Church

Look! No hands!

The other day I realized that I am now able to lean forward with no hands, & hold ia 45 degree angle. I bet that’s thanks to horse therapy AND Cooper:

Our dog, Cooper, absolutely HATES to be alone. Whenever people leave, he sits by the door until he hears the car go, just hoping they will come back. When the car goes, he runs to see if I’m there- (cuz I rarely leave), & he tries to jump on me, as if to say, “Thank u for not leaving me! I love u!” I often lean forward to pet him, & re-assure him that I am really there. So I get practice leaning forward several times a day…

Then, during the day, he naps where he can see me. I recall the ninja-like moves I used to get out of the room w/my babies. I wish I could do them w/Cooper, but I can’t be “ninja -like” in my wheelchair (just turning it on, it beeps like the roadrunner–did they try to be funny when they did that?)! So, if I want to leave, either someone else has to come, or Cooper has to be completely out of it, so I can leave the room…cuz when Cooper finds himself alone, he HOWLS! So I just stay, since he’s too scared of our stairs (I can’t wait to move into our new, one-story home by next month!)

A few weeks ago, I posted a video, but forgot to tell anyone that I did! So, let me share a bit about our Mormon Channel video:

We made that video like 3-4 years ago. When the video was removed from Youtube, we were told it would air it at a “special” time. We thought that the “special time” would be during an LDS conference years ago, but it never did, so we had NO idea it would EVER air! But it finally did air, the 1st weekend of October, on LDS.org, during our church’s general conference–as we had thought it would, only years ago!

I was in Utah when it aired, watching the conference on TV (KBYU), so I never saw it. But the girls were with my parents here, watching LDS.org. My mom saw the intro. & had a feeling it was us, so they were watching, & when it ended, Sophia CALLED (yes, CALLED!) me, she was so excited, & my mom joked they need to update it now!

it DOES get better!

A while ago, I watched the movie “Million Dollar Baby”…it was a waste of 2 hours! It is about a boxer who hurts her spine & can’t move anymore from her neck down–but at least she could move her head & talk! Yet she just killed herself! (I was so disappointed, & thought, “she got a movie for that???) I understand the desire to die & how hard that 1st year is, but it DOES get better! So this post is to anyone out there who is recently injured, or just had a stroke:

In The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints general conference this weekend, Dieter F Uchtdorf gave a talk ( https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/04/grateful-in-any-circumstances?lang=eng&media=video#watch=video ) about gratitude that was exactly what occurred for me. Let me explain: I’d always been an avid journal writer pre-stroke, so when I could finally use the computer again, i started keeping my journal again. I was miserable that 1st year after my stroke, so it was no surprise that one of my 1st entries took forever to type the simple words “i want to die!”

As i got stronger, my entries got longer, & one time i was listing all the reasons why i hated things post-stroke. My sweet husband, mk, saw my list, & encouraged me to instead make a list of what i was grateful for. i thought he was nuts!, & i asked, “what do i have to be grateful for?” he told me that for starters, i was alive! but i wasn’t grateful (then) that i WAS alive, so it took me years to have the courage to start that list, & a while longer before I could say I was grateful to still be alive…the poor boxer girl in the movie didn’t have anyone like mk 2 help her change her thinking, but when I made the choice to set aside bitterness & be happy no matter what, as the talk by Dieter F Uchtdorf teaches, gratitude helped me see my blessings & change my attitude, as my hope, faith, & testimony in God grew. I will be eternally thankful to my husband for this simple suggestion, as it changed EVERYTHING for me. & since not everyone has “a mk”, I wanted to pass it on, since I know how much it helped me!

http://c.brightcove.com/services/viewer/federated_f9?isVid=1&isUI=1

“Gracias, danke, merci whatever language is spoken, ‘thank you’ frequently expressed will cheer your spirit, broaden your friendships, and lift your lives to a higher pathway as you journey toward perfection. There is a simplicity even a sincerity when ‘thank you’ is spoken.”

–Thomas S. Monson, “The Profound Power of Gratitude,” Ensign, Sept. 2005, 3

go to the temple

Since my recent article in LDS Living magazine mentions that the 1st thing I told mk was to go to the temple, I’ve had a few questions about what Mormon temples are, & why I told mk to go there.

Honestly, I was so young when it occured, so at the time, I had very little understanding of the significance in going to the temple. But the spirit wanted me to say it so bad that it was all I could think about. It felt like those words were almost shouted at me for 3 days!, & all I could only think was, “Somehow I have to tell mk to go!” So I can’t explain the excitement I felt when mk said I could talk by blinking!

But I think temples are better explained by our church leaders! Watch this video:

& on http://www.mormon.org it says:
The temple is the house of the Lord prepared and dedicated for sacred gospel ordinances. It is also a place of worship and prayer.

1 Corinthians 10: 13

I HAVE BEEN WORKING ON ANOTHER POST, BUT A FRIEND RECENTLY MENTIONED THIS SCRIPTURE, & I FELT I SHOULD SHARE MY THOUGHTS ON THIS SCRIPTURE:
1 Corinthians 10: 13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.
(King James Bible)

I HAVE THOUGHT OF THAT SCRIPTURE MANY TIMES BEFORE, & IT IS ACTUALLY INTEGRAL 2 MY CONTINUING RECOVERY, BECUZ IT GIVES ME STRENGTH 2 KNOW THAT GOD WILL NOT GIVE ME MORE THAN I CAN BEAR. I HAVE HAD DAYS WHERE I HAVE WONDERED WHERE GOD WAS DURING MY TRIAL. THERE IS A SONG THAT SAYS, “HEAVENLY FATHER, ARE YOU REALLY THERE?” I CAN’T TELL YOU HOW OFTEN I HAVE SUNG THAT IN MY HEAD. BUT THE ANSWER IS ALWAYS THE SAME – YES! THAT REASSURANCE CAN GIVE YOU THE STRENGTH TO MOVE ON. I OFTEN REFER MYSELF TO MY FAVORITE QUOTE, “I NEVER SAID IT WOULD BE EASY, I ONLY SAID IT WOULD BE WORTH IT” OR POEM, FOOTPRINTS IN THE SAND: I REMIND MYSELF THAT GOD IS THERE, BUT CARRYING ME & IT WILL BE “JUST A LITTLE WHILE.” I TAKE COMFORT THAT HE CARRIES ME WHEN IT IS ROUGH. THE SCRIPTURES TEACH THAT CHRIST WILL LIGHTEN YOUR BURDEN. I TAKE IT SERIOUSLY & TELL GOD THAT I CAN HANDLE NO MORE. THEN I NEED TO TRUST HIS HELP FROM THERE. I DON’T LAY IT IN HIS LAP, I JUST KNOW HE WILL HELP STRENGTHEN ME. I KNOW HE IS THERE WAITING TO HELP ME IF I JUST ASK. & WHEN I ASK, IT SURPRISES ME HOW MUCH I CAN HANDLE (BUT I DON’T THINK CHRIST THOUGHT HE COULD HANDLE HIS EARTHLY MISSION EITHER, & I BET HE WAS SURPRISED BY WHAT HE COULD BEAR!)

HOWEVER, I BELIEVE THAT THERE WAS A PRE-EARTH LIFE, & WHILE I WAS THERE, MK & I WERE TRAINED & PREPARED FOR OUR LIVES HERE ON EARTH, & GIVEN THE TOOLS & KNOWLEDGE WE NEEDED 2 CARRY ON. GOD HAS CONTINUED 2 BLESSED MY LIFE IN COUNTLESS WAYS, SO I COULD ENDURE, BUT HE TRUSTED ME TO MAKE THE CORRECT CHOICES SO I COULD LEAN ON HIM & GROW. I BELIEVE THAT GOD LOVES ALL HIS CHILDREN & PREPARES THEM ACCORDINGLY FOR THE TRIALS THEY MUST FACE.

WHEN FACED WITH ADVERSITY, WE CAN EITHER CHOOSE TO MOVE AWAY OR COME CLOSER TO GOD, HAVING FAITH THAT HE CAN SEE THE ENTIRE PICTURE & CAN HELP MOLD US INTO WHO WE NEED TO BECOME. ADVERSITY CAN BUILD OUR FAITH & COURAGE. I HAVE FACED MANY CHALLENGES SINCE 2004, BUT THEY SEEM MORE BEARABLE WITH THE BELIEF IN THE ATONEMENT OF CHRIST, WHO KNOWS, LOVES, & SUPPORTS ME, & THE BELIEF THAT THERE IS A BETTER LIFE AFTER DEATH. NO TRIAL IS TOO BIG WITH GOD’S HELP!