Sunday, September 25, 2011

Be Patient With Yourself, Forget Me Not

Be patient with yourself.

You are not forgotten.

These were the words spoken tonight that inspired my tears.  They were spoken by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf at the Latter-Day Saint World Wide Woman's Broadcast.

I didn't realize I needed to hear these words until they rang true in my ears.

I am not patient with myself.  I often feel that I fall short.  I internally berate myself for not being as physically fit as Susie, as organized as Rebekah, as righteous as Jana, as disciplined as Michelle, as creative as Coral or as financially successful as Martha.

I look around my house and see mounds of laundry needing to be folded.  I see a refrigerator with leftovers from last October.  I fear they may grow limbs and faces and emerge and strangle me to death in my sleep.  My pantry is in complete disarray.  I have not kept up on the kid's photo albums.  I still haven't made drapes for the house I've lived in for a year.  What an utter failure on my part!

I look at my physical body and see flaw upon flaw.  I want perfection. I want it so badly I could SCREAM!! I kill myself daily to achieve the closest version I can.  I am never satisfied.  And then I eat a brownie because food delights me.  And when my jeans are too tight I say bad words.

At work I am a fish out of water.  Erika did it better.  I am no Erika.

I peek into my mind and see all the many books I have not read.  Ellen has probably read all of them.  Michelle has certainly read and re-read every worthy book ever written since the fall of Adam.  I don't have a Master's degree like Jana.  I want one.

I don't serve people enough.  Sure, I invite people to eat and I take dinners to friends who have had a baby or an angry rectal fissure.   But I know Shirley spends most of her days focusing on the sick and afflicted and sad and downtrodden.

I focus on my soul and see my Natural Woman smiling wickedly.  Despite my efforts at spiritual enlightenment she is there.  I don't think Kayte even HAS a Natural Woman.  She was born perfect and should expect to be translated any minute now...  Lori never says bad words.  I do.  I say lots of bad words.

I often feel that I fall short in every given aspect of my life.  I just can't keep up.

I feel that no one really sees me.

I feel alone and misunderstood.

I feel insignificant.

So when these words were spoken tonight I couldn't help but let tears silently slip down my cheeks.  Then I got all sniffley and snotty and some ladies noticed and wondered what my major malfunction could be...

My Bella held my hand, looked concerned and wiped my cheek.  "I love you, Mommy," she said.

Be patient with yourself.

President Uchtdorf reminded me to have compassion for myself.  He understood that I have endless compassion and patience for everyone with whom I come in contact.  Then why not me?

We are all sent to this earth with strengths.  As part of The Plan we are also meant to have weaknesses.

I am to do my best.  I cannot run faster than I have strength.

I am significant.  Even if I'm not famous.  Even if my house is a mess.  Even if I am not a size 2.

My Heavenly Father loves me.  He hears my prayers.  He is understanding of my needs.  He wants me to be happy.

My God wants me to value who I am at the core.  I bring pain to myself and those around me when I allow negativity to seep into my heart.  Even if I don't voice it aloud.

I am an AMAZING mother.  I am an AMAZING wife.  I am an AMAZING daughter and sibling.

I am a great cook.  I am generous.  I'm a loyal friend.  I love hard. I laugh loud.  I sing constantly. My love fills those around me and brightens their lives.   I am beautiful in a million different ways.

These are the things that matter to me.  I excel here.

I took my older daughters with me to the broadcast tonight.

Serena wore a black satin dress and red patent flats.  Before we left she had an idea.

"Mama, I want you and I to be twinners," she said pulling out a black satin dress from my closet and handing it to me.

I put the dress on and was reaching for my red stilettos when she changed her mind.

"Umm... nevermind, Mom.  I think we'll look lame and silly if we dress alike.  Wear something else."

I began to change into a gray and black knit dress.

"No.  Not that one either, Mom.  It has black in it.  I don't want people to think we planned it."

I laughed and showed her a lavender dress.  I paired it with a soft pink cashmere pashmina and nude high heels.

"Okay.  I guess that dress is fine for you to wear."

I am very patient with the people I love.  I want them to be happy.

Perhaps from now on I will work harder to extend that compassion in my own direction.

What are YOUR strengths?  (I'd be pleased to hear about your weaknesses as well.  It'll make me feel better about mine... :)

Happy Sunday, my friends.