Tuesday, January 24, 2012

it's not over until it's over

whew.

it's january what of 2012? i don't even know what day it is. the calendar says it's january 24th. late. or early. however you want to look at it.

friends, i've been kinda dreading coming back into this. i'm sorry. i don't know why that is. i love writing and doing this whole blogging thing. not really for any of you who may possibly probably not ever even care to read this, but for me. for me to just let my retina see the world one way and my being to see it another. but i feel like i left you in one place at one time as one person... and now everything's different. how do you come back from that? where do you even begin? what do you say?

i've thought a lot about the type of "rm" i want to be. i don't want to be one that's always like, "well on my MISSION..." "when i was a MISSIONARY..." ... you know those people. right? and, sorry, but no one reeeeally likes hanging around them because it's like, okay dog, your mission was bomb. we get it. but live in the now. ha ha no i'm kidding. but seriously. i just don't want to be that way... be that person. one of my companions said that she wanted it to be "discovered" that she served. i feel good about that comment. i just don't want it to be all i do or say or think about or talk about.

except the only problem is... that it is. it's ALL i can think about. it's all i want to talk about. it's all i remember. i dream, breathe and live for san diego and what happened there. so here i am in this philosophical psychological debate with myself. people ask me (dumb, unavoidable questions. i know. i asked them and still do ask them, too, even though i resent them), "so HOW WAS YOUR MISSION?!" or "so...how are you?" or "hows the transition?" and i'm like mmmmmmm. "good." ha ha. do i answer too much? too little? just nothing? nothing is easiest because the truth is hard and the lie is a lie. soooo. oh gosh, i'm not making any sense. i started off by trying to say that i've been scared to come back to the world because i don't know how. i don't really know where i fit in or who i am or what to say or how to be or anything! ha ha i'm even at a loss about how to start my blog up, i mean what?!

but i'm coming around. my sweet mother keeps apologizing that this is so hard for me. i feel badly for them--my pa's--for my being so... so... so... emotional? they've been sports. i don't know what i'd do if my daughter kept breaking out into tears randomly. ha. i'd probably feel real bad-like, seeing that she'd rather be near the border of mexico than here with me. but quite frankly, no apology is necessary. i'm convinced that it's meant to be hard. why on EARTH would we come home from such a spiritually boat rocking, life changing, eternity shaping, celestial experience, to have things be just peachy, easy breezy? it's completely illogical to me. that doesn't mean i like it! but i get it. we've gotta continue, keep going, progress, onward and upward. and so let the challenging, hellish, horribly awkward and uncomfortable unknown commence. again, frankly...I wouldn't have it any other way. life was never meant to be easy. i know this is part of it.

so uhhh. hi. ha ha. hello. i'm back. i'm not going to be one of those constantly raving ex-misioneros that's always going off about his or her mission for whatever reason. if you really wanna know, i trust that you'll ask me. i don't have to belittle my incredible experience by making it everyone's. i'm not really sure what to talk about though, because, as said, that IS me. i loved my mission. it meant EVERYTHING to me. i feel so indebted to my Father in Heaven for His immeasurable love and patience in affording me the opportunity to become converted and preach conversion to the most amazing humans of sanD. i will never go a day without feeling grateful for the time with the black tag of freedom and power and authority. i will always and forever be thankful to have come to know and understand the Savior in such a real, personal, intimate way, and to grasp, love and absolutely cherish His restored gospel by seeing what it means to me and those whose life it changes.

before my mission i read books and books and books because i felt this desire, this unquenchable thirst, to know my Savior better--His life, His ministry, His attributes, His atonement. And I felt like I learned a lot, brain-wise, but I wanted heart, soul, feeling sorta knowing. And...friends? Wow. Did. I. Ever! find what i was looking for. I never wanted to go to California. ever. in a million years. i think californians are obsessed with "cali" and their beaches and rainbows and shirtless men and bikini babes and their blonde, perfect beach-y, wavy surf hair and, honestly, i hate the word and all things "cali." so how hilarious is our pc (padre celestial) to call me there? He knew. He knew alllllllllll along what would happen, what I'd see, experience, learn, feel, do and become. He knew it'd affect me deeply, indescribably, personally, effectively, and permanently. It humbled me, I guess. yeah, it definitely did. And now, I know a little deeper, richer, truer, and realer (hows that for grammatically correct, ya english minor?) that there is no other way. i can't say it any other way. THERE IS NO OTHER WAY to eternal life and eternal happiness save through our Savior! He sunk below it ALL for each and every one of us. He LOVES us. He and the Father velar for us...they are always aware of us, always there for us, always guiding us and loving us. Their love is unreal. it is unfathomable. i loved being able to feel a slice of that love for the people we'd meet. I loved promising them that there indeed IS a Savior and that His gospel indeed HAS been restored and that there indeed IS evidence and that their prayers indeed WILL be answered and they will FOR SURE experience greater joy and happiness than they ever thought or dreamed existed. and they did. if they were really looking, they did. and that's because the Savior is REAL. His gospel, His atonement...it's real. it's full. it's complete. it's perfect. it covers you, me, alberto, imelda, pablo, ivan, raquel, la famila salvador...it covers all of us. I know now, in some small, incomplete, imperfect but SURE way, that Jesus is the Christ. He is our Savior. He is The Light, The Life, and The Truth. He is THE. ONLY. WAY. to be happy. it's real. it's all real. and san diego taught me that.

i can't say the least part which i feel. i assume you're getting it though.

every time i talk about my mission, about what i learned, about what it means to me, i rant. i get all heated up and end up banging fists and crying and quoting the same things in different places again and again because the gospel is SO SIMPLE and so pure and so clear and sooo obvious and i'm SO CONVERTED to it. and i can't handle that other people don't see what we have. i can't handle this whole utah valley thing, where people "rebel" against the church. can't they see they're just hurting themselves? it's not about the church or about your parents or your leaders or whoever. it's about YOU. its about your happiness, your future, your SALVATION. and there is NO OTHER WAY. i just... i just get so so so... so... ah, so emotional and so involved in any discussion about anything of this nature because i get it now. a little bit. it's about us. it's about you and about me. so somewhere up around kolob our perfect Father in Heaven and His Son look down upon this small, little, seemingly insignificant girl struggling with this horrible transition, and they care. they care about me and all this, about you and your school schedule, your job hunting, your pregnancy pains, your motherly or fatherly worries. they care. they care SO DEEPLY. so this is about us. this is about you and me, about us personally and individually. it's about us because it's ALWAYS been about it. Jesus Christ came for us. That's why he performed the atonement--so we could be happy, overcome our trials and hardships, grow to become godlike, make covenants, be happy, and progress. so excuse me for getting a little heated about this! i am just seeing life through my new, clear lenses now and there is no time to mince words or get distracted or to not be real about it. there is no other way to eternal life and salvation. remember that. let's both/all always remember that. lets honor my time in san diego a little bit for forever by remembering what's really important.

so that's about it. just that. see, is this me being one of those annoying rms talking about their mission? see my inner conflict here?

anyways. what the heck is up. i'm back. orem. great place. it's pretty brown, isn't it? i was like, what is all this brownness dog? get me some beaches and palm trees (see? am i at it again? i'm just used to san diego! where's the line here?) and greenery everywhere. but orem is beautiful. i'm a fan of it. not on facebook, kaylynn, but a fan nevertheless.

since my last stint of blogging and the whole black name tag business, i've been navigating my way back to myself. christmas was gorgeous. super beautiful. my fam pinned the tail on the donkey for the last time in the history of donkey-tail-pinning-dom with some beautiful things. I was worried about how I'd respond to gifts and love and being soo spoiled with inconsequential things, but they did a great job. I was given very sentimental, meaningful things that lifted my sight up to the Savior in gratitude for the sacred time in representing Him and all that I learned in the process. I was particularly tearful and captivated by the scrapbook the kay and ma put together for me, complete with pictures of my entire mission. inolvidable. also, i'm now a legit mom with a bracelet with all my kid's names on it and stuff. ha ha except normally moms don't put the names of parts of a city that they lived in, huh? ha. well, the bracelet is still a treasure, even if it is silver and jingly and overly informative. i LOVE it.

i bought a car. that was sorta like sky diving. "sign here, here and here. if you die, it's not our fault." haha aka signing your life away. that was fun. writing the check out, even funner. YIKES. welcome back to the REAL world, sister christensen, a world where you don't have a magic blue credit card that automatically uploads $142 dollars for your monthly enjoyment, taste, entertainment and survival. by the sweat of our brow we now make our way.

i got tested for parasites. negative. got tested for ulcers. negative. got all my blood work done. clean. got a vein burnt off my nose. huh? point is, i was sick when i came home, but all's well now. those stomach aches were somethin else though, man.

i started school. whaaaaaaaaaaat. one day i almost started crying because i couldn't remember where anything was. but i knew i'd once known where the JKB was! hadn't i had zillions of classes there? then i needed to print a paper but didn't know how to slash didn't have a valid, non-expired id card with cash on it, slash didn't know where a printer was... ah! I spent my first saturday doing homework, STRAIGHT, for 13 hours. my mom kept prying me to get out of the house, but i was just like NO dog, i've got homework! welcome home. it was hilarious. guys, i just...DIDN'T remember HOW to be a human! i still don't, actually. funny. probably entertaining for an outsider. But i guess i'm sorta kinda a little bit getting the hang of it now. maybe that makes me less entertaining for both insiders and outsiders? just walking around like everyone else...

i uhh um, what else? well, i've had about a million super enjoyable reunions. best times ever. so many liebers around these parts!

that's what i've been up to. it's been real. it's been a rollercoaster, just like the last 19 months of my life, but in a very different, less-enjoyable, non-eternally-important way, if you catch my drift. making the switch from them, you, him/her to me me me has been disgusting. not in a good way. do i sound negative? i feel like the commonly woven and threaded theme of this post is straight up negativity. i'm not trying to be negative. oh, heavens no. that never got anyone anywhere. i've found that i have a lot of my dad in me; he's always said he's a "realist." i like realism to an extent. so i'm sorry if my reality seems negative. it's not. i admit, my attitude at times has been rather gloomy, but i have repeatedly received and continue to receive answers, guidance, revelation, tms (tender mercies) and reminders that LIFE IS WHAT I MAKE IT and that happiness is a CHOICE. it is fighting battle, a constant, conscious CHOICE that requires effort. and if i'm not choosing to love my awkward first dates or choosing to love going fake sky diving without the thrill of jumping out of a plane or not choosing to love my horribly unnatural transition back into society...that's MY fault. and i am 150% aware of that. so. i'm making my choice, my decision. i'm choosing to be happy. i'm choosing to honor my mission, my savior, my father in heaven by being grateful for what's now coming. because i am. grateful.

so there. i'm sure if you missed me at all, you don't anymore. because i'm back! ha ha back into the world of blogging your weirdest abstract unclear horribly ambiguous feelings for everyone and no one to read or understand all at the same time. it's great. and even though i no longer have that gorgeous black tag, they're all over my room, in my books, in my brain, painted across every memory i've got, and burnt into my heart. the line, "every member a missionary" has never meant so much to me.

and so, as elder holland said so perfectly (like he always does)--
"It's not over until it's over."
this is just the beginning. mission: initiated.

6 comments:

Scott & Ali said...

Tawny, Scott had those same exact feelings about being called on a ,ission to California. He hated people from California before his mission. Hah. Glad to have you back. I can't wait to see you and hear about your mission, and to let you meet my precious and adorable little Bo. Love you! Good luck with your transition.

Anna said...

Words Can Honestly not explain how much I needed to here this tawny I was laughing and crying and feeling to the tee what you were saying I just love love love you and would love to see you more because I know. You are such and inspriation to me and so many other's I trully know that because I have herd them say it. You are so much stronger then me because I left my mission and came home and DID NOT WANT TO BE THAT RM ETHER, but here I am doing it ever place I go because it is all I can think about I would love to talk to you more about all of this and growing more of my pure love for you sometime. I totally know that life is going full speed ahead so we need to do lunch or something k I love you and you are such a beautiful girl and daughter of god. REMEMBER THAT Love and Blessings Always Anna

Anonymous said...

Perfectly said!

mare said...

beautiful t-star. thanks for sharing. xo

Sarah Russo said...

girl. thank you for making my thursday better with your wonderful words. I love you.

Anonymous said...

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