As I was considering how to apply this month’s theme about believing in God and being a woman of faith, I considered the many times I have felt His warm presence calm and console and comfort me. I call them Heavenly Father hugs. The following piece came to mind that I composed over a year ago about one such moment.
I believe in God when things are going well and I’m feeling peace and life is happy. And He believes in me when things are not that way. This journal entry sent me a wonderful reminder of that.
Written August 2022
If I were to rank the top three most difficult times of my life so far, it would go like this:
- My divorce
- Getting my masters degree as a full-time working single mama
- The last two months with the move and starting two new jobs
I know this move was the right thing. I know these jobs will be wonderful and fulfilling. But this part right now is so very heavy as I’m trying to seem competent without feeling that way and trying to figure out the ins and outs of the new spaces and places and faces. And it’s heavy when society feels so against me as an educator and against me as a person trying to afford my rent and against me as a single woman trying to remain virtuous and raising kids by myself is hard and it gets really, really, really exhausting.
Transitions are always tricky. I tried to prepare for that. Starting new jobs is tricky. I tried to prepare for those. But being in the middle of it all–I failed a little bit.
I failed my students a little bit. I failed my kids a little bit. I failed myself a little bit. And it broke me a little bit.
Earlier this week, I hid under my desk during my prep and cried for a few minutes.
I also reached out and found respite in the love and support of my family and friends.
Earlier this week, my kids saw their mama break, and my daughter pulled me in to cry in her arms. Then they bought groceries and ran errands on their own so I could catch up on some more work.
Throughout this entire week, I was so busy I forgot to open my scriptures a single time and only sometimes kind of prayed–when I was curled up under my desk and when I didn’t die after all when my son ran a stop sign–and a little bit as I was almost but not quite sleeping at night.
And then this weekend, I went to my place of worship and sat quietly for a little while so I could finally hear Him, and Heavenly Father said to me over and over, “You are doing really well”–and He said it to me in my own voice to remind me to love myself–and I sat in that worship space and cried some more and learned again that He is pleased with my effort even when it feels like failing. I felt hugs from Him and hugs from my angel army and hugs from my earthly army and I wrapped them around me like a blanket and a shield.
And I’m still overwhelmed and anxious but also now more calm and peaceful.
Someday, maybe I’ll learn to ask for help before I break. Someday, maybe I’ll remember that God loves me all the time and no matter what and not just when I’m not failing. Someday, maybe I’ll learn to love myself that way, too. But even though I haven’t learned those things all the way yet, I’m still doing really well.
I’m so thankful for hugs.
Photo source: From https://ssnet.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/GoodSalt.com-pcmas0004.jpg
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