Thursday, March 29, 2012

Buttercream, Butter scotch, butter cup, Candy girl...

My Grandma got a new dog.  Her name is Candy, which I find completely unfitting.  She is soooo a Butter.  I wanted to name her butter.  But I shall not.  She is not my dog.  I think I will buy two mice and name them Beurre and Creme.  Yes.

I have been "enjoying" the rollar coaster ride that is my life.  I really can't complain.  Well, other than my lack of humility sometimes, and my inability to live in the moment.  I have a hard time explaining what is going on in my life, partially because I don't know who reads this blog.  Also because I've talked it over so many times with Mom that I don't really know how to say it anymore.  In fact, the thought of trying to find the words to m'expliquer exhausts me.  It'd be easier in French.

Ça commence avec un homme.  En fait, ça commence avec une mission, et le temps du seigneur. 

Hmmm... no.  It's too late to write in French.  It's much easier for me to say it out loud in French.  That's actually rather ironic because before my mission I could write and read French much easier than speak it.  Now I can't write without a dictionary to check my spelling and gender.  Gender of the words, je veux dire.  Hahaha, I'm still a chick.  Very much so in fact.  Oh my gosh, so one of the things I miss the most from being a missionary?  Having a reason to do my hair and makeup every day.  In fact, I went all out to do my hair and makeup for FHE this last week because I just wanted to feel pretty.  I never thought I'd miss that.

I don't know what to say here.  I know I want to write.  And talk.  But I'm tired and trying to avoid dwelling on the SAME stinking subject I've dwelt on for the last five days.  So instead I will share what I have learned this past season of my life:


How does one validate themselves or their actions?  For the first 23 years of my life my life was self validated.  I graduated from high school when I was sixteen and went directly to college.  I never had to justify what I was doing or why because school was self validating: no one challenged it.  Then I graduated with my bachelor's degree.  Three months later, I went on a mission.  Again, self validating.

I come home and... hmmm.  Different story.  At first, all was well.  No one tried to make me do anything.  Then I got a legit job in my field... but then the job just wasn't working for me, so I left and decided to work a less legit job that allowed me to budget and do what I want.  And that's when it began... I began to start wondering how others saw what I did.  My employer asked me regularly how my job search was going-- referring to the search for a job in my field.  But... my job was fine.  I didn't want a full time long term job in CA.  I had other plans, and making personal roots here was DEFINITELY not part of it.  Then I started to get less hours at work, which diminished my personal value.  Well, how I viewed my personal value.  But... I was doing what I wanted.  

I came to the realization that a lesson I needed to learn was how to feel valid as a person through my own and my Heavenly Father's evaluation.  I tried so hard for so long to do what seemed respectable to other people, when in reality all I wanted to do was "profiter", or take advantage of, the short time that I have between mission life and Grad School.  Yes, I am going to go to grad school.  And yes, I am earning money.  But heck no, this money isn't for grad school!  It's for things and for fun.  I bought a car!  I'm taking trips!  I'm going to buy a computer, pay my own phone bills.  I'm going to live how I want before I have to conform to a more restrained life.  Even if I get married before I go to grad school, as soon as I do, there is responsibility attached.  I will have to stop living for me and start living for others.  Or the moment I register for grad school-- instant debt, that's what I call it.  But now?  I'm a little bit of a free bird.  But people view what I'm doing as irresponsible and selfish.  No.  I call it... doing what I want to do for the first time ever.

I did realize, though, that this same judgement and disapproval is going to continue to come at me.  Especially when I quit whatever it is I'm doing to have a family.  To stay at home and raise my children.  I'm risking judgment from everyone-- Mormons or not.  In France, I was told repeatedly, BY MEMBERS OF THE CHURCH, that it was impossible and SELFISH to stay home and raise a family.  That I HAD to leave to work and help support my family.  Also, that the number of children I want to have is a ridiculous and fantastical idea that will have to change in order to survive.  Hmmmm... really?  Already I have been judged and INVALIDATED by others.  Which means that... the ability to find respectability in what I do through my own and God's evaluations is a most invaluable skill.  I'm going to face adversity the rest of my life.  And the choices I have already made regarding my future will only bring more judgement and commentary.  And you know what?  WHO CARES.

Okay, easy to say now.  But I mean it!  I now have had a little taste of what my future holds, and I'll be honest: I was a little scared.  However, with the insight that I can find validation within myself and the gospel will help me retain some semblance of sanity when the world around me criticizes my life and family choices. Maybe I don't have the skills down yet, but I'm working on them.  I want to be ready for the barrage and les attaques qui vont m'ennerver.  I want to hold my head high and say, "Yes.  I am a mother.  Yes I quit a good job (or school or insert whatever "sacrifice" I will undoubtedly have to make) to do this.  Yes, I let my husband be the bread winner.  And yes, I had THIS many kids... ON PURPOSE."

Maybe I'm being silly.  Or idealistic.  But this was a lesson I have learned these past few months.  It is only one among many.  It is one that I will always remember and use.

Hmm.  That is all the incoherent thoughts I have for tonight.