Another Suitcase in Another Hall: So What Happens Now?

It is the last day of February, and I promised I would blog at least once a month. I have a blog post I am working on, but it isn't quite ready yet. I think I probably care too much about it, mais bon. That is how I roll.

I have been crazy busy volunteering with Community Legal Services, teaching piano lessons, enjoying new babies in the family, and very anxiously waiting to hear back on a few job prospects. I hate not having a plan. I need a plan. If I have a plan and the plan changes that is okay, but I need a plan. That is probably a blog post for another day.

Tonight I thought I would write about something that has been on my mind lately for so many different reasons. I am going to start with this quote from Gerald N. Lund from a conference talk he gave in April 2008.

The heart is a tender place. It is sensitive to many influences, both positive and negative. It can be hurt by others. It can be deadened by sin. It can be softened by love. Early in our lives,we learn to guard our hearts. It is like we erect a fence around our hearts with a gate in it. No one can enter that gate unless we allow him or her to.

Elder Lund's talk is focusing on opening our hearts to the Holy Spirit. However, I remember when he gave this talk, in fact, I am pretty sure I blogged about it then. I remember being struck by not wanting to have my gate be a huge padlocked iron gate.

Well, my friends, here we are seven years later and I have recently discovered that I kind of failed at that. Not that it is an iron gate. Remember how in December I blogged about vulnerability and having the upper hand in relationships?

Yes, I think this is a problem. Good communication is so vital in any relationship. I have been evaluating my extreme inability to speak to people about the things that are in my head. I can't keep being Clarence Thomas guys. I have to get back to being good at communicating. I used to be good at it. I really love people, I want to be able to speak to them better than I have been lately. I don't want others to feel like I am distancing myself from them, or shutting them out for some reason. So I need to become a better communicator, even a great one.

What makes a great communicator? As I consider this question, and my own personal problem three vital components come to mind. (All biblical references are from the King James Version of the Bible.)


No One Needs to Save Me, I'm Already Saved

This is a post I have been ruminating on for some time now. I wrote it in my head a few times and now here I am committing it to blog. Finally.

So, here it is: I am not a feminist. In fact, I find it incredibly irritating when people tell me that I must a feminist because I am a woman. I already know what womanhood means to me, and it does not mean being a feminist. Feminism has been turned into a political party and I do not have to be part of it merely because of my gender. That is not empowering, in fact, it is the opposite.

 The fact that I received an education does not make me a feminist either. This isn't the 1800s. Girls can go to college and law school. They don't have to be a feminist to do it.

In this post I intend to create a definition of feminism, talk about what the role of women has been in history, and what the role of women ought to be, and describe what I see as a better approach to appreciating women and men. In all of this my ultimate goal is to explain the divine nature of womanhood, and hopefully get some people thinking about why it is more valuable to focus on that divinity, rather than focusing on feminism and the troubles it breeds.

So let's get started shall we?


Tell Me on a Sunday: Letting Go of the Upper Hand

Human nature is a funny thing isn't it? I have noticed in relationships that I lean towards the side of carefully guarding everything about myself in order to avoid seeming vulnerable in any way.

I am certain that I am not the only one who does this. Although The Main Ingredient explained to us clearly in the 70's that everybody plays the fool sometimes, we still try to be the exception to the rule.

Lately I have been evaluating myself and how closely I guard emotions, experiences, and fears in order to not end up as the fool. I find myself coming back to this question: when is it good to keep the upper hand, and when is it better to trust and let go?


Les Anges Dans Nos Compagnes

Il y a tant des choses que je peux dire. Mais surtout je veux vous dire desolee. Sorry I never write, sorry I am a slacker.

I am not avoiding you, je vous promis! Maybe I'll get one of those new fangled personal computers for Christmas and then I wouldn't be subject to the millions of other people that live in this home using this computer all the time. Sinon, j'aurai besoin de l'acheter (un ordinateur je veux dire.)

It is Christmas break. My older brother came into town about a week and a half ago. With him here my auntly duties to care for his children has diminished, I can get out of the house more all by myself. Which is nice. Don't get me wrong, I love those tiny people more than life itself, but, you know, sometimes I just want to be alone. Or be in my car NOT listening to Katy Perry. (Although hearing Jayda belt out Roar is adorable.)

Mais bon. It is almost Christmas day. That is exciting. In some ways this year I have had many moments where I have just felt like this year is kind of a wash for Christmas. I said that to my mom and broke her heart though. I am not feeling like a Scrooge or anything, it's hard to explain.


Be Ye Therefore Converted

Desolee mes amis! I have every intention of blogging more often and telling you all about my mission, the new Phoenix temple, things I am baking, and many other things. Life just gets away from me. It is also hard being computerless. I have to share my family computer, which has many people that want to use it. The second I get on my nieces and nephews are right there, wanting to play their online learning games. 3 year olds don't really care about my need to apply for jobs.

Anyway, I have been thinking a lot lately about all the reasons I went on a mission. So many people ask me, "why did you go? What was it like? How does that work? What is the biggest thing you learned?" So, I want to write this blog post to respond to that.