established 10 august 2009

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Counseling

Earlier this Summer, I started seeing a counselor again. For the first time since leaving Indiana. Was I nervous? You better believe it. Scared of discovering that I was crazier than I thought. Discovering that I WAS crazy as I felt. That maybe there was some mental disorder that had gone unchecked and would be finally diagnosed. Believe me, the "What ifs" were endless and relentless. The fear and stress seemed to creep into every thought. Even the thought of having to be on Anti-Depressants terrified me. (There is nothing wrong with modern medicine. I know it works wonders for others and that is awesome. I just have etched in stone thoughts on medicine for myself.) I was fearful that all these fears would become true and that I would feel even more unfit to be the mother of my beautiful boys and unworthy to be my husbands wife. Irrational fears? Yes. But fears nonetheless that consumed me inside. Darkness was all I felt and the only future I could see.

Then came my first appointment. I remember my heart racing as I sat in that waiting room. Wondering what kind of information, what new Corrinne would come out of that counselors room. Then, a middle aged man came out and called my name. He shook my hand and introduced himself. (We will call him Andy). I could barely look at him as we shook hands and said our hellos. I followed him to the end of the hallway to his office. It was small but quant. We sat down and he started to ask some questions, to get to know me and understand why I was there. What my goals were and what I wanted to get out of counseling. My test score was pretty high, indicating i was in a state of severe depression (again). (For those of you who do not know, when you go to see a counselor, you take a sort of test. One you answer truthfully. This helps indicate what type of mental state you are currently in and what may need to happen to better it.) That was fairly upsetting but no surprise, really. I knew I was in poor shape.

I sat in a large, comfy chair holding a pillow close to my chest the whole time we talked. As we started digging into my fears, worries and sorrows that still haunted me to that day for the past ten years, tears flowed from my face. I felt vulnerable and exposed. Here I was pouring out my heart to a man I had just met and for some reason I felt - Safe. Safe? It was unexpected. But I wanted to welcome it. I wanted to continue to sob and utter all my deepest feelings and thoughts. By the time it was over, I was still crying. The receptionist who rescheduled me saw me in tears but I could still sense her sympathy as I parted from the building. And even though, I felt exposed and raw - I couldn't wait to go back. To feel that safety again and be in a place of no judgement. I longed for it. Thinking, I needed it.

Could it be that this was the answer? The answer to all my pleas in prayer form. Prayers that felt like they were hitting a lead ceiling just floating there never to reach heaven. I believe it was. It is.

God was still there. He had been listening. Not only listening, He had been with me the whole time. Sitting with me as I prayed. Sorrowing over His daughter who hurt so much she felt numb. It seems impossible, to hurt so much and be numb at the same time. But its what I felt. Constantly. And so, to have my eyes begin to open to the love that my Father in Heaven had for me and all He had done for me - it was humbling beyond words.

Over the next several weeks, I went back. Back to my safe Haven. Back to shed more tears and pour out my thoughts and feelings to Andy. Then something remarkable began to happen. I learned. I learned about myself. Realizations hit me. Connections from my past to present were made. My instinctual behaviors began to make sense. Why I thought the was I did. Why I acted in these peculiar ways. It started to add up and you know what? It was exciting. Here I was, 27 years old and finally understanding certain behaviors I had portrayed for as long as memory had served me. I was finally understanding - me. One thing I had wanted for so many years but could never grasp was becoming reality. If you have ever experienced this - discovering yourself - then you know the surreal joy that comes from it. By no means am I at a Masters Degree on myself yet, but I am continuing to learn. And I hope I never forget.

Fast forward to now. Andy has told me that I can be done with counseling. What? Admittedly, that thought scares me. Which, of course, I expressed. So we agreed that I should book an appointment for a month out and see how the next month goes. If I feel I need to go back in for one last time, I will. If not, I can cancel. How did I even get to this point? Is that what your wondering? I know. I wondered the same thing. Well, I woke up. I kept an open mind and was willing to learn. I accepted  who I was and where I was and decided I could be better. I could be happier. I needed to be happier. I wanted to be happier. So what did I learn? Well, here's a few things that maybe will help you.

I learned how to catch negative thoughts, process and assess them appropriately and turn them into positive thoughts instead. This is huge. This was the first thing I began to learn from Andy. I started learning this in our second appointment and have practiced since.

I then learned (without realizing it right away), that its ok to put up boundaries. Physical, mental and emotional. For me, this meant letting go of toxic relationships. Not letting myself be exposed to certain people who have hurt me in the past over and over again. Boundaries have become very important to me and it's something I intend to continue to practice as the years go on. But, you have to do this appropriately. You can't just shut yourself out barricading yourself away. Appropriate boundaries.

The other important lesson I really learned was that I do not need the approval of all others. Just those who are most important to me. And I identify who those individuals are and then let the opinions of everyone else go. Is this easy? No, it takes effort. I had to tell myself over and over that "I don't care what you think." This has allowed me to slowly start to be a more genuine me. And let me tell you something. All of these lessons have been absolutely freeing. Liberating. I feel lighter. And these feelings and lessons are enough for me to keep a close eye on myself. To not allow myself to sink back into the darkness that consumed me just some weeks ago.

This is not to say I won't struggle. I know I'll have down days. My depression and anxiety still come some days without warning. Somedays its still hard to pull myself up. However, it has gotten easier. And I know, the more I practice the easier it will become.

Remember you're not alone. God is listening. Heck, He weeps over your sorrows with you. I know with out God, I couldn't have gotten to this point. I'm certain that I saw Andy and not someone else because he was the one who could help me best and God knew that before I did. I love my Savior and I'm so grateful for His patience, love and guidance. I'm grateful for Andy and his counsel, friendship and the way he laughed when I got incredibly animated as I talked to him at times. I'm grateful for LDS services. I'm grateful for my Bishop who gave me the referral so I could go to LDS services. I'm grateful for my husband, Adam. For his love, support and faith in me. He has always seen a strong woman in me and has always know I could be that strong woman. Thank you for never giving up on me. I'm grateful for my parents and their understanding and support as I went through counseling. And again, I'm most grateful for my Savior. For His love and guidance in all of this growing I have done this past summer.

Remember, you are not alone.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Back to Basics

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to help a couple of close friends by listening and giving advice. Sometimes, that advice just comes, like they aren't my words at all. I think times like that is when there is something for both of you to learn. Which is so awesome. I believe its the Lords way of having you help someone in need and helping yourself to grow and learn. So, what did I learn yesterday? I learned the "Back to Basics" concept.

What is it? Well, I didn't know until I typed it out in a text message like I knew what I was talking about, HA! But it helped my friend. And it helped me. In this example, its to remind us mothers that we are good and worthy of our children. But I believe you apply this to any situation.

So, when you're having a hard time in life remember these Basics.

Repeat out loud, as many times as needed:

- I am a daughter/son of God, and He loves me.

- My kids are also children of God, and He loves them.

- God sent these children to me. They are mine. And that must mean, I am enough.

- I am a good mother and I can make this right.

- I love my children and they love me.

So take a deep breathe. Pray out loud and try to feel that validation you need that you ARE ENOUGH through your Father in Heaven. Ask for forgiveness for your shortcomings. And remember, there is time for improvement. Every. Single. Day. You got this. I know it.

Remember, God's love is Real. The atonement is real. His Light is in You. And You are worth His time.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Priesthood Blessings

What an amazing miracle that we have the abolity to give and receive Priesthood blessing in this world. Don't you think? We certainly need it in these trying and confusing times. If ever you're doubting that your Savior loves and needs you, get a Priesthood blessing. You might be amazed at what He has been waiting to tell you.

Time and time again I am astonished at the love I feel from my Savior after a blessing. He is watching out for me. He is listening to me. He has plans for me. He haas confidence in me and believes in me even when I don't believe in myself. He is saddened when I belittle myself. Did you get that last one? Saddened. 

My Savior is saddened over me. Me. When I talk down on myself, tell myself I can't, I'm not enough, I'm not pretty, I'm not smart, I'm not a good wife, I'm not a good mother - my Savior bears sorrow for me. An individual in this world full of other individuals. Which means, guess what? Your Savior is saddened when you tear your self down in anyway. Mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually. 

He loves each and everyone of us. With is whole heart and soul. He is listening, watching and caring for us. He has a wonderful plan for us. All we need to do is seek. Listen. Act. 

Recently, I bought a new journal specifically for writing down priesthood blessings afterward. 


I used it the other night and wow. I can't believe I never thought of doing it before. But that's the thing, while my I did seek and listen, now is the time to act. And I think that's the hardest part for all of us. 

Like that old saying, "Actions speak louder then words." This is true. We can seek and listen to our Savior, but without acting and striving to really change, better ourselves and implement these personal instructions into our lives, it's meaningless. And then, we run the risk of our Lord not telling us more. Why would He if we aren't doing anything about it? If we aren't truly, sincerely changing, why give more instruction? But when we strive for change and act on these instructions given to us, then will our Savior out poor more and more blessings and guidance for us. And who doesn't want that, am I right? 

So remember - Seek. Listen. Act. And your Savior will unfold His plan for you and continue to lead you where you should go and who you should be. 

God Be With You. 

Friday, January 27, 2017

Anxiety: Light, Shadow & Electricity

Tonight, I sat with my dad semi watching t.v. and talking about random things. Almost the entire time I sat on that floor, I could just feel my anxiety running through my body. Like electricity, it just keeps moving. Even now, I sit here writing while rocking back and forth trying to cope and calm down. Wishing so badly that Adam was here. That I could be in his arms so that I might relax. I'm on the verge of tears because I miss him so much and it makes dealing with this anxiety even harder!

.................

Why tell you this? To tell you, you're not alone. I'm not alone. I might feel like I am, but I'm not. I know there are others in my life that know these emotions and the physical aspects that come with anxiety. They've experienced them, too. I know that I'm with my family, and I'm so grateful to have this time with them. And I feel bad that my missing Adam affects my mood while I'm with them at times. But I know they understand. 

Adam just makes me feel better. When I'm having a bad day filled with anxiety or depression or both, when he gets home, I usually start to feel better. But this also makes me feel bad as a mother. I feel guilty that I don't feel this same kind of release from my demons with my boys. That I get frustrated with them while battling off emptiness or figment scenarios. My "What If's". But it's what happens. It's something I'm working on. Something I have to battle every day. It's tiring. Draining. And that lack of energy only feeds my demons. Making me think I'm not a good enough wife. My boys deserve a better mother. That I should be alone. And guess what!? This happens more frequently then I care to admit. 

But earlier, I posted a picture of the temple, saying be need to let our light shine. Don't let the shadows entice into thinking they hold truths when all that lurks there are puppet masters. This is the same thing. Anxiety and depression, they are trying to led me to these shadows, trying to convince me that these whispers of deceit are truths. But they. Are. Lies. And I know it! But still I step too close to the shadows! Why? Because I'm imperfect. Because I'm human. But thankfully, my Savior IS Perfect. 

And in Him, I can step back towards the light. And I continue to fight these battles with His help. His atonement and His love and perfect understanding of what I'm battling. And I am so grateful. Where would I be with my Saviors love and forgiveness? What lies would I believe and what shadows would I hid behind? 

Anxiety manifests itself in many ways and the way we cope varies from person to person and sometimes from day to day. But no matter what, I know I have my Savior. He hasn't left. He hasn't forgotten. He loves me. And He is ready to fight for me and with me. 

That's all we really need. Right? 

Thursday, January 26, 2017

The Book Of Mormon

Last Year, while I was 25, I read The Book Of Mormon in 90 days. It was the first time in my life that I had ever read it all the way through by myself. I felt so accomplished. I did it! It was surreal to feel the Holy Ghost bear witness to me that what I had read, was indeed true. 

Now, I had always had a small, basic testimony that The Book Of Mormon was true. Based on my testimony of Joseph Smith being a prophet and translating it. But I needed it to be stronger then it was -  something I could truly lean on in times of struggle. And reading it like that gave me a glimpse of what my testimony could be. And I crave for it to be stronger. 

After moving to Florida, my habits became out of whack. It was a distracting time and a lot was going on that was stressful and out of our control. It was extremely difficult at times. 

Well, last September (maybe, not totally sure) I began to read the scriptures to the boys at bed time. After they were all tucked into bed I would read a chapter or two. And it quickly became a habit that they needed, too. And so, I of course, continued to read to them. Every night. And now, it's a set in stone habit. 

Now, I'm back in Utah. And since being here, I have been able to physically feel my spirituality grow and strengthen. My understanding of the Book of Mormon has become more clear. I can imagine it in my mind more fully then ever before. I have felt the spirit bear witness to me that these words are true, over and over again. I love it. 

I love to feed my soul and search for a better understanding. I love feeling the physical growth of my spirit. Something I've never really understood before. But I crave it now. I need it. And I am so grateful to my Father in Heaven and my Savior for my experiences. 

 

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Wandering Spirit

If you know me, you most likely know I grew up in the St. George area of Southern Utah. Growing up, I struggled with the strong pull to want to leave and wander the America land. I desperately wanted to Boston and Chicago. Visit Yellowstone, the Rockies and Niagara Falls.  See rolling hills and golden wheat farms. Experience all the Church sites I could. Feel the spirit and pray in the Sacred Grove. 

Well, none of these happened growing up which in turn developed a distain for the red rocks and mountains. Cactus and heat. I longed for four seasons. 

Then, at the naive age of eighteen, I met Adam. As I got to know him more, I learned that he grew up doing the things  and seeing all the places I wanted to see and visit and experience. (No, he was not a military child. His dad was a choir director). I was both intrigued and envious. 

Fast forward and we're married. Shortly after getting married, we moved to Idaho. I got to see the Tetons, Yellowstone, Island Park, Jackson Hole and amazing ice caves. 

We've also now lived in Indiana wear I got to see rolling hills in Iowa and golden wheat fields all around. Unfortunately, we didn't make it to Chicago or Niagara. Or other places that weren't too far, but one day. I'm sure. 

There was also Florida where we got to visit the beach and experience the Keys. 

Needless to say, my life has been full of adventure these past seven and a half years. My wandering spirit has been satisfied to some degree. (I don't think a wandering spirit can ever be guilt satisfied). But I have enjoyed our adventures and the memories. 

Now, we are back in St. George, Utah for a time. And I now have a new found love and appreciation for the beauty it holds here for the red rocks and surrounding mountains. Even the cactus and desaturated desert plants. I still don't like the heat though. Thank goodness it's winter. I love being here. I know I'm suppose to be here right now. I feel it when I'm among this nature and hear the crunch of the earth beneath my boots. When I feel the cold air on my skin. And hear natures cry for peace.