Friday, November 11, 2016

Change is Good

It's amazing what a little perspective can do. The house I bought is in different ward (what we call our local church congregation). When I moved to Georgia I was once again in the Waycross 1st Ward, the congregation of my childhood. While house hunting, I looked specifically at homes that would keep me in the ward, and able to attend church with my mom.

In April I suspended my search. There was nothing that I was falling in love with in the boundaries I had set. Then, two days later, a coworker asked if I was still looking to buy a house. She was planning to sell and looking for a buyer. The only hesitation I had was that it was in 2nd ward boundaries.

In spite of that, everything in this proposition just worked; it felt right! And it fell into place SO quickly. I had so many experiences in the time span of a few weeks that let me know I was making a right decision, to let go of fear, and trust the Lord. Truly, this has been the biggest blessing in my life.

We had a women's meeting last night and as I associated with these amazing women, I was once again filled with joy at the blessing they, and this move, have been in my life! I finally feel like I belong somewhere, something I really haven't felt in a few years. My friends and family in 1st ward are wonderful, but it was time for a change. In a time when I felt very alone and almost forsaken, Heavenly Father created this blessing for me specifically. I hope that I'm able to do a portion of good for someone else here as they are doing for me!

Embrace the change. Change is the only constant in life. And I'm beginning to learn that change is good!

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Finding my Voice

I've been silent for a long time. I've been holding in many of my thoughts and feelings, knowing that by sharing any of them I open myself to feeling ALL of them, something I've been trying to avoid. A few times over the past couple of months the weight and pain have washed over me and I feel like I'm being pulled by a strong rip current to drown in these thoughts and feelings. A bit dramatic? Maybe (ok, totally), but I'm learning to respect and own my feelings. They are there for a reason.

I shared a particular story tied to these emotions with two different people in a scary but vulnerable moment. I NEEDED someone to know what I was feeling, to share that side of me. The first person reacted with questions as to the validity of my concerns, doubts that I should feel anything that I said I was feeling, and showed a surprising lack of understanding that I desperately needed. The second person listened openly and without judgement, she felt the weight of what I shared and did so without judging. I told her that I felt ridiculous to have these feelings regarding this incident (basically internalizing the responses from person number one), but she acknowledged the sense of pain/loss I was expressing and validated me.

It was interaction number two that helped me see that closing myself off to the feelings isn't the right answer, and it isn't healthy. Even now as I've accepted and am trying to own them, they wash over me with such force that I can't hardly control the tears that inevitably come. Because of person number two I don't feel broken or ashamed. I don't have the answers or reasons person number one suggested I needed, thoughts I had myself prior to sharing with her. The first conversation validated my personal fears; the second validated me.

That's what I needed, that's what we all need. To feel validated in spite of our fears. Nelson Mandela said to make our choices based on hope, not fear. I've been acting in a hopeful manner lately, trying to act in faith despite the pain. Because of person number two, I've started sharing again and I've started finding my voice.

While I have no intention of sharing the exact experience and cause of the pain I've been dealing with on this blog, I do hope to continue to use my voice as one of motivation, of encouragement, of hope. I want to once again read my own posts and feel joy as I once did. I want my testimony and the light of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, which gives me hope, strength, and courage, to shine through my writing. There will be troubled waters ahead, but it is Him who will calm the sea and allow my voice to be heard, if only by me.

I'm Home

Well, little neglected blog, I'm here. I reread a previous post that eluded to a "big announcement", and for the life of me I couldn't remember what it was. Then I remembered:


It was, you know, a fairly significant happening in my life and then I promptly forgot to return and report! 
I've been home now since June and it is wonderful. For the first time in my life I've put down roots of my own. I'm here to stay...until it's time to go somewhere else (which I have no plans for now, I've just learned not to say never). For now, I'm right where I need to be and I feel so blessed.