Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Overcoming Adversity

In 1989 Carlos H. Amado spoke in general conference about overcoming adversity and spoke these words: "Basically, we limit our vision to the events that happen in this life with the greatest emphasis placed on the present. Only when we fix our gaze on the heavenly things do we begin to understand the eternities. Only with the help of Christ can we fully overcome tragedy. It is necessary to develop our faith in Him as the Redeemer of the world. He taught us: “In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33.) It is my prayer that when we have afflictions we will follow the pattern that He taught during His bitter experience in Gethsemane. He said: “If thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.” (Luke 22:42.)"  
Who could have guessed almost 30 years ago words were spoken that would bring an unspeakable peace to my soul? Being in recovery has brought so much happiness and peace to my life. Selfishly I would have hoped that the peace and happiness would continue without further trial. God's will doesn't fall into that plan and submitting to Him and following my Savior's example is what I have covenanted. 
In just a few short months I have had several hardships fall into my world, my angel mother was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer that has spread to her lung and liver, and I have had back to back miscarriages a single and twin pregnancy. I feel as though I have "dealt" well with these huge misfortunes. Last night life caught up and I vented my soul to Brian. I woke up this morning with a huge weight of exhaustion, I had a single prayer this last week after miscarrying and having a D&C procedure for my twin pregnancy that I would just understand why.
After everything I have learned over the last few years, why I would fall back into old ways of stomping my foot like a toddler demanding my will to be fulfilled reminds me of how easy it is to forget the lessons I've learned and hold on to only looking at the now.
This morning I woke up and changed my prayer to a fervent plea for peace. The answer I received was overwhelming. I am enough, I am blessed beyond measure, I am a daughter of God who has divine potential for good. I am here to serve others and bless others, and going through these trials makes that potential for good even greater. The single most important thing to remember when going through a hardship or trial is that it is only pushing us closer to our Savior and Heavenly Father. The scripture above stating "I have overcome the world" stuck out to me like running into a brick wall. Why would I try to fight the world and try and understand why, when I don't have to? He has already done that for me, all I have to do is bask in His spirit to find comfort knowing He already fought the fight. 
I have a go to statement "I am fine", but when it comes to our Heavenly Father, even when I am fine, the ache is real and He knows and when we open up to Him, He reaches into our soul and turns our weak hearts whole. This morning I felt that wholeness in my heart and I don't know why I try to hold on to present realities when the eternal perspective is so much brighter, and with one simple prayer and study for uplifting words His hands of mercy gave me a whole new light. 
Through it all, His grace remains and is sufficient, that is the most comforting knowledge. "I will not I cannot I'll never forsake our foundation" those words from How Firm a Foundation are the basis of what I was ignoring and the greatest blessing of this earthly experience is how quickly we get to return to our Savior's example and remember the eternal perspective which is so much more beautiful and peaceful. So for now I get to feel the breeze of the storm and enjoy the silver lining. "I know He understands and He loves me as I am even through the storms and trials He is there watching over me in my heart I believe and lifts to bring me home and that's all I need to know." Patch Crowe.

Friday, December 30, 2016

New Years.... resolutions?

I feel like this time of year is all about a revamping - new diet, new routine, hoping to be more fitness oriented, family relationships become priority, etc. I honestly don't want a revamping rather a refocus,  not on what is lost but what has been found. I honestly can say I lost myself and found myself all very quickly, there are parts I wish I could go back and change and aspects that are still all too cringeworthy but I can't say I would change it or take it back. Like I said I found myself, through all the pain, tears and almost unbearable heartbreak I found out how strong I am, and I found out Who gives me the strength.
With this refocus I want to just continue on my path in this mortality to become closer to God and my Savior. All the goals I listed above are great but also shallow, the depth of all those goals and the power to achieve them is from our Heavenly Father and by His Grace and His will we will achieve all.
 I have only one resolution that can consume all others- intention. I plan to set my intention each day, each week, each month, with Brian, with family, with friends, etc. with every new day and every conversation I want my intention to shine through. As long as my intention is in God's will and allows me to grow, is set with passion and will result in abundance I feel as though my minutes, days, and whole year will be blessed and filled with happiness.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Staying grounded

I have come across myself thinking sometimes, ok now I don't need meetings anymore, or do I really need to stay in contact with people in recovery? These questions get answered very quickly and I am humbled by the way they come because usually it's in the form of the disease of addiction taking someone back down to rock bottom.
Once this question was answered by my counselor when someone had said they were losing touch with recovery, hadn't been to a meeting a few weeks, they didn't have a sponsor, hadn't touched their step work in at least a month. He replied back to them, when are you going to relapse? I was taken back, those statements of their current position with recovery didn't mean they had relapsed but just not doing what I would considering maintaining, right? Well if we aren't progressing we are regressing as that saying goes, and low and behold the same person comes back two weeks later relapsed and completely lost and hopeless. What a shocker to me, but really should it come as a shock that if we aren't being spiritually fed we will lose that divine assistance from our God that keeps us serene and sober?
The newcomer they say is the most important person in the room, self importance may tell me differently sometimes ;) just kidding. But for me I now see why the new comer benefits me. They are the ones who fill the seat I used to. They are so yearning for a new life and a softer way. They are so sick of being sick and look for true joy. If only I could for a second beam to their soul what I feel today. Just to hang on and hope and love and peace all come. Sometimes slow but when it comes it hits hard and they will feel so much better. Life will have meaning and happiness will come without any worldly assistance. Deep down we learn who we really are and that person is amazing and worth living addiction free for. I am so grateful for this freedom and for what God does for me everyday.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Normal life.

Bri and I were discussing some issues we were having separately that were very worldly and superficial, yet simple and easy. They are hardships of normal people, problems that have simple solutions and almost zero depth. I was especially distraught about what I thought was a "problem", and Bri gave me a hug and he asked, "isn't it great though that that is your biggest problem right now?" It made me think of how different my life is now, free from addictive chains and the chaos it creates.  Normal life is all I ever would have wished for in active addiction. I tried to will away so many ups and downs that caused my soul pain and anguish yet I was entrapped and literally felt like the world was collapsing around me.
Normal life wasn't achieved overnight and I still feel like my life and experiences are so different having gone through such a hardship, I look at the world differently and I see people in a whole new light. Some may call such a vision change "rose colored glasses". I call it recovery! I see the hand of my God working in my life showing me the world in a much brighter, better, and beautiful place in which all of us as His sons and daughters get the experience to dwell and find joy.
I definitely believe everything happens for a reason and we all get dealt a different hand in order to learn and grow to become our best version and a vessel to help others along the way become their best version. For today I am grateful for normal problems and normal life, a chance to focus on building spiritual depth and "recovery  insurance" as my counselor would say, because as we all know life will eventually happen; my perception and outlook is key to continually have joy regardless of my circumstances.

Friday, October 14, 2016


I attended a very inspirational fireside meeting last night which focused on Our Savior Jesus Christ. The thought kept crossing my mind as several women were speaking about focusing their lives for the last several months they have had a mighty change in their lives, in which they are now striving daily to follow the Savior's great example, but the thought was how will they maintain this. One lady spoke about how at first she was so engrossed in Christ's gospel that several hours were dedicated to this study, and now she has found a routine in which it's not as long now but definitely just as meanilingful.  I think that the key to preserving such "a mighty change" in which we all embark on when we first enter recovery or first gain such divine knowledge of our Creator's love for us is to have sincere and significant study or devotion to that incredible feeling or touch from the spirit. I think that for everyone this is achieved differently and very personally but it has to be found and acted upon. This will inturn allow us to MAINTAIN or better yet gain!
For me I have found that routine is key, everyday I try to do the same thing every morning and every night. Before I hit my feet in the morning I say a prayer that is full of gratitude, giving me several very tangible reasons to get up and be positive. I then read something uplifting, depending on the day and if my baby wakes up before me this is either 30 minutes or 2 minutes. Either way I gain some sort of inspiration to be better, think better, and focus on what is important in the big scheme of things. Especially in using days but even before I would find every excuse to stay in bed or to get 10 extra minutes of sleep, I have learned through habit and practice getting up when I wake up and filling myself with the Spirit and light of Christ is exponentially more important and allows me to find utter joy regardless of what my day transpires. At night the process is very similar involving getting into bed and reading my scriptures, not just to hurry and finish a chapter but to truly gain the knowledge and meaning it has for me in my life at this time. Following with a prayer with Brian and my own personal prayer which I set this prayer aside for communication with my Father in heaven which I just allow myself to talk to Him as if he were sitting right by me and telling Him of my fears, strengths I would like to find ways to use and also asking for genuine help for things I find myself needing divine assistance with. I personally am an insomniac so not only does this routine train my brain to slow down and sleep but that once again spiritual connection is reastablished and I feel His all loving, never changing love in my soul.
There are days harder than others and it was said in a meeting once that the more recovery and spiritual based reading that is dedicated the better those days go. Therefore on harder days I refocus and dedicate more time to such reading, reaching out and personal prayer.
I am so grateful that I have such an amazing testimony of my Savior's love for me and that I know His atonement and gospel are available to me to continually become a better person, friend, wife, mother, and member of society. With a Christ centered life there are no dark abysses that are to dismal, no faint heart that is too feable,  and no sin that is too unforgivable for His MATCHLESS love.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Service- step 12

Service is the single most effective way to cure any emotion that is bringing our spiritual self down. Step 12 is the last and single most important step in my opinion. I recently read a book about a lady who had a near death experience, while on the other side she encountered all the times she was able and willing to help those around her including her family, friends, and most importantly the least amoung her. When we are in service of our fellows we are in the service of our God. Her main point of the book was when she awoke in the hospital she came to the realization that we are placed on this earth to help others in turn blessing our lives. She made it very clear that doing the next right thing to those in society not just those we love is true discipleship to our Savior and Heavenly Father.
 I have loved the awakening I have had to the true meaning of service because before I always pictured it as going out to rake others leaves, donate to the food bank, or waiting till Christmas to donate presents. While those are indeed service I have found that it is and can be so much more. It is how the 12th step phrases it "practice these principles in all your affairs." ALL of my affairs, this includes word, deed, and thought. I can serve others simply in my heart and thoughts, how amazing is that? I can pray for others and catch myself when I am slipping into a place where I feel I am judging or ridiculing others in my thoughts. Service is having charity, loving others just as they are, being positive and uplifting regardless of how they feel about me. Service and truly practicing the 12 step principles is all around just being a better person, placing myself in a position spiritually to not only be better for me but allow others to be themselves and uplift them.
I am grateful everyday that I don't have to be the judge, that I get to strive to instead follow the single greatest commandment, to love others (everyone) as my Savior and Heavenly Father love me.

Sunday, September 25, 2016


Through experiences I have had, I have found that having gratitude outwardly is so important. But even more importantly to me I feel like a grateful heart changes a person. It's changed me, I want nothing more than to be a grateful person day in day out. A grateful person is easy to be around because they are kind and gentle, they don't put you down or make you feel inferior, rather they build you up and allow you to be your best self.  A grateful person can go without a lot, I have found that I can go with very little and still be very happy and thankful for what I do have. A grateful person is someone others want to be around because being grateful in-turn allows a person to be humble, happy, patient, not easily provoked and respectful. 
I have been humbled and also humbled myself through my addiction to get to the place I am. I know that life is hard and sometimes all that makes sense in the world is to turn away from gratitude especially when things don't seem fair. I know without a doubt that everything happens for a reason, and as cliche as it sounds everything happens to teach us a lesson. Cliche or not we do learn from hard things, but it's up to us on whether we decide to have it be a lesson to strengthen us and make us better people or a lesson on how to resent others, build walls around us, develop a stony heart or even worse have ignorance and be thankless. 
"Hard times are often blessings in disguise. Let go and let life strengthen you. No matter how much it hurts, hold your head up and keep going. This is an important lesson to remember when you’re having a rough day, a bad month, or a crappy year. Truth be told, sometimes the hardest lessons to learn are the ones your spirit needs most. Your past was never a mistake if you learned from it. So take all the crazy experiences and lessons and place them in a box labeled “Thank You.”   — Manisha Shrestha  Bundela
 I think gratitude is one thing we get to give back to our Heavenly Father and Savior who have done EVERYTHING for us.  I have such a strong testimony of the meaning of a broken heart being what we strive for. My gratitude for my Saviors Atoning sacrifice for me is amazing, and it is so deep that I get a very indescribable feeling of intense gratitude when I truly ponder Him suffering for every one of my sins and feeling every depth of despair I have felt.  With that in the forefront of our minds how can we not have a box that says "Thank You" and place every hardship in it?  It is overwhelming to think of how much more grateful I can and should be yet then I remember how grateful I am for His grace allowing me to continue to be imperfect and allowing me to continue striving to be the best possible version of me. 
Today I am grateful to be an addict and that I have gone through the depths of my own hell to be able to know the true joy of feeling my Saviors love for me.  I also know that I can go on in life with very little but there are a few people I wouldn't know what to do without, and I am so grateful to call them mine, my sweet husband and my amazing babe Meiken! ❤️️