then my sister in law, who was having trouble with her daughter getting ill all of the time, took her off of gluten she saw a marked improvement. So now my mom has tried to accommodate me when we go up there for Sunday dinners but I am still falling ill and so something needs to change.

I just hate to have to strictly avoid eating the food that she prepares but I will because I can't live like this anymore... I just have to prepare my own food and eat that on Sunday, I hate it but that is how it has to be.

Anyhow, that's the difficulty I'm having, I was sick over the weekend, feeling a better now that I've been eating only fruits, veggies and coconut kefir...

I'm working on Job training until I hear back from the interviews that I had on Friday...

Trying to be optimistic, yet still take seriously what needs to be taken seriously...

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Employment Resources

There are many employment resources out there, most recently I came across this blog put out by the church

Employment Center

at the top of the blog they post a link to register for a seminar and they have a link to open a pdf file of the course manual!!

What a fantastic resource, go ahead and take a look!  :)

Also check out the Unemploymentality  blog...

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The way Christ helps me with life

The way Christ helps me with life.

I think that for the most part, in life we are successful if we work hard, find that competetive edge and go for it. I find myself continually searching, probing, refining trying to "fix" whatever problem that I have ended up with from growing up without parameters in my home... rules so breakable that they might as well not be there at all.

Eventually I am going to learn to type fast enough, spell most words correctly, learn how to use the 10-Key quicker, learn more tricks to Quickbooks and Excel... all skills needed for work and for my goal of getting into grad school later on. Well mainly work at the moment, one thing at a time.

It is Christ though that helps me take the mechanical, routinized perfectionism of this world and put it all into perspective.

It is through quite moments of reflection when I admit that I have failed, fallen short, that I am not perfect where I realize my humanity and his love for me.

That he loves me despite my mistakes, and that I can pick myself up and move on, striving for that ultimate goal of success.

Still knowing that the essence of life is love, and if I fail to develop that trait then I have truly failed. So I keep my eyes on Christ, holding onto His word with gratitude for what I have and a hope that the success that I seek may come.

Monday, February 8, 2010

A Message of Hope

I received this Newsletter on Sunday and found a beautiful thought within...

A Message From the Bishopric
February 7, 2010

David Leigh

Grandview 8th Ward Bishopric

Recently, I read the well-loved poem, "The Touch of the Master's Hand," by Myra 'Brooks' Welch and saw the movie made by T.C. Christensen. I think the message is important for our ward. The last verse of the poem reads:


And many a man with life out of tune,
All battered with bourbon and gin,
Is auctioned cheap to a thoughtless crowd 
Much like that old violin.
A mess of pottage, a glass of wine,
A game and he travels on,
He is going once, he is going twice,
He is going and almost gone.
But the Master comes,
And the foolish crowd never can quite understand,
The worth of a soul and the change that is wrought 
By the Touch of the Master's Hand.


Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin said, "We all yearn to experience love like this. Even when we make mistakes, we hope others will love us in spite of our shortcomings -- even if we don't deserve it. Oh, it is wonderful to know that our Heavenly Father loves us -- even with all our flaws! His love is such that even should we give up on ourselves, He never will. We see ourselves in terms of yesterday and today. Our Heavenly Father sees us in terms of forever. Although we might settle for less, Heavenly Father won't, for He sees us as the glorious beings we are capable of becoming. The gospel of Jesus Christ is a gospel of transformation. It takes us as men and women of the earth and refines us into men and women for the eternities (General Conference, October 2007)."


I bear testimony that this is true. We are sons and daughters of a Heavenly Father, and He loves us with perfect love.

I want to thank Brother Leigh for the message, it brought tears to my eyes because I, like many others, undervalue myself at times and at times feel unworthy of even the simple love and attention of others.

It is hard to hold my head up high and walk forward regardless of the sins and mistakes that I commit, hard to be humble, aware of mine and others weaknesses but neither debasing myself or debasing others.

I pray you all might gain some insight and comfort from this message as well, that we can be better than we allow ourselves to be.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Abide with Me

Wouldn't it be nice,

to be in a place that was safe from the world,

safe from judgment,

safe from the fray of trying to live.

To just sit and listen to the strains of heavenly chords

in a nice warm chair, wrapped up in love

and to finally be able to talk, freely, calmly

to someone who cared enough to just listen, again, without judgment

someone who loves you so much,

someone who believes in you

and knows that you can do something great

someone without an agenda of their own,

all they want is for you to heal

and become stronger

They would never ask you to compromise in any respect

they love you too much

and understand that what is best is what is right

They hold sacred life, and love

and you can just rest

That is how I felt when listening to "Abide with Me" by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, that I was loved and cherished... I wanted to stay there in that chair, it is so hard to face the world, to be kind and loving without being compromised. To be taken seriously, and respected without having to resort to meanness. Firmness without anger, guidance without hatred, love without lust. Can I just curl up in that chair and stay?

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Ramblings

To a certain degree we all struggle with the perception and reality of aloneness. It is a perception because often, though we feel alone, we are surrounded by people. It is a reality because unfortunately we live and breath and die with the constant companion of self and there is no other that can dwell there unless we open and let others in to whatever degree that is possible.

In fact that is the dilemma that we face when trying to open ourselves up to the influence of spirit. The inner voice is the strongest voice, and even then the inner voice can be silenced  by distractions, nonsense and idiocy. The challenge is to embrace the enlightening influence of the spirit, incorporating it into our awareness and balancing that with the immediacy of the corporal world in which we live.

I think my inner voice has been silenced in many way's at times by certain desires to fit in to the general mold, not surprisingly this general tendency leads me to silence as in the world of generality I really have no voice as I am generally and naturally separate and distinct from others, though I have the same underlying desires of being understood and loved for who I am.

Ironically I find not only silence but a retreating into a shell of defense when I allow myself to be categorized as a certain stereotypical person, which I suppose is unavoidable in some respects.

The irony really is that I betray myself in order to fit into the mold and then find that I am uncomfortable there.

So this blog then has been an effort to blend in, as unnecessary as that may be, and instead of writing lengthy discourses on my thoughts (as I tended to do in the beginning) I have limited it to a few pithy antidotes about my life and whatever amusing or enlightening bit of media that I came across... so much dis-ingenuity that I have often thought about closing this blog from the sheer burden of having to come up with more of the same to post.

Thus, I vow to ramble away if the need strikes me, for then truly this blog will be a reflection of myself.

SG