Faith in Adversity Talk

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This is a talk that I gave in church in March 2015.

Faith in Adversity

Family intro . . . 

Lessons That I’ve Learned as a Nurse

I’m very passionate about my work as a nurse. Nursing has opened a lot of doors for me and has taught me many important life lessons. As a nurse you are caring for people in their most vulnerable times. I see many miracles and many tragedies every single day. It’s helps me to put my life into perspective. I used to work on the Trauma Floor with Sister Moss. While working on the Trauma floor, I realized that life can change in an instant and that we must treasure each and every day. Matt worked in the ER and had the same experiences. I’d see people who would leave for work like they do every day, and then have their lives changed forever because of an accident.  

My favorite patient was a man who was severely injured due to a boating accident where he was caught in a propeller. He was in the hospital for months with a very long and painful recovery ahead of him and yet, every time I took care of him, he was so optimistic and positive. He lifted up everyone around him. When I’d enter his room, I’d feel the Holy Ghost there.

He recognized God’s hand in his life through this tragedy. The propeller was only millimeters from severing his sciatic nerve and other vital organs. He almost bled to death in a remote area of Utah while on a church sponsored youth trip. He received a priesthood blessing. The doctors didn’t understand how he could have survived such a horrific injury but he knew how. He gave credit to God and shared his story with everyone. His optimism, hope and peace came from one place, and that was Jesus Christ. His faith in Jesus Christ and his recognition of God’s hand in his life brought him and others around him much peace, hope and even joy during this difficult time.

Being with Babies and Families in the NICU

I have been there many times as babies in my unit have passed away or when a devastating diagnosis is presented to parents. I have seen the anguish of parents as they let their little one go or the exhaustion that they face from having a baby in the NICU for more than a year. Sometimes it’s hard to understand the reason that we have to pass through these difficult trials, but the knowledge that comes from the restored gospel can help us to find peace in troubling times. A knowledge of God’s plan of salvation helps us to understand the big picture.

Life Isn’t About Avoiding Trials

Life isn’t about avoiding trials. It’s about enduring them well when the do come. The Lord didn’t keep it a secret that we would test our faith and our obedience. He said “We will prove them herewith to see if they will do all things whatsoever the Lord their God shall command them.”

The Lord spoke these comforting words to the Prophet Joseph Smith:

“Know thou, my son, that all these things shall give thee experience, and shall be for thy good. The Son of Man hath descended below them all. Art thou greater than he?”

We need to view each trial as an opportunity for growth. Someday we will understand the why.

Elder Pino’s Daughter

In Elder Pino’s talk in the April 2009 General conference, he shared the story of when his little daughter drowned while playing in the ocean. He said,

“The moments that followed were extremely difficult, filled with anguish and pain for the loss of our youngest daughter. That feeling soon turned into an almost unbearable torment. However, in the midst of the confusion and uncertainty, the thought that our children had been born under the covenant came to our minds, and through that covenant, our daughter belongs to us for eternity.

“What a blessing it is to belong to the Church of Jesus Christ and to have received the ordinances of His holy temple! We now feel that we are much more committed to be faithful to the Lord and endure to the end because we want to be worthy of the blessings that the temple provides in order to see our daughter again. At times we mourn, but ‘we do not mourn as those without hope’

This faithful family came to understand that when adversity arrives in our lives, the only true source of comfort is God.

“Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27).

Alma 7

In Alma 7:11-12 we learn that there is no infirmity, affliction, or adversity that Christ did not feel in Gethsemane.

11 And he shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictions and temptations of every kind; and this that the word might be fulfilled which saith he will take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people.

 12 And he will take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities.”

3 Nephi 17:7

“7 Have ye any that are sick among you? Bring them hither. Have ye any that are lame, or blind, or halt, or maimed, or leprous, or that are withered, or that are deaf,or that are afflicted in any manner? Bring them hither and I will heal them, for I have compassion upon you; my bowels are filled with mercy.”

Did you hear that? He said that if we are afflicted in any manner (emotionally, spiritually), we can go to him and he will heal us. I have felt his healing power in my life as I’ve repented and as I’ve been overwhelmed with sadness from difficult times. I have felt of His healing power and I know that it’s real.

Jesus Christ said,

“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” He is our source for peace and strength.

Mosiah 24:13-15

The Book of Mormon talks about the people of Alma who were enslaved and persecuted by Amulon.  They prayed in their hearts to God for help.

 13 And it came to pass that the voice of the Lord came to them in their afflictions, saying: Lift up your heads and be of good comfort, for I know of the covenant which ye have made unto me; and I will covenant with my people and deliver them out of bondage.

 14 And I will also ease the burdens which are put upon your shoulders, that even you cannot feel them upon your backs, even while you are in bondage; and this will I do that ye may stand as witnesses for me hereafter, and that ye may know of a surety that I, the Lord God, do visit my people in their afflictions.

 15 And now it came to pass that the burdens which were laid upon Alma and his brethren were made light; yea, the Lord did strengthen them that they could bear up their burdens with ease, and they did submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord.

Heavenly Father won’t take our problems and challenges away. But he will strengthen us so that we can better endure them.

The Wise Man Built His House Upon a Rock

Do you remember the story about the wise man building his house upon a rock and the foolish man building his house upon the sand?

The Savior said:

“Therefore, whoso heareth these sayings of mine and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, who built his house upon a rock—

“And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not, for it was founded upon a rock.

“And every one that heareth these sayings of mine and doeth them not shall be likened unto a foolish man, who built his house upon the sand—

“And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell, and great was the fall of it” (3 Nephi 14:24–27).

Notice that the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew against both houses! Living the gospel does not mean that we will everlastingly escape adversity. Rather, it means that we will be prepared to face and endure adversity more confidently.

My Repelling Story

While working at the Utah Boys Ranch, I took a group of kids backpacking in Escalante for a week. We were backpacking Calf’s Creek and were going to repel down the 200 foot waterfall. We got to the waterfall and began to set up the anchors and ropes.

There were large boulders at the top of the waterfall. My boss jumped on them and pushed with all of his might to ensure that they were secure. We secured the 2 anchors to the boulders so that we could use them to repel down. My boss and I clipped in to the anchors and my friend began to repel. As she went over the edge of the cliff, both boulders slipped and all 3 of us almost fell to our deaths. But with extra strength from Heavenly Father, my boss and I held the ropes with our hands and with our backs, we pushed against the boulders until my friend could safely make it down to the bottom.

It was a very scary experience but I learned a great lesson. We need strong anchors in our lives. A testimony of Jesus Christ and our faith in Him is our strong anchor. When life’s storms come, we can rely on Him to help us get through. He is a sure foundation.

Helamen 5:12

 12 And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall.

Quoting the words of the prophet Ether:

“Wherefore, whoso believeth in God might with surety hope for a better world, yea, even a place at the right hand of God, which hope cometh of faith, maketh an anchor to the souls of men.”

Our faith in Jesus Christ will help to anchor our lives when hard times come. We need a sure anchor. A sure foundations to help us through life’s difficult times. Jesus Christ is someone who we can rely on no matter what. He will always be there. Heavenly Father will always be there for us. He will never abandon us.

He Will Never Abandon Us

When I was 19, I had the opportunity to work in the orphanages of Ecuador for 3 months. While working in a baby orphanage that was run by Catholic nuns, I had an experience that I won’t ever forget. In the room, there were 40 cribs all lined up in a white room. This orphanage was very short of help and for that reason, there were strict rules at that time that you weren’t allowed to hold or play with the babies. You could only pick them up to take them to the changing table. They would even prop the bottles up for their feedings. These amazing nuns were doing the best that they could with their limited resources. It was heartbreaking to see all of these sweet babies who were completely alone in the world.

One day, while I was in the room alone changing diapers, I noticed a group of babies that were smiling and cooing and laughing. Although I could not see any angels, I knew that they were there with those sweet babies. These babies had no earthly parents to care for them, but they have a Heavenly Father who loves them and will never abandon them. They are his children and so are we and he won’t ever abandon us either. He loves us and he wants to help us to return back to his presence.

O God, Where art thou?

The Prophet Joseph Smith, who knew a lot about the storms of life, exclaimed in anguish during one of his most difficult moments:

“O God, where art thou? And where is the pavilion that covereth thy hiding place?” (D&C 121:1).

Then, as the Prophet raised his voice, the consoling words of the Lord attended him, saying:

“My son, peace be unto thy soul; thine adversity and thine afflictions shall be but a small moment; And then, if thou endure it well, God shall exalt thee on high; thou shalt triumph over all thy foes” (D&C 121:7–8).

Center Our Lives on Christ and Nothing Can Ever Go Permanently Wrong

President Howard W. Hunter said:

“If our lives and our faith are centered on Jesus Christ and his restored gospel, nothing can ever go permanently wrong. On the other hand, if our lives are not centered on the Savior and his teachings, no other success can ever be permanently right” (The Teachings of Howard W. Hunter,ed. Clyde J. Williams [1997], 40).

Testimony

I know that God lives. I know that he sent His Son, not only to help to redeem us from our sins but so that he could strengthen us through His Atonement. Jesus Christ has the power to help us. We must build our foundation on Him and as we do, we will be able to have joy, peace and an eternal perspective as we pass through the difficulties and challenges of this life.

I have felt His power in my life. I have been strengthened beyond my own capacity to face difficulties. I have felt Him heal my troubled heart and give me hope for a better world and a better future. I know that He lives and I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

April 2014

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Wow! How time flies! It’s crazy that I haven’t blogged for 4 months. I guess that’s the life of a mom of an almost 1 1/2 year-old. Life is great and very busy. I’m always amazed at those mothers with 2, 3, 4 and 5+ kids! How do they do it?! I have so much respect for them. I recently became friends with a mom who has 9 kids. Amazing!

A lot has happened in the last 4 months. I’ve been working full-time in the NICU since December. It has been great. Matt has been able to watch Lilah while I’m at work so that has been a huge blessing for our family. He’s been able to spend so much time with her before he starts P.A. school in May. They have bonded so much and I still am able to be home 4 1/2 days per week with Lilah because of my amazing job. I’m so glad that I became a nurse. It’s a great job for a mom. I can work full-time and still be able to be at home most of the time with Matt and Lilah. They are my best friends in the whole world. I miss them when I work, but it’s also kind of nice to get out of the house to maintain my sanity. I applaud stay-at-home mothers and fathers! They truly have the most important job and the most difficult job on the planet. I would love to stay home more when Matt becomes a PA but I also always want to keep my nursing license and work 1-2 days/week or 1 day every other week like some of my friends at work do. I definitely want to keep my job in the NICU no matter what. I love it and I’m so grateful that Matt got into PA school in Utah so that I can keep my job.

Lilah has really progressed in the past 4 months. She started walking last month. It’s so cute to see her waddle around with her arms above her head for balance as she crashes into the closest thing that she can get to. I just love to see her explore her little world. She is at such a fun stage. She has started jabbering a lot lately. Nothing intelligible but she has some good intonation going on. Haha! She still is saying Mama, Dadda and dog. Those are still her main words but she said “Gramma” twice and Jack once and she approximates words sometimes. But it’s hard. We try so hard to get her to talk more. The other day in the car we were reading a farm book and I said “This is a cow. Cow. Cow. Cow. Cow. Cow. Cow. Cow. Cow. Cow. . .” Then Lilah pointed to the picture and said, “Dog?” Haha! Silly girl. She calls every animal a dog. Except sometimes she has said Duck (which sounds like Dog in reality). The other day, I think she said Frog. She’s getting there. We are very proud parents.

She’s a really good girl. She’s been teething a lot lately and her molars have been coming in so that has been hard for her but overall, she is a lot of fun and very pleasant. She is definitely opinionated though. It’s hard not to give into her. We really need to teach her sign language or something to help her not throw tantrums. I gave up on sign language a long time ago but maybe it’s time to revisit that idea.

Matt and I had the most amazing experience earlier this month. We had been preparing and praying for an opportunity to go on a humanitarian trip with the church together to teach newborn resuscitation. We got certified in Helping Babies Breath and NRP as providers and instructors. I even expedited my passport renewal just in case we got called to go.  In March, we got an unexpected phone call from Dr. Bond who said that one of the nurses had a change in plans and couldn’t go on the upcoming trip to Honduras. I told Sister Bond that we could both go and she made arrangements for us so that we could both go. It’s great to speak Spanish because we can serve on these trips much more often because of the great need for this training in Spanish speaking countries. I’m so grateful for this amazing opportunity. Matt and I went to Honduras for 9 days. I’ll write a post about it.  It has been one of Matt and my dreams since we started dating to go on medical humanitarian missions. We talked about how we wanted to do that on one of our first dates hiking up to the Salt Lake Overlook. It’s such a blessing to be able to fulfill one of my lifelong dreams with my husband so young in life. We thought that we wouldn’t be able to go together until much later in life.

I think that Heavenly Father loves me. He just keeps blessing my life and answering my prayers. I don’t deserve it either. I really struggle sometimes with doing everything that I’m supposed to do and yet, He always finds ways to reach out to me and help me to know that He is there and that He loves me. I’m so grateful for God’s mercy and grace. He really can make so much more out of our lives than we can by ourselves. He has made my life so rich. I’m sure that there are so many other blessings that He has for me if I only reached out to Him more. He’s like the best friend that is always there for you no matter what.

The End of an Epic Year

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     2013 is coming to a close. It has been an amazing year for our family. I have grown so much. My life has dramatically changed and I am so thankful for each new day and the new adventures that await our family. A lot has happened in the last couple of months.

      The really exciting thing is that . . . DRUMROLL  . . . MATT GOT INTO PA SCHOOL AT THE UNIVERSITY OF UTAH!!!! Matt and I recognize that it truly was the grace of God that got him in. Matt worked so hard and is an amazing candidate but there were 800 people applying for 45 seats. It’s so competitive but he did it!!!! We have prayed for this since we got married and we are so thankful to our Heavenly Father for making Matt’s dream come true.

     We found out that Matt got on the waitlist for an interview a few months ago. We thought that since he was on the interview waitlist last year, and that no one turns down the U of U because it’s ranked as the #2 PA school in the nation, that there was no way that he’d get an interview. He’d almost given up hope and he was really sad about it. But when interview time came, we prayed that he could get an interview. The day before the interview’s for PA school, Matt got a call from Doris Dalton, who asked if he could come and interview the next day! Matt was so ecstatic! He came home and told me that he got an interview and we just hugged eachother and cried. It truly was a miracle.

     The interview went very well and the next week, Matt got the acceptance letter! When he got the letter, he didn’t tell me right away. He came home from work and gave me a gift. I wasn’t sure why. I opened the gift and there was a card that said, “I love you. Thank you for your support.” I then saw a piece of paper at the bottom of the gift bag and I just said, “NO WAY! YOU ARE KIDDING ME!” Then I jumped up and down for joy for a long time as we cried and hugged eachother. It was so surreal because this is our ultimate dream for Matt’s career. We have worked SO hard for this! We know that it’s a miracle and that God has given us this amazing gift. Matt had trouble sleeping for weeks because he was so excited. Seriously. That is not an exaggeration. We still can’t believe it! Matt is now trying to prepare himself so that he can get the $44,000 scholarship that is available to 4 people. He is an awesome candidate for it, so I hope that he gets it!

     Another thing is that I have lost 23 lbs since September 4th. I did 2 sessions of Boot camp. It was fantastic. This past month, I haven’t done very well with Thanksgiving and Christmas but I want to continue on. I appreciate my family’s support, especially Matt, Angie and my Mom. I got up for 3 1/2 months at 5:30 AM to go and workout for an hour. Even though I was working night shifts every weekend. I tracked all of my food with weightwatchers. I’m really proud of my accomplishment and I feel great about what I have done. It’s not really about weight for me. It’s that I want to be healthy for my family. I want Lilah to be healthy, so I have been cooking almost every single day. We eat dinner every night together. It has been such a great change for us.

    Lilah turned 1 last week! It’s been the most beautiful experience to watch her learn and grow. I’m so grateful for my little bug. She is my treasure and I love her more than words can express. She is so smart and funny. She is such a little busy body and she gets into everything. She has started to point at everything and she is becoming a little social butterfly. She used to have lots of separation anxiety but she is getting a lot better and she enjoys having everyone hold her and play with her. When we have Sunday dinners at my Mom’s house, she knows right where to go to get to the playroom. No matter where you set her down, she’ll start crawling as fast as she can up the stairs to the playroom.🙂 When she’s hungry or is eating something that she likes, she’ll say, “Num. Num.” And she has the best cheesy grin. I just love it. She still loves dogs and says “dog” all of the time. We bought her a little dog that has wheels on it’s feet that she can pull around and she absolutely loves it. She had a great birthday. We got her a bunch of toys, books and jammies from Kid to Kid. My parents got her a bouncy chair toy that she loves.

     We still haven’t had her birthday party because last week was a terrible week and we just couldn’t pull it together. We just moved to a new place a couple of miles north of our old apartment. It’s much bigger and we love it! It’s a 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom condo with a 2 car garage. Lilah has her own room and we have an office so that Matt can study at home while in PA school. I have a big walk in closet and I love the kitchen and dining room. It’s been a great move and we are happy to not have to shovel that huge driveway anymore! We are definitely going to miss our old neighborhood though. Especially because we lived so close to Seth and Christina. I loved being in their ward. We had awesome neighbors and landlords but we were definitely ready to move. Lilah was sleeping in the living room at night and during the day, she’d sleep in our room but we couldn’t go to the bathroom when she was taking a nap or we’d wake her up! It was not working.

      So last week was such a terrible week because it is so stressful to move with a 1-year-old. There was no safe place for us to set her down and then we got pink eye. It was so exhausting. After pink eye, I got a horrible cold and was sick in bed with no babysitter. Then Matt lost his job. It was such an awful week, but it’s over and things are going much better. Even though it was a tough week, it was an amazing one because I realized how blessed I am to have such an amazing family. I was feeling really overwhelmed and sad. Angie babysat Lilah three times and then brought me a bunch of stuff to help me to feel better even though it was totally inconvenient and out of her way. She would text and call me every day. My mom brought me lots of food so that I wouldn’t have to cook all week and she came and helped me organize my house. She also bought me a ton of stuff for my new house at Walmart. April bought me this book and then brought me over a present. It was a decoration that said “Sisters are forever friends”. Christina made me a really delicious dinner and brought it over when she heard that I was having a hard day. I love them so much and this is one of the reasons that I am so grateful that Matt got into PA school at the U of U! So that I can have such an incredible support system. I love my family very much!

Our Family – October 2013

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Wow! This year has gone by so quickly! It’s crazy how fast time flies! I realized that next May, I will be 30!!! Aaahhh! I can’t believe it. I need to enjoy my 20’s while I can. Haha! I have such an awesome life and I’m loving this new phase in my life. Motherhood. It’s amazing.

Today, Lilah was so much fun! She’s almost 10 months old! I can’t believe it. She has such a fun personality. She is so happy and playful. She loves Matt and me and we absolutely adore and cherish her! She was so good in church today and she let me hug and love her today. She is usually so wiggly and on-the-go that she won’t just sit and cuddle but today, at church, she let me cuddle and hug her. It was such a gift to me. I love how she loves me. She has a really hard time when I leave her with anyone. At the gym daycare, she just cries so much that they always call me back in to come and get her. She even cries for our family when they watch her. She just has bad separation anxiety right now, which is normal. I feel bad for those who watch her but I just love how she clings to me. It makes me happy that she loves and trusts Matt and me so much.

Last night, on my way home from work, I called Matt and heard that Lilah was crying really hard as she was being put in her car seat so Matt put me on speaker and when I started talking to her, she just calmed right down and started babbling into the phone. It made me feel so good. Matt is so good with her. He took her to City Creek and had a fun Daddy/Daughter date. I’ve started working nights and weekends so that Matt can watch her and so that we won’t need daycare.

Lilah just adores her Daddy! In the morning, she’ll crawl around the house looking for him yelling, “Da?” It’s so cute! She’s got “MaMa” and “DaDa” down pretty well now! When she’s happy and playful, she’ll say, “Da Da Da Da Da Da”. When she’s upset and crying she’ll yell, “MA MA MA MA MA”. I’m not sure how I feel about that. It’s funny though. She also knows how to say dog! Every time she sees a dog or hears one bark she says, “Dah”. It’s so cute. Today, she was reading her little book and when she saw the picture of a dog, she said, “Dah”. I was amazed!🙂 I’ve been trying to teach her sign language, and I think that she understands some of the words that I sign to her, especially Outside, Food, Drink, and Bath. But she never really signs back.

She loves to play peek-a-boo, patty cake, this little piggy and the itsy-bitsy spider. She loves to crawl around everywhere and explore her little world. She never holds still, especially when you are trying to change her diaper! She will roll and spin and wrestle to get out of having her diaper changed. It can be dangerous. Haha. She recently has started rolling and turning over when we are trying to get her into her carseat. It’s a struggle. She has never liked riding in the car. She loves to make messes and she is so good at it, too.😉 Haha! It’s so hard to keep the house clean, but I like to let her explore. She loves to read books, go outside and swing in the tree swing in our backyard. She loves to go on walks and she even walking along the furniture herself. She reminds me of a little puppy because she will follow me everywhere and just crawl around panting with her tongue out. The other day, she was even crawling around with a little shoe in her mouth. Haha! She cracks me up. I wish I had a picture of that. She has brought so much joy into my life.

I love her laugh and her cheesy grin when she smiles so big that it’s almost as if she can’t contain her joy because she points out her chin, squints her eyes and she just has to wiggle her arms and kick her legs because she is so happy. I love when she is so tired that I get her to cuddle me and when I can just hold her and rock her while she sleeps.

Lilah loves her grandparents! The past few weeks, Matt’s mom and dad have been watching her on Tuesday nights when I was working so that Matt could go and do his calling for church. He is the Assistant Ward Mission Leader. I would pick up Lilah on my way home from work and she would always just be SO happy. One time she even got mad at me because she didn’t want to go home. Haha! Today, my mom was holding her and Lilah kept reaching for me and then changing her mind and clinging to my mom and she did that a few times. And of course there is Grandma Great! She just loves Great Grandma Thorup.🙂 She has watched Lilah almost every Tuesday since I went back to work in March. Bless Grandma for that! Seriously, I don’t know how to express my gratitude for her service to me. I didn’t want Lilah to have to go to daycare. I’m so grateful for my Grandma loving her and caring for her each Tuesday. I’m sure Lilah will miss that.

The past five weeks I have been doing a fitness boot camp. I really have loved it. It’s helped me so much and I’ve seen big changes in my fitness ability! I went from wanting to die when I ran at 5 mph to being able to run at 6.5 mph at a 5% incline during the hour of circuit training without wanting to fall over and die. I have lost 10 lbs. and I think that I have gained a lot of muscle and lost some fat. I’m excited about it. It’s been hard to get up so early before Matt and Lilah wake up, but I feel that it’s so important. I have a lot of weight to lose. I needed to lose about 50 lbs! But now I have 40 lbs to go! Oh, man. That sounds daunting, but I really think that I can do it and I really need to. I want to start my family life off right. I want to be a healthy and active Mom! I’m also doing online weight watchers. It’s been great. My goal is to get down to my goal weight by my 30th birthday. I hope that I can do it.

Matt got an interview for PA school for Touro Las Vegas! I’m so excited for him. I hope that he gets in there. He is such an excellent candidate for PA school. It’s really hard going through the process of getting in because we have worked so hard for this goal. It is so important to Matt and me. I just pray all of the time that he can get in this year. He got on the waiting list for an interview at the U of U again. Last year, everyone showed up for their interview so he wasn’t able to interview. It was disheartening when we learned that he got on the waiting list for an interview again. We really wanted to be able to stay here in SLC. But Las Vegas would be amazing too! And it’s close enough to our family so that we won’t be completely cut off from them for two or more years. I really hope that he gets in there. We’ll see. His interview is in January. He still hasn’t heard from a lot of the other schools, so hopefully we will get more interviews. I’m very proud of Matt. He is such a hard worker and he is so dedicated to our family. I’m grateful to be married to such an amazing man who is so responsible and loving and fun to be around. Lilah is so in love with him! He is the best Dad and Husband ever! We are so lucky.

Here are some pictures from the last couple of months . . .

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Most Embarrassing Moment – Top 2

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Well, last Sunday, I had a really embarrassing moment. In fact, I think that this is my second most embarrassing moment in my life. The first being when Steven H. was spitting on me in the bubble at Oakcrest Elementary and my skirt flipped up and everyone saw my Mickey Mouse underwear and then I walked around with my skirt up and I didn’t know.

Let me just preface that I was premenstrual and my emotions were all over the place. In Relief Society, Jen gave this amazing lesson about Depression and Mormon women. It was a great lesson and I learned that I shouldn’t compare myself to others but that I should love myself for who I am, imperfections and all. Well, at the end of the lesson she asked us what resources are available to us if we struggle with depression. People talked about doctors and therapy and medication, etc. But I wanted to share an experience that I had about 2 years ago. It was during a period in my life when I was having a very difficult time and I was very sad and devestated. My heart was broken. I wanted to share that Jesus Christ was able to heal my heart. I prayed and sought His divine help. It was the lowest moment of my life. The miracle was that the next morning, after feeling the saddest that I had ever felt, I woke up renewed and I had so much peace and love in my heart. It truly was a miracle and the Savior was able to heal my broken heart. I’d never experienced anything like it. I know that God listens to our prayers and he loves us. He will help us in our time of need and he has the power to heal our broken hearts.

Well, I’m glad that I shared that experience because I felt that I needed to but the embarrassing part was that I cried uncontrollably while sharing that experience. It was a mixture of just feeling the spirit and being premenstrual. HAHA! Probably the worst time to bawl your eyes out would be during a lesson about depression. Now I’m pretty sure that my whole ward thinks that I’m really depressed. I felt so humiliated after that. I actually am so happy and things are going so well for me. I was so embarrassed about it that I went home and cried to Matt about it. Haha!

A Day in the Life of Me

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Things are going great. I love being a mom. I love my family, my job, my apartment and we are all healthy, thank heaven. I have so much to be grateful for. The day to day is a lot of the same. I wake up, feed Lilah, let her play, make her breakfast, clean up the house, then let her play until she goes down for a nap around 10 AM. She’ll usually sleep for about an hour then she’ll wake up and take a bottle. She’ll play for a while and then we’ll eat lunch together. She’ll sometimes take another nap after lunch, wake up and eat a bottle around 2 or 3 PM. Play, take her afternoon nap, wake up and eat dinner, play, get ready for bed around 6:30 PM, take a bath, eat another bottle and then go to bed around 7 or 7:30 PM. I guess that’s Lilah’s schedule and not really mine, but it’s really just one and the same. She is my life. Whenever people ask me what I’ve been up to lately, I just talk about Lilah. Haha. I love it though.

It was really hard going to work at first and it still is, but now, it’s really been nice to have a break from being at home although I’m still taking care of babies while at work. I’m so grateful that we don’t have to put Lilah in daycare. Grandma Thorup has been so sweet to watch her on the Tuesdays that I work, and Matt’s new job has been awesome so that I can work some night shifts during the week and sleep while he’s home in the morning. Matt watches her on the weekends. It’s so good for them to bond. I’m grateful for such a supportive husband. He’s such a great dad and he’s the sweetest husband. He always tells me how beautiful and amazing I am, even when I don’t feel like it. He is so kind to me.

Lilah has been crawling around like crazy! She gets into everything. It’s so cute to see her explore her little world. She will follow me around the house while I’m cleaning and she’ll come and just sit by my feet while I do the dishes. It’s so sweet. She pulls herself up to stand and has started taking baths in the tub instead of the sink. She says “Ma Ma” all of the time. It melts my heart especially when she’s crying for me in the crib and says it. She gets really shy around strangers and hides her face in my shoulder. She is a great eater. Her favorite foods are avocados, especially cafe rio guacamole, black beans, all vegetables, pumpkin, chicken and she loved hummus (but then I saw that it had tahini in it and that she isn’t supposed to have it til she’s 1 because of the sesame seeds). She really doesn’t like fruit. She’ll sometimes tolerate apples, peaches and bananas but she makes an awful face every time I give her any type of fruit, except watermelon. She loves that. She loves her little puffs and is started to eat more of those. She is even starting to be able to pick them up and self feed. She loves her sippy cup and holds it herself. Water is her favorite.

We have been trying to teach her some sign language and she finally started signing drink this week, whether she knows it or not. I think that she knows what a lot of the signs means, but she doesn’t know how to sign them back. We are teaching her Mom, Dad, drink, food, all done, outside, bath, book, car, more, play, walk, diaper, etc.

Matt applied for 17 PA schools this last week. I pray that he gets in. I think that he is an amazing candidate! We worked so hard on his essay. It’s really good. It would be amazing if he got into the U of U but it will also be so much fun (and kind-of scary) to move somewhere else.

Matt and I had our 5 year anniversary this last week! I can’t believe that it’s been 5 years already! It’s gone by so fast. I love Matt so much! We’ve really accomplished and been through a lot together these past years. I’m so glad that I married Matt. He lifts me up with everything that he says and treats me with so much respect and kindness. For our anniversary, he gave me these high top shoes that I really wanted and then Matt’s brother, Chris, watched Lilah while we went to dinner at Ruby River. We then went and walked around Liberty park. He gave me this beautiful ring with my birthstone and four little diamonds. He said that it symbolized these past 5 years and the next 5 years that we will have together. He said that he would spend the next 5 years making himself a better man so that we would be even more in love the next 5 years. I want to make the same commitment. I want to be a better wife to Matt. He never criticizes me for my shortcomings but I really want to just be my best self for him and for our kids. He encourages me to do things that I love and to develop my talents. I couldn’t be more blessed to have Matt in my life. He’s my best friend. Things aren’t always perfect in our lives but we are happy and grateful for this amazing life that we will have together. I can’t wait to see what the next 5 years brings. I’m so grateful that we were married in the temple so that I can have him and Lilah forever.