Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Fester, Lochinvar, 3 Months, and 10-Year-Old Wisdom

I told Mike recently how I'd read an article about . . . oh, I forget what you call it . . . but something like “Couples' Evaluation” I suppose. The author discussed how she and her spouse had weekly meetings together to gage how they were doing, discuss issues, resolve problems, etc. It sounded very wise. I suggested to Mike that, while everything seemed fine (to our primitive sensibilities), our marriage was actually probably floundering due to an absence of any such regular coming together and accessing. I told him how the author said that when frustrations came up, she didn't stew because she always knew they would be able to discuss it soon.

“Ah,” Mike said, understandingly, “and your concerns have to just sit and fester.”

“Yes,” I agreed sadly.

“In fact,” Mike went on in an ah-hah manner. “That's probably the reason for all your stomach problems! (I've been dealing with an ulcer) It's all that festering! There's probably a giant ball of 'fester' just sitting in your stomach.”

That smart alec. It's very difficult to sit and let things fester as they properly should . . . while being told there is a “giant ball of fester” in your stomach.

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Speaking of Mike: we met, as many of you know, on a blind date. I was not, however, his date. I was there as the date of one of his closest friend's brothers.

When Mike went home and expressed to his parents a desire to ask me out . . . complicated by circumstance; Mike's dad, bless his heart, told him “all's fair in love and war” then read him Sir Walter Scott's poem Lochinvar -- wherein Lochinvar steals his true love away (by scooping her up on his horse, naturally) during her own wedding feast.

Mike recently found an old, downloadable, comic-book version of the poem which we proceeded to make prints of. Here I was just sticking them up with painter's tape, but I think we'll stick them in clip-frames and call it good. I rarely hang anything, so it will be fun to have another something of meaning on the wall. (I say “another” because I’ve also hung the sketch of my dad's back that has a cool story all its own – which I will share someday, but, for now, we're on Lochinvar.)

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Also, can we give a three-month hurrah? Shout! Three months! Hurrah!

It's actually a week or so beyond three months, but I am always so . . . happy? relieved? when we make it here. Three months is still: “juggling life with a tiny baby in tow”, but, for me, it is also when my efforts to develop some level of “schedule” and “predictable” and “fall asleep happily on their own” finally begin to come to fruition. I live inside a whirlwind until that point. At three months, the whirlwind peters out to just . . . a gusty gail. Gusty gail feels pretty great.

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During a recent conversation with ten-year-old Goldie, I mentioned something Elder Richard G. Scott said in the October 2005 General Conference of our church: “You were taught and prepared for the circumstances you would personally encounter in mortality . . .”.

I teased with her and said, “That seems like a bit of a trick, doesn't it?! To train us for what we would deal with here and then . . . slam a veil down over our eyes!”

Goldie responded with her ten whopping years of wisdom (which, apparently, is a fair amount greater than my 37-years' worth), “Yah, but maybe the training made our spirits stronger.”

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It suddenly occurred to me that, if I had worked and prepared and trained for a marathon – put in all the countless hours of sprinting, distance running and maintenance runs – and then smacked my head hard enough to give myself temporary amnesia, I would very likely think I knew nothing about running a marathon – that I couldn't possibly run a marathon; but I'd be wrong. My muscles would remember. My lungs would remember. I would be able to run that marathon just as I'd hoped – even if it took me a while to trust my footing.

It reminds me of what Elder Koelliker said in the April 2012 Conference: “The blessing of humble prayer with real intent, allows the Holy Spirit to touch our hearts and help us to remember what we knew before we were born into this mortal experience.”

I worry probably more than is normal about doing and becoming what I wanted to do and become before I set out on this mortal journey. It is a great comfort to me to know that not only have I been trained for this, but that I have the Spirit to remind me and lead me to accomplish what I wanted to accomplish, become what I wanted to become, and do what I promised I would do.


Hallelujah for that.


And . . . again . . . hallelujah for three-month-old babies! ;)

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(Everyone around here thinks she’s genius for learning to such her lower lip in like that.)


Kara said...

Great analogy.

Shannon said...

AWESOME! I love that Goldie said that. I love what we have been learning. So amazing. And I love that Summer can suck in her lower lip!

Linn said...

You cannot imagine how many times I have thought of this post in the last ten days. Literally almost constantly. I gave a thought about it during Sunday School last week (gave you credit) and actually based our FHE lesson on it Monday night (gave you credit). Your writing and insights bless me more than you could ever know. Thank you so much.

Nancy said...

Linn! Thank you so much for coming back to tell me this! I often suddenly feel sheepish for blathering on about whatever I've rambled on about on here -- worried I've shared too much, worried it's more of the same, wondering why I didn't just write something fun; etc. It made me so so happy to know that something that I loved -- hit you the same way and you loved it too! Thank you, friend!

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