"Two years is a long time". "People change".
Over and over I heard these words, and over and over I ignored them.
When my boyfriend of nearly two years left for his mission to California, I knew that there were a lot of unknowns in our future. But that didn't matter for me at that time because there were two knowns: we loved each other, and he needed to serve a mission.
Now that I look back on it, I realize that at that time I exercised the most faith I ever have in my life. I knew that two years would be hell. I knew that I would be lonely. I knew that I would have a lot of opposition. But I also couldn't ignore the comfort that I received daily. For a lot of that time, I honestly felt like I was carried through my trials. There were many nights spent crying myself to sleep, many days questioning my decisions.
I was committed, and willing to see it through. But then things gradually started to change. I didn't share my feelings with a lot of people because I was really confused, and for a lot of the time I didn't know how to express my feelings. And also, it really wasn't anyone's business.
With everything that I have been through in the last four months, I have realized that my feelings and plans two years ago were not misguided or unreal. At that time I really knew what I wanted. I acted with faith knowing that Heavenly Father would bless me with the desire of my heart. I just didn't know then that His plan was slightly different from my plan. Not better, just different.
I have been given a lot of advice from some very well meaning people that just want me to be happy. I am thankful for the support that I have in that regard. I also have been able to see how important my own agency and the ability that I have to choose for myself. I have learned that despite good intentions of others, I am the only one that really knows my own mind and my situation. With some help from my Heavenly Father, I know that I can be guided to the best decisions possible.
I have learned a lot these past two years. I went through trials that I know will help me in my life. I had very unique opportunities that have helped to shape me into the woman I am today and the woman I am still becoming.
I really don't regret how my life has played out. I really do feel that everything happened the way it did for a reason. I feel like in some ways, I know those reasons, but I also know that I won't find out until the eternities. But, until then, I am happy with knowing the little bits that I do know.
Yes, two years is a long time and yes, people change. I know that now.
It makes me really sad when people have negative feelings towards men. I know that there are many guys out there that don't make the best choices, and make problems for the rest of the male population. But in my life, I have been blessed to know so many good men. Men are essential to our life here on earth. I don't mean that in an anti-feminist way, I just mean that we need them, and they need us. The men in my life bring humour, a sense of safety, and treat me so well, reminding me that I am a choice daughter of God.
When I think about the best men I know, there are six names that come immediately to mind.
My Papa is one of the kindest men I know. He loves my Granny, his family and the gospel. He is so hard working, and such a good example to his entire family.
My dad is one of the most selfless people I know. He always puts his family first, no matter what. He loves his wife dearly, and he does his best for his family. Despite hard times, he provides for his family every way that he can. My dad is another really great example to me.
My brother David is one of the funniest people I know. David loves a good laugh, and loves to share laughter and humour with everyone around him. He is the best big brother. He is kind, protective, and always lets me know when he thinks I could be doing better. His creativity in his photography amazes me, and he is one of my best friends.
My brother-in-law, James is one of the most hard-working men I know. He has a busy job, a busy calling, and a new family and he does his best in every single of those parts of his life. It's really neat to see the care that James takes with my nephew, Joey. He is a natural father.
Justin is probably the best living example of a friend. Justin has such a kind heart. He is really truly, a gentleman and often puts others above himself. He tries his best to make others happy, and make them as comfortable, even in the most awkward of situations (trust me on this one!). Justin is also a very forgiving person and sees the good in life.
Christopher is one of the sweetest people I know. He is always conscious of the needs of others, and likes to make me smile. Chris knows how to make me feel like the most important woman in the world. He is smart. He is also a gentleman. Plus, if you ever need to help moving, he is your guy -- trust me.
I am so blessed. Seriously. I could go on and on with the list of other men in my life that have made a big impact on it. There are so many good men out there, just trying to do their best.
Ladies, please treat men with the respect that they deserve. There are so many Prince Charmings and Knights in Shining Armour, just waiting for you to give them a chance. Don't give up on that fairy tale. It exists. Trust me.
I promised my dear cousin Sarah last week that I would post by the end of the week... but then I didn't. I apologize. Things have been a little crazy over here. Not bad crazy, just busy crazy. Lots happening.
So, let's summarize the last month, shall we?
School is now in full swing, and I am still enjoying it. I had a midterm yesterday (yuck) and have some papers due near the end of the month, so we'll see if I'm still enjoying school then. I am taking American Literature, Intro to Greece and Rome and History of Psychological Thought.
Work has been good. It seems I am rarely there anymore, since my school schedule cuts into most of the time that I would be working.
Christopher and I have had a lot of fun so far this fall. There have been some movie dates, many nights watching The Office and the occasional fancier night out. Chris just got a job this month, so we see each other much less than we used to, but we still see each other every day, even if it's just during an hour break that we have between classes. It's definitely an adjustment, since we've been used to seeing each other every night after school for the past month, but that's what phones are for. Chris' job at Shaw will definitely be helpful to his future career (he is in the IT program at SAIT), so I should be thankful for that.
I still love my house, and am enjoying this time I have to live with good roommates and be independent. One of roommates is getting married next month, which is a happy/sad thing (I'll miss you, Megan!), but I am happy that we've found a new roommate!
All in all, things are good. I love my life.