Thursday, April 18, 2013

Never Really Alone

I started this blog as a place to post my crafty projects. But I need it to be more than that sometimes, I've decided. It's mine, so I can do that, right? I wrote this post a bit ago and have been trying to decide if I wanted to post it or not. It's long, rambling, whiney, a bit embarrassing.

But here it is anyway. Be nice. ;)

I've been struggling a bit lately and it kind of makes me feel dumb.

My life isn't really harder than anyone else's. I'm incredibly blessed and grateful for all I have.

But some decisions I made about 6 and a half years ago are still impacting me today. I knew they would, though that doesn't make it any easier to deal with.

I knew I was going to marry Dustin before we even went on our first date. I didn't know why and I thought I was going crazy. I prayed and prayed about it, and knew he was the one, but it still didn't make any sense to me.

I had always dated good Mormon boys in high school. In college, they were returned missionaries. More good boys.

Dustin smoked and drank. He swore up a storm. He hadn't been to church in at least 10 years, probably more. He wanted nothing to do with it.

This was the guy I was supposed to marry?

He wasn't all bad. Not even close. He was sweet as could be. Loving, loyal, supportive. He became my best friend and I couldn't imagine my life without him. But I didn't know how we would ever get married. I had stopped going to church regularly and wasn't doing everything I was supposed to, but I still really wanted to get married in the temple. I wouldn't accept anything less.

And then I got pregnant.

Not what I had planned, not how I had expected my prayers to be answered. But I can see now that that is exactly what had happened.

Dustin wasn't willing to change and I wasn't willing to give up. So we made a decision and were married. We had been taking about it for months and months, so it wasn't so crazy to us. Not the timing we wanted, but it was too late to pick.

Jayden was born about 6 months after we got married. We were so happy. He helped to heal broken hearts in my family and helped us to look beyond ourselves a little more.

When Jayden was about a year old, I decided to start going back to church. I had missed it. I still prayed, I still believed, I just didn't GO. I knew I needed it, my soul craved it. So, with a little divine intervention, I made an appointment with my bishop and started going again.

I took Jayden with me. He helped distract me from the stares and whispers that I knew were there. It took every bit of strength I had to keep going, keeping my chin up. I looked like I was there alone, except for my baby. But I wasn't. I knew I wasn't. Especially on the hardest Sundays, I knew there was someone else with me, giving me the courage and support to make it through those 3 hours and to go back again the next week.

I started taking a temple prep class, something I wanted so badly. As it ended, Dustin's dad moved in with us for about a month. And I got pregnant with Maycie (yay!!). And I got sick (not so yay). It was getting a little harder. Life was getting harder. I was hanging in though. Holding on tight.

I went through the temple on January 16, 2010. I was 7 months pregnant with Maycie. Emotional and massive. But I was there! I did it! Something I had always wanted. I did it. It was one of the best days in my life. I knew I was getting where I wanted to be.

It also ended up being one of the hardest days of my life. Dustin felt so shut out. Some family members said some things to him that made him feel like even more of an outsider. I spent a good part of the night crying, wondering if I had made a mistake. Done something that I wanted even though it was bad for us. I felt so selfish. But I still knew I had done the right thing.

The next day I went to church, afraid that when I got home, Dustin wouldn't be there. Afraid he had changed his mind and didn't want to be married to a church-going, temple-attending, garment-wearing girl (Yes, that was an issue. They're kind of awful if they mean something negative to you).

He was still there when I got home. He wasn't giving up on me.

We talked a lot that weekend. We cried. We prayed. We talked some more. We kissed a little bit. That does help fix things, in case you were wondering.

We realized that things were still okay, just a little different. We still loved each other. We loved Jayden (and the baby girl in my tummy). We weren't going anywhere or changing in any negative way. We were still us.

And here we are, married for 5 1/2 years. Two beautiful children, a nice little house, a goofy dog, and a happy family.

I still take my kids to church by myself. There are Sundays when I spend the entire Sacrament meeting fighting back tears of frustration. Some Sundays they leak out. As hard as it is, I never regret going. Ever.

I spoke in church on Easter. I dunno who had that crazy idea. But one of the things I kept going back to as I wrote my talk was that we could never give up and that we were never alone.

Out Heavenly Father knows when we feel discouraged, when we feel like giving up. But because of Christ's atoning sacrifice, we are never alone. Christ knows how we're feeling. His comfort and peace is always available to us. We just need to seek it, ask for it. The Lord sends us the companionship of the Holy Ghost to give us the comfort and peace that we seek.

On my hardest days, like today, it's so easy to forget that someone is looking out for me and wants to help me. I'm loved no matter how far from perfect I am. And believe me, I am pretty dang far from it. Prayer is one of the most powerful things we have. It gives us an opportunity to ask for help, blessings, comfort, guidance, give thanks, and just a chance to talk to our Father. There is no one better for us to talk to.

I'm so grateful for this life I have. For my good husband and all he does for our family and for me. I'm grateful for the daddy he is. I'm also grateful for my Father in Heaven and the peace he gives to me when I need it most.

1 comment:

  1. I did not know any of these things. Crazy how you think you've stalked someone long enough to know everything but really not know them at all. I am always so impressed with women who are valiant enough to go to church alone with their kids. Kids definitely make it easier for everyone, but some weeks I just feel like pretending its not Sunday and seeing if the kids notice. But then I have to answer to joey, so I get out of bed. I totally admire your hard work...cause that is what it is. Wrangling kids alone and all the emotional work to keep it together at church and sometimes at home. My sister is married to a non member and her oldest was just baptized....that was a rough milestone for her. But her husband is so awesome and sweet and laid back. And totally supports her. You are right are never alone. That has been a comfort to me lately.