Giving Peace and Comfort

Some are more inclined than others to focus on spirituality. Finding the best avenue may be like searching for the right doctor. For 10 years I was a massage therapist and if you came to me with sciatic nerve pain, on our protocol would be Piriformis muscle which is located inferior/ underneath the Gluteal muscles. However, if you went to a Neurologist, they would have an entirely different protocol. A while ago I was feeling spiritually stagnant. I methodically came to realize my beliefs and perception needed to be more inline with God’s. It takes time to understand His words and will. Progressing requires patience on my part and the ability to adapt. When I understand a new spiritual concept, my ability to input spiritual knowledge expands and allows room for more enlightenment. Occasionally the realignment is uncomfortable, like the last unexpected deluge.

It was just another adversarial verbal-combat through a meltdown, with a certain 3-year-old whose name shall remain anonymous. (wink-wink) During pre-season meltdown, the referee(myself) took a time-out to my bedroom.  I am grateful Jake was not traveling for work and was home to take on all the nightly rituals. My affliction held out to a ghastly length. The details of my foe are too tender to share, but certainly the enlightenment can be disclosed. The muttered complaints were mostly to myself, but I guess God took it personally because he sent the Holy Ghost to boldly comfort me with, “You have everything you asked Me for.” It was the nicest way anybody could have told me to “Shut the hell up.” God is right, and all that He’s given adds joy to life. Before His words of comfort came, my personal drama was like involuntarily shoving my own face into a hot-sloppy, muddy- reality and only in submersion could I make meaning out of His words, “Landmarks of success don’t bring peace!”  Past experiences with peace has always been a struggle. Therefore I can expect the same for the future.

A variety of sources lend peace and influence individuals differently.  I was diagnosed with Anxiety/Panic disorder at the age of 21 and what my internal voice has told me is, “If it improves an aspect of your life without harming another aspect, try it.” For the practice of grammar I’ll include a personal illustration: Somewhere imbedded into my sinews is the muscle-memory of running on Utah’s Wasatch BLVD. Animate alongside the Wasatch Mountains with cars whizzing by and my feet making contact with the asphalt; provided an intermittent space of peace throughout all four seasons of the year. ‘Running’ is retired because the function of my body morphed and the amount of its influence wouldn’t be as impactful. Today the Pacific Ocean is an undiluted source of outpouring peace and prevalent for my body. Even though I am an advocate of all organized religions, I don’t think these institutions are singular to knowing God. So yes, the ocean brings me closer to God and helps reset my beliefs to what is true.

God is a good, reliable source in giving peace. His words cannot be bound by earthly cares or effective my the Periodic Table of Elements. His way of providing peace adapts to each person’s unique needs. Like, when these scriptures below were in my studies the day after my ‘time-out.’ He knows I’m a typecast for a dark comedy movie, so the first scripture is enjoyably humorous. Then I’m reassured of not being the only one and to keep my chin up because I am progressing. Then He gives me a job to do so I feel needed.

“12  Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:

Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.

10  But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle”

“5  For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.

6  And whether we be afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effectual in the enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer: or whether we be comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation.

7  And our hope of you is steadfast, knowing, that as ye are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye be also of the consolation.”

So, I guess my hope for the future is staying close to God and trusting He will lead me to more  resources contributing peace and my own false-landmarks will vanish. God gave me comfort and peace to pass on, so others may feel it as well.

 

 

 

Flipagram: Tie-Dye

A deeply held belief of mine is that we all have a purpose here on Earth and God wants  us engaged with its discovery.  In my current frame of mind, knowing my purpose is a way of existing in life that feels like light and truth. Each new discovery adds more light and brings us closer to truth. Understanding how I operate spiritually and physically is an aide for this process and helps me connect to other peoples’ discovery-of-purpose.  It is through God and His son, Jesus Christ who have been my guide and in whom I put my trust. I give them full credit for providing me the enlightenment and motivating me to obtain a greater perspective.  If a creature like myself believes  God has a purpose for me, then it would only make sense for it to extend to every other living creature on this planet. They too are designed for a purpose their discoveries are equally important. This little girl Tie-Dye, has enriched the life of each member of our family. Did I ever think I’d have a Dubia roach colony in my daughter’s bedroom, or that I’d rather smell dog poop than dragon drop-drippings? Nope. Her stillness and observations grounds me to the present. When I watch her, I’m ‘in-love’, and ‘in-fascination’. Tie-Dye reaffirms to me that my spiritual being harmonizes with science. I don’t expect all humans to feel ‘in-love’ with tetrapod vertebrates, but I do hope these animals receive respect for their reptilian classification and be treated kindly.

Washington DC: Election Week

The week in Washington DC was challenging because it took me out of my comfort zone, was physically exerting, and made me wish my IQ level was much higher.  Jake works in this amazing city every other week, so the girls and I worked it into our school schedules to come out with him. It just happened that the best week for us was election week. I am so glad for the “perfect timing”. Conquering an unfamiliar city with three young girls was daunting and invigorating. The first day the girls and I had a conversation about “getting lost”. They were concerned and nervous. Their past experiences with my navigational skills wasn’t giving them confidence, nor should it have. So I had to think about what I could give them for confidence and said something along the lines of, “I’ve been getting lost since I was Ivy’s age (2) and I’m still here and doing fine. Getting lost isn’t the end of the world. You work through it and make it in the end.” Getting lost has always been incorporated into my traveling methods….or lack of. I’m used to it, but my kids weren’t. Jake does extremely well with finding his way around, and I do hope my kids latch onto this strength of his. Ivy had major meltdowns several times in every day. But it was something to see her confidence grow as she rode the Metro, and did so much walking without a stroller. Ayzia and Eden helped with navigation and felt grown up  when they got to stand on the Metro, opposed to sitting. They were motivated explorers in a new territory. Elementary age is the perfect age to go to the DC! I am not going to go too much into my observations and personal feelings about election week. The Nations’ feelings are still raw and tender with the event being current. My girls haven’t spoken much about their opinions regarding the election and what they witnessed. But hopefully when they are older and can articulate their feelings better, I’d love to know how it shaped them. Within our tight-knit little family, we had both Donald and Hillary supporters. For viewer information it doesn’t matter what family member was with what presidential candidate. But our family had the discussion after we found out who won, that it’s important to always vote for who they feel is the best candidate, regardless of what their parents think. We can still be a family and be friends!  I guess there is one personal experience worth sharing. I got an impression that it was important to express concern and empathy about Hillary and sorry that she didn’t win. (I was sincere, and was able think about their feelings.) Next, I want to mention something, but not sure how to articulate it so  I’m just going to say it; I loved being around the local Americans that were black. Every where I went, there was a black person laughing and in good spirits. I don’t know how this will come across to the viewers reading this, but in the  moments surrounded by black Americans, I was keenly aware of how calm, safe, loved, and “right at home” I felt. The diversity there in creed and color felt good within my soul. We are all one America, God bless our great country!

Waiting For the Metro

20161111_160301704_ios 20161110_143013533_ios 20161110_143008008_ios 20161108_144055957_iosWalking Around the City

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This gentleman was our greeting into the zoo. He wanted us to take a picture of him and email it to him. My judgement was that he was a little deranged, but it turns out, he is legit. Super friendly guy. ( Click the picture to be routed to his website)

This gentleman was our greeting into the zoo. He wanted us to take a picture of him and email it to him.  Super friendly guy. ( Click the picture to be routed to his website)

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Despite the advertising on the packaging, the girls didn’t understand what it was made out of…That was until after the purchase and the cashier informed them, “Now you can write on elephant poo!” Eden’s face was priceless and we left the employee in her apologetic laughter.

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I would have lost weight on this trip from all the walking and carrying of Ivy. However, it was the daily icecream that made me come home heavier than when I left. :( The emotional eating was worth it though.

I would have lost weight on this trip from all the walking and carrying of Ivy. However, it was the daily icecream that made me come home heavier than when I left. 😦 The emotional eating was worth it though.

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Good food! Ayzia loved the Thai Dumplings.

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Eden and Ivy had spaghetti, Ayzia had buttered noodles, I had the Alfredo, and Jake had a sea food dish(Lobster, scallop) It was okay, but we have had better.

 

Although I have never drank an alcoholic beverage and I don't plan to, a liquer cabinet is always pretty.(even with a messy counter top)

Although I have never drank an alcoholic beverage and I don’t plan to, a liquer cabinet is always pretty.(even with a messy counter top)

 

Family History

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My great grandparents lived here from 1929-1935 while my great grandpa studied law at George Washington University

My great grandparents lived here and started their family from 1929-1935 while my grandpa when to school.

This side walk is across the street from their place. The neighborhood is predominantly black people. It was quiet and calm, but run down. I looked up homes in this area on Redfin, to see how much they were selling for? About $600,000 plus. YIKES! Guess my fantasy of buying one for a second home and renting it won't be happening any time soon.

This side walk is across the street from their place. The neighborhood is predominantly black people. It was quiet and calm, but run down. I looked up homes in this area on Redfin, to see how much they were selling for? About $600,000 plus. YIKES! Guess my fantasy of buying one for a second home and renting it won’t be happening any time soon.

The building where Jake works

It was super cold and windy. Luckily we had our jackets and our friends McKay's lent us their stroller.

It was super cold and windy. Luckily we had our jackets and our friends, the McKay’s, lent us their stroller.

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My great grandpa Stewart got his law degree at George Washington University

Arlington Cemetery

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World War ll Memorial

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Lincoln Memorial we saw on Vetran's day. We heard an amazing man sing the National Anthem.

Lincoln Memorial we saw on Vetran’s day. We heard an amazing man sing the National Anthem.

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This wasn't planned, but when you have kids that are tired of walking around and come across this. It is a "pick-me-up" in their moral.

This wasn’t planned, but when you have kids that are tired of walking around and come across this. It is a “pick-me-up” in their moral.

Smithsonian Castle

Smithsonian Castle

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I would like to recreate my back yard to have this kind of atmosphere.

I would like to recreate my back yard to have the feel this courtyard’s atmosphere has.

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Writing in their journals while protesters come and go.

Writing in their journals while protesters come and go in front of the White House

The White House

The White House

Natural History Museum

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Ivy wanted to walk through this over and over. Having to leave it behind triggered a 45 minute meltdown and ended with an ice cream sandwich from McDonalds that was outside and around the corner.

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They enjoyed experiencing the flight simulators. This was another pick-me-up, having to wait through Ivy's tatrums and walking around.

They enjoyed experiencing the flight simulators. This was another pick-me-up, having to wait through Ivy’s meltdowns and walking around.

Native Indian Museum

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The architecture is most intriguing. Both Jake and I have architects in our family and love to admire the structures of buildings. This is definitely interesting to reading over.

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I haven’t quite figured out why, but this was my favorite quote. For me, it has something to do with, put in your best work while you are here on earth and having a fight for ‘life’ mentality.

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It was so cute. One of the days we were there, the day Ivy and I got ice cream at Cold Stone. In the elevator on the way back to our room, Ivy and I stood in between a tall, well-suited black man and a sharp looking black women. Ivy lifted her finger towards the woman to offer her a sticker on her finger, “Here you go sissy.” I wasn’t sure if the adults could understand her 2 year old language so I repeated, “Aw, are you calling her sissy?” Ivy claimed, “Yes.” Again she looks up in pure delight toward this woman. I didn’t want the two adults to misunderstand her definition of ‘sissy.’ so I ask Ivy, “Is she your sister?” Ivy says with a big smile, “Yeah!” The woman gladly excepted and the man chuckled under his breath. There was so much to learn and feel in that moment. -Children are certainly God’s blessed-

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Losing Grace

A friend of mine pointed out on her blog that most family blogs only tell the light-hearted side of life. She vowed to be more honest in her writing. In trying to do this myself I’m forewarning you this post will do just that; show a side of me that is unlikeable.

I thought grace left me on the day of my daughter’s birthday.(For several reasons that don’t pertain here.) The next 3 days were spent dwelling on how I managed to lose grace. But I was wrong… Grace actually left me on the third day of grieving its absence. It could be, grace was long gone and this event was the repercussion or the after-math effect. But either way, it was this day I knew for sure grace was gone.

To help my daughters not be scared, I’ve tried hard to create monsters into something good, funny, or a metaphor. However, one of the worst things I’ve done as a parent in the last 6 years(since my oldest is 6) was trying to do just this. Our girls have a problem with screaming at each other. It looks very much like a monster you’d see on television. So I created this space where, if they did this kind of behavior, they would be sent there to calm down. The place? Under my massage table. Why? Seemed like a great place, a save place to me. What was it called? The Monster Box.

Well…it was the stupidest name! After thinking more about putting the two words, monster and box together, I could see the warped image a child might have. Most of you reading this are probably muttering to yourself, “Yeah, I could have told you that from the beginning.” It took the second time using this space to see, that trying to get a small child to sit in this space actually turned me into a monster.

The rest of this day was spent trying to recover from the event. Filling our day with happy pictures was a must. We hiked Elfin Forest, the girls played in the yard, had popsicles and then watched the movie, Monster in Paris. The movie was quite befitting; since the monster was kind-hearted, had a lovely singing voice and played the guitar. (all the attributes I wish to possess). Most importantly, we denounced the monster-box and instated the Safety-Fort. A place where they can say anything they want and won’t get in trouble. A place where they can calm down from whatever is giving them anxiety or frustration. The new title fits better for the intentions is was created for. After their showers I gave them a massage on the roof of the fort. Their pops then put them to bed and I finished this post.

I’m putting myself back onto the road to find grace.

Grace is Slippery

Last week I found out grace is hard to hold onto when life is out of balance.  The balance may range anywhere from not eating right to preparing for a big event. Which in this case I’m referring about planning a birthday party for my 5-year-old. As the days drew nearer to the date, I felt grace fleeting, but instead of leaving quickly it left like holding a slippery bar of soap. Grace is easy to have when life is calm, but difficult to grasp when life is busy.

Richard Evan’s Quote Book

After breakfast I decided to pull the book, Richard Evan’s Quote Book off my shelf. Remarkably, the ones read seemed to be what was needed to start my day.

“I have taken my best pains not to laugh at the actions of mankind, not to groan over them, not to be angry with them, but to understand them.” -Baurch Spinoza

“Oh, the comfort the inexpressible comfort, of feeling safe with a person, having neither to weigh thoughts, nor measure words-but pouring them all right out-just as they are – chaff and grain together-certain that a faithful hand will take and sift them-keep what is worth keeping-and with the breath of kindness blow the rest away.” -Dinah Maria Mulock

“Years ago I preferred clever people. There was a joy in beholding…a mind…bearing thoughts quickly translated into words, or ideas expressed in a new way. I find now that my taste has changed. Verbal fireworks often bore me. They seem motivated by self-assertion and self-display. I now prefer another type of person; one who is considerate, understanding of others, careful not to break down another person’s self-respect…My preferred person today is one who is always aware of the needs of others, or their pain and fear and unhappiness, and their search for self-respect…I once liked clever people. Now I like good people.” -Solomon Bennett Freehof