I keep thinking I need to update my blog about my life and not just a birthday post. Sometimes it is hard to want to put anything down for everyone to read, I don't really want to write about the bad stuff. When I look back at some of my journals from the past years, it seems like I only wrote when I was upset. It was an outlet for my frustration. I know that is a healthy outlet but it seemed like I was upset more than I wasn't and that's not how I remember my life. Whenever I think back on the almost 17 years of my life with Bryan and the kids, I hardly think of anything other than the joy of being a wife and mother. Even though it feels like I have been through so many obstacles and sometimes it feels as if my life is just one big obstacle. I don't want to give the impression to others that I am totally negative, because I don't feel as though I am. This past 2 years have been the hardest years of my life. It's as if I am living the life I NEVER wanted to have to deal with.
When I was younger, my family had a lot of instability with my father's construction business and when it finally went under in the late 80's, he changed jobs a lot until he found his footing and started a new business that has supported him ever since. He didn't find this new job until right before I got married. As a result of his first business going under, my family moved a lot when I was a teenager. We had lived in one home for 10 years and when I was in the 9th grade we moved from Mesa to Las Vegas where he got another construction job. I was really happy in Las Vegas and didn't want to move back here when his job ended, but being a kid, I had no choice. So, I moved to Mountain View area in the middle of my 10th grade year. We lived with my grandparents for about a year. My parents were trying to buy my grandparent's house from them, but when my dad lost his job again (this time he was working for my uncle and his company shut down too). My parent's couldn't come up with the mortgage payment for a month and my grandparents asked us to move out.
We had nowhere to go, so my parents rented a 2 bedroom apartment after my junior year. 2 adults and 6 kids in a 2 bedroom apartment. This apartment was in Dobson Ranch, so I changed schools again. I had a very difficult time there. Starting out my Senior year at Dobson was like a nightmare. I never made any friends there, other than my little sister JoAnn's friends being kind to me. Then my dad got another job and we were able to rent a house in my cousins (the Johnsons) ward. This was the middle of my Senior year and back to Mountain View. My cousins (and aunt and uncle, too) were so good to me. It makes me tear up to remember how they made me feel included after feeling so alone. They let me in there circle of friends but with the only cousin my age being a boy (Joel, he was still cool!), it was still hard. We stayed in this house for only 8 months and then had to move again. Thankfully, it was one street over and my parents were able to eventually buy that house and they stayed there for about 10 years. I met Bryan right before we moved for the last time. He was the young adult rep for the ward and I had just graduated from high school. He was just what I needed. Someone to love me with his whole heart, wanting to be with me and needing me as much as I needed him. He is my best match, best friend and my strength. His family opened their arms to me and his mom made me feel wanted in their lives and I will always appreciate her kindness to me. I think they changed my life back then.
That was 17 years ago. I never intended to write so much back story and so much of my soul here. It is hard to put my most painful parts of my life out there, I admit it I am afraid of criticism and even ridicule. But, I feel in order for people to understand why these last 2 years have been so hard for me, I have to explain my life somewhat. Losing Bryan's job and having to move my family from where they were happy was so very hard for me. When Bryan lost his job and we had to move, Jonathan was the same age I was when my family lost everything the first time. I was so afraid of him going through the same things I went through. I did not want my children to go through this and have the same fears I had.
I feel as though I have been searching for stability since I was a child. Bryan's last job, while overall it was good for us, was totally unstable and made me so anxious sometimes that I couldn't handle it. I feel as if I have grown so much over these years and I know that we have gone through this for a reason. I am stronger now than I have ever been. But I still have a long way to go. I am not even close to where I need to be.
That being said, my children are doing so well. So much better than I think they would be if we had never moved. All of my kids have straight A's (except Jon who got 2 B's, but that's ok!). Alex loves his school, Jenna is a smart little cookie and a budding artist. Connor is loving ELP and is so smart, he gets bored in class. Kaitlyn, miss Vice Pres, has so many people who love her and now she is the only student to get straight A's in her class. Her teacher made sure to tell me that! Jonathan has a fantastic group of friends now, they always seem to include him and I know he is grateful for them. I am grateful for them and how they make my son feel. We love this ward. We have felt accepted from the moment we moved in, flaws and all, broke or not, it never seemed to matter here. I feel so blessed to have been led to a place where I know we belong. I am happy here. I just need to work on finding happiness even when I get so overwhelmed that I forget which way is up. This is why I do not blog very much. Overall, I am a happy person. I promise! But when I am happy, I do not have the urge to write, instead I play with kids, cook, sing, go on walks, etc. When I am sad/angry/frustrated, that's when I think to write. Except tonight. I needed to share how I feel tonight. I am proud of my children and how they are coping. They are strong. Stronger than I was, that's for sure. And I wouldn't have it any other way!
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