Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Cultivate Joy

I'm sitting here full of so many
things I'd like to share with you,
but I'm scared too.
It's been a month since I last
wrote here on this space.
My last post was hard to share.
I think that has something
to do with me not posting
since that day.

But today!
Today as I sit here in 
my living room typing these
words, I can see my reflection
in the computer screen.
I'm wearing my Fight Like Girls shirt.
The boxing glove is cheering me on.
Inviting me to continue to share.


First of all, gratitude!

I have so much to be grateful for!

My husband has a job.
A warm house to live in
Diet Coke
Prophets and Apostles
Answers to prayer

...And so much more!

The Word

Psalm 16:8,11

"I have set the Lord always before me: 
because he is at my right hand, 
I shall not be moved...
Thou wilt shew me the path of life: 
in thy presence is fulness of joy;..."

On My Heart

These came this past week:

My 2017 Powersheets and Simplified Planner.
Before when I've gotten them,
it's been beyond exciting,
and I've jumped right in to using them.
This year I noticed that I didn't
feel that excitement and joy
that I usually do when they come.
This along with conversations
with several people have 
helped me see that I get to
cultivate more joy in my life.

So I've started researching "Joy"
in the scriptures and other
LDS church resources.
I've learned so much about joy,
and I'm only just getting started!
The one talk that I found that 
summarizes what I've learned
was by President Russell M. Nelson
in October 2016 General Conference.

Here are a few things I've found that 
can help me cultivate joy in my life:

-Look to the Savior in every thought
-Repent and use the Atonement
-Focus on the Plan of Salvation
-Give thanks
-Keep my covenants
-Choose Heavenly Father as my God
-Nurture my spouse
-Guide my children
-Ask for forgiveness
-Choose celestial laws
-Help others come to Christ

So in an effort to cultivate more joy
in my life, I am going to start
now instead of waiting for the new year
on doing some of these things.
I'm going to work on living a more
Christ-centered life!

I will also be working through the prep work
in my 2017 Powersheets in December.
If you would like to order some Powersheets,
I would love to have some friends to do 
them with for some accountability.
Click here to order yours and use the code 
"flourishonpurpose" for 10% off.
Hurry because they are going fast!

I'll be sharing as I complete them
on my stories on Instagram.
Follow me: @uncoveringstrength

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

The Day I Chose (Again) to Live

It happened one day
 in late February.
I had just dropped L off 
at the babysitter's house and was making 
my way the few short miles to work.
I was thinking about how
I was a horrible mother.
I was a bad wife.
I was a bad teacher.
I wasn't attractive.
I just plain wasn't good enough.

Then a thought hit me,
"You know you could speed up
really fast and run your car into a phone pole.
You wouldn't survive.
Your family would help MHG 
take care of L and 
everyone would be better off
without you around."

My body was tensed and ready to do it.
I pushed on the gas pedal
and started speeding up.
It was in that split second,
that I really truly got scared
and realized how bad my depression
had really gotten.
There had been a times before when
I had thought about killing myself,
but it had never gone this far.
I slowed down my car and
started praying for some strength.

This realization that my depression
was worse than ever was an
important moment for me.
It was the moment I chose
again to live.
It was the moment I realized
I get to take time
to figure out what was
going on with me
and take the steps I needed
to take to help myself
feel better mentally, physically,
and spiritually.
Click here to read
the post I wrote at the
beginning of this journey.

I felt hopeful for a few weeks
following that day,
and then the depression
hit me full force again.
I was so frustrated with myself.
I knew the tools I needed
to help get me through this,
but for some reason,
I just couldn't do them.
Or if by some miracle I did
try to do them, I didn't feel
like they were helping much.

I felt like God wasn't listening.
I had moments where
I was so frustrated
that God wasn't answering
my prayers and giving me relief.
I had moments when I would
get a little answer to my prayers
and just be so thankful.

It took months to feel like
I was doing better most of the time,
and I still have days
when I'm not doing well,
and I sit around my house
and don't do anything.

If I could share one message with
you that I have learned this year,
it is that sometimes we get to
just be in the season God has us in.
We just get to learn to move through it,
let it happen, and do our best
even though it might feel useless.
We get to have faith that
God has a reason for letting
us remain in this season.
As we press forward in faith
even when we don't feel like
we're getting any answers,
we will be given the strength
we need to endure.

So no matter what season you are in--
be it depression, waiting, beginning, ending, etc.--
remember to have faith.
I have realized
that if I have hope
and faith that I will be
given what I need in my season.
Sometimes what I need is a way
through the season.
Sometimes what I need is to stay
in that season and learn more
so I can be strengthened for
something new that is coming.

Even when I don't feel like God is listening,
I choose to keep my covenants
and have faith
because when I'm ready,
I'll find what I've been looking for.
What God has been trying to show me.


At the beginning of October
Heavenly Father wrote it on my
heart that I needed to share this with you.
I dreaded it.
So I didn't write.
I could still hear Heavenly Father
telling me to share,
but I continued to push it away.
Then two weeks ago,
I finally did it.
I sat down and wrote
the beginning of this post.
I cried remembering.
I couldn't bring myself to finish.
But Heavenly Father was still
asking me to finish.

I started to dig deep last week.
Why was this so hard for me to share?
I was talking to a friend about
my path of depression this year
and realized something.
I've always had a hard time being vulnerable.
I felt ashamed for what had happened.
I've felt like what has happened to me
is inconsequential compared to what
 other people have gone through.
I didn't believe
my depression was as bad as
other people have experienced.
I realized something as I talked to my friend.
Everyone's story of depression
is different.
It is never the same.
There is no "worse" or
"not as bad."
There is just different.
It felt so freeing to realize this.

My path is my own,
but maybe someone is experiencing
something similar.
Maybe I can help one person
by sharing.
So here I am finally finishing this post.
I pray as I send it out into the world
that it will find the people who need it.

God's love is eternal!
I'm so thankful for the
sacrifice of my Savior.
He has been with me every
step of the way on my path,
especially when I couldn't
feel him there.
He has wept with me.
He has wrapped me in His loving arms.
I'm thankful for the love of my
friends and family.
I never told any of them how
bad my depression really was,
but they are always there with
love and support.
I'm so thankful for my
amazing husband
and my sweet little L.
They are the daily sunshine
in my life.
They make me laugh and smile.
I'm so thankful for my
wonderful, beautiful life!