Wednesday, March 31, 2010

No One Knows Why I'm Doing This

Dear Friends,

I don't really know why I'm writing about this.  But I just feel like I should share the things that I've been learning.  I have an AMAZING Book of Mormon class taught by a Member of the 5th Quorum of the Seventy.

Two weeks ago, we learned about Anti-Christs!  (I know, it's pretty much the coolest subject ever!!) We learned about Humanism.  That is the doctrine of emphasizing a person's capacity for self-realization through reason, one who rejects religion and the supernatural.  Focusing on the assumption that you cannot know what you do not see.  I even learned how to fight the Anti-Christ.

Sometimes, I think I try to do too much.  I try to reject the Lord.  He's doing all he can to help me, but I try to do it alone.  And why do I try to do it alone?  There is a reason I have family, friends, bishops, priesthood blessing, things like that.  And yet, I still try to do it alone.  That is a very bad idea.  But then this week, we learned a better plan.

Some days I feel very lost.  I feel like I don't know who I am.  C.S.Lewis said (though I am paraphrasing) The best way to find yourself, is to look for Christ.  If you look for yourself, you will find despair and ruin.  If you look for Christ, you will find peace and Love, and he will find you.  "Christ says, 'Give me all. I have not come to torment your natural self, but to kill it.' "

Alma 33:19-23 talks of the importance of looking to Christ.  Specifically talking about the Children of Israel and the staff that was a type of Christ.  How if the Children of Israel would look to that they would live.  If we look to Christ, and feel the swelling of faith grow, your burdens will be made light.  All this ye can do if ye will.

Alma 34:31  Come forth and harden not your heart any longer.  For behold, now is the time and the day of your salvation.

Why do I stop myself?  Why don't I just look now?  I'm really pretty good at looking for a bit and then turning away.  But I can do this.  I can do this if I will.  It's up to me.  So.. I will do it.  I will stop letting my heart be hardened.  The days that are good days are the days that I look to Christ.  The days that I don't stress about my troubles, and I just have faith.  Sure the troubles are there, but so are the answers I've been given.  And no matter how much I ask, I keep getting the same answers.

We'll see if I can really do it.  But that's the master plan.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Pretty Much I Like Fire

Tonight I went to the ballet.  That's pretty cool.  I've only ever been to one ballet before.  It pretty much rocks my knee-highs.  Although, I will say that I am VERY glad that they put a synopsis in the program.  I just didn't really understand that language.  I think that I need to attend many, many more, so I can figure out what they are saying.  That would be a great idea.  But the dancing was great.  And now I feel all sorts of cultured.  I'm high society, Yo.  (All the hoity-toity posh people say things like "Yo".)

My favorite part of the show was the music.  Really, I love this song.  Though their version was much shorter, it was still pretty great.  So, now for your viewing pleasure, listen to this and just feel the greatness.  Someday I want to be an orchestra and play this song.  If I could play the timpani part... Just thinking about it gives me shivers.  I love it!  I think the last three minutes are my favorite.  Just close your eyes and let the beauty pour over you.  Come on... you know you want to!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

And I Know This Is Random...

Dear People of the Land of Buckets,

Greetings!  So, it's crazy late, and I'm sure I should be sleeping.  But you see, sleeping is something that I seem to have misplaced my talent of.  That's a bummer.

OH, but I do have a great new pillowcase.  CRH made it for me and I got it during my "Let's run away from  your problems" trip to TX.  It's pretty great.  Argyle.  That girl knows me!  Well, let's be honest, most all of you know me and you all know that I love argyle.  Really, what's not to love?  The good news is, I am even using the pillowcase now.  It's not my #1, but getting closer.  There is an adjustment period to me and pillowcases.  You see, when I am sleeping I need to have something familiar next to my face.  Many people take a pillow with them when they travel.  All I really need is a pillowcase.  Mmmm it makes me feel all cozy just thinking about it.  Anyway, when I get a new pillowcase I have to ease myself into it.  I sleep with 2 pillows, so the new case goes on the bottom.  But my pillows are angled so sometimes I'll end up on the bottom pillow.  Then my subconscious cheek gets used to the new pillowcase, thus making it so I can move it up to #1.  It's pretty intense.

And that my friends, concludes the really random portion of our program this evening.

I just have to share, how grateful I am for the Priesthood.  I have had two blessings in two weeks.  That's pretty much a record for me.  But they were both good.  I kind of had to be talked into the one tonight, but it was perfect.  Good news for me:  I'm not crazy!  You see, I've really been questioning all of the answers I've been given.  Hence, the reason the blessing was so good tonight.  I was told that I will be able to do what I've been asked.  And that the answers I've been doubting were real.  That I can have faith in them, because they will come to pass.  So... Here we go!  Hold on, it's gonna be a bumpy ride!  (No, I'm not a creepy talking shrunken head.)  So, thanks for my friends who can give me a blessing at the drop of a hat.  You totally rock my knee-highs.

Oh, and I was pretty much proposed to on Facebook tonight.  Too bad it was by a guy who hasn't taken me on a date for over a year.  The joys of Facebook.

PS, the title of this post can be found in one of the songs that plays on my blog.  Just tying all of the Buckets together!

Friday, March 19, 2010

A Few More Rules

Ok friends!  I have some more subway rules for you all!

Rule #1:  When you step up to the glass, please know what you want.  Now, I realize, there are a TON of choices at our shop.  You may walk in and have no clue what you are in the mood to eat.  I understand that.  That doesn't concern me.  BUT when you step up to the glass, you should know what you want.  ESPECIALLY if you come into our store 20 min before we close.  We have a lot to do.  I really, really don't want to be standing there waiting for you to figure it all out.  Our rule is that if you are standing away from the glass, we can keep cleaning and working on closing.  We all are trying to have a life.  As a result, I would like to leave about 10 min after we close.  Please do what you can to assist in this great work.

Rule #2:  It is great that you want to come and get healthy food late at night.  Sure, bring the whole family.  But please keep your children in control.  When you come with your friends, and you put your two 3-year-olds at their own table, they are very likely to start running all over.  Please, control them.  It is very hard for us to do our job when your children keep coming back into the employee area.  And, because you spent so long choosing what you want, we are running behind, so there are quite likely going to be knives flying around.  You really don't want your kids coming into this.

Rule #3: Don't lie to me!  Here's the deal.  I've been doing this for a year.  I am very aware of how to best put your sandwich together so it is the neatest, and easiest for you to eat.  So, when you tell me you want all of the veggies, I need to put the sauce on first so it's all nice and neat.  This is why I ask you, "What sauces would you like?"  DO NOT tell me that you don't want any sauces.  Really, if you say those words, then I'm not giving you any sauces.  Because, when you tell me that, and then you ask for all of the veggies, and you want extra of 3 of them, your sandwich is busting out all over the place.  NOW you want to add 3 different sauces?  REALLY?  Who do you think you are?  You point blank lied to me!  That is so lame!  And yes, being the nice person I am, I'll give them to you, but then, when we close the sub, all of the sauces are going to fall out with your loads green peppers, thus making the sauces pointless.  But now they are all over my gloves.  Thanks for that.  LIAR!  You are so fired.

~As for an update on my life, just in case any of you were wondering.  Here's the story:  I'm ok, ish.  Some of you are aware that I was looking into possibly getting some counseling, cause I've been pretty depressed.  Well, I talked with my bishop, and he doesn't think that I need that.  We talked a lot about other options, and we came up with a new plan of attack.  I don't feel like I should be sharing that here, but I feel really good about things.  I'm pretty sure things will get a bit worse before they get better, but I'm feeling better.  I'm still working on having the faith I need, but some days are really good.  Sure, there are still hard days, but I'm still having some hope.  Thanks to all of you for caring and keeping me in your prayers.  I love you all! ~

Friday, March 12, 2010

I Don't Know Where This Came From

Recently I have been thinking about serious things.  Oh, wait, that would be funny if it wasn't true.  Cause this is all just crazy stuff.

I have been thinking about these:

Ears are crazy things.  Really.  Think about it.  Some funny shaped skin and then we can hear?  Who came up with that plan?  And some people have really, really, funny looking ears.  I have a theory about that.  I don't think people know what their ears look like.  Have you ever really looked at your ears?  Cause my eyes just plain aren't able to go there.  I guess I've probably glanced at them when I've used mirrors to look at the back of my head, but I've never really noticed.  Wow.  I could have totally freakish ears and not even know it.  What kind of friends are you?  You never told me about my freakish ears?  Wait... never mind.  I can't afford any sort of plastic surgery, so we'll just play ignorance.  That way, if anyone ever asks me about my freakish ears, I can play stupid.  Thank you all for protecting me.

I was watching a movie the other day, and I noticed that the main character had totally mis-matched ears.  Really, they were completely different.  I know that we aren't supposed to be symmetrical.  So, that's all cool and stuff.  It's just strange.  

I guess I never think about ears too much.  Mine are pretty lousy, too much drumming, not enough ear plugs.  As a result I pretty much need to be facing people when I talk.  I do a lot of lip reading.  Some people are totally into earrings.  I think they look nice and all, but they aren't really my thing.  That may be because I don't have pierced ears.  I do have 3 pairs of screw back earrings though.  They are pretty cool.  But they are all really sparkle-y and all that.  Sometimes I'm into sparkles but most of the time I'm a plain Jane.

Not sure where I'm going with this.  Ears.  They're pretty cool.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Avoiding the Whale

Dear Friends,

So... remember back when I was funny?  Yeah, maybe those days will come again.  But today is not one of those days.  Today I need a little bit of advice.

Life's been pretty rough for the past month.  The hard part is, in many ways, rather than getting better, it's getting harder.  Here's the thing.  I have had many very significant experiences with Heavenly Father.  He has answered my prayers in many ways, ways that I think are impossible to misinterpret.  (For example, the day I chose to give up, and just walk away from my problem, I went to a fireside and Robert D. Hales spoke.  His topic was having faith through our trials and never giving up.  How else could I interpret that?) Through all of this, I have come to know that He is VERY aware of me, and I am oh, so grateful for that.  The problem is, He has told me things that seem perfectly impossible.  I know He's a God of miracles, and I see miracles in my life, but this one really, really big miracle that He's told me will happen just seems like it's too big of a job.

How have you dealt with something like this?  I have no problem believe in miracles in other people's lives.  I know that they happen.  And I've heard about a miracle that happened in my life.  But I was only 6 weeks old, so I don't remember it at all.

I guess... Well, Heavenly Father has asked me to do a lot of things.  He told me where to go to college, he asked me to go on a mission, he asked me to move to Texas, he asked me to move back.  Some of those things were very scary, and I didn't understand them.  I didn't know if I could really do them.  But I had faith, so I moved forward and did what I was asked.  And they all worked out.

What he has asked of me now is the hardest thing yet.  It hurts.  Every day I question the answers I've been given.  I've had people tell me that Heavenly Father doesn't want me to be unhappy, so why would he be asking this of me.  But he has.  And it doesn't make sense.  It's not easy.  I don't have perfect control.  When I was told to go on a mission, I started working on papers.  I had control over it.  Sure, I had to be living a good life, and pass all of the interviews, but I had control.  I don't have any control over this.  I just know the idea of what I need to do, but not how to do it.  And it really involves someone else who, to my knowledge, hasn't asked or received the same answers.  They don't want the same answers either.

So, what do I do?  How to I find the balance between having faith in something so hard, that I just can't see?  It's not logical, and right now, I don't even really want it.  It would be so much easier to just turn around and walk away.  That way my heart wouldn't have to break, over and over.  But I know what I've been told.  How do I have hope, and faith in something that seems so impossible?  How do I come to believe in miracles in my own life?

My dear sister, L7 bought me a book.  It's called Believing Christ.  So far it's good.  But it's mostly about believing in the Atonement to cover your sins.  I know I'm not perfect, but I don't really question that.  There have been some things that have really touched me in the book, but I'm not quite there.

Don't think I'm questioning the Gospel.  I'm not.  I'm just questioning my ability to do this.  So, dear friends and family, how have you done it?  Because I don't want to give up.  When the Lord tells you something and you do something else, you get swallowed by a whale.  That would be a total bummer.

Ok, so the big question is:  How do you have faith in the impossible?  How do you get yourself to believe in the illogical?  And how do you find the strength go keep going when everything else around you is telling you to just move on?

"If you are helpless, He is not.  If you are lost, He is not.  If you don't know what to do next, He knows.  It would take a miracle, you say?  Well, if it takes a miracle, why not?" ~ Boyd K. Packer, Conference Report October 1970

Monday, March 1, 2010

Coming Out Of The Rain

Here I am, rocking out with CRH in Texas.  She's pretty great.  She and the Texan have been kind enough to take me in when I felt the need to flee the state I'm living in to run away from my problems.  Yes, I am very aware that running away from my problems won't make them even a little bit better, but it's been kind of nice to try to ignore things.  Granted, I can't really ignore them, and I have probably been doing a lot more thinking than one would care to admit.  It's just that I'm alone during the day, and that gives way to lots of pondering.

Today it was raining.  That is not at all unusual for Texas in the spring.  It rains often, and it rains hard.  CRH was kind enough to let me drive her car around today, so I needed to pick her up from work.  As I left her house to go to her place of employment, it was raining pretty hard.  An interesting thing sometimes happens when it rains in Texas.  When I looked right above me I could see white puffy clouds and blue sky.  And yet, it was raining.  And it kept raining.  The closer I got to CRH's work, the better the weather got.

I remember thinking this was a strange occurrence back when I lived in Texas.  It seems so odd to be driving through rain when the sky looks so blue.  Yes, there were dark clouds around me, but they weren't right over me.  (If any of you are real weather experts, you're probably thinking that there had to be dark clouds right over me, but I swear they weren't.)  The best part was the fact that I was able to drive out of the storm.

Now I'm going to go all philosophical on you.  It's seemed for the past while that I am driving in the sun, yet being rained on.  I'm doing all that I can, and yet the rain still comes.  I often have glimpses of real sunlight and dry conditions but I keep finding myself in the storm.

For example, Friday I was able to spend some time with a friend.  I know him from where I live, but he happened to be in Texas this weekend as well.  We've never done anything together, but we decided to bond while here.  We spent quite a bit of time with his family.  And it was great.  They were all sorts of kind and accepting right from the beginning.  I had a genuinely nice time.  You're all thinking that this is the sun shiny time of life, aren't you?  And yet, it's not.  As I drove home that night, I cried quite a bit.  You see, despite all of the awful things that Scuttle has said, and done in the past 8 weeks, I still love him.  That makes me seem crazy.  I've spent a lot of time praying, and fasting, and attending the temple.  Despite what I want, I've been told that I need to keep trying, and I need to be Scuttles friend.  So I'm doing as I can.  Sometimes that is being made very difficult.  It's impossible to be close to someone who is constantly doing all they can to push you away.  When I was with this friend in Texas, I just kept thinking, "Hmm, he's a nice chap.  Maybe I should try to flirt it up with him.  He's nice, his family is nice, why not?"  This is a logical thought really.  There wasn't anything truly wrong with that.  And yet there really was.

Why would I flirt when I've been told that I should keep trying?  Going and doing something fun with a friend is totally ok.  There is nothing wrong with that.  The problem arose when I decided I wanted to go against the counsel given to me previously.  Yes, things are hard.  Yes, I don't see how things could ever work out.  This is when I need to work on faith.  Faith in what the Lord has promised.  Faith in the answers I have been given.  Because history has shown that when you keep asking for something different than what you've been told, it doesn't turn out very well.  (Think Martin Harris)

When I do as I'm told, despite the hardship, I can walk around in the sun.  Unfortunately, like an idiot, I chose to sit in the rain.  Let's be honest, I can quite enjoy a nice dance in the rain.  Gene Kelly totally rocks my knee-highs.  But this is no singing and dancing in the rain moment.  This is more sitting outside, no umbrella, it's cold, and I could go inside, yet I choose to sit and mope in the wetness.  Why do we as people do this to ourselves?  When we follow the instruction given to us, we are happier.  We can have faith.  When we try to forge our own path, we end up sitting in the rain and having no fun.

My choice:  To drive out of the rain.  Just as I drove out of the rain when I went to get CRH.  It's hard, and I know sometimes I'll probably end up back in the rain, but I need to work harder to just keep myself out of it.  To stop looking at what I think I want, and figure out how to want what I've been given.  It's a process.

Does any of this make sense?  Probably not.  I'm kind of rambling.  My brain is a pretty scary place.  It doesn't often make sense.  Despite the fact that figuring this out is hard, and scary, I'm pretty determined.  Life doesn't really come with an umbrella, so I'll just have to get myself out of the rain.