Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Update

When I write, its always with that inner voice that I often don’t speak out loud. I love to write because of that, because it keeps me honest and I’m freed of the things I haven’t said, but definitely should’ve in some way. Often, when I read back over what I wrote however, its so very dark and sad and negative, because I kept it all in for too long and I spend the next while reading over it trying to correct all the sadness and make it sound better and try to put the silver linings in and more positive perspectives, because no one wants to read about things that aren’t happy right? With all the crap that goes on in life aren’t we seeking for things that make it feel less crappy and encourage brightness? Especially in the hard times. And times are always, to some degree, hard.

“life isn’t easy, but its still a good life”

Which brings me back to my purpose, which is looking back and catching up. I’ve got some time to be still for a moment and I cant help but to fall back to the old healthy habits that I forgot about in the momentum I gained. And I always come back to writing.

So!
I guess I left you back at the farm!






So much goodness happened there. It was just what I needed and my debt to my family is insurmountable. How do you pay back a life saved? What words or actions can possibly convey the gratitude I feel for the charity and love and healing given to me so freely at such a critical moment in my life? I cannot express even a part of the gift my family was to me. My Aunt Penny, my Uncle Rodrick and my beloved cousin Jane all worked together and loved me without reservation and brought me back from the brink again. I spent hours talking with my aunt on the trails on horseback, I spent late nights and lazy afternoons in conversation with Jane or writing songs about everything and anything and Jane would always sing along whether they were good or absolutely horrific because she loved me that much. I watched movies and went on boats with Uncle Rod and his spirit that he carried with him always reminded me of my own relationship with my father in heaven. 

I was given the opportunity to spend time with someone who had one of the purest spirits Ive ever met. He was given for healing and peacemaking, and he helped to smooth some very prominent scars that I was refusing to move past. I wrote songs like I was listening to them, I painted and drew and colour burst from me. The smell of drying grass, muddy dams, mulberries… the feel of the cool wind standing on top of the rocky hills, the ache of a body well-worked, the clean air, the undeniable closeness to heaven when I'm laying in a wide open field with perfect sky above me, listening to the animals grazing, to the birds talking to each other, to the cicadas calling, to the trees swaying… I don’t think anyone could remain in darkness with such beauty and richness at their feet. I was completely changed by it.


My broken heart and broken mind starting coming back together, and I knew it and God knew it and everyone around me knew it. And with that, it was time to be in motion again, the calling for something more grew louder with every day. It wasn’t fair for me to stay in my refuge forever. I knew I was not so blessed just to stagnate when I at last could climb mountains to where I was commanded to be.
That was that. I quit one of my jobs and transferred the other to Melbourne, the big smoke! I moved there with my sister to pursue further study in the Veterinary field again, for I felt my need to finish what I had started in Adelaide rise again. I knew I wasn’t strong enough to do the University thing again, and my mind was definitely not strong enough for it either. So I opted to ease myself back into it and start studying veterinary nursing at Tafe with the plan of graduating, working in the field, then taking up the dropped degree again when I was more established and decided on what I was getting into.




Moving to Melbourne was a massive change from swaying trees and herd animals and open sky. I've never done well in cities, for whatever reason. But I thought id be okay this time around. Moving in with my sister was awesome! I got to know her better than I ever had and getting to know her was half my love for the move, she was and is, such an incredible support and beacon to me when I'm laid low. She is very funny, smart and loves people, and it encouraged those parts from me too.



The year I moved A LOT happened. Before I moved I crashed my car and by the incredible charity of my ward and the tender mercies of the lord I was still able to have a car and a means to move. I began my course and made a lot of wonderful friends and met a lot of good people. But, for whatever reason, I started to decay. Its senseless but despite my many blessings I started sliding and the days started becoming dark. But I refused it, and charged on.






Later that year, 2016, I went snowboarding the first time ever and it was the beginning of a very big adventure. I would constantly tell the lord in my prayers and in my heart that ‘marriage is not for me, you’ve seen what has happened to me, you were there. I never want to be broken or fear like that again. I do not want this, though I will say I am sad for my children that I will never have, for I love them already. Please Lord, let me have a good life and I will do as you will, just don’t ask me that because I cannot and will not allow myself to be in that situation again. Never again. In the eternities, I will trust you to find someone kind for me.’ I was completely shut off to relationships and dating. It’s a weird thing to talk about but I just didn’t want a part of it. I’d just found my will and my own power again, I’d just raised myself from years of laying in ashes, I didn’t want to lose it, and my experience taught me that I’d lose. That relationships were about turning the other cheek over and over and over till you’re raw, and sacrificing till you’re bloodless and cold and bending and bending and bending until you break. Its all struggle and settling and pain. Atleast for me, all those pretty pictures of family and white weddings and happiness would never have me in them.
Didn’t mean I didn’t want to be a part of the picture, I just had no faith it was something I could survive or even enjoy. So I tried and failed whenever the hope grew strong enough, but in the end my faithlessness and not choosing my path, rather just letting it happen to me with an uncertain and reserved attitude, always resulted in a bitter and unhappy end.
It made me realise how much I was unable to do the relationship thing, that I just didn’t have it in me to be that open again, that “love” was just practical and not joyful, that it was about bending and bending and bending… and I was not okay with breaking again.
But then I fell in love, suddenly, with one of my best friends at the time, when the snow was falling. That love, the taste of a future I thought wasn’t going to happen for me was completely unanticipated and I chose it, rather than just letting it happen to me. Stranger still, those silly lists of qualities they made us write in Young Womens of our ‘perfect RM husband’, he fit the bill almost perfectly. For once in my life I felt understood, I felt like I belonged. A lot of that was because of our friendship, he felt like he fit. But I belonged!!! I wasn’t alone in my head anymore!!! Someone understood me at last!!! I sang and I painted, and the encompassing feeling of’ he’s here to stay, in some way, he’s here to stay’ shook me from the decay the city brought upon me. So I decided not to fight anymore, and what an ordeal of soul that was. I faced down Myrtle and all my dead dreams to dare to hope, dare to be vulnerable and open again. And I decided it was surely the Lord who would send such a person to me, to show me I could indeed be central in a picture like that.


Maybe he was necessary in some way or another, to break me from my stupor. But the love wasn’t returned and it wasn’t a kind or gentle or good situation. He ticked all the boxes but one: He did NOT love me. He did NOT want me. For whatever reasons I was cast aside like I was nothing, again. Ah and how deep the repercussions of that action ran. Like all loves, whether for good or ill, it changed me completely. And I let it make me rotten.



I did not know how to be gracefully destroyed as before. So when I was struck down, I landed, HARD. Myrtle rose with a vengeance screaming all the things that worse men had said and done, replaying the repeated affirming actions of ‘you’re nothing’ over and over, using all the few words he’d said, all the actions he’d did, and that violent silence to remind me of my worth. Remind me of all I had fought so valiantly to overcome in the last four years. I had let myself down, I had betrayed my futures and my heart by letting myself love him. I had let myself be fooled again, by pretty pictures and silly dreams. I could feel the bitterness setting in, and it cut me off from the Spirit. Endless effort I spent trying to purge me of such destructive ill feeling - I wrote songs until I couldn’t sing, I painted till my hands lay still, I checked into therapy, I fasted weekly and poured out my soul in prayer. But the darkness came, wearing his face and using his voice, twisting the sweeter words he’d said and making the gentle memories into something sinister. A dark silence settled in. It wasn’t just losing my power… I had lost, in so many ways, I had completely lost.






As uniform and also unique as the heartbreak was and my poor response to it, it was just a start of things to come. I got sick, really sick and my whole future as a mother and a veterinary nurse came into question. They couldn’t tell me why or what was wrong, only that something was very wrong and the pain was stopping me from being able to work and study. And that last dream of my heart stood at the chopping block. I saw my distrust of marriage in a new light and suddenly I realised I would take the pain of being in a relationship like that if I could have children. Just let me be able to. Just let me have the choice! And then, I crashed my car, AGAIN. This time there was no saving her, it was 100%my fault and I had no one and nothing to spare me this time. I moved house, which was a blessing, as I didn’t want to remember the things that had happened under that roof. My family suffered a loss of a grandfather, I lost my best friend, though truth be told, we had lost each other long before that. And I mourned more fiercely my friend and love’s abandonment, I mourned my loneliness, I mourned my dead dreams, I mourned my unborn children and my futures, I mourned my bitter heart and my weakened faith because my sincerity in crying to the Lord for help was tinged with ‘this is YOUR fault! Why did you do this to me!’.


I realised the bitter and twisted state of my heart and soul. I failed to see the many blessings around me and Myrtle had me bound, body and soul. I knew I’d always be fighting her, and knew (but hoped differently) that no one could understand that and how deeply it affected the simplest of my actions despite my best efforts to rise above it and be normal. Sure, hard times happen, and depression is a silent killer, but I had flown into a ‘I am a victim of my circumstances’ mentality and that was the real killer.
I cannot say what changed exactly, this seems to be my life’s battle and cycle. But I know I was laid low enough to raise my voice and asked for help, and I began changing HOW I was asking for help.
And help came, amazingly, and my gosh, I did not deserve it but I was exceedingly blessed.


My health improved, I could return to work and to school and I managed to finish my course at last, though I limped over the finish line. Where modern medicine failed, Priesthood power healed me and let me function relatively pain free again and my desires to be a mother was an option again. I was blessed with many tithing blessings and material aid. Best yet, I was blessed with new friends and relationships that encouraged me to move, who truly loved me despite my bitterness and flaws, who encouraged me to have faith and to see the great gifts around me. I learnt a lot, about forgiveness and remembering the God is, a God of miracles and I was subject to many small mercies and miraculous circumstances. I achieved nearly all my goals for the year and my spiritual health improved as I made adjustments to my prayer habits and making a goal to read the Book of Mormon in three months. And as anyone whose taken on such a challenge knows, you can be so immersed in the word of God and not have great changes of heart and spirit.






In the moment of losing a family member and all the complicated and intense feelings that came with that experience, I was blessed with someone who has my best interests at heart. All the circumstances that went into having a person like that suddenly come into my life with kindness and thought for me and my happiness were incredibly weird and peculiar to say the least, and somehow my experiences the year before played a part in bringing me to him. On our first “date” I got the call my grandfather had passed, and you know when you get shocking news you kind of burst a bit before you just go kind of numb and mechanical to get stuff done, and so he was there through all that, and I was expecting him to bail, cause you know, men cant handle emotions and like to run from hard situations right? (told you I was bitter), but he stayed for the whole thing, he never left me to go through it alone and was constant at every turn. When I was sick he served me in helping me move new housemates in, and doing chores and calling my friends and family to come help me when I couldn’t reach out myself. He encouraged me toward spiritual habits and health, loved me enough to be honest when I lost someone dear to me through by bitter attitudes and inspired me to do better and change. He has been a new kind of steady I didn’t think was real, and I'm thankful everyday for his patience, love and presence in my life.


Is it all happily ever after? Has everything suddenly got easier? No, but in some ways yes. It seems I overcome one obstacle to immediately turn and my path is blocked by another greater one, before I even recovered from the last. I still am struggling a great deal with Myrtle, on the daily, my lows are more frequent and intense, my prospects for a career are poor and I am overwhelmed at times by a sense of directionless confusion as to what I am supposed to do with this life I have. My body is still subject to pain and bouts of illness that return me to hospital at times, but Im glad to function despite it. I still mourn my losses, the people who aren’t in my life anymore, the mistakes I’ve made and the people Ive hurt, the opportunities I couldn’t grab in time. Trial is constant, but my attitude toward it has greatly improved and I can only contribute that to reading the Book of Mormon in changing my heart from focusing on bitterness.













I walk into this New Year with good family, good friends and a wonderful man by my side. I’m very unsure about this year and what it will bring and worried I’ll waste time or miss out on living again. But I’m grateful for what I have and I hope to continue to develop spiritually as that seems to make all other difficulties infinitaly more bearable and even enjoyable. 
Wish me luck!


Sunday, January 17, 2016

I Am Loved Along the Way: Even More So Now

The way I write, The way I talk, is due to this weird fascination and obsession I have with self-awareness. Hahah.
Im also very dramatic and poetic to the point where its down right hilarious!

Appreciation post ahead. Im filled with gratitude.

Lately Ive been getting to know myself more, who I am, what my limits are, what my heart looks like and what makes it go.
Ive discovered and come to these realizations as a result of a few trials, a few tests. As we all do.
The adversary knows where to hit me the hardest. He knows how to wake up that sleeping demon in my head.
Shes stirred of late and I greeted her like an old friend. Then promptly went to war.
The old battle scars opened up and she got a few good hits in,
'You dont matter! You dont matter! You are nothing! They dont care about you! Youre false!' 
She ranted and raved.
Days got a bit hard because she was so loud I started to listen to her a little.
However I did not realise... instead of just she and I on the battlefield, behind me stood an army.
The same way the adversary knew how to wake her up, The Lord knew how to send her to sleep.
Loneliness has a way of blinkering you, so you feel so alone, isolated, misunderstood and uncared for. In my loneliness I was no exception. So I did not see, I did not realise that the Lord would not allow me to fall again.
When I could look around, past my doubt and loneliness I realised I was not alone at all.
This is what they said:

'Its okay to go at the pace youre going. Dont run before you can walk. Thats what the atonement is for'
'Sounds like youre trying to do too much. Dont forget the fog has dissipated but not totally cleared.Some days are dark as ever, but some days you feel the sun. Its okay to be selfish and look after yourself too'
'Remember to balance things and that its okay to say no sometimes. You cant save everyone'
'People wont understand unless theyve walked as you have. So dont feel like they are saying things with full knowledge of where youve been. Take only the positive things into your heart'
'You are your own worst enemy. Thats how satan works these days, makes your perspective cloudy so we dont see how truly amazing we really are. The more we draw closer to god and rely on the atonement the greater the inner peace and in turn, confidence'
'you do what you can do, and what you can do is enough'
'You got this'
'I love you so much'
'Im here for you. Always.'
'You are a good person Bek. You have an affect on peoples lives for the better no matter what youre going through.'
'You change people. You have a gift to reach them, even from a dark place, you reach them and bring them light'
'you have nothing to prove to anyone or have to explain anything. Just do whats right by you and because you have that charity inside you, you wont go wrong'
'You cant determine how other people feel or react. Sometimes youll be ina  situation where being true to yourself will make them react negatively, BUT what youve ultimately done is whats right by you and right by them by being honest. Making yourself uncomfortable for others happiness is wrong. YOU are a good person,'
'youve come so far, youre doing so well. I care about you'
'I miss you. They miss you. They told me that youre the best one out of us. I know you dont feel it or understand, but thats the effect you have.'
'You are so loved'

Alot of it seems silly and kind of funny. But those words sat inside me and beat back the long dark again. Words are powerful things.


Im so loved. Even more so now. Be prepared for some cheese.
I guess what I wanted to share is that, though you feel alone, though you feel like your mistakes and missteps hold the power to throw you over the edge, when you start to believe those whispers in the dark that tell you youre nothing,
Look up, Look around.
I guarantee you arent standing alone.
Your Savior knows you and will never leave you. He sees you with incomprehensible love and will encompass you about with light, even in the darkest of places. There is no place, no abyss thats too deep, too dark, that He cant reach you. Reach up, look up, cast your burdens upon Him and youll be okay. I know it.
You are so, very, loved.