Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Who knew? Today I'm grateful for...

My mom wrote this post today on her blog and it really got me thinking.

Many don't know this history, and it's actually quite relieving to see so much joy entering my mother's life as she begins to open up and share her life (and what an amazing life it is).  What a blessing the internet can be that way. 

It also got me thinking about the answer to her question....why does God allow suffering?   Such a difficult, overbearing type of question to answer; especially when I feel so inadequate to share my own thoughts.  Often, I look at my life and wonder to myself, "when is the despair going to hit? When will have to suffer like 'her'?"  I hope I never have to, because really, my life has been so great.  For me, however, there have been difficult things--things I'd wish on no one, but do wish more had a real understanding. 

Though my griefs are not mine to share, so never will I open up this way in such a public way. The last few weeks, however I have found just that--some understanding.  The supposed ailment/problem/painful annoyance of TMJ, turned into a great, great blessing as I have been able to go to the DENTIST (yes, you read that right) for relief from not only my physical pain, but also some of my spiritual aching. And it has helped tremendously to have new found friends/cheerleaders in my journey. 

So, sometimes, I think God allows us to experience aching in order to create an opportunity for us to find healing.  Sometimes, He allows it to create more gratitude for our lives as they were or will be...or even as they are.  Sometimes, He allows it so that we will turn to Him more fully  (as we do that, our lives will be increasingly blessed).  And sometimes, He allows it, so others can learn these things vicariously through others experiences  and find the beauty-full in our own just a little bit more each day.

This perspective keeps me moving some days.  So today, I'm grateful for the dentist.

Friday, February 18, 2011

How to

How to eat pizza:

Suck on it.  Just suck and suck until you can't suck anymore.  That way, you burn calories WHILE you eat, and you get so tired of sucking, you won't finish it anyway--it just takes TOO long.  This is how I prevent myself from gaining any weight at all.  But, mommy can sometimes convince me to chew if she breaks my food into small enough pieces--then again, I still want to wait until I am in the mood to chew.  Sometimes, I just swallow pieces whole.  In fact, this eating process can make me so exhausted, I fall asleep in the shower. Mom then takes embarrassing pictures of me in a doggie towel (which I love, but won't admit to anyone).

Sunday, February 13, 2011

A lip or tu

I woke up from my *lovely* Sunday nap to these beauties.

(yes, flowers for the day before Valentine's Day, because I asked to not receive flowers on Valentine's Day this year)
Tulips, of course!  There's a story behind them.  You see, when I first entered Young Women, we had a new beginnings program in which the parents of every new beehive were to share a flower that reminds them of their daughter.  Most of the flowers chosen were extremely heartfelt and sentimental.  One friend received a rose from her parents because of her exquisite beauty inside and out.  Another, a lily for similar reasons and virtue and grace.  Perhaps a daisy because of how much sunshine 'she' brought into the lives of others.
For me, my mother chose tulips.  Why?  To remind me to always keep my "two-lips" clean and pure.  Apparently I wasn't excessively dainty, exquisite, beautiful, virtuous, or graceful, because my mother basically called me the biggest flirt alive, right in front of everyone.  If you know my mother, she's a jokester, so I would never have put this past her, however, I realized while she was talking (and she even said) that she had no idea she was to choose a flower that really "fit" me as a person, but rather, just choose a flower for me period.  She figured most girls would receive a rose (as most did) and wanted me to be a little different.  As is her way, she was able to create a very effective teaching moment through her humor, and it has certainly stuck with me.
Continuing through the years, the tulip became my favorite flower for more reasons than just this anecdote implies.  Not only can I realize the magnificent beauty of this flower, but I also realize something priceless.  These flowers stay open and REACH toward the sun.  I hope I can do that--always remain stretched toward the Son.
Now, I also realize that the tulip tends to describe me a bit as a PERSON.  This blog may say it best, "You think that when you see a tulip wrapped tight, just admiring the outside of it, you’ve seen the best that tulip has to offer.  After all, when you think of tulips, you think of them with their petals closed.  I was thrilled when this purple beauty opened to show there is always more beauty on the inside.  Same is true with most every person I know."
What a great reminder for me, and for everyone, I suppose.  You can find true beauty deep within people, and yourself, as you and they open up to show it.  Now, I'm just grateful that my husband can share in my love for tulips as well.  You see, although he often can't remember my birthday, or my middle name for that matter, he does and will always remember that tulips are my favorite flower of them all.  So, I guess my mother continues to make an impact in all the little facets of my life.
HAPPY VALENTINES DAY to the LOVES of my life!!
 And just because he's getting to be the biggest cheese ball...

What a dream...

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Normally, I've been pretty in, I don't really want to have one*.  I'm not a flowery, too-big-of-a-bow-for-the-top-of-THAT-little-girl's-head type of person, but today, I had second thoughts.  Not that I'm going to convert to the bows, but perhaps it would be good for my husband to have the same experience I've seen many of my other male friends having with their daughters--being ABSOLUTELY smitten and wrapped around a little girl's finger must just be that priceless.  It is probably good for all men to have that experience--the experience of having a precious, virtuous, fragile daughter of God that sort-of belongs to him. That he doesn't have to raise to be "a protector" but rather, "a nurturer."  That is his forever to maintain and protect and spoil rotten.  And the true desire to never see another man hurt her at all; under any condition, ever.  I think it does something for a daddy's heart that perhaps a boy might not be able to do. Yes, I do think that every man should have that glorious opportunity after all.

*As an editor's note, I must add that never, under any condition whatsoever, ever, EVER, would I love or desire a daughter any less, I've just normally secretly hoped I had all boys.