Anticipation.

You’ve been away for almost a month now. I can’t wait for you to get home, and yet I am also incredibly nervous for you to come home. With every day that passes, with every thought I have of you, I know that I really want to be with you. I’ve spent time trying to determine if it is a relationship that I want, or if it is you that I want. I know it is you. Right now, at this time and place in my life, I know it is you. I think of you, of all the little moments we’ve shared, and a smile comes across my face. A smile that is accompanied by a warmness in my heart and a longing to be beside you. I hope you feel the same way too. I hope that I haven’t been waiting, anticipating, wishing and missing you for this month to be put to the side. I don’t think that it will be that way. Or maybe I just hope that it won’t be that way. Hope and know sometimes get confused in my mind. Nevertheless, there is always that fear. I am always afraid of losing you, but then, when in your arms, that fear just melts away.

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I Love Thursdays.

Most people love Thursdays because they are the day before Friday. However, I love Thursdays because they are the day a new Love Bomb mission is launched. The concept is simple, each week Lauren sends out a new mission: someone who is indeed of some love and support. The Love Bomb team members receive an email with a couple of sentences of why the individual selected needs some extra love and support this week, and a link to their blog. People from all over the world then check out the blog and leave comments of encouragement, support, faith and love. The Love Bomb tagline is: “We change the world, five minutes of the time.”

I absolutely love Thursdays.

I love the fact that there are so many people out there, willing to offer support and words of encouragement to total strangers. My Thursday lunch hour always ends up going long as I love reading the comments that everyone posts. Personal Stories. Connections. Empathy. Love. Faith. Positivity. But even more than reading the comments, I love going back through the individual’s blog we just blogged and learning about them.

They are all people of such incredible strength who are dealing with something they shouldn’t have to, but they are still going. Or trying to go. I am so often humbled by what I read. This week I am in love with Brittany. I haven’t gotten all the way through her blog yet; I’ve actually had a very busy two days. I’m looking forward to exploring it more over the next couple of days. She is a beautiful writer, able to express her thoughts so beautifully through word.

Brittany, I hope you don’t mind, but I’m going to post one of your poems right here. You can find the original here.

Yes I do. Every single day. And yes. It hurts.
She wrote in her notebook.
She wasn’t quite sure what to do with this weight she’d been carrying.
A heartache that couldn’t be soothed.
She was finding it harder and harder to keep herself pulled together.
Tears leaving trails down her cheeks when she drove to work in the morning,
before she fell asleep at night,
and inexplicably many times while checking her email.
She looked up from her writing and breathed deeply.
Softly closed her eyes and imagined a different girl.
A different life.
She knew when she opened her eyes,
that everything would be the same.
And that hurt too.
Yes I do. Every single day. And yes. It hurts.

Amazing. I can remember feeling that way. I don’t remember the specifics of the “feeling”, I think that’s been blocked out. But what I remember is the covers over my head, the mimics of life but not really being there, the realization that tomorrow is just going to be the same, the emptiness that comes from feeling too much but at the same time feeling nothing at all.
I loved reading about Laura who is watching the world fade away, but with each new day has more hope and determination to move forward and continue growing.
Eden is an amazing photographer and a woman with a heart that is so big I can’t comprehend it. I hope to one day love my future children the way I can see the love she has of her own through the lens of her camera.
I love Cassie‘s honesty and willingness to try and grow through expressing herself.
I love the friends of these individuals who nominate them for a little extra love. I’m grateful to the Love Bomb team for thinking up and driving this initiative. I’m grateful to those who have a little bit of extra love to give. If I can be inspired and uplifted just by participating and by reading the comments of others, I can only imagine what it does for the intended recipients.
I need to try and share more love with those all around me – those I know, and those I don’t know.

Truths.

Yesterday, being the first Sunday of the month, was Fast & Testimony Meeting. This is something I’ve historically dreaded; who wants to hear the thoughts of everyone? I know this is potentially a very hypocritical thought as I strongly believe that everyone has a voice, and everyone should find a forum for their voice. But oh so often these meetings diverge from their true purpose – to allow individuals a chance to testify of Christ and the Atonement in their life – to a story-telling, all-purpose emotion-sharing, meeting. It is that which I can’t stand.

So I would be lying if I were to say that I woke up yesterday excited to go to Church.

The meeting started out not too badly; nothing  caused me to cringe overtly.

Then, one gentleman stood up and shared words that resonated with me. I was so grateful to know that someone was able to share openly what they believed, and what I believe many believe, but don’t openly share.

I paraphrase:

I am grateful for all the truth in the world that is available to us. And I don’t mean just Gospel truths. Through the Gospel, and the tools within, God has provided with the ability to perhaps see truth more clearly, but there is truth all around. The truth is not circumscribed within the walls of this building, within the Gospel itself and within the 15 million of us on this earth. And I am grateful for all I can find and understand.

Thank You. He disappeared after the meeting before I had the chance to thank him personally, so this is my thank you. I’ve always believed this; I love when I come to an understanding of various pieces of knowledge.

It is very dangerous to assume only one set of beliefs is accurate, is true, is the one and only. Many years ago I started academically studying the tenets of a variety of religions. I wasn’t “shopping” for a new religion, I was seeking to understand others. Looking for points of commonalities and points of divergence helps is essential for tolerance, compassion and granting of religious freedom or for actively pursuing effective missionary work – whatever way you want to go. I can’t profess to be an expert on any of the religions, I’m not even sure I remember what I studied. What I do remember, however, is the profound realization I had that there were many, many similarities, and that what seemed like obvious points of divergence were due, in part to culture differences influencing how similarities were acted on. Looking at these other religions through the lens of “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the one religion with the most truths and fullest of the Gospel”  I could see the stepping stones of belief within that religion which, with a bit of additional knowledge, could lead conversion to the Church.

I can’t substantiate this, because as I said, this is based on memories of thoughts from casual reading many years ago. What these memories mean to me today is that there is no single keeper of truth on this earth. There is a lot of truth, half-truth, maybe-truth, definitely-not-truth, out there in the world. Each of us has the personal responsibility to go out there, investigate, and come to our own conclusions.