Wednesday, October 21, 2009

What I Learned This Week

What I learned this week.....

You are never alone,

unless you want to be.


being alone is like stuffing wax in your ears.

His voice is there but

you are choosing not to hear it.

Heavenly Father will do His part

if We do ours.

He loves us unconditionally

and no matter how hard we try

we can never pay Him back


He loves us more than we can ever, possibly,


I'm happy

to know it


Monday, October 5, 2009

Dear Erin

You are probably wondering why I am writing you a letter on a blog. I'm not really sure why except I wanted to share a few things I've been thinking about lately and would rather not do it on the phone. Since I have made my blog private I feel like I can say more of what I need to say, so anyway, here goes.

I suppose as the big 50 approaches and life has changed and time marches on, I look at myself with a much more critical eye. I'm not thinking so much about what I see in the mirror as I am about what I think of myself on the inside. I realized some things the other day. One is that I started going to Weight Watchers in 2005, almost 5 years ago. During that time I have stopped and started. Stopped more than started and had some moderate success along the way. After almost 5 years I think I know what I need to do to lose weight. I just don't do it all the time like I should. One of the changes I've noticed is that I don't think so much about the future as I used to. The "future" to me feels like right now. These are the days when I still have my health and abilities, with a few exceptions, and I don't want to waste them. I've accomplished most of the important goals I've set for myself in life but there are still a few things I need improve upon.

I have a very busy life. Work takes up the most hours of the day followed by home. I don't like the way work chews into my life. Lately I have had a very difficult time getting home at a decent hour. I totally missed getting home in time to do my visiting teaching last month and I don't feel good about it. I want work to be finished around 4 or 5pm so that I can go home to my life and my other responsibilities. That is number 1.

Number 2 is my testimony of the Gospel. I have one. I've said it for years and have felt it for much of the time but I haven't studied. I haven't put myself out there and tried to earn it. I want to know the Savior better to feel his peace in my life and to do that I need to put more attention to scripture study and prayer. In the last six months I have been better about that and it has made a difference. I am reading a book about spiritual maturity and the author had a quote in there from Joseph Fielding Smith about the true laziness of people who don't study. I felt rebuked and am promising to do better. I have spent years of my life earning a secular education. I'm overdue to spend equal time on spiritual matters.

Number 3 is the need to develop discipline. I suppose discipline sums up what I want to develop most in my life right now. I don't know if getting to a particular weight is really what I want to focus all my energy on at the moment. However, I am keenly interested in being more disciplined about what I eat as well as getting regular exercise. I'm trying to go to bed earlier and get up earlier. That's really hard but I'm always glad I did it once I get there. I have also realized lately that I'm not capable of being disciplined on my own and recognized I need heavenly intervention. Today I was very tempted to stop at my favorite bakery to pick up some cookies. After a heartfelt prayer the temptation went away.

Number 4 and finally last is that I would really like to have a friend. I'm not good at the whole friend thing. In fact, I don't think I ever have been. I'm not exactly sure what my problem is but it is something I would like to change.

Anyway, I just want to finish up by telling you how much I love and appreciate you. I don't think I tell you that enough. Another thing I want to change.

Love you 4 ever,

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Digging Deep

I stuck the pitchfork in the ground tonight expecting nothing
and receiving everything, new sweet potatoes!!
The garden gives her all and does her best every time.
Lately I only give whatever I need to give to get through the day.

One day, a long time ago, I was cleaning houses and Heavenly Father whispered,
"You are capable of doing more than this." I listened, and now I'm a social worker.
I need to lose weight and get back on track with my diet program.
I can do this.
I need to dig deep and rediscover the strength I have inside.

Thursday, September 24, 2009


Today I visited a lady who is dying from a disease that is wasting the muscles away in her body. She is close to my age. She told me that she has been mad at God for doing this to her and last week was especially bad. However, today was better and because of that she was apologizing to God. She added that she is really scared to die and isn't ready.

I said, "Have I ever told you why I get up every morning and go to work?" She said, "no". I said, "Because every day I feel how much God loves our patients even when they can't feel it themselves." "And right now, I feel how very much God loves you." "I don't have any answers about why things happen. The only thing I am sure of is that somehow in the end God makes it ok." "I know you are scared but all of us will help you get through it."

I don't talk about my work with people anymore. Most people don't understand what I do and don't really care. That even goes for most of the nurses I work with. For some reason, I needed to hear that today even if it did come from me. I have struggled a lot lately wondering if I make any kind of difference.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Here I Go Again

I had a hard week and I'm not ready to go back to work tomorrow.

Too bad.... I have to go anyway.

I just don't want any NURSES to talk to me.

Friday, August 28, 2009


Old friendships die sometimes.
New ones are born.

Children grow up
and leave.
Just like the birds in the nest on my front porch.

The phone rings
and then it doesn't ring anymore.

Stress comes
and stress goes.

You get thicker
and thinner and then thick AGAIN.

Nothing ever stays DONE!

Grama used to say that the only
thing you can count on is change.

And that tomorrow the sun will rise again.

Through it all
you keep breathing.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

What matters most

Lately I've noticed that a lot of crappy things happen to really good people. I don't really understand that. People ask me all the time. "Why do I have to suffer?" "I lived a good life." Usually I don't have any kind of answer. Just a selfish thought sometimes that I'm glad it's not me.

I'm beginning to think that there is a reason. Everybody gets to have problems. Some worse than others. I just watched a 46 year old man with a beautiful wife and 5 kids die of throat cancer. He was scared but in the end he made his peace with it and was ok.

Maybe what matters the most is not the challenge. Maybe it is the way you deal with it. Life is a canvas and God hands you the paintbrush. When it's all done what kind of picture will it be?

You can slap the paint on and take the easy road. That never appealed to me. Maybe what matters most is the climb, not the destination.

Friday, May 22, 2009

On Being a Parent

I talked to a man today who I would describe as "the salt of the earth". Simple, kind, has a great testimony, but carries around a lot of guilt. His son died six years ago from a tumor in his pituitary gland. It stunted the boy's growth and created all kinds of problems. He described his son as "childlike". He said that after his son graduated from high school he worked at a local thrift store where he had several different supervisors. Unfortunately, instead of having a great experience, which we all would hope that he would have, he instead, got regularly chewed out for being forgetful and always complaining of having a lot of headaches. His father was called on a regular basis to pick him up and take him home. Eventually the powers that be wouldn't let him work there anymore. His father, being a very kind man, always tried to smooth things over in hopes that they would let his son stay on. However, upon occasion he had to rise up and advocate strongly for his son, much to the chagrin of the establishment. On those occasions, he always made a point of speaking loud enough for his son to hear him. Unfortunately on the medical end, they also had their challenges. They spent a lot of their time and money on trying to get treatment for their son. They trusted their doctors completely, only to discover that certain decisions were made for them, like ending certain treatments and eventually removing the feeding tube when he was no longer responsive.
All these years later he still feels guilty for being too trusting of the doctors and not forceful enough to help his son.I asked him, "If your son were here instead of me, what would he say to you right now? He said, "He would probably cuss me out for not trying harder." I think he would probably say, "I love you Dad for being there with me all those years. For loving me, spending time with me, and for always being the kind and gentle person that you are."
I think that as parents we never feel like we've done enough. Their pain is our pain and if they die before us it feels unnatural and wrong. Our children mean everything to us and no matter how much we love them, it can never make up for the loss and the pain when they are gone. Being a parent, more than any other experience in life exposes you to the deepest love and joy and the deepest pain and fear. Of all the things I've done in my life I am most proud of my kids. They complete me.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Major, my doggy therapist

I just wanted to post a couple pictures of my dog. Major weighs about 90 pounds. He thinks he's human. He also likes to pretend he is a lap dog. We hear a lot these days about distinguishing between our wants and our needs. Major is definitely a need. No matter what I know he loves me unconditionally.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009



are a pain in my rear end.

think they are God's gift to the universe.

can't see past the end of their noses.

think that they are the ONLY ones who do anything for a patient.

treat everyone else like they are annoying little ants that should be SQUISHED....


OK. I'll stop now.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Day I Lost My Voice

"He's dead." I told her. My second grade friend.

On an otherwise ordinary day.

The plot thickened and with every word I sealed my fate
and with every wandering of my tongue, her eyes bored into my head as if she was desperately trying to find me in the shadows
or perhaps herself.

A deer, caught in the headlights
seeking connection and feeling shame in the wanting.


you can't fill a well that leaks
but finding solace in trying.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

When You Hand Your Social Worker an Elephant

Here, take my elephant, she said. I don't want him anymore.

I'm done! I'm tired! (I've heard this before.)

You're the Social Worker she said, You know what to do.

Just give him away. I don't care. I'm through!!

I looked at my friend and said with a sigh.

Your elephant's a doozy. He's a really big guy.

I can't take him away. He's yours to keep.

So leave him outside and get some sleep.

Wherever you go, no matter how far.

Your elephant will find you wherever you are.

We all have elephants, I said with a smile.

They take us on journeys, there's no denial.

The thing to remember, the thing that is true

is that God made this elephant especially for you.

As you live with your elephant and teach him to mind

his strength will become yours and God's love you will find.

So here is your elephant, I'm giving him back.

My love and support you never will lack.

Friday, January 30, 2009

My Winter in Rock Canyon

I want to get out of here.....
I want to blow this popsicle stand,
walk out that door and never look back.
I want to feel the sun on my face on a hot day in July.
I want to feel the press of people around me when I shop for Christmas presents in December.
I want to accidently burn the chicken in MY oven, in MY apartment just before my family comes to visit me on a sweet Sunday.

I want to live.....

I am David battling Goliath on a slippery slope.
I am Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz....
"You have always had the power to go home." she said.
Just follow the yellow brick road and........

I'm tired.

Pills fall from the sky like rain.
I fall, and someone offers me a wheelchair and a glass of water.
The road becomes dark and I am wrapped in a blanket of stars
but the voices fill me with sadness....

My strength and my resolve ebbs for a time
it never leaves me......

I am in my winter.

I am a tree.
tall and strong...
My limbs are bare but the creatures of the forest take shelter in my branches.
I lift the hands that hang down.
I give the warmth of my smile to those who are cold and barren.

I put on my armor again,
the leaves that I dropped on the floor of the forest.
Voices from the past, present and future come to strengthen me.

I go out and look for Goliath in the hot desert sand.

I slay him with his own sword of doubt, apathy and indifference
and wait..........


that spring will come
and I will


Written for my friend, KT at Rock Canyon January 2008