Friday, December 30, 2011
But it can be easy to get drawn into the routine of life. It can be easy to feel like day by day, we go along doing the same things, and while we may progress toward certain goals in some ways, that our lives are ultimately just a mash and smattering of dull gray days with a sameness about them. I know I've felt like that, and that mentality is and always has been there in varying degrees.
I felt an awakening a little less than two years ago, when I realized the ultimate beauty and importance of the moment. And I've strayed from that a bit through my "survival mode" and adjusting to living in a new place, but it is something I never want to lose sight of for long.
Everything is different today. The patterns of weather, and how they all correspond to each other across the world, will never be exactly the same again. The clouds will never take that same shape again. The grass won't be at that length, with that history of growth. I will never be this age again. This moment is a moment all to me. It is the only moment I have right now, and it is the only time I will ever this moment. In an hour, it will be a different moment.
No day is inconsequential. Lives change every day, all around us. We change. We are who we are today. Today is what matters. Today, at this moment in time, all of the past, and all the possibility of the future converge into this one moment, into this undeniable existence of now. Enjoy it.
Thursday, December 1, 2011
(I kind of got interrupted while writing this, and never really finished it, and am a bit out of that mode right now but figure I'll post it anyway.)
Thursday, October 13, 2011
Saturday, September 10, 2011
Saturday, September 3, 2011
Sunday, August 7, 2011
When I was a child, I used to have a hard time getting to sleep. I was haunted by stories of the holocaust, and when the lights went out and everyone else went to sleep, going to sleep in my own room, and I would wonder what if it happened again? What if mormons were the target this time? I only had a vague idea of what happened then, that they had been taken off into concentration camps, killed in gas chambers. It was what I feared most as a child, though. A swastika was a symbol of terror for me. My grandma gave me a book when I was about ten called Three Against Hitler, and I never got past the name and the swastika on the front, afraid of what might be revealed within its depths, thinking it might be too much for me to handle. I was scared of that book.
You see this with a lot of children, though, and I don't think children really know how to express it. Children know about the world we live in. They don't know everything, but they know that there are things to be scared of. I never really voiced my fear to anyone, not until I was much much older did I even mention in passing that I had been a bit scared about the holocaust.
The other thing that used to scare me was listening to the news, and always hearing about someone being murdered. There were always stories of people killing each other, and I used to be scared to go to our basement alone, worried when my mom was taking longer than normal to get home, worried that someone might come in the house, or worried something had happened to her. These were the fears I faced: murder and holocaust.
I had to confront my fears by myself, because in the darkness of night, I was left alone. It never even really occurred to me that my sister was in the room next door to me, and I probably could have gone into her, or that my mom was across the hall, and I could have gone in to her for comfort. Everyone slept in their own beds, and so I figured that is what you did. It was just what was done. It was what was expected of me. I eventually figured out that I didn't have the same fears confront me when I was listening to a story going to sleep. We had Powertales tapes, stories of real life heroes, and I used to listen to their stories as I went to sleep. Then eventually I started taping the audio of tv shows, and listening to that when I went to sleep. If I had a tape, I'd go to sleep very quickly. I used to think that when I got married and lived out on my own, I'd have to have a tape player with me then, and my husband would hopefully be okay with listening to tapes going to sleep.
When I moved in with my dad, I was so happy to be with him, and having come off the most depressing year to my life that point, just after my mom getting remarried, I was really afraid of him dying. I was afraid of what it would mean for my life if he was gone. I had him tell me stories going to bed, and I used to record them, every night, because I wanted to know I'd have them to listen to, if he did ever die.
Going to sleep listening to my dad did a lot for me, in that regard. And then making friends with my best friend, and us sleeping next to each other, arm in arm oftentimes, brought a lot of comfort, and I lost the reliance I had always had on a tape player to be able to sleep. It was also around this time that I began to confront my fear of the holocaust. I read the book my grandma had given me, and really quite enjoyed it. My dad gave me a play to read that was similarly based on the people mentioned in the book. The fear about murder had slowly dissipated as I began to realize that no one showed up to murder me or my family, and that I didn't hear about it happening to anyone I know.
But as I think about those experiences I had as a child, I wonder two things. I wonder why we have a society and social convention setup where our children are separated off to sleep in their own rooms. Now don't get me wrong here, I loved having my own room as a child, loved having my own space, to direct what went on, to have some place that was my own, but I think I would have loved to also have spent lots of nights with my parents and sister. I remember Saturday mornings when we would wake up, and all go into my mom's room, and just lounge around in bed, talking to each other, and enjoying each other's company.
I know there is a large push for cosleeping with young babies, and I highly support that, but I also wonder if our children might benefit, and us as adults too, with sleeping more often in the same room. My grandpa recalled a night he spent with a family, which sounded rather large, and they all slept in the same room, him as the guest included, and it sounded like he really enjoyed the experience. There is also this perception as adults that as soon as we put children to bed that they should be ready to go to sleep. I see this with my dad and my niece, him thinking that she is trying to get away with something when she comes up repeatedly and asks for a glass of water, or for something else. Perhaps I shade it too much by my own past, but I see it as her not knowing how to ask for what she really wants: comfort and not to be alone.
The other thing I consider is that maybe I was wiser before I overcame this fear. I basically overcame it by coming to the realization that I don't live in a segment of society where that is likely to happen, at least at present, and so I personally will be okay. But you see these things happen, genocide and killing, all over the world. And I'm simply not afraid because it's not happening to me or anyone I know. I feel like I should still be scared, because it still exists in humanity, because it is something that still happens, but not so much in the childish, not being able to sleep way, but confronting the world I live in, and that it reaches beyond the bounds I set to consider my “personal” world, but then also with that that perhaps the scariest and worst person I have known is someone who I used to take comfort as being a warm body next to me in my own bed.
I was scared of Janardan for a long time after he left. That's what happened when I was in Australia in December and posted that entry. I was afraid of him again, of what he had done, and that he might be able to do it again to me. I was afraid of losing myself again. It was part of the process, after I decided to stop having contact with him, coming a realization of what life was like when I was not within his mental clutches, but at the same time, not realizing how it had happened in the first place, and sometimes straying to the edge of terror that it would happen again.
But once I felt my own worth and value again, as I felt a pull in another direction, away from his view of me, and into others' view of me, I began to confront the demons of those four years, to question everything that had happened, to stop giving him the benefit of the doubt as I had for so many years, to question his intention in everything, and realize the possibility and probability of the depth of his mistreatment of me, for with emotional abuse, it is difficult to tell always, just how deep the bruises went, just how many lashes there were.
And now, as I go to sleep next to the man who healed me to completion, not really by showing me his view, but showing me a view of myself that is most accurate to the person I really am, to felt seen for the first time, and to see myself for the first time, and to see how to see myself, rather than always depending on the views of others, I am not afraid. In some ways, I know the world is a worse place, more personally than I did when I was a child. I know that bad people really and truly do exist, and that they can be lurking anywhere, that there are mini-hells being created all the time by these people who would don't fit the murderer bill. But I also know there is good in the world too. I know that true love really and truly does exist, because I see it every single day, multiple times a day in my love's eyes. I know that goodness exists, because I have seen so many people. I know the world -can- be a good place. We just can't let the Hitlers rule us. May the good people of the world rule themselves.
Monday, May 2, 2011
Friday, April 1, 2011
Sunday, March 6, 2011
Affliction. My life has had its share of trials. But when I look back, each of the most difficult periods of my life has propelled me into new appreciation of life.
When I was 12, my mom got remarried, and I moved with her and my sister to New York. The changed dynamic of the family was one thing that was hard to deal with, along with hostility at school. I loved church in New York, though. We had great leaders, and it was a very tight-knit group. It was during that year that I first read and finished the Book of Mormon. I knew before the end that it was true, but still took Moroni's challenge at the end, and felt that confirmation, that this book was true, and that it was the word of God.
This propelled my life into a deeper relationship with my Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. It was just the beginning of something that has come to have such depth and meaning to me. I love them, I know them, and I am so grateful for all that they are to me, and all that they give to me. I also grew very close to my dad in that time. I'd escape to him, and we would play games together, and he'd just give me the attention I was so desperate for.
Mark also came to me during a time of affliction. It is strange to have a child enter your life not as a baby. Like, I feel this sense of Mark being born to me, but he was 14, but maybe it's more that is when I was born as a mother. When we were born, that was a huge change in my life. I feel like that is when I began to appreciate beauty. I saw in him something I'd never seen before, just a purity and beauty. I used to call him beautiful all the time, and still do on occasion. It was just so awe-inspiring, to behold what I saw in him, as he went through all these difficult things, to see that he had something truly special about him. It made the world more beautiful to me. It made me appreciate snuggling with my nieces more, their laughs, and just what love meant to me.
And then, Janardan leaving me, which actually was not that much affliction, but brought a great deal of relief, but the life that led up to that point was quite painful, and full of affliction. I feel like him leaving is when I came to really appreciate myself. It's when I realized my value, what my life could be like, and that it had not been living up to what it could have been, and that I had given away a lot of the rights to my life, and so it was a big experience for reclaiming myself.
And there has been a lot of healing, and just enjoying life the past year. Dated a few people, had lots of guys tell me I'm beautiful, feeling desired and desirable again. And then finally realizing that I didn't want to be looking for a guy, that I wanted to be found. I wanted to be found by someone who could embrace all the different aspects of me, and the other important relationships in my life. I wondered if such a man existed as I would need, to support me through the things in my life that are far from typical. I thought perhaps I would never be with someone again, but also felt at peace with that, because I knew from experience that it could be delightful to be single, and it was much better to be in that position than to be in a horrible marriage.
But then I got found. I have the ability to see into people sometimes, to look, and see more in them than they see in themselves to a degree. This has been huge with Mark, but I will be able to see into other people on occasion, and sometimes show them something in themselves. I'd never really had the experience myself, but that's what Andrew brought to me. He looked inside, and just told me what he saw, and then I could see it too.
Affliction is the dark parts in the chiaroscuro painting of my life, but these relationships, they are the bright points. I love to love, and it is worth all the affliction I've been through to have these people in my life.
Saturday, March 5, 2011
It is such a beautiful gift.
To grow in the womb of a mother, sharing her body, then to emerge to begin life on your own.
Every life is precious. Every moment of life is precious. And I'm grateful for mine, for all 25 years of it that I've had on my own. 25 years. I'm grateful for the experiences I've had in my life, the dark and the light, the good and the bad, because they've all made me who I am today, and brought me to this point, and I'm so glad to be me.
I love who I am.
There have been dark times in my life, a lot of them, but I truly believe that the Lord gives us opposition in all things to increase the possibility of our lives. For without the dark times, I would never come to fully appreciate the light. Without the times where I am pushed beyond capacity, and feel incredibly weak, I would never come to find the true strength I have.
I feel like over the past year especially, I've come to appreciate life like I never have before, to just celebrate the precious moments on this earth. I love the smells that come, the sunrises, the color of stormy clouds, the colors of the seasons, the love of the most important people in my life.
Today, I want to celebrate my life. I want to know what you remember about me, who I am to you, or just a funny story to do with me. (Feel free to continue to comment after the day too.) I'll be releasing posts today from various people about my life, and my relationships, and then some by myself, written just about different parts of my life, or stories.
But for now, comment away~
I was born 25 years ago today! To celebrate, I'll be having posts coming out various points through the day to celebrate my birth and life. There will be a few posts written by me, and some by people close to me, and then just some with pictures. So check back in various points through the day to see all of the birthday happenings!