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The Rocky Road–Writings from the Past


I have spent several weeks searching for this “essay” that I had written around 2003, possible into 2004. If I had been able to put my hands on the disk that it was saved on, I probably would have the exact date. Alas, many years and many computers later, the digital copy was nowhere to be found. I had printed a couple of copies when I first wrote it and put one in my desk at school, another in a drawer at home, and one that I have carried folded up in my purse of and on for the better part of the last 8 years.
Needless to say, this copy was falling apart, and it probably was the copy that
had come home from school when I went on disability, and then replaced with the
one from the drawer until it was the last copy I could find. As I watched this
copy begin to disintegrate and unable to find a saved copy I resorted to
re-typing it. I made myself stay true to the original as much as I wanted to
change certain things that I felt were no longer accurate, or didn’t feel right
to me. I had to keep telling myself that this wasn’t about now, this was about
then and changing it would be dishonest to myself.

There are parts that I still agree with. There are parts that I still believe. There are some things that are no longer true. There are some that I have given up on. For now, I give it to you as it was originally. (P.S. This was not a letter written to anyone except myself; It was one part of me talking to another part.)

I know that I have jumped back and forth, from one side of the fence to the other. At times it may seem like I have done it just to annoy or tease you. I have done a lot of thinking lately and my thoughts have been based on fear. Fear of what will happen if I do, fear of what will happen if I don’t, this fear is controlling my life. Someone famous once said “you have nothing to fear but fear itself” I won’t take the time to look up who it was because that is not important. What is important is that I put a little faith in Heavenly Father and Jesus, give them the benefit of the doubt that they won’t let me down. I have been pretty blind, blinded I am sure partly by Satan who would love nothing more than for me to go through the rest of my life being afraid. I have to say this and it is hard, but I have to admit to myself and to you that Heavenly Father and Jesus have been there for me, I was just too stupid to see it. All the times when I nearly OD’d, sometimes on purpose and other times accidentally, and walked away with no permanent damage to my body. All the times that I became addicted to something, made it through the withdrawals, and out the other side. And, after nearly bleeding to death, surviving sepsis and six months of surgeries, I came out in one piece. I have been blessed with four wonderful, spiritual children, none of whom were easy to get here, who have beautiful testimonies of the gospel and are great examples if I would just open my ears and eyes, to hear and listen to these testimonies. I have been surrounded by absolutely wonderful LDS people, everywhere that I have landed with my job and in my life, who have been there to encourage and support. I have wonderful LDS friends who spend countless hours listening to me, counseling me, being inspired on my behalf, just because they are my friends and care about me. I have given all of them ample opportunity to run, and Heavenly Father has helped them stand by me. I am sure I could go on and on and on.

          I have had things happen to me that are reprehensible, sick and ugly. These events lodged thoughts and feelings deep inside me that told me I wasn’t worth anything. That I didn’t deserve to be happy, that I was a bad person. I lost trust in everyone in my life including Heavenly Father and Jesus. I was blind to the fact that they were there carrying me, holding my hand, giving me the gift of stubbornness to help me plod through and not give up. I thought I couldn’t trust or depend on anyone, and as a result I grew to rely only on myself to get through life. Well, somewhere in the scriptures it says that man is not meant to be alone, I see now that this doesn’t just refer to being married, or having a soul mate, we are not meant to be isolated from Heavenly Father’s and Jesus’ love for us. How could I not see this for so long, why could I not see they were there through everything, helping me and giving me the skills and tools I needed to make it to a time in my life when I was strong enough to deal with it all. Two years ago he decided I was ready. I may not have agreed, but nonetheless, I had to begin to deal with the ugliness and finally the hatred and anger. I have come to realize that I had pointed all that hate and anger at Heavenly Father and Jesus instead of at its’ rightful owners—the people who were responsible for exposing me to the horrors of abuse. I’ll never see their faces, I’ll never hear them say that they were wrong and ask me to forgive them. I have to forgive them for what they did to me, I have to remember that they will pay the ultimate price; they must face their maker and account to him for what they have done. It is my job and destiny to forgive, not excuse, not blame, not hold a grudge, for I have tried this path and it has led to a miserable and unhappy existence. How many people have tried to tell me, how many times was I not ready to hear? More times than I can count, and if I could remember through the years who each one was and what they did for me, I would personally give them a great huge THANK YOU, a thanks for sticking by me, and trying to point me in the right direction.

          As a result of all the feelings I had inside myself, I didn’t feel worthy to be in Heavenly Father’s presence. I allowed this misconception to creep into my life and take hold more times than I care to remember. Each time, after I hit rock bottom, I would stand up and try again, pushing that thought out of the way and walking down the right path. Each time did, I was pushed off the road because I didn’t trust enough that I could hold on tight. I have done some things that I have to own up to and pay the price, knowing that no matter how high the price, living in Heavenly Father’s presence is worth it. Repentance isn’t an easy process, but it is a necessary step in eternal progression. I must learn to forgive myself, just as I have had to learn to forgive those who have wronged me. I must hold my head up high, and walk through the ups and downs so that in the end, I can say “I did my best!”

          Just making a choice to give up that which is not pleasing to Heavenly Father isn’t enough. As I say no to the bad, Satan tries even harder to make it look better, causing us to slip and fall many times. The road back is not a smoothly paved road, but rather a muddy dirt road with many potholes and ruts. Only by leaning on and trusting Heavenly Father and Jesus can I get through the muck, and clean up. I am stepping into the mud, treading carefully, trying to not get mired down, but I think I know now that when I get stuck, there are people out there willing to help, and that I can ask for help from the most powerful of all. There is a prize at the end of this road worth working towards, one step at a time: I will keep working towards it.

          I have taken the first steps forward, I have gone backwards a few, I will continue to make progress this way. I have to not beat myself up when I go backwards, rather, I need to pick myself up, brush off the mud and start walking again. I have to ask for help along the way and I have to accept the help that is given. I have to hold up my end of the bargain, no matter how hard, no matter how dark the skies. I must trust that I will see the rainbow soon, a little reward for a job well done. An array of colors to remind me of the array of friends I have, who have pushed me, pulled me, carried me and walked beside me all the way towards the end.

          Thank you is not enough to express my gratitude: no words can express the peace I feel as I begin this journey. I am writing this not only for you, but also to remind myself when the skies are gray of why I am out here doing what I am doing. To remind myself of the hope I have today.

“Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear.”

~~~Ambrose Redmoon


The actual quote is “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself” by Franklin D Roosevelt at his first inaugural speech.

The scripture is my take on Genesis 2:18  “And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.”

3 Comments leave one →
  1. 06/05/2011 12:13 am

    Thanks for posting such a beautiful letter! I’m glad that you still agree with at least some parts of it. The part that really struck me was your realization that “man is not meant to be alone” also refers to Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. I, too, know that they have helped and carried me on my difficult journey. I had never thought of that scripture in those terms, though, so thank you!

  2. 06/06/2011 12:30 pm

    Thank you for having the courage to share this wonderful piece of writing today! We have strenth that we never imagined in spite of our illnesses! I was moved by everything you shared and your realisation that God was with you all along. How precious.

  3. 06/07/2011 12:49 pm

    I can imagine a bit of healing coming your way every time you read this tiny source of strength and what a powerful statement you make by posting it for us.
    In Peace~ Amanda

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