Thursday, November 1, 2012

ParaNorman. . . .

I'm going to break away from tradition a bit on this blog and use a movie as my blog title instead of a song because there wasn't a song out there that would translate what I wanted to say better than this movie.

But before I get into why, I'd like to tell you a story.

My brother married a woman with three boys, and each one of those boys has a different form of autism. For the most part, they are all non-speaking kids and have stemming quirks that either calm them or cause a problem for them. It has become very common in my family to hear one boy flush the toilet constantly, the other sing a tune in his own language, have constant clapping, touching, interruptions and best of all, kids covered in either dirt or water.

It is sometimes difficult to explain to small children, and even adults, what's happening when others encounter our family. But I was not really prepared for what was said by a young boy describing my nephews. He told me that "There's something wrong in their heads that makes them not act normal. Something's all screwed up." I was completely taken back by his description of them and immediately tried to explain it in a way that was feasible to a six year old and also wasn't rooted in ignorance. I tried to tell him that there's nothing wrong with their brains, but it's more like they're wearing a mask and this mask makes it difficult for them to talk, listen, see, etc. That there is nothing wrong with them but that they just have a hard time taking what's going on on the inside and sending it outside to all of us.

The attention span of this group is of course limited and so the subject changed very quickly. However my mind, and my husband's, dwelled on it for some time. We felt that what he had said was beyond wrong. And we were upset, in the most Aunt-&-Uncle-Bear way, that this boy spoke about our family this way. But we couldn't get mad at the boy, he is only six. Who we can direct our writhing emotions to are his parents. How ignorant are they to explain such a thing as autism to a kid as "just something screwy in their heads". It was obvious to me that his parents have not taken the time to educate themselves enough on autism to explain it, and therefore tried to explain it away by placing it in the general category of "not normal".

This brings me to the movie ParaNorman. In this movie this young, unsuspecting boy has no friends and is constantly teased. In the movie, there's a scene between Norman and his Dad that is completely heartbreaking.

Norman: This is so unfair! I wish everyone could see what I see. I didn't ask to be born this way. . .
Dad: Neither did we.

Even his Dad, someone who's supposed to love him unconditionally, wishes he was different, more "normal". Poor Norman goes around in his day, fighting off bullies, cruel words, teasing and loneliness all because he has something about him that others do not understand. Norman can see ghosts, and to Norman, this IS his normal.

Through Norman's adventure he comes to a conclusion about people, and he said something that will stick with me forever.

Norman: Sometimes when people get scared, they say and do terrible things.

I will be the first to admit, that when I see someone with a disability, I'm not sure how to approach them. I have a moment where I'm scared. I believe we all have these moments. However, it's what we do after that moment of fear, that will shape who we are.

Norman's Grandma: There's nothing wrong with being scared, Norman, as long as it doesn't change who you are.

Putting ones with autism, or anyone who is different from your version of normal, in a group that labels them as not normal is just you being scared. Saying things that are not in love towards anyone different from you, is just you being scared. Being ignorant of other's because of their disability (or anything you dislike or are uneducated about) is just you being scared. It is so difficult sometimes to fight that feeling of fear and break out of your box to understand someone else's life. The easy road is to just make fun of them and forget that they are human, just like you. But this is the worst way of thinking/behaving imaginable!

The theme to my blog is basically that perception is the key to all understanding. If you are going to sit back and keep yourself ignorant by un-educating yourself and closing your mind to what is the truth about other people, and then teach that ignorance to your children, you will only be breeding bullies. And that is just what you are when you treat others in any negative fashion, disability or not. In the movie, Norman befriends a young boy named Neil who is also teased relentlessly for being fat. However, even though Neil completely understands what's happening to him, he does not let it get him down. He is simply a happy person. Neil has a line that I feel is true to anyone who chooses to take that fear and breed ignorance.

Neil: You could be a bully too, if you were bigger and dumber.

I loved this movie. I loved it more than just about any movie I have seen and will be up there with some of my more intellectual favorites, ie. Lars and the Real Girl I know it's just a kid's movie, but I feel it really makes you think. I hope you all get the chance to see it and possibly think about the way you treat someone "different" from yourself. I don't think we will ever completely be rid of this natural fear that comes with the unknown, but don't let that stop you from becoming someone amazing. Don't let that keep you from being that amazing person to someone else.

So I ask you this, Have you let fear change who you are today?

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Family Tree. . . .

My husband comes from a blended family. Much like the Brady Bunch, my husband's family was split down the middle consisting of four step children on either side, equaling eight children total. (My husband is also a twin.) Yesterday he told me how his biological dad wants to be friends with him on Facebook. Now, my husband hasn't seen or spoken to his bio-dad in many, many years and only had those encounters a total of four times since his dad left them when he was four. That comes out to about one visit every eleven years. It's no wonder the dad I know, is his step dad, though he is never referred to with that title and sometimes I swear they look alike.

My family on the other hand is a very tightly woven family. And with the exception of my grandfather not ever knowing his father, my family ties have always been close and "original" so to speak. Until my divorce, my family never really experienced such a divide in family circles. Needless to say, it was and still is something foreign to me, and many of my family members.

So when my husband chuckled as he told me his bio-dad wanted his "friendship"on Facebook, I asked him, "Does it feel weird not knowing your dad? Or any of your half siblings?"

His answers were private and I choose not to share them but I will share the mentality of his family that I know brings peace to him and a testimony to me.

When I first met my husband's family, I was not prepared for the full embrace and unconditional loving arms that so quickly wrapped around me. Coming from an all Mormon, white family, I was taken back by the mass diversity his family has. From divorce, drug use, homosexuality, race, nationality, who was related to who, smoking, language, and down to the glass of red wine sitting on the counter, I had never seen so much difference in one room. As someone who loves theatre, and has the need to understand the reasons why peopled do things the way they do so I can create that on stage, my naive mind started spinning.

Soon after that, I married my husband and became part of that diverse family. And not only me, but my children too. My in-laws made it so easy to love them, and care for them, and call them Mom and Dad. They also immediately insisted on having my kids know them as Grandma and Grandpa, which was very comforting rather than try and explain to my five year old who they are and what to call them. They loved us without question and simply opened the family circle to add us in. (Now this is not me saying my family does not do the same thing, I'm only focusing on the dynamics of my husband's family.)

So them calling me their daughter, my kids their grandkids, and even cousins didn't hit so deeply as when my husband's sister in-law called my daughter her niece. Her niece! She didn't have to call her that. But her calling her, her niece instead of something along the lines of, "my husband's, brother's, wife's kid" touched my heart beyond anything I can ever explain. It was the straw that opened my eyes to what a family really was.

Many things in life will break a family circle. I have encountered them first hand. On this earth, there is nothing that can not be broken. But just as my husband's family looks past everyone's differences to make a complete family, tying everyone together, so does our Lord.

I have a testimony that the Lord will heal all. That the Lord will always connect families together regardless of what is missing. The Lord will take the broken, frayed, loose ends of a family and connect them together with new strings and make them whole as if they never were broken in the first place.

I know that no one will be forgotten, that no one will have missing pieces, broken ties or incomplete circles, because the Lord's plan is made so that one day we will be complete, we will be and have all that is needed to make us whole, and our families will be connected in such a way that they will stretch from one end of eternity to the other with each person woven into the perfect place for them in our eternal family.

I pray that if any one is feeling like a piece of their life is missing, or that they are broken in some way, to look towards the Lord for peace. Through him, we will all become whole. And because of his example, we can live on this earth in a way that will give everyone a home and a family who loves them.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Our Savior's Love. . . .

I have felt like an outsider in my ward ever since our stake realigned the boundaries 9 months ago. Also with my job, I have had to deliver a firm hand to many ward members creating a not so welcoming relationship connecting me to the ward. Needless to say, I am invisible to the ones I seek to connect with and make myself invisible to those who I try and avoid. Not the best situation I've created for myself and if you happened to read my last blog about my ward, my feelings toward the whole thing are rough.

So, why do I bring this up? Well only for me to write down one revelation for myself. My cousin commented something on my last aforementioned blog that has sat inside me and grown into a bit of light.

"Church is just chaos and imperfection coming together for one purpose."

I feel like defending myself with that thought because some people in my ward think I'm losing my faith and I so very much want to tell them my faith in God has not wavered. In fact I've grown closer to him now than any other time in my life. But it's my tolerance for the ward that has weakened and this bug of a thought my cousin planted in me is what's keeping me in attendance.

I know for whatever reason, I'm suppose to be here and I'm suppose to learn something important to my character. So this is why I still attend church. And yes I am writing this during church, sitting here listening to the missionaries speak. And no my faith has not left me. I just don't like being here.

Friday, September 21, 2012

The Stranger. . . .

Do you remember when you were little and you would get teased at school? You'd run home crying and hurt from dagger-like words spewed at you from someone else in anger and your Mother would always say, "They are just jealous of you!" I've notice through facebook and Pinterest posts that even as adults we are teased and hurt by others, and our natural response is still the same. "They are just jealous of me." Except as adults we are more poetic in our response and say something more to the affect of, "Whatever they don't like in you, is just a reflection of what they don't like in themselves." I love this thought anytime I am feeling attacked by others. It makes me feel like the bigger person. The "winner" in an argument. But what if you were not the victim, but the one throwing the daggers?

I have been battling with some anger issues towards others who have hurt me in the past. I know I should just turn the other cheek, but I really don't want to. This group of random people have collectively, in one way or another, either threatened my livelihood, told direct lies about me, or have gone out of their way to make my life miserable. Now, this group of people are ones I see at least once a week and they on the rare occasion speak to me as if none of the aforementioned daggers were thrown into my back. (A bit dramatic I know, but I'm upset, so I'm allowed.) This is where the other cheek comes in. I know, deep down in my Christian heart, I should be the bigger girl, turn the other cheek and forgive, but I just can't. And since I can't, my bitterness towards them has festered into something that I don't find fitting to my character. I hate them.

Every time I see them or talk to them or even notice their existence, I give off the energy that they are not welcome near me. I don't say anything rude, or even out loud, but I most definitely dislike their proximity to me and do everything I can to translate it to them by short answers to their questions, lack of eye contact and obvious changes of direction. The discomfort that I feel has even prompted thoughts of moving and/or changing where I attend church.

So today when I read someone's repeated post about one person's attitude being a reflection of what they dislike in themselves prompted me to think, wow, what does all my anger towards these people say about me?

I had posted something on facebook where I shared a belief I had about how it is best if we not compare ourselves to anyone else because then we don't have the expectations that create fictitious ideas of what "good" and "bad" are. One dear friend of mine posted her opinion on it and I'd like to take the liberty to share what she had to say.

 "First we need to love ourselves, in order to love others. I personally feel that people who have love and respect for themselves, have a much easier time than people who dislike or don't respect themselves. Make sense? Love begets love....judgement begets judgement. Once we stop judging ourselves, we can stop judging others. Just my humble opinion ♥"

*sigh* Okay, so obviously I agree with her. And as much as I dislike the idea that I could be in the wrong, I must admit that I am. *grrrr* Not that it excuses at all what they did to me, I must stop treating them the way I have been.

This is not going to be easy, and because I am stubborn, I know it will take some time to completely overcome the urges I have to punch them in the face when they walk by. However, I know my Lord would have me do so. Besides, I don't want to have to ask for their forgiveness at judgement, so I might as well grant them the forgiveness my Savior has asked me to give them.

This whole blog has really brought me inner reflection. I hope it will for you too. I know the next time I reach into my figurative bag to pull out my imaginary poison tipped dagger, ready to throw at annoying people, I will take that second to look at myself in the mirror and find out what is going wrong with me. I am the only thing I have control over in my life. If I'm angry, then I have control over it. If I want forgiveness, I have control over it. If I want to truly be a happy person regardless of whom I encounter, I have control over that. And whatever I send out into the universe, is what will come back to me. So I better be sending out good energy.

So the next time we have anything bad, or ill spirited to say or do towards anyone for whatever reason, maybe we could take a moment to reverse our wise Mother's words and ask ourselves, "What am I jealous of in them?"

Saturday, September 15, 2012

She Doesn't Know. . . .

I have been battling with self esteem issues for my whole life. And even at my age, I still have demons that stop me from being positive with myself. For the most part, I simply feel like I don't ever measure up, whether it's in inches or miles, I see myself falling short every day. Most days I can handle it, and try to give myself some slack, but other days are too overwhelming and I cannot stand tall. I'm either not thin enough, not strong enough, not talented enough, house isn't clean enough, dinner isn't good enough, I forgot this, I forgot that, I didn't notice enough, budget's not covering enough, I missed this, didn't go to that, didn't spend enough time here, should be better at this there, should serve more here, don't waist time here, I shouldn't be so tired, etc. Etc. ETC. . . . I'm not good enough! This is what plays in my head each day.

Now I know I can't say "I'm the only one" because I'm not. Pinterest is filled with little funny saying that translate to a cry for help being re-pinned all the time. My most recent one is, "I smile to hide how completely overwhelmed I am." A theme to my blog is, "I'm not that good, I just smile that well" because I have adorned a fictitious smile many, many days of my life just so it will make others feel comfortable. If my face actually showed what I was feeling, no one would sit by me. (Not that they do anyways.) But it's easier for me to fake it, than burden others with what's really going on.

So why is this going on anyway? Why do we, in general, put ourselves down? No one's going to drag you through the mud better than yourself, so why do we do it? My husband compliments me daily and I find it so hard to believe him because what's playing in my head drowns out his words. Is it easier to be on the bottom? Is there less to live up to if we always say we're less than a certain level? What is stopping us from being positive? What is stopping us from being happy with what we can do and who we are?

I love female comedians, and one of my favorites posted something online a bit ago that made me realize the tape that played in my head needed to be erased and replaced with something I do every day anyways. Please take a moment to watch and listen to her advice.

I would never tell any one of my daughters that they are not good enough. Or that who they are is not who they should be. I fill my day for them with compliments and "good job"s, "I'm so proud of you"s, and anything else I can do to get them to feel happy about themselves and what they've done. When did that way of talking stop for myself?

I do believe that regardless of the choices we have made, the way we look, the cleanliness of our homes, the amount of nutrition in our dinners, the intentions that we have and the efforts that we make, our Heavenly Father loves us. And just like the way we speak to our children, He wants us to feel happy about ourselves. I know God is an advocate of happiness. I know that he wants so much for us to find the happiness that is within us. God does not make crap! God does not make someone who is not good enough. It is what we compare ourselves to that changes how we view ourselves. This video was a swift kick in the butt for me. I want so much for my daughters to love themselves, I cannot forget that I am their greatest exemplar.

I hope that each one of you reading this realize how wonderful you are and start saying that to yourselves each day and be happy!

So I ask you this, Are you happy today?

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Nurse Who Loved Me. . . .

Today I feel the need to write. But I'm also afraid of writing what I'm feeling. I'm sorry, but I must be cryptic because this is not exactly my story.

It's been a rough day for me. I received some news that stings an all to familiar sting, and yet I'm calm. When news like this came around the first time, I panicked and immediately went into denial. Now that the similar news is here again, I'm not so naive. So as I'm trying to figure out how to navigate the next two weeks the title of this blog's song pops into my head, and I think for just a moment what it would be like to slip into another world and not experience what is happening right now. I can imagine myself lying on the floor, experiencing life in a deliriously happy slow motion while everyone else runs around in chaos behind me. Myself being completely oblivious to the truth and pleasantly distracted by the simple topography of my living room rug. Alas, I cannot.

Even though I feel completely drained from the day's news, I find myself at peace. Not a happy peace, but more a "God knows what he's doing so relax" peace. I can't even get mad yet.

I don't have an ending to this blog. Like I said I just needed to write. . . .

I guess I ask you this question, How do you cope with something you don't want to face but know deep down you can't avoid?

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Settle Down. . . .

I have had a thought plaguing me for over seven months. It's a thought that makes me cry and go into an almost depression like state. If I were a doctor, I'd diagnose myself with a pre-midlife crisis syndrome. But since my doctorate is only from WebMD, I'll explain.

I have three beautiful daughters and for the past three years I have been counting down the days until my youngest was in school full time. Well, those days now equal less than three months and the knowledge that I won't have to worry about a sitter during the day any more is liberating and brings the sensation I'm sure Kate Winslet felt as she stood on the tip of the Titanic, arms spread wide, wind on her face and a handsome man breathing his warm breath down her neck, unadulterated attractive freedom! So when I remarried earlier this year, my mind reset into a past phase. My mind said, "Well Heidi, you're married now, time to have kids." Panic attacks set in quickly when I realized my body was "nesting" and my emotions were preparing for me to have another baby. This was something that my hubby and I discussed quite deeply before we were to wed because he is 13 years older than me and is to be a grandpa this year. We had decided that the option was on the table, but that it was not to be acted upon in the first year as to limit the amount of drastic adjustments we would in no doubt face while blending our families together. Unfortunately for me, my body and mind didn't read the memo.

When my youngest was born, my then-now ex-husband and I had decided we were done having kids. This was something that killed me inside. Our marriage was only a business transaction at that point and I felt it was one more thing that had died as a result. However, circumstances led me to needing a cesarean for delivery and when it came time to conveniently make an end to my fertile womb, something frightened me to a degree of silence and I only quietly wept as I was stitched up. I chose to not have the procedure. For years I thought it meant that I was not finished having kids and weighed that knowledge heavily against the men I dated as a deciding factor of if I would marry them. It was a bit of a challenge weighing it against my hubby because it seemed that the likelihood of us having kids was very slim. But I realized that regardless if we were to have kids, I wanted to be married to him, and so, here we are today.

This is what I am now stuck between:

~On one side of me lies the innate, "programed" way of life as a traditional wife and mother and the very strong desire to have a little one running around that looks like my hubby. A very good way of living.

~On the other lies my job and the ability of advancement, all my kids being independent, a full night's sleep, weekends where it's just my hubby and me, and the knowledge that I could possibly only share my life with him for another 30 or so years. Another very good way of living.

I am torn, not between the two, but at the realization I may be ready to leave the baby making phase behind, let my kids grow up and identify myself as someone more than a mom with young kids.

I'm only 33 and my mom was 36 when she had her youngest and my older sister is pregnant with her fifth the same time my baby sis is having her first. So it's not like the idea of having more kids at my age is far fetched. AND Bruce Willis just had his forth and he's 57ish so thinking that Handsome is too old to have kids at 46 is not really true, also considering his brother of 40ish and just had his first.
So this whole rant now leads me to this blog's question, When did you know it was alright to stop having kids?

I spoke about this to my sister(in-law) just the other night because like I said, it's been plaguing me. She at 30 decided four years prior she was done having kids and adamantly expressed how she did so with the reason being, "she wanted to enjoy her husband".  I feel the same way. I relish in the nights where it is just us two in a quiet home, free to run here or there or even naked around the house without the chance of a child interrupting our bliss or cutting the evening short by way of the babysitter's curfew. It is very probable that in ten years, Handsome and I could take off at will for any destination, just us two without the shadows of whining kids darkening our fun. (Not to say that family vacations aren't a bucket of fun!) Yet, I look at him and almost cry because I don't have a kid that looks like him.
Would it be all that terrible if I didn't have any more kids? Would it be all that hindering on my adult life to have another? I DO NOT KNOW!! What I do know is that the more time that goes by it leaves me feeling more and more reassured that my family is good enough the way it is and that I may be ready to switch from the diaper phase to the high school phase and not realize it, and this scares me. What are your thoughts on this? Did you just know you were done having kids or was it a struggle for you too? I feel very frightened at times when I contemplate this life altering decision (which doesn't need to be made today, it's just an imminent decision).

So I ask you, When did you know you were done having kids?
-or- When did you know you needed to have one more?

Thank You Very Much. . . .

I simply have to say how blown away I am with the responses given towards my last post Lost. . . . I was actually overwhelmed by all of the advice and responses. Some of you wrote that you were sorry or thought I might be offended at your opinions, but to that I say, Heavens NO! Life is such a learning process and I only took your opinions to heart for the better. Better for myself and better for the way I should write in explaining my thoughts. Writing for me is a way of releasing what can sometimes torment me. I was bothered by last Sunday so much that I couldn't sleep and needed to release my anger through words. I was only writing it for me and did not expect such passion to be released from all of you. And just like I have a right to my thoughts, you have a right to yours and I respect that. So thank you.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Lost. . . .

I'd like to paint you a picture, if you will:

It's Sunday, and church is the norm. You get yourself respectfully dressed and walk the block to church on a beautifully cool summer day. You step into the chapel expecting to become edified and are taken back by the most beautiful improvisational piano prelude music. You have never experienced such music in church before. The melismas and melodic depth transforms the most simple hymn into a work of moving art. Tears were brought to your eyes until your ears become clouded. The grey, dark cloud of adult conversation billow over the pews and begin to drown you in gossip, cackles and unnecessary noise until the view of the colorful melody being performed from the stand disappear from sight. This was my Sunday.

A gentleman with exquisite talent was filling in for our regular organist and I do wish he would more often. It was simply beautiful! An experience rarely seen and from my point of view deeply appreciated. Unfortunately, it was literally drowned out by the noise a majority of the congregation was making. I wanted to go to the pulpit and ask them to be reverent and listen to the music being played, but the meeting started too soon for me to no doubt stand on my soap box and offend many. So instead, I will stand on my soap box here. I am ashamed of my ward.

I am ashamed of my ward to the point where I do not enjoy attending church. Ironically, as I was sitting there with tears in my eyes and my thoughts reeling with frustration for the noise that continued through the meeting and distracting many from the messages of the best talks I had heard in a while, one gentleman spoke about the importance of the church. (Again, I am LDS.) I loved what he said as a point to his talk. He said that he does not come to church to have friends, but that he comes to church to be edified, taught and strengthen his own testimony. His words prompted a thought in my own mind. Is church really that important anymore?

I look at the many people in my ward, and other wards, who only come to get their bills paid, or attend because their wives make them, or don't care if their kids run wild through the stand, or break out lunch as if it's okay to even eat in the chapel, or carry on a conversation so loud it's completely clear to everyone in attendance, etc. etc. and I think to myself, "Why are you even here?!" I understand that church is for everyone, and one of my favorite quotes is, "If your sacrament meeting doesn't smell like cigarette smoke, you're not doing your job." Which means, it's open to all walks of life and if it's not filled with that, you aren't doing your job as a member missionary. So I am not at all saying that you must be perfect to go to church. I'm also clearly admitting that I've had my days where I check my facebook during a meeting and have dozed off a time or few. What I'm getting at is the noise. My point is the noise. Better yet, my point is the lack of reverence or respect for something so sacred and wonderful as what goes on during a traditional meeting. So if we are loosing that genuine respect and adopting the idea that it's okay to talk, eat, and let your kids be as noisy as they want to be, is church really that important to us?

I think of a certain individual who used to be such a beacon of light at church for me. He was one that I admired so it was such a shock to me that he suddenly stopped going to church stating that he could feel the spirit better at home than at church. I never really understood his statement until today. I really feel that the spirit in my home is stronger than the spirit that was in that meeting. So what do I do about this? I don't want to not go to church and I have faith in my Lord's gospel, I just have found myself in a state where I have no desire to attend church. I still love visiting teaching, FHE, prayer, scriptures, etc. etc. I attend my activities and encourage my girls to go to theirs. My husband and I are planning to be sealed in the temple, I just don't want to go to church because I seem to always come away feeling frustrated. Do any of you feel this way?

I have no idea what to do. I am lost. I know the primary answer would be to understand that we are all human and that no one is perfect, but I'm not seeking perfection. Am I? Is the expectation of a reverent sacrament meeting too high? I'm sure I need to take a slice of humble pie and take a positive twist to all of this by diving in and serving so much that by example things may change, but I have no desire to do such things. I just want my desire to attend church to return.

Let me explain my thinking to you. For me, the gospel of Jesus Christ is my religion. I am LDS, but only believe the church to be a tool to guide me in the living of my Lord's gospel. The church is not what is true for me, the Gospel is. I do believe that being LDS is the true path for me to take, but I take it to be a part of the Gospel. Do you see the difference between the two? The Gospel is true. The church supports the Gospel. In my mind they are separate things that need each other to work. Because the Gospel is run by God and his Son Jesus Christ, it is constant and true and what I have for my foundation of faith. Because the church is run by humans and will always have an element of imperfection, my faith is not supported by it only guided by it with my own judgement. I hope you have a clear understanding of how I believe in my religion. (If not, ask away and I will do my best to explain.)

So has my faith in God dwindled? Not at all. Has my desire to bring forth the knowledge the LDS church has to others? Not at all. Do I still wish for others to come closer to God through the church? Yes I do. I just don't feel like attending anymore. It's like I have too much respect for what should go on during church to witness what really does. I really wish I had an answer to this question today. I have about 40 people reading my blog. Would you please give me some advice on this? I love my Lord, I love the LDS church, I just don't like how it's being treated. I hope I have not offended anyone, I am just being honest and sincerely ask for your help on this.

So I ask you, Is church really that important to you anymore?

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Big Girl You Are Beautiful. . . .

So I find myself, like many other women today, on Pinterest. And for those who don't know about it, it's pronounced puh-interest or pin-terest. It's and pin board about things you are interested in. Just another fanatic craze much like facebook. In fact you can even link the two together. The idea is to create a virtual pin board of things you want to do, make, create, remember, admire, talk about, etc. It has been proven very useful for me. It's almost like it's own mini search engine for recipes, crafts, sayings, etc. and gives you their links to blogs, web pages and etsy shops. This is not a private site and anything you post can be seen by the public, including your profile. Now as another day goes by and I keep repinning idea after idea to my boards, I realize something, 90% (and this is my mathmatically limited brain's guesstimation) of the pins I see are either of desserts or rock hard female bodies. It's like the idiots guide to being an oxymoron. So then, I ran across this saying from Adele: "I love food and hate exercise. I don't have time to work out. . . . I don't want to be on the cover of Playboy or Vogue. I want to be on the cover of Rolling Stone or Q. I'm not a trend-setter. . . . I'm a singer. . . . I'd rather weigh a ton and make an amazing album than look like Nicole Richi and do a shit album. My aim in life is to never be skinny." *If you didn't notice, I did correct the grammar. I so loved this quote that I instantly repinned it and then immediately began this blog. So this is the question I ask you, Can you make your dessert and eat it too?

I am an emotional eater. There are many days when I go out on a date with the hubby that I realize I don't know what to do that doesn't involve eating. There's a movie (popcorn and a drink), bowling (cheese fries and a soda), mall (food court lemonade), etc. etc. When I think of going out, I think of dinner somewhere. Food literally runs my life. Whether it's the indulgence of such or the avoidance of it, it fills my day. Now a year ago I weighed in at about 210 lbs. I was training for a half marathon until I injured my foot and had to stop running all together. I still worked out pretty heavily at the gym and was on my way to changing myself for the better. But, like everyone's life, it got stressful. I packed on 20 lbs by Christmas and if you read my last blog, I have packed on another 20 lbs since Feb. So now I am back to my heaviest weight of 250 lbs. None of my clothes fit (because I gave away all of my larger sizes when I dropped the weight) and my self esteem is plummeting much like my belly as it hits the bed when I lay on my side. I remember around October saying to myself, "I'm sick of depriving myself of anything good. If I want a chocolate donut, I'm going to have a chocolate donut." And I did. Almost every day along side my Diet Coke. I'm not shocked that I gained all my weight back, I'm just sad I did.

So here I am, feeling fat, staring at recipes for cheesecake and asses that you could bounce a quarter off of and I can only blame myself for the size of my ass and let my tummy growl at the sight of strawberries and whipped cream and then cry at my wedding pictures where I clearly look pregnant even though I am not. This is not how I am suppose to be. I am suppose to be like Adele, gorgeous, sexy, a red head with the voice, curves and big boobs, and even that seductive British accent where I can get away with saying fink instead of think. But I'm not. I guess my answer is, this: Yes, you can make your dessert and eat it too, but you can't eat your dessert and have a killer ass.

I am like Adele in one manner, I don't want to be skinny. I want to be less jiggly, but not skinny. If I didn't have my boobs I'd probably cry, even if there are countless reasons why I'd be happy to not have them. I had come to the conclusion countless years ago that I would never be skinny. My bone structure and genetic hand-me-down attributes will forever prohibit me from being such. And I'm okay with that. I'm happy to be a curvy girl and be a size 16. My really happy size would be a 12, I don't imagine myself any smaller than that because I really don't want to be. I love that my ass looks like an upside down heart and that my boobs hang that way as well and rest in the crook of my neck. I love the s-curve my figure makes and know I would never be happy with my hips being as small as my waist. I do think that being a size 16 requires you to be healthy too, so don't think I'm advocating sitting on the couch. I am simply saying, no, you cannot make your dessert and eat it too if you want to be like the asses on pinterest. But if you want to be happy and eating your dessert makes you happy, and you're okay with what it does to you, then by all means eat it!

I believe we are all creatures of evolution. We always grow, change, revert back and even idle in stages of life. So what, I gained 40 lbs in a year. Did I feel good when I ate those donuts? Yes. Do I need to eat those donuts now? No. Am I gorgeous no matter what I eat? Yes. Am I capable of changing? Yes. Am I ever going to repin an ass from pinterest? No. Should I pin my own? Maybe.

I hope you walk away from this blog thinking. I hope you start thinking about the things in your life you love, you want, you have and begin "pinning" the best parts of you. I feel it to be a challenge to myself to each day, "pin" a new favorite part about me that will inspire others to "repin" it and inspire themselves. I will forever love the combination of Diet Coke and Dunford chocolate donuts in my mouth. I forever love the feeling of cool shower after a hard workout. I will forever love who I am regardless of what size I am.

If you would, please "pin" in my comment box, your favorite part about yourself, physical or otherwise and let's get the conversation going.

So I ask you, Have you inspired someone today?

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Any Other World. . . .

First off, I apologize if any of this blog comes off as insensitive. That is not my intention.

Something happened this year that rocked the foundation of my three daughters. Their step-mom committed suicide. Their father thought it would be fitting to tell my then ten and twelve year olds the truth about her death. Their father is not one to keep in touch regularly so it left me responsible for the after math that occurred once she was laid to rest. This is what happened.

My oldest dropped off the face of the planet. She became distant, stopped smiling, wore dark colored clothing, only answered questions with either eye rolls or mumblings and most noticeably, completely stopped caring about school. My younger daughter cried for a bit, but didn't show any other forms of distress until a school counselor called me and had told me she was breaking down to her friends at school. This infuriated me to the highest degree I had ever been upset. It was so noticeable that their knowledge of their step-mom's suicide was deeply affecting them because it seemed the only daughter that was happy was my five year old who was only told she got sick and died. Now, I wasn't angry at my daughters for their reactions, but angry at my ex and his wife for causing them.

I skip back to a past portion of my life. My sister was rushed into an emergency delivery of her first baby boy only four months after my youngest was born. We knew something was wrong but never expected the outcome that came. His heart just stopped beating once they cut the umbilical chord and they were unable to get it started again. She has since delivered another healthy baby boy and is pregnant with another girl due this summer. However for her and every member of our family, we now carry the worry and concern that such things could happen again.

One more past moment of my life, I got a divorce. I never even thought about it, and if I did I quickly dismissed it until one day it came pounding on my door. My divorce still affects me today, even though it has been over four years and I am happily remarried. The understanding that it could happen again is real. The idea of an end is commonly logical and lurks in the back of my mind every day.

In the instance for my daughters, suicide is now real. Suicide is now a possibility, just like the death of an infant is for my sister and abandonment is for me. It is all real and affects everything in the future for us. Have you ever had something you never thought of become a possibility for you?

I know I could easily flip this question into a positive like when my 220 lbs body completed a 10k, something that I never imagined happening, but I'm not going to. I want to leave it on the hard side of the flip for a minute. I want to leave it there because I ask you another question, Is any of this even fair? I get asked that question a lot. Being a religious person, people ask me my opinion on life being fair or not. Was it fair of my ex to tell my girls about the suicide? Was it fair that she did it in the first place causing pain for everyone as well? Was it fair for my sister to lose her son? Was it fair for me to stand alone after ten years? The answer is almost joyously, No, it is most certainly not fair at all!

So what do we do now? Foundations have been shook, anger ensues, and it has been established that life is not fair. What do we do now? I'll tell you what I've learned to do. For me, just because it's possible, does not mean it's going to happen. When I was dating after my divorce, I found myself ending most of the relationships I had out of rooted fear they would end without my control. So when I was dating my now husband, those same fears surrounded me to the point of irrational. Thankfully my handsome man understood my fears and helped me through them so that I could turn that "possibility" into experience and knowledge, not a predestined occurrence.

For my two struggling daughters (and my third who will one day face the truth about her once step-mom) I can only turn that "possibility" into a tool for them, teach them it is not what will always happen, and show them there is no prevention for life. That we must carry with us all that we know and learn from what happens along the way - fair or not. I believe it helps, if not is the key, to support one another and share the love (which is my favorite saying). If I didn't have my family supporting me through my divorce, I would have turned out worse off than I am now. And if I didn't have my wonderful husband embrace me with love for my fears instead of running from them, I would still be struggling in this life single.

I once created a motto that I use to explain my blog, "Perception is the key to an idiosyncratic delivery." Meaning, It's how you look it that determines the outcomes that may surprise you.

So I ask you this, Do you have a possibility today?

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Mean. . . .

Does it surprise any of you that people lie? Does it surprise any of you that people steal or are underhanded? Does it surprise any of you that there are so many attributes that people have that are flat out negative? It doesn't surprise me at all. Not one bit.

I'm LDS. I consider myself one who tries to be as Christ-like as I can be. (I fail miserably all the time so don't think I'm standing on a soap box right now.) But my husband and I were discussing parts of our religion and ended up focusing on a point that has been the answer to a lot of the above mentioned questions for me. (Forgive me if I'm delving into deep philosophy here.) When our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ were creating our world, earth, our planet and existence was created a bit more specific than any other worlds God had created. I say that because Christ died for us, but not only us, He died for everyone including all the other worlds God created and all the other children he loves and governs over. So why is ours so specific? Well it's because out of all the untold number of worlds our Heavenly Father created, He created ours in to be "evil" enough to crucify his son. No other world could do that. Our world was the only world he created that would crucify their King. And it had to happen. Christ needed to pay the price for all of our sins so that we may one day return to our Heavenly Father, that we may one day escape our mistakes, that we may learn and grow and become better people, that we will one day be able to grasp that magnitude of how much God truly loves us.

I probably opened up a can of worms for such a short blog, and I know I do not have all the answers, but I do know one thing: God loves us! I don't think we give him enough credit for just how vast a statement that is and how absolute of an answer it is. So yes, people lie. People steal and are underhanded. And people will cause you hurt. There will be moments in your life where you cannot believe the audacity of individuals and are left with the scars they cause. But through all of this that we have endured and all that we will undoubtedly endure, please take with you the absolute joy it is to know that God loves us, Christ loves us, there is so much love in this world.

I think just like any parent, God wants to protect us. Wants to keep us from harm, but knows we have to choose things for ourselves therefore leaving this world up to man. So I ask you, What have you chosen today?

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Fat Bottom Girls. . . .

Ever since jr high I've been, shall we say, "well endowed." It is something that I cannot control nor can I hide. I do my very best to not let the girls hang out nor do I show them off unless a fantastic theatre role comes along that calls for such cleavage, and then I am all for it! However, even though I keep the girls covered, it doesn't keep men (and even women) from talking about them. It seems no matter where I go or who I'm with, I find someone to always point them out as if I didn't know they were there.

Sometimes I find it funny that they come up in conversation, sometimes even flattering, but for the most part I find it humiliating. Especially when they talk about them as if I can't hear what they are saying. It makes me want to crawl into my bathtub and hide from the world. I know I'm not the only one who deals with this issue, so for those who sympathise, just nod along for the rest of the blog. But for those who have no idea what I'm talking about, welcome to class students you are in Big Boobs 101.

First off, big boobs are expensive. Here's why:

When you measure for a bra, you first measure your rib cage or the area just under the girls. That measurement can range from 30 inches to upwards of 44 inches and even more. I am a 36 band size. Next you measure the girls across the nipples or largest part of the breast. For every inch you measure there above your band/rib cage size, you add a cup size starting with A. A=1 in. B=2 in. C=3 in. and so on. DD or DDD translates into DD=E and DDD=F. My current breast size is 44 inches making my total bra size a 36H. (Welcome to hell people.) Now you can find bras in almost every store that sells clothes. Even the dollar stores sell bras.  They range from 32A to a 44DDD and sell for as little as $10. They come in very cute colors and designs and even coordinate with little panties. Notice my size is not in that range. DDD cup sizes don't usually start until you reach a 38 band size. So usually I'm screwed. I have found my size in larger department stores like Nordstroms but they usually start at about $69 and go as high as $139 per bra! Then they tell you you should have at least 3 bras, one to wear, one to wash, and one to rest in the drawer. Ya right!! Are you following my pocket book here? Specialty stores like Lane Bryant are finally starting to expand their cup sizes but they still don't go above a DD in a 36 band making my boobs still SOL.

Secondly, big boobs hurt. Here's why:

My boobs weigh approximately 5lbs each and are only attached by soft tissue and thin muscle. If I shimmy too hard, I can actually tear my muscles and injure myself. But imagine if you will, a ten pound bag of sugar hanging off of your chest every day. Can you picture what that can do to your back? Sometimes when I take off my bra at night I could almost cry at the pain my boobs feel deep inside just from the weight of them. Now throw a poorly fitting bra into the mix and you are constantly in some sort of pain from them. Some insurances even cover breast reduction surgery as a way of eliminating pain in a woman's back. And let's not forget how much more there is to fill with menstral cycle related hormones each month. There are days they just ache with pain because my body is filled to the brim with estrogen.

Thirdly, nothing ever fits over big boobs. Here's why:

For me specifically my waist is a lot smaller than my girls on top. So in order to find a shirt that fits nicely over my boobs, I end up wearing what looks like a tent around the mid section. The same is in reverse, if I find something that fits great around the waist, there is no way the girls are tamed uptop. So basically I end up doing a lot of tailoring to make my clothes fit. I buy what fits my boobs and then take the rest in. But forget about button up tops entirely. They never fit.

Fourthly, big boobs never stay still. Here's why:

Big boobs always fall out of their bra. Whether it's on top or on bottom, they never stay in one spot. I am constantly adjusting them to make sure my cleavage isn't out of control, that I don't have muffin top boobs, or that they aren't falling out. It's a constant battle, day in, day out.

Fifthly, nursing is an even bigger problem. Here's why:

When I was nursing, their size doubled. I was literally wearing bowling balls. I was always over lactating. Sometimes there was so much milk my nipples would no longer stick out enough for my little one to latch on and eat. I cried every day when I was nursing. If I didn't feel fat enough as I was, nursing was going to make sure I did.

Sixthly, you can't run with big boobs. Here's why:

It is a sight to see when a big breasted girl goes running. So much that they invented the tv show Baywatch. I have yet to find a sports bra that actually does what it's meant to. Seriously, I wear two bras to go running. An underwire full coverage one and then a sports bra overtop. And I still feel them bouncing away as if they are waving to spectators in a parade. And let's not even get into what they look like in an aerobics class. Good heavens a girls could knock herself out in one of those classes.

Seventhly, they are messy.  Here's why:

If you drop or spill anything while you are eating, it will land with a dramatic thud right on your boobs for all to see. Upside to this argument is that your pants are always clean. Also if you lean over the table, or anything really, you don't always feel that you just dipped your boob into the mashed potatoes and are now wearing them like the long lost nipple ring you never had and don't even notice until you go to the bathroom and look in the mirror because what big chested girl can look under her rack? Not me.

Eighthly, they always get in the way. Here's why:

Take that previously mentioned 10lb bag of sugar and put it back on your chest. Now fold your arms. Now sit in a booth at a restaurant. Now give someone a hug. Now try and do any sort of stretch on the floor where you bring your knees to your chest. Now try and wear an apron. Now do anything that requires you bend over. Now try and pass someone in close quarters. I could go on and on, but did anything get in the way for you? I rest my case.

I seriously could continue on at all of the examples of why big boobs are bothersome, but at this point I'd hope you'd understand. My point being that having big boobs is not always fun. We battle with them daily. We do not need men pointing out to us how huge they are or gawk as if they've never seen a pair before. We don't go around laughing at all your little weenie bulges. (Or at least I don't.) I do believe that men are always going to look and that's because men never truly grow up. This is just me venting yet another issue that pissed me off. But it's pissed me off for over twenty years and what better way to talk about it than in a blog.

I wish I was one of those women who could confront creepers and tell them to f*** off, but I'm not. So to make myself feel better I just remember the wise words my dad once told me when he caught me crying over a comment someone made about my boobs. He said, "Heidi, one day someone is going to love you for those boobs." And that someone sure does. He gets to fall asleep on them every night. So stick that in your tiny weenie bulge and jacket.

So I ask you, do you have big boobs today?

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Love. . . .

So tomorrow is Mother's Day and Mother's Day for me is usually filled with family, dinner, school pictures and flowers. I am usually so excited for any sort of holiday, especially ones where I receive gifts. But, this Mother's Day, I seem to be struggling as a mother. Johnson and Johnson's came out with a commercial about a baby and what he would say to his mother if he could, it still makes me cry.
What parent out there actually feels like they are doing a good job? I'm not asking this question to be flippant, but to reflect upon myself because I never feel like I'm doing a good job. I find myself every day feeling less than who I should be. As a wife and mother, I have this sense of who I "should" be.

~For my Husband: I "should" be thin, fit and sexy with a libido that rivals any man's. My hair should always be lustrous and curled and my eyes always alluring with just the right amount of heavy mascara. Dinner is always well prepared and makes him moan with delight at each bite. The house should always be clean and smelling amazing so that at the drop of a hat people can pop in or we can decide to make love at any location in the house the moment the kids are out of sight.
~For my Girls: I "should" be home. Home to clean, do laundry, do dishes, help with homework or projects. Always have their beds made with clean sheets. Their rooms smelling like fresh laundry. Help them be prepared for every church activity/project/award/service/etc. Run them to friend's houses and back, to dance, piano, and soccer because we can afford it. A snack for them after school and a very well balanced dinner freshly prepared from my amazing coupon filled shopping trip where I saved enough money to take them to Disneyland. Oh, and a room mother.
~For my Job: I "should" be on time, looking amazingly professional, always remember everything I was taught, impressing, eager to be promoted, fill every second I am on the clock with job related activities that improve the company, willing to work extra hours and wear a smile.
~For my Church: I "should" be perfect and have enough time to serve in multiple callings.
~For Myself: I "should" be content, capable, and fulfilled with all of the above.

Now I know the details are all different for everyone, but I'm sure most of you will put yourself at the bottom of this list too. Slowly breaking under the weight of all the "should's" you should be doing.

For the most part, I really "want" to be able to do all of those "shoulds". I want to be able to do it all so my family will be at their full potential and so I can say I am a good mother. But I just can't do all that. I only do what I can and most of the time it's to the point of exhaustion because I tell myself it will be easier tomorrow if I just stay up a little later to finish all of the dishes tonight. But is that really "good enough"? Are pancakes for dinner because you forgot to plan dinner really good enough? Are early morning homework sessions because you ran out of time to sit down with your ten year old yesterday really good enough? Is a C in History for your thirteen year old because you didn't notice she was struggling until now really good enough? Is allowing your six year old to wear shorts and a sweater because you didn't do laundry again really good enough? Is asking to be on the bottom because you are so tired and you know it will be over faster really good enough? Honestly, is any of this really good enough?

I want to take you back to your childhood for just a moment. What do you remember? Do you remember the laundry? the dishes? Do you remember all those times you were late to dance class because your mom didn't get out of work in time? Do you remember how little money you had as a family so you didn't get the upgraded hotel package on your vacation? Do you remember only going to McDonald's once a month instead of every week? What do you honestly remember? Well for me, I remember how I felt. Certain events or every day livings are strong in my recollections, but what I remember the most is how I felt. I can't tell you what my parent's budget was, or how many times we could go out to eat, or any of the times I was late to something, or how many times my mom drove me from place to place, or how much my school clothes cost for tenth grade, or even who was at my graduation. I just don't remember those things. But I do remember how I felt when my sister and I would share a Coca-Cola from 7-Eleven. I do remember how much my dad loved fishing and how he made me feel so happy every time we fried up those rainbow trouts. I do remember feeling inadequate as a daughter in my mother's eyes. I do remember the feelings I had as a kid.

It has been difficult for me to not be able to give everything to my family. Everything I think they "should" get from me. But I devote all of my energy to making sure one thing is given to them every day. I make sure they feel loved. I'm not always successful at it, but I make sure they feel like I made those pancakes with pure love. I do everything I can to make my daughter feel like homework at 7:00 am is the best way to do homework. I make sure it's understood that a C in history is not how I measure the value of my daughter. I make sure my eclectic six year old feels like a supermodel in her green sweater and orange shorts with matching over sized crocheted headband she insists on wearing even though it's no longer winter. And I make sure my husband knows he rocks my world regardless of what position we are in.

I know I will never be rid of all the "shoulds" that hang over my head but at the end of the day, all I pray is that the love I show for them, the love they feel from me, will out weigh any expectation that comes along with the title of Mother. So I ask you this, Have you shared the Love today?

Saturday, April 28, 2012

I Won't Give Up. . . .

I'd been divorced for quite a while, and at my age, most of the men I was dating had been too. The most difficult hurdle I'd faced in dating was that the divorced men didn't want to get married again. They didn't want to marry but most definitely wanted everything that would traditionally come along with it. They wanted it all, but didn't want to feel the drowning weight of the gold band wrapped around their finger. It didn't make sense to me why they didn't want to be alone, yet not want to be married. In my mind's eye, they were a living oxymoron and needed to be behind glass at a museum for all to gawk at. But I just chuckled at them for the most part, sometimes cursed a few colorful words or two and moved on.

I'd come to realize that it wasn't the getting married that scared divorcees, but it was the chance of getting divorced AGAIN that scared the pants off of them, whether they admitted it or not, self included. So when I stood at the bridge of marriage once again, memories of my first go-round started to flood my mind and cloud my vision of what a "fanciful" wedding it should be.

When I pictured my wedding with Handsome, I realistically didn't want one. I wanted to run to Vegas or pay the extra $30 for a judge to perform it, walk out in my jeans and green chucks a married woman, then continue as normal having nothing be different. But because of my Chickadees, I knew they needed something special because their life was going to dramatically change and be forced to find a new normal. So a wedding did in fact need to be planned.

Handsome, being older than me, wanted a traditional wedding. He wanted me in a dress, him in a suit, girls all girlied out, flowers, cake, dinner, music, etc. I got the feeling he wanted it done right because he knew I was Mrs. Right. This battled with me. I didn't want a dress, I didn't want to walk down the aisle, I didn't want a reception, I didn't want crowds of people, I didn't want gifts, I didn't want music, I didn't want a wedding cake or even a topper. I didn't want there to be a big deal made over us getting married even though I knew he was my Mr. Right. Why you might ask? Well I asked myself the same thing. It was because I didn't want to get divorced again. If I wasn't married, if I didn't have all the neon glow of the basic wedding package hanging over my head, I wouldn't be screwing it up all over again and get divorced. If it was quiet, personal, and only ours to share, it would stay that way and be safe from the outside forces that cause divorce.

My paranoia grew as each time I tried to make my wedding small failed. First it was to be Sunday evening in front of the sunset filled windows of my grandmother's living room surrounded by my closest family. The height of the eight foot ceiling and small number of people held in my nerves and gave me the comfort of privacy I had wanted. But for whatever flippin' stupid, &*%#ing reason it is, an LDS wedding cannot be performed on a Sunday. (Notice I am still bothered by this.) So I searched for different sources of authority to perform it, but nothing seemed right. If I wasn't getting married in the temple, I wanted the next best thing. So we changed the date.

Now my grandmother's home is not your typical reception size. At best we were going to squeeze in about 40 people. But soon family members who were not originally invited wanted to come and so I down sized my personal friends list to make room for them. But soon, that got ridiculously out of hand and we needed to move to a larger venue two weeks before the date. We ended up at a church through the magnificent work of some wonderful, wonderful people, and I was so grateful. However it was the antithesis of what I wanted for the wedding. The thought of having it there brought on moments of agoraphobia and panic. To me, it made this whole day way too big of a deal.

So many wonderful people came and helped me. It was almost like they were more excited about my upcoming wedding than I was. But the day came, everything was ready and I found myself running late, as usual. I had Handsome take the Chickadees down to the church to greet people and help entertain until I got there. My hair was done, make-up on, dress was on and tears were in my eyes. The day was very scary for me. My metaphorical marriage bridge was in front of me. I'd wanted it to be small, short and quick, but it was Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom size with crowds of people on both sides as spectators to watch me cross and possibly fall. Handsome knew I was scared. He knew my irrational fears were overwhelming at that moment. But he took my hand and crossed with me.

I could've easily stayed safe. Stayed on the single side of my bridge never risking the fall of divorce again. But I loved him and wanted him to be mine. More correctly, I wanted to be his. We had a moment during the tearful ceremony to say a few words to each other. He spoke words of deep love and  I chose to sing a song that reflected just how I felt about him and in that moment, it was just us. I didn't care if anyone heard what we said to each other because nothing else mattered. We were married and very much ready to make the most of it.

I was finally happy with it all now that it was over. I could enjoy the food, music and company. But most importantly I could enjoy being married. As the days continue, I am less and less fearful of getting divorced again because I am more and more sure of what we have created. The more confident I am about us, the more I want to share. I have never experienced such happiness. I do feel like we've come so far to get to where we are now and the fact that we have both been divorced changes the way we work at marriage. Neither one of us would've crossed that bridge if we weren't focused on what we really wanted in a marriage. I truly believe that we and our marriage is worth it.

So I ask you, do you have something worth it today?

Saturday, April 21, 2012

One and Only. . . .


My heart stopped as I straightened my shirt, fluffed my hair and said a quick prayer before my hand reached the silver door knob. I paused for what seemed like a minute, but in all likelihood was only a second, as to not seem too eager to open the door. With composure and gentleness I turned the knob and greeted my date.

All evening long I'd prepped myself for that moment. I even gave myself a pep talk to help stay focused. "Wait until the end of the date to kiss him." I told myself. "Wait. Give the evening a chance to take place before the hormones kick in." I laughed at myself for the train of thought. "Heidi, you didn't want to kiss him last time, what makes you think he'll kiss you now?" But he was different, I was different. I wasn't nervous anymore. The first date I went on out of routine, this one I was going to go on out of connection. I had never been more excited to go out on a date with someone in my life. It was as if my soul was pulling me much like a magnet drawn to another towards the door like she was going to take me right through it and join forces with the man on the other side. I don't know where the turning point from the first date to the second date took place, I was just glad it did.

I smiled as my eyes caught his and I remembered the nights of conversation that preceded this moment. I felt as if I was meeting him for the first time. Anxious, giddy, girly, and all the other emotions an awaited date could bring. He stepped inside and quickly embraced me as I let the door close. I had never wanted to be so close to another individual. He smelled sweet and delicious and the feel of his leather coat against my skin brought delight to my senses. His arms would not let me go, nor did I want them too. I giggled at the imbalance the extended contact caused me. "You don't want to let go." I laughed. "Because you feels so good." He responded.

We stayed there for a moment longer and then he broke away just enough to place his left hand behind my neck and kiss me. *sigh* So much for that pep talk.

Once our lips broke away from each other, he took my right hand in his left and began to dance with me to Adele playing in the background. Needless to say, we did not make it to the party. Sorry Larissa.

I fell in love with him at that very moment. I still want to dance with him every time I hear that song. As we danced, I imagined us as in a romantic comedy where the two antagonists, after years of loathing each other, finally come together and fall in love. We spent the remainder of the evening on the couch talking and kissing. I never wanted to leave. Fitting that in that apartment alone, he also proposed to me on that same couch. I will be sad the day we get rid of it.

All the wonderful details of our short courtship are kept secret only for he and I to enjoy. However, I will tell you this, he is no longer called Creeper. He calls me Beautiful, and I call him Handsome.

Stay tuned for the wedding post, here to come.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Crazy Girl. . . .


I remember quite vividly almost crying as I prepared for the date with Creeper. I remember saying to myself over and over, "Why am I even going out with this guy?" I even talked myself out of canceling more than once. So when I locked and closed my front door at the awaited end of our evening out, I literally shook my head and asked myself the same thing, "Why did I even go out with this guy?" My nerves were so strong and my confusion because of his more than forwardness caused me to breath a huge sigh of relief as I walked downstairs to my twin bed alone.

I quickly forgot about Creeper and moved on. Even dating a guy I'd known from jr high that was in town for the week. But for some strange reason, about two weeks after the bizarre date, I couldn't get Creeper out of my head.

Before our first date, I remember talking to this guy on the phone the day before. I was at work. It was a slow day and so I decided to mop the floor. I mopped myself into a corner as my phone rang. It was him and we chatted for a bit as I sat on the bathroom counter waiting for the floor to dry. Now don't get me wrong here, I thought he was a decent guy or I wouldn't have gone out with him in the first place. So I somewhat enjoyed the telephone company. So two weeks later, I found myself mopping the floor once again on a slow work day and remembering him as I mopped myself into the corner of the men's bathroom. As I sat there on the counter waiting for the floor to dry, what he said kept pounding in my head like my heart after a good run. "I think I could make you happy."

"I think I could make you happy." repeated over and over again in my head. Almost hauntingly until I began to itch from the stress of it. I thought to myself, why on earth did after one date he think he could make me happy? I almost got angry at all this hypothetical thinking. An almost "how dare you" attitude began to react to his voice echoing in my mind. Then it struck me, he never called me back. Oh how my fiery emotions began to boil. Who does he think he is? Basically posing an eternal question at me on our first date and then disappearing. That "how dare you" attitude finally reared it's head.

Now to set the record straight, he did send me a message online thanking me for the date and telling me he had a good time, but I ignored it afraid he'd ask me out again. Boy did that come around and bite me in the butt!

He began to haunt my days and for almost a week I struggled with this. Thankfully I had my big move into my very own apartment to distract me. Or so I thought. All the unpacking kept my hands busy but fueled my mind because of all the quiet hours to myself. That itch of stress kept building until I finally, out of curiosity and anger, texted him a simple, "Hi how are you? I haven't heard from you for a while. How have you been?" I was bound and determined to stop thinking about him by finding out why he thought he could make me happy.

Four days later. . . .

I was a bit sad at him not responding, but again, I did ignore his first after date communication and so deserve whatever bed I made. So I continued onward in my life, until he responded.

I was oddly giddy at him getting back to me. I even teased him about his response time. But ended up talking to him for an unknown amount of time that night. I think it was almost four hours or so. Then again the next night, and the night after that. I had this strange draw to tell him about me. Like I needed, more than anything, to have him understand me. And so I talked. I talked about things only the walls heard me say. I could've easily been afraid or nervous, yet I was happy with him. So happy I asked him out. I invited him to a friend's Christmas party three days away. He responded with a yes, but only if I agreed to go to his work's Christmas party the following Saturday. I agreed and the dates were set.

The day of our second date came and after work I frantically fed and gathered my girls together rushing them out to be with their dad so I could come home and get ready. I cleaned the house, lit sweet smelling candles, vacuumed the floor so the carpet tracks were new, showered, and got myself ready, bouncy curls and all. I remember thinking to myself, "Why am I so excited to go out with this guy?" It was such a dramatic difference in myself between our first date and our second that I was questioning why as if I was going crazy. Then he knocked on my door.

Stay tuned for PART THREE.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Creep. . . .

So. . . I got married. Wanna hear the story?


Well, I dated this guy for a few months and I so thought he was the one. Until one day he told me that he had no intention of marrying me but that he was just looking for friendship. So I told him I don't kiss my friends and dumped him. I really wanted to say F*** OFF! but retained my composure and lady like demeanour.

Once that ended, I really didn't want to date. I was sick of the whole dating world. I hated the thought and even felt exhausted any time I tried to go on one. I wouldn't let myself NOT date because to me, that defined myself as "giving up", and that was something I was simply not about to do.

So back to the online dating world I went. Creeper after creeper came my way and away they went. Until one creeper caught my eye. First thing out of this creeper's online mouth was, "You're beautiful. Want to go out?" I simply laughed at the forwardness of this man.

Now let me back up. I had read many dating books and sought out many opinions and techniques on how to snag the perfect man and they all told me to not be too picky. To not look for perfection right off the bat, but to basically go out with a guy to simply breed competition over you in other men. So a while back, after F*** OFF! man broke my heart, I chose to always respond to anyone who said hello regardless if I wanted to date him as to put out the good energy of dating and hopefully cause the right guy to finally ask me out. Translation: Talk to guys so guys will talk to you. Treat others the way you want to be treated. This notion leads me to my response to "creeper" and why I thought he was one (at least at first).

I basically told him. "Thank you, but I'm not interested. Good Luck to you."

He responded with, "Why not?"

"Well, even though I do think you are very handsome, I am looking for a good LDS guy." I responded. (He had no religion posted on his page at the time.)

"Actually I am LDS."

"Well, that's wonderful! However, I think you are just too old for me." (He being 14 years older than me making him a "creeper".)

Our conversations continued as we spoke of religious topics and our own personal opinions on them. I had hopes that he would simply catch the net and leave me alone, but because I promised myself I wouldn't ignore anyone, I kept talking. Until one day he said, "So Sunday? I'll pick you up about six?" I decided to say yes and go out with him so I could finally be rid of him.

Sunday came and I was less than excited for our date. Almost to the point of dreading it. I don't think I even showered that day, that's how lax I was about the upcoming evening. But I did dress up, curl my hair and put on my evening make-up and heels. He picked me up right on time and away we went. Dinner was ordinary and at the usual first date location of the Olive Garden. -Why guys think that's the best first date dining I will never know. The conversation was led by his smile and followed by my nerves and shyness. I felt so uncomfortable. But then he scored points by taking me to a play. *He was the first and only guy to take me out based upon what he read in my profile. ie. Favorite things to do: I love the theatre!* Unfortunately for me, it was the play my brother was teching for at the U. My brother knowing I was coming, promptly greeted us as we entered. I felt embarrassed because it was so obvious that he was older than me and being that I was totally planning on not going out with this guy again, I knew my brother was going to ask about it later making this date seemingly unforgettable and not something I could simply sweep under the rug.

Anyway, the show started and he insisted on holding my hand and gently tickling it by rubbing his fingers along my palm. I hadn't been given affection like that for months and so I told myself, "enjoy it!" And enjoy it I did, under my coat so no one else would see.

Show was over and the date neared it's end. Or so I thought. He felt like ice cream and took me to 31 Flavors forcing me to endure another hour of awkwardness and nerves as he distracted my conversation with the tip of his right index finger gracing the back of my left hand.

Finally, we were headed home. But suddenly he pulls over just outside my neighborhood and my mind screamed "CREEPER!" I had no idea what he was doing. I was more than nervous at that point. I leaned towards the passenger door planning my escape route as the began to say, " I think I can make you happy." I did not expect that out of his mouth and instantly shut down. We talked about many things, nothing that registered as coherent for me at the time. I basically shot him down and he said, "I really like you. I think I can make you happy, but maybe not at everything. We can just be friends."

The shock of what just happened hadn't sunk in as he walked me to my door. He wasn't a creeper, just a very honest guy. But when he asked for a kiss I said no, gave him a hug, and quickly shut and locked to door behind me ending the most bizarre date I had ever been on.

Stay tuned for PART TWO.