Friday, October 9, 2015

On friends and losing them

My bed, as of late, has become a type of hotel. In the past two months, five different people have shared it with me. And aside from my strange love of sharing beds, this has been delightful considering they have been some of my closest friends who have stopped by for a night.

The thing about getting older is, you realize why you like the people you like. Perhaps you become more particular? You start understanding the importance of surrounding yourself with people who inspire you – people who you want to be like. 

As you get older, your ability to form deeper relationships grows. You feel so fulfilled with these incredible people you get to associate with.

And then… they’re gone.

I mean, they don’t die and you don’t stop being friends, but life happens. They have to move on, move up, move forward. You do too, but it doesn’t usually take you in the same way.

I have gone through many phases of this with my friends. Sometimes it’s a new job that claims them. Sometimes, a move, or parenting, or life just gets busy. But nothing claims them as much as marriage.

This year, I will go through the deepest phase of this. My closest friends are moving on. It’s this bizarre-o mix of being deeply happy for them, and thrilled to have seen this miracle unroll, but silently mourning the loss your friendship has to take.

You’ll still be friends. You can still talk and hang out (after they re-surface in about a year), but never will the relationship be the same. It’s appropriate their loyalties shift, but it’s a little painful to think about what you once had that no longer is the same.

So all of these bed sharings, and quick drop bys? I’ll soak them in while I can. And then I’ll trust that I’ll enter into another good phase.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Life isn't fair

This post isn't totally about me.
It's mostly about you.
And people like this:

a tired little family I saw on Trax a few weeks ago. The Dad is asleep. The mom was stressed out of her mind, their little trunk provided an extra seat for their boy and from the sound of their scattered conversations, that was as close to a home as they had right then.

And so I've been thinking.
I was born into a happy, functional, white, upper-middle class family in a gentle community with a healthy body and almost every opportunity I could possibly want be available to me.

I don't deserve it.

The past few weeks have hit me with this reminder.

It isn't fair that I have those privileges, but I do. 
It isn't fair that I was born with a race that isn't highly discriminated against, but I was. 
It isn't fair that of all the billions of people, I am part of a tiny percent that has the gospel of Jesus Christ in my life.  
It isn't fair that I was born with an amazing family, but I have 18.5 people to prove it. It isn't even fair that I have a personality that isn't heavily hindered by intense fear of meeting people. But that is what life (and God) has dealt me.

If this life was all there was, all of this unfairness would be a giant hole of depression. For people like me, I would wonder why I got so lucky. Why am I not the family who makes their home riding on Trax? And for others who go through endless amounts of hardships, there would be a lot of wondering what they had ever done to deserve all this?

But this past Easter season, I was hit by the realization that for the most part we didn't do anything to deserve any of this. The only thing we did, was decide we wanted these experiences. That choice is all it took.

The real title of the post should be "A non-Easter Easter post." Easter, and everything it celebrates - Christ's atonement, crucifixion, resurrection and continual ministry - means that in the end it will be fair. It won't matter what status we spent most of our life in, but just that we made it through life attempting to even those injustices as much as we can. 

I know it's past Easter, and this is a mini little sermon, but I just feel grateful  that life has been far better to me than I deserve and I need to better at helping others' life be similar. So sure, life is not fair. But someday it will be.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Change & Compassion

A man hit the open button on the trax door and then got out at the opposite end of the train. I saw it on my way to work the other day. I was confused by it at first and then I realized he saw a person with their hands full trying to get a bike on the train. He was helping him: a small gesture.

Those are sometimes the sweetest.

I carelessly left my phone on the train on my way to work last week. I didn't even notice it was gone, but someone else did. I didn't lock it. I probably had my bank account logged in somewhere on there. It was a perfectly good phone. She had access to the whole phone.  She could have used it or used me. Instead she went to a lot of efforts to get it back where it belonged.

A text came at just the right time.

A huge full moon greeted me when I stepped off the train from work the other night.

I got invited to an activity.

My sisters and family fed me dinner.

The list could go on and on and on.

I guess my point, if I even actually have one, is that there have been a lot of changes for me this past month, and they haven't all been bad and they haven't all been good, but changes often highlight good things in the world to me.

Compassion is easiest for me to see at times like these. Possibly it's because I am most sensitive to it and never more grateful. Maybe that's why we go through changes so often.
I don't know why this blog so often acts as a place for me to dump my feelings when they feel most sensitive, but for some reason it helps. Writing has gotten me through some deep feelings. I've had a lot of those lately, but mostly I've felt a deep sense of hope.

Overall, that's probably what I'm most grateful for.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Today it happened

A few weeks ago this happened.

And I've since been anticipating its coming. Today it did.

The school homesickness.
I love school. 
The past few days I have been still pretending to be a college student. It's all been very fun. This mostly means I have gone to the first day of classes with Luke for the first two days, and done other normal college life activities like devo and yoga and hanging out in the library. In that sense I haven't missed out too much on the social part of it.

But today I was walking through the tutoring center when finally it hit me.
Students were teaching each other different aspects of all different topics and I had to laugh at myself because I realized I really missed homework. And classes. And even though I'm excited for my future and I know there are good things to come, a part of me wished I was a freshman starting it all over again. College was such a ride. It is the one time in my life when I never wanted to be doing anything else other than what I was doing. 

But! This post is going to be dedicated to some fun things that happened in my final semester at BYU-I. In lovely picture form.

#1. Having auto class with Daylyn. We were both so excited for this class. It would have ended up being a great disappointment of a class except we were in it together which meant a guaranteed hour of giggling with Daylyn. And taking sneaky pictures of her in class. She took sneaky pictures of my occasional naps in class.

#2. This awesome group I worked with to try to earn $200 dollars of grant money for a Non-profit organization. They became dear friends, and it was something that started out as a school assignment, but has ended up being one of the rich experiences of my education. We won the grant money and this picture is us giving Anne of The Haven (a very cool homeless shelter in IF) the check. It was a great day. 

#3. My cutie roommates. I left Royal Crest and my best friends to move in with 4 girls I had only met once, because it felt right. It was a wonderful decision. These girls had huge hearts and they taught me a lot. Also I will miss the wonderful tininess of Amber. Here we are comparing hand sizes.

#4. Adventures with Daylyn. It's amazing that in only a year she has become one of my best friends, but some people are just that way. This semester we didn't get to room together so we made sure to have some adventures together including this cross country day in Yellowstone. 

#5. And I don't have much to say about this picture except that it just makes me happy. Graduation day was a really good day full of friends and family. BYU-I I love you!

Monday, November 10, 2014

A fox of Halloween past

The closer I get to graduation, the more I have started thinking about the choices I've made in college that have been life changing. Moving out last January to live with these girls was one of those. I don't live with them any longer, but they are still some of my best friends. So last Friday, when many of my friends had a party at my family ranch, it went down as my favorite Halloween in a long time. There was also the surprise of about 30-40 more people there than expected. The night consisted of a giant pot of taco soup, Daylyn repainting her missing tooth about five times, one weird weird game of Dare, a man dressed as a tooth fairy, two attempts by my cousins of cutting the power out, one VERY broken leg, a game of murder in the dark that didn't work very well (60 people is way too many), and the telling of not-very-scary scary stories.

Ope, I just threw this picture of our cute Jack-o-lantern cheese sandwiches I made with the cute Lake babies because... aren't they cute?

Monday, October 20, 2014

Then I got punched in the face... and other fun events

It's faaaaaaaaaaaaaaaalllllllll.
One of the best times of the year! Definitely in my top four favorite seasons. Actually one of my top three, because winter can easily be booted down to #4.

This was a perfect weekend. One of those kind you never want to end. Homework was light, I only had to work a minimal amount and the weather was incredible! So on Saturday Amber, my cute roommate, and I went to Jackson Hole. Just the two of us. Packed a little lunch, and went on this beautiful little pathway that winds through the Jackson neighborhoods. A romantic little date together.

Friday slammed into me with a, "Get me outdoors! Right now!" mentality. So Luke took me and his roommates fishing. This resulted in no caught fish, but in accidentally loosing the top half of Luke's fishing pole in the river, which could only be retrieved by him later stripping down and taking a very, very cold little naked swim. Meanwhile, I enjoyed warming up the car far away from the river.  Henry's fork was beautiful, and was just right for helping my outdoor craving.

And as a final highlight of the weekend: I can now cross off the bucket list item of being full on punched in the face! I'm not sure why this has been on that list. But it sat close to the bucket list item of slapping someone across the face. (Most of my other items are much less violently inclined.) 

We were playing water basketball and it got pretty aggressive. 

Examples: at one point I heard this kind of ripping sound and felt something underneath my fingernails. Then I realized with horror that it was this boy's skin and I had ripped two long claw marks down his back! Fortunately, he thought the gouge marks were really cool for some reason...

He later accidentally got his revenge by winding up to stop the ball, but instead of making contact with the ball, his fist found my eyeball socket. There was a loud bam! of bone hitting bone that exploded in my head. It was a teeth rattling hit. As in my teeth actually rattled. It was strange. And to be honest, I'm very surprised/a bit disappointed that no black eye appeared. This below is all I have to show for it. Three cheers for friendly aggression!

Monday, October 13, 2014

I want to be a tree.

I love and hate this book.
I read it again today. It's been a few years since the last time, and I get that little prickly ache that comes right before you want to cry whenever I read it, BUT I haven't cried full on from reading it yet. 

The giving tree just speaks to various parts of my soul. Like the part when I remember people that have always given and given and given to me and I have been ungracious to them. Or the part that misses childhood. Or the part that is a little frightened of getting old. Or the part that loves trees and hates to see them be torn down. Or the part that I think each one of us has: we try to put our happiness dependent on something to come. or someone. or somewhere. It's a part of me I always want to fight, because it's good to be content in day to day living.

My favorite part of this book is the tree though. I know a lot of trees I. Trees are people whose happiness comes from giving everything they have. In the end, the tree is happy, and that is just what it deserves to be. I love my trees. I want to be a tree.

So, while we're on the topic of weepy books, I want to know - does anyone else have books that do this to them? I'm on a children's book reading spree and I would love suggestions.