Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Planting Seeds..... (Religious post.. fair warning)

I feel like I need to say this… (perhaps before I forget..) My experience as an inactive member of the church has been long and drawn out.. I attended church once in a while.. probably every other month or so. I feel truly lucky to have the life that I DO have, because I certainly wasn’t searching the right way for it…I was blessed with my great family anyway… But to be honest, I wasted a lot of time when I should have been accomplishing the tasks God had intended for me…. I am now painfully aware of the experiences I have missed out on, and the slow process of finding my way back to living the gospel every day.

It is easy to think that you can “sin now, and repent later…” but I can’t begin to tell you how much harder it is to find the motivation to get going again. For a number of years, Sunday was considered to be a “day off” for our family, one of leisure, and laziness…. I Didn’t spend my inactive years killing, or doing drugs, or living a horrible life… but I am honestly a little embarrassed and even ashamed of what I was ACTUALLY spending most of that time doing-Nothing.

Don‘t get me wrong… I had a lot of blessings over the years too… I married my best friend, became a step mom and later a mom to my own children… but when I say I did nothing, I mean nothing to further my education or spirituality.. I didn‘t even maintain friendships like they are meant to be nurtured… I stayed in my house with my (wonderful and adorable) children and husband, but even then, I feel like I did nothing..  I’m sure I could have been a better mother all this time… and I KNOW I could have been a better wife. Letting God into a marriage is a very humbling-and gratifying thing! I feel like I know my husband better, although I have always considered him my best friend. He knows me better than anyone on this earth, yet I kept my deepest thoughts and hopes from him. I wish I didn’t have to say that…. But I didn’t know how much it meant at the time. I didn’t know that an eternal family was Possible for me.....
I didn’t know if I was worth it. But I am slowly gaining my testimony, and self worth back… and I am gaining the confidence to go out and DO what God has planned for me… because while I have missed out on experiences up to this point, I know he has big plans for me. My patriarchal blessing makes that perfectly clear. I am excited and anxious to get going on it and I only hope I don’t let Him down again!…

Another thing I need to say before I forget it, is that there were members of our ward (and others) that visited our family over the years. I can easily see how they may have felt their presence was unwanted, or unappreciated. They were given the “task” of fellowshipping my family, with the thoughts that their efforts were likely going unnoticed…. But as an inactive person, I can honestly say, every time someone stopped by, or called, or visited with me in the store…. They planted a seed. That seed may not have been watered in time, but the seed was planted. And people continued to “plant those seeds” over time… with the hope that one day we might water them. And guess what? When we finally started to water those seeds, things started to grow all around us! It feels good to go to church, and see a familiar face…. To have a few people in the ward who know we aren’t “New to the area” because those are the few people who know how big of an effort we are trying to make… and they can possibly appreciate how hard we are trying-when others might not even give it another thought. I’m sure there are several people who look down on us for not living perfect lives from the beginning, but judgments aside, we are definitely paying for our decisions… I try not to think about what people think of me, because I bet I am being harder on myself than any of them could ever be…

I hope, when I am asked to visit an inactive family, I can Remember my experiences over the last few years, and befriend them without expecting an immediate return… because in my case, it certainly wasn’t immediate, but it happened! I am also grateful for those members who kept themselves worthy-and available-to my family for when we WERE ready… Because in our experience, once the ball started rolling… it didn’t slow down! (I wrote a detailed post about the events that lead up to everything.. it's a little too personal to share right now..) We were blessed in knowing WHO to call… and luckily, they had been living worthily to be ABLE to help us when we needed them most… They could have easily “fallen off the wagon” in the time it took us to climb on.. And then we would be alone yet again…  Our gospel is such a treasure… it isn’t something to live when it is convenient or easy… I hope someone is able to learn from my experience.. Because God has a funny way of humbling people… and rarely is it a simple or painless process… I think it is a little like reading the scriptures… They are such a powerful tool, to help us learn from others’ experiences, before God has to give those trials to us…

Saturday, February 4, 2012

2012 goals

Because I was on bedrest at the beginning of the year, I tried not to even let myself think about my New Year Resolutions, but now that baby Kaimyn is here, I really need to put my thoughts somewhere while the motivation is still here... I gained a total of 11 pounds during this last pregnancy, 8 lb and 14 oz of it were my baby!! so i obviously am back to my pre-pregnancy weight already... but i still have a LONG way to go.. I intend to be back to my PRE-pregnancy weight... the weight i was before getting pregnant the FIRST time... and that will take a little while!!

Not only do I need to lose weight, but I also need to reconstruct my life in general... Before I got pregnant, I really wanted to go back to work.. I was over the "house mom" job, wanting more of a social life and tasks other than folding laundry and cleaning... With 5 children to take care of, it feels like I would be taking the "easy way out" pawning them off on someone else so I can have a social life.. but there are times that I would rather work 40 hours a week JUST to pay a maid, cook, and nanny! haha

However, after being on bedrest for the Majority of my pregnancy (accepting help from lots of wonderful friends in the meantime), I now want nothing more than to BE that stay at home mom right now...

to maintain a stress free and happy home,
to end each day with at least a clean kitchen and living room,
to have a well balanced meal prepared for my husband when he gets home from work,
to become more active and find things I enjoy outdoors,
to get ready at the beginning of the day, so I am not embarrassed when I see people
to balance my family's finances and save lots of money,
to teach my children that they don't have to rely on video games and tv for entertainment,
to have FUN and take more pictures with my family

When I think about all of these things, it is easy to feel overwhelmed by them and think there can't possibly be enough time in the day... but I know that the reason I haven't accomplished them already is because i have NEVER been good at following a schedule. so, at the end of every day, there is a list of unfinished tasks.. if i can finally learn how to stick to my schedule, i think these things can all get accomplished this year.. i don't have a plan in place quite yet, but i have every intention of posting it when i do :)

any tips you guys have would be greatly appreciated :)