Energetic Seedlings of a God

26 February 2017


It has been a difficult last few days.   :x

But, some good things.  I'm reading a book right now that is sooooo enlightening for me.  The God Seed by M. Catherine Thomas.   I'll share a couple quotes from her book below - I'll save your eyeballs from posting the entire text of the book.  Though I am drowning in brilliantly deep thoughts from this read.  This woman understands that nature of our eternal beings better than anyone else.  (I've raved more about her here and here).

I'm in Tampa, Florida for the week with Ryan & Charlotte and Gary & Sandy.  Today we went to a local LDS church service, and it was amazing!  Relief Society and the confidence of those women hit me so powerfully.  I love being a follower of this Gospel.  It speaks a lot of truth to me.

And now, the quotes.

We already have within our being the energetic seedlings of the attributes of God.  They need only the light of our awareness, a spiritual practice, and the ever-present enabling power of the Lord.

M. Catherine Thomas

[We] have got to learn how to make ourselves Gods, Kings, Priests, etc. -- by going from a small to a great capacity, as all Gods have done.  Till [you] are able to dwell in everlasting burnings and everlasting power. 

Joseph Smith

Upward and onward,

Part 3: Our Little Buddy is Born!

20 February 2017

(Part 1 and Part 2).

Ah ha! Tricked you!  You didn't know there was going to be a Part 3 to Charlotte's labor story did you?  Well, neither did I.  Midnight free-write for the win.  Also, an email from my dear, dear friend Becky just gave me the biggest stroke of courage, and I felt like writing something honest.  So here you go:


I know the power of the mind.  If you think strong, then you will be strong.  As you think is as your reality is.

And that's why I put so much effort into preparing for my labor with Charlotte.  At least an hour a day, every day, for six months.  I wanted a natural labor for several personal reasons, and I knew it was going to be difficult.  So I set out on preparing my mind for the upcoming adventure, building a strong mind that was going to be a powerhouse during my labor.  And also, I was hoping to manifest the most beautiful labor.

I had some insane out-of-body experiences from getting so deep into trance and self-hypnosis.  Meditations that I typed up in full detail and never posted because I thought that people would think I was legit crazy.  No, I was just so mentally on point.  Focused.  Mindfulness.  Separation of Body with Mind.  Ethereal Awareness.  Heightened capacities.  It's all real.

Anyway, a couple weeks before Charlotte's birth, a downward pull began.  Those last few weeks of pregnancy are the only time I really felt like ragging on the journey of holding a baby inside of me.  You don't sleep, ever.  Because your gigantic belly mass must be hoisted and propelled to merely flip sides.  And by the time you shift time zones by turning your body over, you have to get up to pee.  And by the time you leverage yourself out of bed, you've woken the neighborhood.  So basically, I spent a lot of nights wandering around my house, spending most of my time in Charlotte's nursery, laying on the spare twin bed, eventually dozing off for a few mere seconds before a rush of urination urges pulled me out of sleep, and once on the toilet, out comes exactly four drips.  Gah!

(Seriously, the "newborn fatigue" people talked about was nothing compared to the final weeks of third trimester for me.  Probably mostly because once you have that new little baby treasure, you want to get up for it.  The whole first month or so of Charlotte's life, I was on such a high.  In the wee hours of morning when she'd peep, I'd rush to her rocker a million miles an hour, lurching to a halt to just gawk at her.  "Oh hi baby, I was just running over here full speed to see what you were doing.  Oh, just laying there.  Of course, you can't move yet.  I just needed to look at you some more.  Oh, you mean I keep hovering over you and it's freaking you out?  Okay, I'll take a few steps back and pull out my binoculars."  Seriously, it's an obsession like you didn't even know.  So newborn fatigue, didn't notice it.  Ask me on a much later child, though; I may think differently).

Anyway, so I was mentally keyed in, and I was ready for labor.  But as I mentioned, a couple weeks prior to Charlotte's birth, a real weight entered me.  I felt very sad.  Triggered from hormones?  From some type of prenatal depression?  From what, I don't know.  But it seemed to throw off my birthing focus.  My birthing plan, written on one side of lined piece of college paper, holding all the details of my packing list and post-labor requests, did not contain:  "P.S. I feel soo sad, so take that into consideration while I'm in labor.  SOS."  Nope, it didn't say that.  Instead it said: "Here is placenta lady's phone number."

(Which okay, pause.  After delivering Charlotte, so many people reached out with that special phrase - "let me know if there's anything I can do for you."  Ryan and I deliberated one night, and mockingly decided, the next person that says that will hear, "Here's my placenta.  Can you please go take it to the encapsulator?"  Because that ambiguous offer for service is silly to me).

So anyway, I go into labor.  And I know that everyone's labor and delivery is so unique and hard in different ways and probably if I say "unforeseen complications," I'll get a throng of women on my doorstep, ready to tell me the details of their crazy labors.  I mean, unforeseen complications in my labor did not result in an emergency C-section, and I feel like that holds the anchor to that phrase.  But, Charlotte's position inside of me was not right, and it intensified my labor so incredibly much, right from the beginning.  We knew she was posterior, but we didn't know how deep she was in my cervix, so with every contraction, her face was slamming into my pelvic bone, and I was grabbing at my crotch in desperation from the pain, and my placenta was in the exact spot that the baby needed to be, so baby just could not get into optimal position without completely pillaging my entire uterus and blah blah blah awkward birthing words.  So needless to say, it was extremely painful.  Painful in a way that when I was dilated to a 3, my midwife said worriedly, "something is not right" and called for back-up.  Then measures had to be taken with a giant band being strapped tightly and tied aggressively around my belly, so we could maneuver Charlotte up and over, while I was deep in the throws of heavy contractions.  And labor is already painful if left to its own force, without all the other theatrics. The lower half of your body is basically trying to rip itself from your upper half.  I felt like a semi truck was crunching the inside of my pelvic bone every few minutes.  And the evidence was all over Charlotte's bruised face when she was finally delivered.

And, well, I felt a looming defeat after delivery.  Several of my close friends gathered around me and encouraged me into the grieving of the labor I had versus the labor I thought I was going to have.  And the grievances came because I had prepared my mind so dutifully and when game time came, it wasn't near the experience I had visualized for.  It was grueling and unspeakably intense.  When Leslie and her husband came to visit me and asked how my meditations had worked during labor, I just laughed so hard.  My inner Ghandi was dead that day; I was Mama Bear in survival mode.

I spent the next few days after delivery far away, somewhere gone.  Despondent.  And in a way, the postpartum period right after a baby is so liberating because your emotions can be swirling and whirling, and it's expected because of the hormones.  So people love on you and ask you how you are, and no matter how odd your emotions are, YOU JUST HAD A BABY!

You basically become a lesser version of the baby, just wearing a bigger diaper.

Anyway, I wanted to be strong.  I wanted to be a glorious new mother.  A radiant powerhouse.  A beacon of bravery and pride and connection.  But I was really just aloof.  Not ready to be present in this experience yet.

But here's the thing:  I love Charlotte with such ferocity that I have to pull it back, or I will spout tears until the world floods.  I fit this role as if I were being molded for it my whole life.  And I don't feel so sad anymore. (Also, I go to the boxing gym every day, so.... that could be it).  And I don't remember any of the pain from delivery, as I was told would happen.  I just feel pride.  Arrogant, gloating, happy pride.  I labored like a mama lion for 18 hours, a grueling and unnatural labor,  entirely unmedicated, and I feel that pride from delivery so fully now.   And moreso, I sure as heck feel it in mothering.  So I am that glorious, radiant mother.  ...

I just needed a little time.

I love you, my friends, AND RYAN!  Thanks for being here with me.  By here, I mean Earth.  This life is better approached like a group project don't you think?  (Even though I HATED group projects in school).  Anyway, it's really late, and I got a baby and a million tax returns to tend to tomorrow.

Upward and onward,

Charlotte wants to say hello to you!  She loves you too.

The Ultimate Compliment

12 February 2017

Ryan, Char, and I went for a walk this evening to deliver some of our egg surplus (our chickens are wild with the laying lately!).  We stopped by our friends' house in the ward, and while the men chatted about their hunting tags, my friend told me how much she enjoyed reading my blog. 

That is my favorite compliment.

Someone could massage my feet for an hour or tell me they love my blog in four seconds, and they both stand with equal hedonic points.

Upward and onward,

Gold Medal Moments & Belonging

11 February 2017

Charlotte is down for a little snooze, Ryan ran to a boat show, and my brother, who has been staying with us, has gone out for a bit.  So it's time for a Gold Medal moments list.

- a happy wife is ... vacuum lines in the carpet.

- My brother, Trevor, has been staying with us the past couple of nights, and he introduced Ryan and I to a show called Hunted.  Oh man!  We LOVE it!  Pairs of fugitives start running and the best detectives try to find them within 28 days.  It's so interesting to see how people, despite their best efforts, cannot not think like themselves.  And when our lives are opened up to professional hunters, we are actually rather predictable.  (The word predictable always makes me think of riding on a bus in India with one of my best friends, Kelli, reading excerpts of a book called Irrational Predictability to each other.  So good!  Kind of similar concepts to the show).

- Boxing.  I. am. so. sold.  I have gone 5 times in one week.  I can't get enough of it!  Mentally, I need more, more, moooooore.  But physically, I am hardly moving.  I am sore up and down and all around.  That is such a satisfying feeling.  Until I have to stand up and do something.  Ha!  I can't wait to go back again next week!  I love the gym, the people, the music, and ultimately, the sense of belonging.  More on this later... maybe....

- I took Charlotte into my former office this week, while I met with a client about his pending audit.  My former co-workers were more than thrilled to watch Charlotte.  Little Buddy has some charm.  Afterwards, Char and I met Ryan for lunch, and I could hardly focus on anything because I was feeling such nostalgia over work and all the confidence and focus that surrounded me.

- Our book club had its first meeting this week.  I entered with excitement and left with ambivalence.  We'll see about this.  Though this book club started as an idea between Brittney and I to meet more people, once we had a group formed, I turned out to be the only one not in their ward.  Which on the bright side means I just have that many new potential friends!  But on the downside, I will have to answer the question "And, who are you?" probably eight more times.  Luckily, Brittney was by my side, and we could make sidenote remarks to each other, and after everyone left, we planned a movie night for just us.  I am grateful for her.

Okay back to this whole belonging thing.. because I'm really feeling it today.  Or, rather, not feeling it today.  I've had a lot of transitions in my life the last couple of years.  I am part of a new family, part of a new ward, part of a new city, and the infusion of me into these places hasn't come naturally.  And I think back often to the first biggest transition of my life --- college.  Boy was that a transition.  I didn't really feel like that was a place I belonged until my late sophomore year.  But as years went by, and especially in grad school, I never felt a more solid feeling of belonging and connectedness in my entire life.  Lately, every day, I think back on those times with such fondness.  SO many memories.  I'm most likely going to make a shrine of college degrees and pictures, and hang it like a baby mobile above my side of the bed.  In college, I really grew into my own, and I met people who have become my closest network, and I worked so dang hard and laughed and and and.  Oh, I loved that time so much!

So of course my infusion into these new places and times of my life will take time, and I could do without beating myself up so much while I overcome all these awkward hurdles.  But I once again feel like the wrong type of animal trying to run, swim, and jump with a pack that is already uniform.  Once Charlotte entered our hearts and home, this simmering journey of "belonging" went from the backburner, to a forefront boil.  I needed to get out of the house, and I needed to find a sense of belonging.  And funnily enough, my outreach has mostly led me back to my safe anchors of college roommates who have since become my best friends.  And boxing, ha.  Those two things alone are sewing up my melancholic transitory seams.

Thank you my college roommates :)

Upward and onward,

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Gold Medal Moments Free-Write

03 February 2017

Now I've tucked my sweet gentle Charlotte into her crib, Ryan is snowboarding with the Teachers Quorum and sending me lots of fun videos, and I have soft music playing as my companion while I continue to write a sequel to my last post.

I love my Ryan and my Charlotte so much.

Anyway, I have decided on a new practice for myself that I'd like to do weekly.  An idea lined with leniency.  Because my scheduling doesn't read by normal clocks where the hour hands are straight and tick in even intervals.  My life reads by baby clock, where the hands are more squishy and the measurements are more forgiving.  Less "on the dot" and more "come what may."  So basically, I don't promise regularity.

So to expound on this idea, in my private journal, I'll often jot down a bullet point list of moments in my day that were a highlight.  Small instances where I think, "that deserves a gold medal."  Thus I coined the phrase "Gold Medal Moments" and starting titling my lists as such.  And, I think now would be a good time for me to give more effort to this practice.  Because frankly, I haven't done a Gold Medal list in awhile.  And I would hate for myself to believe that that's because there aren't any gold medals to be given, because the entropic forces that try to wither me away into a sad, booby despair would have me believe as such.  But today when I gave myself permission to let all the burdens of my mind go and give myself a full break for the weekend, I had a perceptible shift in my mood and a shroud of awesome memories from the week began to flow.  So, I must write them down, and I must continue this practice because it is the fast pass to joy.

Gold Medal Moments This Week:

- For starters, there is a fly in my house.  (!!!!!!)   That means spring is coming.  And of course, by next fall, I will be chasing all these flies around my house with a dust buster and cursing at every last one of their dead bodies that I find under my furniture.  But that is not here or there.  Spring.  Gold medal.

- Ryan and I made a pact one evening to really dedicate our evenings to our little family.  Again, life just does its best to stick its big, fat, wide, loud head through our front door and fill up our home with all sorts of petty distractions.  This head resembles Donald Trump and it is alarming.  But we have consecrated our evening hours to focusing on each other, and we have had such tender moments and such hilarious moments this last week because of this pact.

-Ryan and I had another heart-to-heart last night in the dim light of Charlotte's nursery.  Talking about the powers of negotiation and persuasion and boundaries and goals and our life and our dreams and sticking to our guns.  And basically it was so profound that I created a personal Title of Liberty in my head while we talked, and I plan on typing it up and hanging it by my desk.  Here's where Ryan and I are headed, world, and the opportunity cost of not keeping our feet planted firm in that direction is far too great, so no.  No, go away.

- Another night, Ryan and I were again in the dim light of Charlotte's nursery, and I had her sound machine playing an evening sound like we were camping in the woods.  Ryan and I were side-by-side, huddled over Charlotte, and she was jabbering away at us.  Telling us all coos and gurgles that will change the world someday.  We tell her that her thoughts are so wonderful and unique, and her voice is beautiful and charming, and we encourage her to tell us everything on her mind because we love anything that she has to say.  And at 3 months old, I can tell already this girl is going to have a lot of things to share.

- Charlotte sleeping 11 hours a night.  She sure loves her sleep, and she has since she was born.  I read upwards of 4 books on sleep training with newborns, getting myself in full army gear, ready for the battle with long nights with a baby.  But I have indeed given birth to my Ryan's daughter because she cuts no corners with her snoozing, and we have been far too blessed with how well she sleeps. (Though, as Ryan and I often discuss, every couple's transition to a baby is difficult in its own way.  We've gotten lucky here, but go ahead and read my last post....) 

- Meanwhile, I still wake up in the night, and I wander into Charlotte's nursery and lay on the spare bed listening to her breathe and gurgle, until I drift off to sleep again.   If she ever makes a fussy peep, I swoop in and snuggle her.  Her tiny little curled up body against my chest, while I sway in the rocking chair gently into the dawn.  I just miss her so much in the night times, and I love all these moments with her.  So if I am tired, it's my own fault.  I keep my husband up talking into the wee hours of the night (again, read my last post), and then I'm in Charlotte's room at the crack of dawn, just fawning over her.  Basically I'm neurotic.  Read: "basically I'm a mom."

- Going on a mid-week date to Braza Express with Ryan.  It was a spur of the moment, Wednesday night idea.  Thought we'd try out a new restaurant and seek reprieve from our already psychotic week.  It was fantastic!  I had such a good time with my family, and we sure had some good laughs imitating people.  It could be a good comedy sketch titled, "People Who Are Really Hungry Eating Salads with Large Forks in Public."  Needless to say, in one word:  unflattering.  And in reality, I'm the star of this comedy and embarrassment.  It's me, guys.  I'm that freak.

- Ryan's dinner of .... the name is failing me... no seriously, I want to say Horchata, but I'm trying to recall the name of a fish, and I know it's not name-sharing with a Mexican drink...  HALIBUT.  Yes, Ryan's cooking of Halibut.  There we go.  YUMMM!  Moving on.

- Brennan texted me this week and thanked me for teaching him how to release emotions through muscle testing.  He said it helps him so much to do that every day after school.  I love that!  LOVE.  I can't even say what that text meant to me.  It felt like he shared something so personal with me, and that I could help him in such a meaningful way.  I can't even begin to say how much I love my little brother.

- Also, same day, a lady had heard of me somehow and how good I am at what I do, so she took to Facebook, found our one mutual friend, and requested that she ask for my permission to have my contact information released to her.  By what means did said person hear about me?  Mystery to be determined.  But I must be doing something right if my name is being passed around through social networks not integrated with mine.  Compliment.  Brush my shoulders off.

- Being sick last weekend.  That may sound within the category of Last Place Medal.  But, there is something sweet about opening up the blinds and curling up on the couch all snuggled together as a family and sniffling through movies all weekend.  Also, you get to litter your house with as many tissues as you want, and your parents don't make you clean it up.  Also, you're the parents now. 

- Spending time with friends.  A day with my friend Leslie and her son, Matthew.  Oh my goodness, little toddlers have a curiousness that just feeds my soul.  I love it!  Matthew held our little baby bunnies, and he was so cute with them!  Plus it's SO nice to be in the company of friendships that make you feel so loved and protected, laughing and reminiscing.  An afternoon with my friend, Allie.  We are tied together at the soul.  She is so lovely and calm and feeds my subconscious peace.  Voxing with Kelli - basically Kelli gets the brunt of all my panic attacks and nerves and all the other types of conversations that occur when you have retreated to your closet, face-down on the floor.  Anyone else?  Just me?  Okay, that's fine.  Lunch with Sharla, eating warm pho and having Vietnamese women swoon endlessly over Charlotte, asking multiple times if she's a boy or girl.  It's fine.  Humans of all races, religions, and genders can have fuzzy bald heads if they want to, and we still love them and squeeze them tight.  Can someone tell Donald Trump that?  Reaching out to my college roommate Brittney, and next thing I know, she's at my doorstep with baby clothes and we have started a book club!!  She was a good find for my life nine years ago.  And also, hearing from Rachel in Micronesia.  I live in fear that Rachel will be transfigured, and I won't know about it.  So every time she contacts me, my entire day is brightened because she's still here on Earth with me.  She's too good.  Rachel is the type of person that EVERYONE loves, and she has a million friends, and for good reason because she is the most caring and inquisitive person, remembering small details about everyone and checking in on them often.  And yet, she comes to me to share the more private moments, and I feel really humbled all the time that I am her person.  Blows my mind.

- Faster internet.  Yessssss!  Even though the process of switching internet providers is like cutting off your arms and legs and gluing them to the opposite side of your body and figuring out how to do life again.  Basically, it's the worst hassle in the world.

- The Bachelor.  Guys, I can't stop.  It's like a circus that is so melodic and beautiful and fancy on the outside, and then you go in and it's a loopy mad house and you can't get back out.  Ever.  Basically what the therapists are terming "an addiction."

- Deinifyely.  Which is what I texted someone in lieu of the word "definitely."  My mom brain is on a new vocabulary train and everyone needs to roll with it.  Speaking of train..

- Marathon training!  My pre-training days are over, and I am officially on the official schedule of the official race.  I am by no means the power-legs that I once was, but I am still giving a good game on effort.  Oh yeah, also that one night I really pushed myself and I thought I ran at least five miles, and I was SO proud, and I came home and it was just over 3.  And I walked a lot.  HAHA!  Ryan keeps telling me that once we establish the basework of our running, we can do this.

- BOXING.  I am going to my first boxing class tomorrow.  I am so so so excited!  I visited the gym this week, and a nice girl gave me a tour and talked to me for a long time.  Basically a lot of heavy bags hang from the metal rafters and the class participants each get behind one and pummel that thing.  And then they have a ring for competition practicing.  No to that.  But yes to running through the rows of heavy bags like Pocahontas in a corn field.

And with that, I know I have more, but boxing class is early....  So g'night.

(But for the record, I feel SO good right now.  And released of so much of the gunk that's been causing me heavy steps.)

Gold medal moments freewrite, the end.

Upward and onward,

Guys, I no longer have an inventory of selfies to add as my post-script since I've had a baby .  Gosh, I hate the thought that I am becoming less narcissistic. 

Adios amigos!

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The small of things inside the thick of things

At 5pm, I logged out of my email accounts and closed my laptop.  Time for the weekend!  Office closed.  Then I plugged Pandora into our surround sound, and I got to work cleaning and dancing, while I carried Charlotte with me from room to room in her rocker.  She was thoroughly entertained by my twirls. 

It has been a charged week for me.  Charged couple of weeks.  Charged.... while.  I'd like to say I'm still held within the postpartum experience.  Meaning, I keep high-centering with my emotions.  The term "helpmeet" has really tugged tight with literal meaning in our household, as I've fallen into Ryan time and time again for his listening ear and kindness, and he helps me.  And I am just as grateful for the friends who have welcomed my thoughts with safety.  I am always and forever a person of deep emotions, love it and hate it.  And with all the hormones of delivering and nurturing a baby, my sensitivity alerts have heightened, so I am capable of taking in the smallest peeps, understanding the most subtle of gestures and whimpers from my baby.

So that attuning with greater sensitive awareness means I am one incredible mother.

But holy cow,
I am so overtaken by the rest of the world.

I am so easily flooded with stimuli.  News.  Pictures.  People.  Responsibilities.  No matter how much I try to purge and release and shed and talk through it, I feel only ounces of ease.  I don't understand what's happening within me a lot of the time, just that I feel flooded and heavy.  And we live in a world of a lot.  Satan wants it to be that way.  Loud and boisterous and reactive and over-packed.  It can be so so tough.  I want to say that again ... -  but quietly because of my sweet gentle babe asleep next to me, with one tiny chubby leg propped up on my thigh, with full and beautifully-formed lips pooched out, still doing the motions of sucking in her sleep.  ... -  Emotional overload is SO tough.  So isolating too.  Because expressing and feeling through such overwhelm is a splatter and a clamor of art that isn't grounding or inviting.  And it's so hard to escape.  To hide from.  Satan finds you and weighs you down, however he can, and it seems that motherhood hormones leaves you so freshly exposed.  Luckily I have Ryan and those couple of friends that keep me from drowning.  Even just typing this, I want to cry.  Life isn't sad for me.  Life is just a lot for me, and I feel sad for myself that it is unavoidably that way.  And it seems to keep getting moreso, and I keep wanting everything around me to be less-so.


dig into the moments, and life is really sweet for me at the core.  I have to keep my focus on the small and simple.  At night, when the world tries to swallow me whole, I turn my mind to the smallest places.  I think of Charlotte's little dimpled hands.  Of Charlotte's long, pretty eyelashes.  Of her stuffy nose and little snores.  Of the way she curls into a ball when she's tired.  Of how she pooches her lips and takes in the world with such wide-eyed wonder.  Of her gurgly coos and generous grins.  Of how she shares her little thoughts with this precious little voice.  Of how her little thumb finds its way to her mouth, and she doesn't even realize that it's a part of her.  I think of Ryan's strong big hands holding Charlotte.  Of his sympathetic eyebrows when Charlotte is sad, and he tries to comfort her.  Of his several pairs of shoes by the door, showing every role he's played that day.  Of his love and interest for our bunnies and chickens.  I think of the lights on our front porch that light and protect out property line.  Of all the books that I read while nursing dotting every room in the house.  I'm safe here. 

It is sweet in this little three person tribe, in this little yellow house, in these white winter hills.

Maybe Donald Trump could build a 20 billion dollar wall around me for awhile.

Upward and onward,



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Bless the Lord