There is a scripture in the Book of Mormon. In Alma 34:38 that pretty much sums up my last few weeks of 2010.
"That ye contend no more against the Holy Ghost, but that ye receive it, and take upon you the name of Christ; that ye humble yourselves even to the dust, and worship God, in whatsoever place ye may be in, in spirit and in truth; and that ye live in thanksgiving daily, for the many mercies and blessings which he doth bestow upon you."
This scriptures has been on my mind because I have been doing the opposite. I have been fighting against everything. Fighting against myself, my body and definitely not completely letting the Holy Ghost and the Savior in. Not always, because we've had a wonderful few weeks, but just contending enough to not be able to fully enjoy it.
I think it started when I couldn't find my scriptures. Which means I wasn't reading my scriptures, which means of course I'm not in the best mood and bla bla bla. Now whats even more silly is right now, we probably have 12 copies in the house right now, but I couldn't find MY favorite ones and so was in a funk about it and of course to dumb to just read another copy. Funky mood has been following me. Particularly at nites and in the morning when I'm trying to find clothes to wear.
Because while I have been pregnant many times, Jason pointed out six exactly, but this will be my fifth full term, I always seem to forget what a fog pregnancy seems puts me under. For me, my emotions are heightened but really you are forced to lose control. You don't have as much energy, can't do as much. Slower and tired. Truly its selfless (if I do say so myself, ha!) to give up yourself for another person and really being pregnant is just a tiny taste of how much you'll have to do that after that baby is born. Does it ever get easy to see your body changing? I don't know. But lately I have been fighting it. Or wallowing in it, take your pick. With an awesomely attractive herniated belly button that forces me to not hold Paisley so much, a tingling carpal tunnel hand that has caused me to curse the nites, and complaining about my too tight pants, my view hasn't been real rosy.
Until I finally busted out my dang maternity clothes. Wait, I can breathe now? There is room? Why or why didn't I do that sooner? Pride. Ego. But funny cause unpacking those clothes it was like seeing old friends, which is just hilarious that you can feel that way about fat clothes. But they are. Like hey guys, we are going to do this one last time, could you find a way to make me still look cute? Thanks for not digging into my stomach. And while I haven't exactly figured out the cute phase yet, at least I'm comfortable. So good bye circulation cutting off clothes, hello elastic waist bands. Don't even ask me how many weeks I am because it doesn't matter.
A few days ago, my scriptures being lost was no longer cool anymore. Seriously I looked everywhere. EVERYWHERE. And while I don't claim to be a very spiritual person, lost items used to be my specialty! Many times in college and after that prayers have helped me find keys and important papers. I was getting discouraged. Because I don't know if I mentioned this, but as I've been reading this really cute little copy of Book of Mormon that I hadn't seen before, I had decided with Luke that we were going to highlight the whole thing in red. Every word. And while Luke lost interest in our goal, my set is continuously being colored red with each page. So that by the end I will have RED the whole thing. Get it?
Well after a lackluster New Years Eve while I stayed home watching/bawling in Toy Story 3 with a sick baby, Jason went over to some friends with the older two. So then I decided to read this book that I was promised to be a real tear jerker. Since if we are crying already might as well get it out and start on my only new year's resolution to actually read ALL the books on my bookshelf and not just sit looking at them. So I read by myself while my girls were asleep and waiting for Jason to come home. Here's my hot tip for you. If you are in a bummed mood, don't choose a sad book, read a happy one instead. Because this book I read was like the most depressing book ever. EVER. Terrible. Like I should have just chucked it out of my hand but instead I chugged along hoping for a nice happy resolution. This was the book by the way. Don't buy it, you can have mine. For future reference I don't really like sad books, or sad movies anyway.
Jason did come home safe and sound and the new year did come (we saw the ball drop on tv, well I sort of did between my tears bawling at this horrible book while Jason was half asleep ...seriously who does this to themselves?). But guess what?
The next morning, Jason found my scriptures. I couldn't believe it. My FAVORITE scriptures. After a week of prayer and even getting the kids in on action "Please bless that mom will find her scriptures." (cause you know kids prayers have extra potency? They do). And guess where they were? Practically right in front of me. Right where I put them. A weird spot but as soon as he showed me I remember thinking at one point it was a good one. I had looked there but too frantic I guess. I couldn't believe I had missed them cause I walk by there 5,000 times a day.
So today I read my scriptures, and colored the pages red. All about Moroni fortifying the cities against the Lamanites, which is one of my favorite parts fittingly. And then because bad moods are never solved that simply, especially since I was holding onto mine so tightly. I decided to get my butt out the door. So we took Jason to Placerita Canyon for his first time. Went on a little hike, breathed in the fresh air, got some dirt on our shoes. Took some pictures. And vowed to not contend so much with everything around me.
While I haven't wrapped my head around any resolutions for this year, the one thing I really want is not to fight so much. No more contending. Don't try to squeeze into clothes that aren't fitting and just embrace the next step sooner. Because sometimes the obvious answer (like pulling out my maternity clothes early because wearing too tight of clothes is good for no ones self esteem) might be right in front of us. Where we have looked a million times, but haven't seen it. I do this alot. Miss the obvious, contend against the Holy Ghost who is only trying to help me. Part of not contending is not beating myself when I am so slow to figure this all out. Jason and I talk about this. About how on other people we can see quickly when others are sabotaging themselves, but its much harder to see it in ourselves.
So for me, and with my family grateful if I can follow through, I will contend no more. Be more open to inspiration from heaven. And live in thanksgiving daily for the many mercies and blessings that have been bestowed upon me. Because there have been tons. Thank you for a wonderful year 2010, I hope I wasn't too grumpy to miss the good parts. Hello 2011, nice to meet you.