Thursday, June 11, 2015

The Stages of Grief

I am amazed at the stages of grief and how one can bounce from one stage to another throughout a span of time.  There are some incidents that are so painful to deal with that one finds themselves pushing them way down deep into their soul and barricading and locking that forbidden door to ever open.
But then Divine Hands intervene and that forbidden door is gently opened and you find yourself going through all the stages of grief and the tears begin to flow and when all emotion is spent there is a healing that has begun.

There are many causes of grief and there are some griefs that many have no clue what to say or do for the one afflicted. Those griefs are very personal and run very deep within ones soul. With that type of grief one finds that they are a lone traveler on a dreary road passing very few who are also walking that dreary road.

Over my lifetime I have faced many faces of grief and for the most part I have been able to rise above my grief and heal; but there have been two events in my life that my grief was so overwhelming that I buried them deep within my soul with no trespassing signs and do not enter signs placed all around.  These griefs I could not bear to face.

In 2001 Divine Hands gently removed my signs and gently opened one of those painful doors.  Tears flowed and I found myself going through each and every step of the grieving process but then where there once was darkness there was now sunlight gently shining in and a healing started.  Once again those Divine Hands are removing my signs and reaching for the knob to open that painful door I feel for one last time. 
I am finding myself feeling lost and unsure of what is to come when that door is opened.  Will I have the Faith to trust those loving hands as they continue to reach for that forbidden knob.  As a friend who has traveled this lonely desolate road observed, 
"this door dashes all hope." 
I instantly understood and felt the truthfulness of her words as the chilly feeling of hopelessness started to penetrate my already wounded heart.
Then just as quick Elder Ballard's words started running through my mind, 
"No blessing will be denied, let me repeat that: 'NO BLESSING WILL BE DENIED!"

Currently I am feeling a sorrow and loss that is hard to put into words. 
I am truly traveling this lone and desolate road alone.

Some Book of Mormon Prophets stories have been running through my mind.
The first involves the Prophet Nephi.  In his writings he shares how the Lord has shown him the destruction of his "fair and delight some people."  He pours his grief out upon the pages and then closes with his testimony, "I know in whom I have trusted."
Many years later another Book of Mormon Prophet is witnessing the bloody battle which wipes out his people.  He is wounded and his great heart is breaking as he watches the utter destruction of his people.  He too testifies about trusting in the Lord.

At this moment I am not sure why these two prophets stories are flooding my mind but one day I will understand.  
For now I will continue to silently grieve and continue to trust in Him in whom I've trusted and as Hillary Weeks lyrics say, "For Now Just Let Me Cry."

"Just Let Me Cry"

"I believe that everything happens for a reason
We're not just tossed by the wind or left in the hands of fate
But sometimes life sends a storm that's unexpected
And we're forced to face our deepest pain

When I feel the heartache begin to pull me under
I dig my heels in deep and I fight to keep my ground
Still at times the hurt inside grows stronger
And there's nothing I can do but let it out

Just let me cry
I know it's hard to see
But the pain I feel
Isn't going away today
Just let me cry
Till every tear has fallen
Don't ask when and don't ask why
Just let me cry

When I agreed that God could put this heart inside me
I understood that there would be a chance that it would break
But I know He knows exactly how I'm feeling
And I know in time He'll take the pain away
But for now

Just let me cry
I know it's hard to see
But the pain I feel
Isn't going away today
Just let me cry
Till every tear has fallen
Don't ask when and don't ask why
Just let me cry

I have felt joy the kind that makes my heart want to sing
And so my tears are not a surrender
I know I will feel that way again
But for now
For this moment

Just let me cry
I know it's hard to see
But the pain I feel
Isn't going away today
Just let me cry
Till every tear has fallen
Don't ask when and don't ask why
Just let me cry

I believe that everything happens for a reason"

Thursday, June 4, 2015

"We're Sisters"

What amazing lyrics to remind us who we are and what we share with all around us.
For my true blue friend and all my other "Sisters" who bless and enrich my life! 
And for all my Sisters that I don't know as well...We are truly Sisters and Family!

"We're Sisters

It's Sunday morning in this little town
With people waking up in houses everywhere
And there's a woman in the kitchen eating breakfast all alone
While another one's putting ribbons in her children's hair
And many drive away to the church house down the street
While others stay at home wondering what they all believe
And we have more in common than we ever choose to see
We care about so many of the same things
We all belong to one Father on High
But we hardly think about is as we pass each other by
We're Sisters

Maybe you're the woman sitting in the front row
Singing praises to the lord on high
Maybe I'm the one all the way in the back row
Who hardly sings at all and isn't there half the time
And maybe you would think that we'd never get along
That I'm a hopeless cause, but you'd be wrong
And we have more in common than we ever choose to see
We care about so many of the same things
We all belong to one Father on High
Don't you think it might be time that we asked each other's names
We're Sisters

Some of us are eighty, some of us are twenty
Some of us are hungry, some of us have plenty
Some of us are lonely, but few of us would be
if we could only see that we're a family
And we have more in common than we ever choose to see
We care about so many of the same things
We all belong to the same God above
And we all have things to learn about redeeming love
We're Sisters
Let us love and lift and pray for one another
We're Sisters"
Lyrics submitted by des.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Always A Daughter

Image result for pictures of sealing room in the salt lake templeAs a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints one is surrounded with teachings about love and family.  You are taught at an early age about the sacred bond that should exist between a husband and wife and the preciousness of children.

Being married to a wonderful man that does not share my beliefs can at times be challenging.
I now understand that my Latter-Day Sisters who have been sealed in the temple also face challenges which are different but still they are challenges that causes one to reflect and at times doubt "is this really worth it."

I recently had a Latter-Day Saint friend who had been sealed in the temple share her frustrations with me.  As I listened I could see where our frustrations paralleled but as she was wrapping up she looked at me and made this profound comment, "He should know better!  He was raised with the same teachings as you and me."
As her words shot through me I remember thinking how grateful I was for my challenges with a spouse that did not share my beliefs.

Image result for pictures of sealing room in the salt lake temple

One of the challenges I face is that members keep my husband at a distance as though he were a leper.  I sense that they are not sure what to say to him.
After all it is very challenging to leave the safety of your bubble and those your share it with.
I have found that I am excluded from many activities and many a Sunday I am sitting by myself observing the interactions of husbands and wives their children and their friends.
A line from my brother's last letter runs through my mind,
"They have hugs for each other but none for me."
Then another comment made by a sweet sweet woman my husband and I met in Alaska.
"You can be in a roomful of people and still be alone."
I know the truthfulness of those words.

Another place I'm alone is in our holy temple; but oh how I love being in the temple because there I'm not alone because I feel my family all around me.  I must admit I do miss not having my spouse lovingly look at me and winking or smiling when eye contact is made.  What a very special moment for husband and wife.  There again the temple is about couples and families.  But there was one very special time I was allowed to be a "couple."

Image result for pictures of sealing room in the salt lake templeI was in the Ogden temple many years ago.  I was sitting in the waiting area listening to the beautiful organ music when I was approached and asked if I would like to be a witness.  I smiled and thanked him and explained that "I am kinda a single sister."  He just smiled and pointing to an elderly man related to me that "He is a widower and he would love to have you share with him the witness experience."  I was honored and humbled as I and this sweet sweet grand-pa knelt at that holy alter.

It was an experience that I will forever cherish.  That day in the temple was very special indeed.

This past week
I was in our Twin Falls temple
participating in sealings.
Because it is just me I try and "crash" a ward sealing session.

This time around I was with the Delco Ward and I found myself sitting in the sealing room
 with four couples.  I was amused as the sisters whispered to each other
and kept giving me curious glances.

I was sticking out like a flaming red sore thumb.
To alleviate their wonder I finally smiled and shared with them that I was from the Filer Stake and was just crashing their sealing night.
Bless her heart, one sister  got up and came and sat by me.
I don't think she realized how much that small gesture meant to me.
But one day she will.

The sealer was gracious and wonderful.
As the session began I watched as each couple was called and then when there was a daughter involved this gentle man would look at me
and quietly ask,
"Sister Bishop, would you be our daughter?"
I told him I would be honored.
As I knelt I was taken back to that wonderful day in 98 when I was sealed
to my beloved mom and poppers.
I then returned to my seat as the session continued.

A few minutes later I again was asked if I would mind being a daughter.
As I stood this time the Spirit whispered, "Always a Daughter."
I was perplexed but then the teaching began.

I found my mind filling with all the various titles women may or may not carry,
Mother, Sister, Aunt, Grand-ma, Friend, Mentor, Wife.
I then found my heart aching because many of those titles
I have not had the privilege of holding and the tears begin to flow.
As I was kneeling I felt that familiar ache begin to stab my heart
and once again the Spirit whispered, "Always a Daughter."

Then this overpowering surge of love started flowing through me and I felt all the love that had been poured upon my head starting with my beloved poppers, my adopted father and the love of ancestors I have yet to meet and my husband.
I was tearing up as I headed back to my seat due to the power of the emotions that hit me and as I sat down I felt another surge of love with the thought, "I know you have been denied some of the titles that your heart has desired but never forget you will Always be a Daughter to ME!!"

Once again a loving Father in Heaven when He seen His little girl struggling reached out to let her know that even when she is sitting in a meeting all alone and may not receive the invites to the functions, she is never alone because she will always be a daughter and that makes her so very very special and precious.

Image result for pictures of sealing room in the salt lake temple
May we all feel that special-ness of 

"Always A Daughter."