I have two harp students, 12 and 8 years old. I have forgotten that to help encourage them, I need to keep them moving on so they feel successful. I don't feel like going into details, and I am not depressed or feeling hard on myself. But I feel...surprised. I somehow forgot to be sensitive to their personal needs with the harp.
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We've been going to the temple every Saturday. The blessings promised are so beautiful; we have a sweet experience every time. Going so often helps me stay in check! I'm so grateful I've been able to keep the spirit of General Conference vivid. Too often my vigor would fade, and I would forget all those goals I had for bettering myself. Hah...a little funny that "bettering" and "battering" are close words! Anyway, I've tried very diligently to make my prayers more meaningful through Elder Bednar's instructions. It has helped me change my attitude! And by going to the temple, I have felt nudged to take better care of myself. It's difficult, but it's obviously worth it.
For a long time, I have had a lot of various pains and discomforts that I have tried to ignore and even avoid mentioning at all. But I've known, more or less, the causes of all the problems. I didn't get enough sleep, I didn't eat enough (or at the right times), and I hadn't exercised for months and months. So I know my body won't be perfect, but I can help it feel better! I've been given several blessings and promises of health that I need to have more faith in. And faith requires action!
The last time we went to the temple, I received a valuable comfort. It's one I feel fine to share, too. I know it is a common thing--understandably--for mothers to question their ability to have a second child, third, fourth, etc. Because of my health and simply common reasons, I've had "nightmares" of having a second child all too soon--Ender is only 8 months old. But without really asking for it, I received a comfort that I will be ready, whenever the time comes. Even if it was now. We're not announcing anything. Still, I don't worry anymore. I will be able to do all that I need to. I know it. Not even vainly so, not in a naive sense of believing it's easy. But I have the strength of the Lord on my side.
I am not afraid of anything. There are scary things: sharks in dark, deep water; clowns; kidnappings; car accidents...Sad things, too. But nothing will conquer my family because we have the power of the gospel in our hearts. We can and will overcome obstacles and trials. I am not afraid of anything.
My part is so little sometimes. My best effort is laughable (often)! Perfectionism seems lightyears away much of the time, but it's never impossible in my mind. It's always there. While that used to drive me crazy, now it's beautiful. It almost feels like a memory. Somehow I feel like I've known before what perfection feels like. I have caught glimpses in performing music on my harp, glimpses through the love I feel for my husband and son, glimpses when I battle selfishness and win. I have been perfect before, I think. I think I was a perfect child of God in heaven and for a short time when I was born. The feeling is so desirable it drives me to find it again.
I'll just need to remember that when I disappoint my potential, it doesn't decrease my potential.
I had a swim coach who disagreed. For logical reason. He told us our potential is comparable to a jar of M&Ms. Each time we missed practice, we took a handful of M&Ms out of that jar. When the swim meets approached, suddenly we'd find we couldn't reach our goals because there just weren't that many M&Ms to be had--our potential for reaching the goal had diminished.
There's some truth to that. But it ignores the Atonement if you want to apply it to the eternal parts of life (such as perfection). Why else would we be commanded to endure? Keep trying!
I needed to hear myself say that. I have a concert coming up. You could say I took too many M&Ms out of my jar to make this a great concert...but gracious peas, I'm a MOTHER! I can't practice 4-5 hours a day anymore! I am determined to be grateful for this experience even if I have to laugh at myself. I'm more concerned about embarrassing our conductor, but not to the point of stress.
I DON'T DO STRESS.
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My daydreams usually consist of me having some sort of superpower. It's usually a universal kind, like the vague power of "magic." Once in a while, the superpower is called money. Nearly every time, though, I wish I had more power to help people. It sounds very cheesy, it does. I am mildly interested in daydreaming of a beautiful mansion, lovely fashionable clothing and a nice garden sometimes. But it's more fun to think "and if I had that much money, I could do all these things for my friends! For strangers! It would be SO fun!"
There's nothing wrong with that, probably. But I forgot I could still be generous with what I have! I forgot I still have many ways to serve others!
I do have the ability to get rich with Michael. Whatever, maybe we will be some day.
In Relief Society, they often hand out clipboards with lists of services to sign up to do. At first, I found myself thinking "but even if I can cook a meal for someone, I need to do that for my family first" and "I can't give any money, I can't justify taking from my family for it." I'm a little embarrassed how long it took me to realize DUH! I don't have to be asked to serve! I thought up some things I can do for people and made it known. I was so blessed--our ward did a service auction, like Heavenly Father instantly offered an opportunity!
I'm so grateful I can help in so many ways!
- I can bake bread, any kind
- I can give facials and teach about makeup
- I can teach harp lessons
- I can give harp performances
- I can decorate cakes
- I can clean
- I can babysit
- I can give rides
- I can be an exercise buddy
- I can be a good friend
- I can go on and on and on!
It's my favorite blessing, when I count the many, to be able to bless others.