Saturday, October 4, 2008

WARNING: very long and introspective!

Please don't feel obligated to read this. This blog is in essence my journal and so I have some things that I dont just want to write about but NEED to write about and now this is a safe place for me to write about them. A lot of it is going to be very personal but Ive never been one to shield my true feelings. I use to be embarrassed about this but since marrying John I have come to appreciate this much more about myself since it is one of the things that he loves about me the most. But I'm sure this post may be long and boring for some of you so please feel free to move onto lighter blog reading...I wont be offended!

Growing up I wasn't exactly a tomboy but I did like to have boys for my friends much more than girls. Not for the reasons most people would believe either, I was a VERY late bloomer, who wasted no time in catching up might I add :) Anyway, I just couldn't stand the pettiness of girls. They drove me crazy with their mind games, gossip, and most of all their need to put others down to make themselves feel better (before I offend all of my friends, I am generalising to my experience with the girls at my school). I did find some good friends that didn't play into this as much as others did and they were my saving grace through High School.

I couldn't wait to be an adult where I felt all of this would just go away. That's one of the things that I loved about BYU so much was that even though there were thousands of girls with thousands of talents that I may not have had it didn't matter. For once I found girls that didn't feel the need to try to put you down to boost themselves up. They were just nice! They were even (gasp) happy for you when something went right for you or something fantastic happened to you. It was like freedom I never had found and I loved it! I still had tons of guys for friends but I also had tons of girls for friends too.

Perhaps BYU gave me a false impression of what life would be like, it seemed that HS was a thing of the past. One of the hardest adjustments that I have had to make as an adult is that not everything can be talked out, not everyone wants to solve problems. I can honestly (and proudly) say that when I left High School, I LEFT High School. I cant think of one time since HS that I have done something that I thought might hurt someone else's feelings on purpose. Now, I'm not saying that I have never hurt anyones feelings since then but I have never done it intentionally. I can also say that I have never been not happy for someone if they got something that I wanted. For example, I had a lot of friends who got married before me and I was never not happy that it had happened to them and not me. Heck my friend Rachel and I shared crushes in college and when something kind of fun would happen for her with one of those boys I never once was angry and I know she felt the same way because we would totally share and squeal with each other over things like this. (Maybe it helped that Rachel was raised with 7 brothers and no sisters)

I guess what I'm trying to say is that for some reason I have not been asked in this life to deal with jealousy, envy, and spite as a temptation. In fact I have been blessed with a very tender and sensitive heart (don't think I'm not aware of the problems and temptations that I do face, I'm just saying these aren't some of the crosses that I have been asked to bear). So its hard for me when things happen or when I encounter people who, in my opinion, use and manipulate situations that are innocent and try to for whatever the reason turn things around. Ive experienced this with two specific groups that I have in mind that I have encountered at different times in my adult life, that no matter how hard I tried there was just no solution to walk away from the situation with it actually resolved. In fact it seemed the more you talk the worse things get.

Its very hard on me and very hard on my tender heart. If you know there are people who do things on purpose to hurt you, how do you deal with people like that? I just cant seem to come up with any solution that works and Ive been trying to figure out that balance between being Christlike and continuing to put myself, and now our children in situations where I know some people may just not have the best intentions.

Whats even more frustrating is both groups also have done the exact same thing in trying to turn the situation around and blame you for the exact same that they themselves cant deal with. I remember studying this in my MFHD classes I just cant come up with the term right now but in essence its mirroring. For example one of these groups that I have in mind was a houseful of girls in my Seattle singles ward who in my opinion loved and thrived on drama. When I did try to finally talk things out with one of the girls she accused me of purposely doing things to cause drama and stir up trouble. In this situation is was laughable because it was so obvious but sometimes its not just that black and white.

Its always been my opinion to not go and tell everyone the situation but then others don't always play by those rules and so you wonder if others are only getting one side of the story and who knows what that side is. My wise friend Amy from Seattle once said, that "its a mighty thin pancake that doesn't have 2 sides." That's always stuck with me and I try to always remember that when I hear things, but still assumptions are always made. Perhaps that is one area where I struggle more...

See, whats driving me crazy is that this all sounds like that HS drama again that I felt I had left behind or at least should have! Isn't that one of the freedoms of being 30! I cant believe that as an adult I'm having to deal with issues like this and its driving me crazy! What are my obligations to people like you just cut them off entirely as not to disturb the feeling of rest and peace that I try so hard to cultivate in our home? Perhaps this is another area where I am weak is that I open myself up so much to people around me that I cant close parts of me off when they are around. So no matter how hard I try, these people disturb my feelings. I cant keep them emotionally at arms length and just put on a brave face. Ive never been one to pretend or hide my real feelings.

Anyway, I guess I just needed to vent these feelings off. To throw these questions and my problems to the expansive world of the World Wide Web, to not let them fester inside and cause my body to contract. See that right there shows how deeply I feel things. My heart feels things so deeply that it causes a physical reaction in my body.

Until I am perfect I will continue to pray for the ability to be both kind and wise at the same time as the Savior was when approached by people who had malice in their hearts. He had such a gift for not causing problems but just laying things to rest in such a simple and perfect way.

Its funny how one thing such as openness, honesty, and candor can be such a gift, as it is in my marriage to John. Tenderness of heart and pure intentions can be a gift to my children and to a friend who is in need. But then in a situation like I find myself in now it is not only the catalyst for getting me into something that seemed so straightforward and is then used against me as a weapon....

I guess I just have to remember that one day I will have to stand before God and be judged according to what is in my heart, for only he knows. And in that day it wont matter what others thought but only that I feel and my Heavenly Father and Savior feel that I have done my best, with my best intentions of heart.

Updated: At first I was reluctant about his post but now I'm so glad that I did since I received so many answers to the questions that I pose in here. Its a miracle that is now documented in this simple blog of ours. Thank you Elder Hales for being aware of me and my struggles months ago. I love Conference and all that it offers us!


Grandma Caroline said...

I perserved reading through, just because I like to know what's going on in my girly's life. I have nothing to say, but I'm glad you can write out your feelings in such a positive way. Visit my blog to see what we did.

Evenson Fam said...

It is just too bad that people can't enjoy the amazing person that you are. Forget their crap. Hang in there.

Sara said...

When there is someone that is "toxic" in your life, then yes, I do believe it's okay to "cut them off". Just because you separate yourself from that person does not mean you are unkind. You can still be kind and Christlike to that person, you've just distanced yourself and family from being vulnerable.

I'm sorry you've been in a situation that has made you unhappy but I'm so glad you received some answers! I need to reread Elder Hales talk when they get online on Thursday!