Friday, December 20, 2013

IMO: Duck Dynasty Drama

With all the Duck Dynasty drama everywhere, I've tried to keep my mouth shut. Mainly because tempers are rising and people are way too excited about arguing their own point. But when things like this pop up, I try to keep in mind one major point.


It seems like both sides of the "debate" or "issue" have lost all regard for who they are arguing with, and their only goal is to make sure they prove that their view is the right one.

I've learned there is no ONE right view. Everyone on this planet is unique, has lived different experiences, gone through different trials, had different influences on them. We all develop our own personal beliefs and views based on those experiences. Remember that quote about viewing the world through rose colored glasses? In my mind, I picture everyone with their own colored glasses on. Reality happens, and you view it and perceive it through your own glasses (your experiences, your trials, your views, your beliefs, your issues, whatever else has influence on your perception.) No one views things completely without bias or judgement. We can try, but we don't. We can't. Because we're not clean slates, just absorbing info. We're taking things in and dissecting them and analyzing them and putting them back together how we see fit.

So... Both sides of the Duck Dynasty issue are viewing this event through their own glasses. Those who are Christians feel like they're being forced into political correctness and being pushed to say that something they believe is wrong really isn't. They are ONLY going to push back harder that they have a right to believe and say what they want, because they see the views of others and interpret them as attacking, so they get defensive. The Gay and Lesbian community who have felt left out and persecuted their whole lives took Phil Robertson's view as an attack on who they are and their lifestyles and of course got defensive as well. When we're under attack, we all either have that Flight or Fight instinct, and online, it's all too easy to Fight back.

I am Mormon. And I'm southern. I have a lot of Gay/Lesbian friends whom I adore. They are amazing people. People assume they know my stance on things based on any one of the above facts.  But I'm not really upfront about exactly how I believe. I follow my church's teaching. The below is taken from

"People inquire about our position on those who consider themselves so-called gays and lesbians. My response is that we love them as sons and daughters of God. They may have certain inclinations which are powerful and which may be difficult to control. Most people have inclinations of one kind or another at various times. If they do not act upon these inclinations, then they can go forward as do all other members of the Church. If they violate the law of chastity and the moral standards of the Church, then they are subject to the discipline of the Church, just as others are" (Gordon B. Hinckley, Ensign, Nov. 1998, 71).

Point blank... Being gay is not a sin. Violating the law of chastity is. So there. I said it. In my opinion, Gay sex is a sin. But you know what else I believe? That all people sin in one way or another. So the fact that I don't have gay sex does not make me any better or more righteous than someone who does, because in fact, I sin a lot. So, you can get your panties in a wad because I think gay sex is a sin, or you can recognize that I believe everyone sins in one way or another. No one is better than anyone else.

And I'm absolutely positive that my view on it will come as no surprise to my friends, especially those who are gay. But can I tell you a couple things I always try to keep in mind when it comes to issues like this and my beliefs?

1. Like I said before, we all sin. No one is free from sin. Hence, who am I to judge?

2. Who am I to tell anyone how to live their life or what to believe? As I said before, we all go through life with our own perceptions and views and beliefs and they are all valid. You got to those beliefs and views because of what you've gone through in your life. And that is OK. It's alright. It's valid for you to see things that way. It doesn't bother me. It's not my job to "correct you" or "teach you." And it's not your job to do the same to me. My views are ok and valid as well. And what's super crazy is that we can co-exist without drama or disagreements or conflicts, as long as we both recognize this fact!

3. While I may view certain things as sin (I don't drink coffee or tea or alcohol, I don't smoke either.) That doesn't mean that I look at you and see you doing those things and think "That person is going straight to hell!" I don't think that it says that anywhere in the bible (or book of Mormon for that matter.) I don't know or understand every commandment out there, so I'm obviously not living up to and keeping all of them. Hmmm... I'm trying to figure out how to write this part out so it can be understood. You can take any bible verse, let 10 people read it, and all 10 people will have a different interpretation of exactly what it means (remember those glasses from before? That's why.) To me, religion and spirituality are very personal things. I believe that God teaches us what WE need to know. What I need to know may be very different from what YOU need to know. How I view sin is this... God looks on the heart, right? So what's in your heart? What do you feel and believe is sin? If you think something is a sin (or wrong, whatever) don't do it. If you think something is okay, go ahead. But be honest with yourself about it all. I would LOVE to get a tattoo (crazy right?) but I honestly believe that it would be defiling the temple(my body) that God gave me, so I don't do it. If you don't view that the same as me, then go ahead. I believe that God will hold us accountable for our own personal beliefs, and what He has taught us, through personal revelation (your conscience and all that.) I believe our judgement will be a very personal thing. Not that we have to measure up to some magic ruler he has, because honestly, none of us would ever measure up alone (but with Christ and the Atonement and all that... It's possible.) If you'd like to get into a more in depth discussion on what I believe the final judgement will be like, I'd be happy to do that, but it'll get way long (and this is already getting there.) so just message me or comment or something.

4. You don't even have to believe in God. If you don't, I'm cool with that too. Just try to live up to whatever ideal you have. Don't be a jerk. Try to be kind and decent to people. I do believe that a lot of this life is how we treat others.

Before I really conclude, I'd like to say one  more thing. Because I have the views I do on homosexuality, that DOES NOT mean that I am Homophobic. I am not afraid of gay people. I do not believe that people are going to hell for being gay. I do not hate a person because they are gay. So, the fact that I am southern and christian/mormon does NOT mean I'm homophobic. And the comments that are labeling people (no  matter what the label) kinda bug me. It's like name calling. It's not nice.

My main point to all this... BE KIND. The top two commandments given were to Love. Love God, and Love each other. When you love someone, you love them no matter what they're doing. You care for them no matter how they're living their life. It doesn't mean you have to participate in something you don't agree with. But you don't try to change them to fit your expectations. You're just there, accepting of the person as they are. That's how I see it. You treat people like PEOPLE. After all, we're all sons and daughters of God. Or if you're not religious, we're all just human beings trying to live out our lives as best we can. I think in this day and age, Kindness will go much further than arguing some point that in the big picture, has very very little to do with your life. 

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Tired and alone.

Feeling very lonely at the moment. I really am needing some help... desperately, and asking for it, and yet it seems like no one is answering. The friends who say "Let me know if you ever need a babysitter" can never babysit. The people at church who are there to help you out are all too busy to help you out. And family either has their own stuff going on or are all sick. So I'm left alone trying with everything in me not to lose it and to try and find a solution.

Tomorrow is going to be one of the most difficult days of my entire life. It will be Hell. Because I will be reliving, in explicit detail, the moments of my own personal hell. The moments that broke me, in nearly every single way possible. A wound that has abscessed, and needs to be cut out. And I'm doing that, taking the steps to cut it out and finally heal from it, but it's hard and it hurts and I'm alone.

I have been praying desperately for my Heavenly Father's presence through all of this, and I feel as if he's holding me up, because He knows I don't have the strength to do all this on my own. But there's only so much that spirit can do. It can't watch my kids for me. It can't give me a break from all the normal mom/holiday duties I've got going on in the background.

I am so grateful for that spirit of comfort, that has allowed me to get to this point, and to try and push forward, but I need more now. I need someone HERE. And when I look around, I don't see anyone. So what will have to happen, is I'll have to cancel the interview. Which only delays and prolongs the entire process, that in turns delays and prolongs the healing process.

But that's where I'm at right now. I've got nothing else. Time and time again I learn that the only people you can count on are Yourself, and Your Father in Heaven. And sometimes you can't even count on yourself.

It's not others faults. They have their own things. I understand, cause I have my things. It's just... hard. And I'm tired.

Friday, November 22, 2013

No, It's my stress, and I won't let it go!

I know I suck at blogging here lately... or maybe forever. But I try. It's the effort that counts, right? Maybe not on the internets.

Most of the things I'd probably be writing on here, I've been writing in a journal lately, and it's been a bit easier there, since no one will read it and I can be completely honest, which I can't be here, to be honest. There are trials and struggles I'd love to be open about, but this is not the forum. If you're interested, just ask. I'll let you know.

Anyways... There has been a ton going on. Internally and externally. This has been one of the most trying years for me health-wise. Physically and mentally. It has been very trying financially as well. Having a baby costs money. Did you know that? I  knew that, but had one anyways. God told me to. You're suppose to do what He says. But, OH, it's so much money. Money I'd rather be spending on other things. But I'm very grateful to have had my little baby this year, and since I did what I was suppose to, or inspired to rather, I know we'll be taken care of there.

That's what I was trying to kinda make my way round to... Faith. This post seems to be jumping around a little bit of everywhere, but it's really all about faith. There are many dark things in my life right now. Things that scare me, make me anxious, give me nightmares, and cause a lot of hurt and pain.  It's hard to make sure you see the "light" through all of that darkness. But even at times when I can't see it. I know it's there. I KNOW that my Heavenly Father has a plan for me. He said there would be steps into the darkness that I'd have to take along the way. As members of the LDS church, we know all about the iron rod. The rod we cling desperately to when we can't see for all the darkness around us. With that rod, we can keep trudging forward, keep working towards that ultimate goal.

For me, that rod isn't only the gospel of Jesus Christ. It's also my heart, spirit, soul, whatever. I know that if I do what I feel is right, I'll be okay. If I listen to those promptings, they'll lead me to where I need to go. Far too often I try to cling to the fear. If I don't worry about it, what if it sneaks up on me? If I don't stress about it, how will I figure out how to fix it? What I'm learning more and more is that all I have to do is trust in Him, and He'll take care of it.

My middle daughter is 5 now, and when she gets upset or hurt over something she locks up. She refuses to tell me what's wrong. I'll hold her gently and tell her "If you tell me what's going on, I can fix it. If you let me know, I can take care of it." But she is stubborn and insists on holding it in, holding it back, and not opening up and letting me as her mother do my job and take care of her. I realized, I do this over and over again with my Father in Heaven.

When I'm heart broken and everything around me seems to be falling apart, I clutch my problems as tightly as I can and refuse to hand them over. "NO, they're mine. I have to fix them." To Him, I'm his child, I can't see the whole picture, I can't see the solution, I can't see the end. I can only imagine his frustration with me, "If only you'd let go, and let me handle it, it'd all be okay."

So, I'm learning to have faith, to trust in Him. While I've always believed that Christ was the Son of God, I've rarely actually had faith in Him, the faith that He could take away all the heartache, the hurt, the pain, the sin. I haven't trusted Him to handle my issues how I want them handled. I've been that little kid struggling for control. But no more. I'm trying now, to just trust in Him. Allow Him to do what He does. And I know that it will all be okay. Maybe not right this second, but the assurance that it will be at some point is enough to get through the moment. And that's enough for now.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Are the demons buried for good?

The husband told me the other day that I am me again. We saw a glimpse of me last year, prior to getting pregnant with the baby. Before that, there were tiny glimpses here or there, but the last time I felt "Well" was probably 6 or 7 years ago. At the moment, it doesn't seem like it's been that long that I've been fighting, but when I'm in the pit, it seems like much longer.

But for now, the demons have been laid to rest. 

One of my favorite bloggers posted about "Remission" today. I was thinking about how my issues are in remission at the moment. I'm doing good. I'm back to normal, and even without the help of medications to get me there. There are still good days and bad days, like any other person has. But the bad days aren't so bad that I'm paralyzed with anxiety and shame and guilt. 

In the past, the idea of "Remission" always made me a little bit depressed. Because the illness can come back. But what I'm able to focus on now, is that it doesn't have to! And, because it is in remission and I have fought it before, I can do it again. I know what it takes to defeat it. 

So, Are the demons buried for good? Maybe not. But they are for now. And I'm grateful that they are... even if it's just for a little while.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Building Hype... and I'm finally catching up

I've got a new project I'm working on. It's kind of in honor of my last year in my 20's. Just trying to get you on the edge of your seat...  building that hype up... It's not that cool. You can calm back down. I'm just excited, but not sure what others will think... but then again, I don't care really. It's for me... yeah.

And I'm also on Tumblr now. Took me long enough. But I only know a handful of people... so... yeah.  Follow me if you're on there. Or don't if you're not. Whatevs!!!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Finally, it all makes sense.

I recently got very sick. I was in the hospital for about a week... then in outpatient treatment daily for 2 and 1/2 weeks. It was a very long, not fun process. But I learned an absolute TON about myself, and about what I need to do to be a healthy person, physically and mentally.

While I was at the hospital, the doctors discovered that I have bipolar II disorder. In bipolar II, the mania is not quite as manic, generally called hypomania, and is basically just an increase in energy, needing less sleep. But with Bipolar II, the depressive episodes are generally more severe than bipolar I, and last longer. In my case, I was being treated for only depression, and the medications I was taking was only making my symptoms worse, and also making me sick. While I was at the hospital, my meds were changed, to help balance my hormones, and to help stabilize my  moods more.

I've learned alot about CBT and DBT also. They are skills that practically anyone and everyone can use. They help you handle stress differently and kind of reprogram your brain so you can not worry or stress about silly stuff. They've also done wonders to help my anxiety.

With the new meds I'm on, and the new skills I learned, I feel more like myself than I have in years. And it feels wonderful. At the same time, it's still very new. And I'm having to take "baby steps" (I love What about Bob. I think I may watch it tomorrow) to get back into normal life. But I'm on my way.

Monday, September 30, 2013

I need some distractions (cause now Sarah Mclachlan is stuck in my head.)

In an attempt to try and distract myself from certain challenges I find myself facing...

Here's an awesome road a few miles from me...

A friend made the comment that he would absolutely send people MILES out of the way when giving them directions to his house... just so they would have to drive down "Bonerwood."

While I was taking the pic, I had to make a comment about the "angle" of the picture. 
I couldn't resist. 
My gutter mind wouldn't leave me alone until I said it out loud.
And now my mind is running wild with comments that I can't post.
So yeah, that's a good place to stop. 

Saturday, September 21, 2013

When I die, I wanna die here...

That may sound a bit morbid... But the Narrows of the Harpeth are absolutely stunning.

I needed a bit of a break today, so I took the trip out there, all by my lonesome. 
 Even the drive into the park is GORGEOUS
 The water on the front side of the river was so still... the reflections you could see in it were amazing.
 I love these old stairs
 And these rocks
 Here is the first of the steep climbs up the bluff to the top. 
 "Sanctuary"... I wonder if they'd let me on that list too.
 Does anyone else see the Letter K in this next one?
 Next time I'll remember a pocket knife to add my  name
 More pathway
 I think this tree is awesome. Obviously... something has been trying to kill it... but it just keeps rising above it and continuing to live.
 The view from the top.

 The edge... I had an epiphany today while I was sitting at the top of the bluff looking out and down. I'm terrified of heights. TERRIFIED. And while the view is incredible, every once in a while I'd look down and see how high up I was, and my body would tense up, my head would start spinning, and I'd get sick to my stomach... terrified that I'd fall over the edge... which was absolutely ridiculous, because I wasn't even close to the edge. I was sitting on safely on a solid rock. I do that all the time in real life. Even though I'll be sitting safely on solid ground, I'll start freaking out about things that will never happen. Hopefully, from now on, I'll be able to better remind myself to not let my fear and anxiety get the best of me, and keep me from enjoying "the view."

 Happy Clouds. They were so pretty today!
 So... These pics are mostly trees, rocks, and pathways... If you don't like these things... Turn back now.
 I love this next tree. The branches are SO amazing. Even those this isn't what most people think of when they think of a pretty tree, I think the chaos of it all is far more beautiful than a cookie cutter pear shaped tree.
 and back down the bluff
 And around the backside... more trees, with the sun shining through. 
 some history on the narrows

 The "pond"
 And another fear faced... SPIDERS. They were all over the place. This one was a bit bigger than a quarter, and made me pee my pants when I almost stepped on him. 
 The waterfall... This is actually a tunnel. The Harpeth river travels around a 5 mile loop and comes within just a few hundred yards of itself. Years ago a tunnel was blasted out of the bluff. It's gorgeous. 

 Oh, and I made a friend... or not... This little guy made me POOP my pants. Not really... but seriously... I about had a heart attack when I saw him. He was bigger than my hand. No clue what kind of spider he is, but I was TERRIFIED.
 Tree trunk
Tree stump 

 I climbed up the side of the bluff... and this is the view while I was standing on top of the tunnel where the waterfall feeds out into the river.

I have no clue what this is... but I saw it on/in a rock. 
Roots... I love roots. 
More roots... When roots are exposed like this... It reminds me of bones. Does anyone else think so? 

 The property on the other side of the river is Private Property... and there were some "good ol' boys" out there shooting. I about nearly pooped myself again when I heard the gun fire. but I think they were just shooting off some rounds for fun.

 And roots
 Today I went down a different trail, one I've never gone down before... and this is what I found at the end...
 It looks like something you'd see in a movie. I can't wait to go back and have a picnic there!

Anyways... I'll post more on my wonderful trip and experience later. It was a very beautiful day and I'm so grateful I was able to go. I can't wait to share this place with those that I love. 

Monday, April 29, 2013

Tablecloth PomPoms

I'm still pregnant. Just in case you're wondering. But I have a c-section scheduled about 4 weeks away... so I am counting down.

Tot's birthday is also coming up, pretty close to the due date and I'm afraid that I'll end up going into labor and ruining her birthday party... so we're doing it a couple weeks early.

Here in our house we are pretty big UT Vols fans. And Tot has asked for a UT birthday. She has this little Smokey dog (their mascot) that she loves and wants a "Smokey" birthday. So that's what we're doing. The girls get to be cheerleaders and the boys... football players.

To save some money, I am making Pom Poms for the party. I saw this video online.
It's a great tutorial on how to make Pom poms, but I needed orange and white, (For the vols of course.) and finding orange trash bags might be a bit difficult. So I decided to use those cheap $1 tablecloths you can get at the dollar store, or even walmart. And they have nearly every color you could use.

Anyways, here's how I made my pom poms!

First, I rolled out the tablecloth, but did not unfold it. It was folded into 4ths, so I just left it like that.
 Then I cut all the way down each side. On this side, I cut through two layers of the table cloth.
 This side had the edges, so I only had to cut through one fold of the table cloth.
 After that, I folded one corner down to form a triangle
 Then I cut, so I'd have a square.
 After I did that to the entire table cloth, I also did the same thing to a white one as well. Then, I started layering the colors. I did two squares of each color, layered on top of each other. Each table cloth forms one full pom pom, so you should be able to get two pom poms out of the two different colored table cloths. So make two piles.
 After you have your pile of squares, put your fist down into the center of the square and make two lines on either side of your fist. Then you will cut about 1 inch strips on either side of those lines, making fringe for the pom poms.
 Here's a picture of one side.

after you have the fringe all cut on both sides, gather square together with the fringe on either side of your fist.
 Then start taping tightly around the uncut part of the squares. This is gonna be your handle.
 All done taping!
 After you have the handle made, set the pom pom between your legs with one fringed edge facing up. Then pull apart all the strips you cut, alternating directions and fanning them out to make the pom pom.
 Be careful not to pull too much, because you will stretch out the plastic. Do this to both sides of your pom pom. And here is the final product.
 The video I followed said you can trim them afterwards to make them more uniform, but since mine are just for a little girls birthday party, I'm not too worried about it being all uniformed. But I think they turned out super cute.

I'm going to make these as favors for the rest of the girls as well, but their's will not be quite as big and thick. That would end up being $2 for each girl who comes, and with the new baby on the way... I just can't quite do that right now. But I'm excited to get them done and see all the little girls dancing around with them! I may even have to whip out some of my old moves at the party. Maybe it'll help wiggle this baby out a bit.