In my last post, I mentioned my “I Will & I Won’t” plan for 2014. It has been fun to think about new goals and look forward. It has also caused me to look back. Below are some of my favorite moments of 2013.
Last winter, on a very cold and foggy morning, my husband and I drove to Ogden so I could speak at a women’s conference. Immediately following the engagement in Ogden, I was schedule to speak at another women’s conference in Orem. We left Ogden quickly – too quick – and I accidentally left my talk in the chapel there. When we arrived at the church in Orem, I looked in my bag for my talk. It wasn’t there. I looked in the car. It wasn’t there. My heart sank and I began to cry. (Which isn’t like me.) When he saw my reaction, my husband was instantly concerned for me. However, I reassured him the tears were not because of fear. When I realized I didn’t have my talk, the Spirit quickly consoled me and I knew everything was going to be okay. I was crying because I felt the Spirit in a strong and unique way. I stood up in front of 500+ women in Orem, told them what had happened and then went on with speaking and singing. The Spirit brought everything that was important to my remembrance.
I really struggled with my Time Out For Women presentation this year. It took me 6 months and 5 tries to get it right. As I drove home from my second TOFW event of 2013 (in Idaho Falls), I knew it hadn’t gone well. I had blown it again. Why was this so hard? Why couldn’t I get this right? I pondered on my presentation the whole three hour drive home. I felt so discouraged. A few days later, I received this email from a member of the production crew:
I just want to let you know how much I enjoyed your awesomeness in Idaho Falls. I have thought a lot about that weekend and I don’t know if I have ever been so moved by a TOFW event. I have always enjoyed your music and stories but for some reason I felt really inspired by Idaho Falls. I have seen a bajillion presentations both from LDS presenters and non and I have always felt that you go above and beyond. I can tell that you put a lot of work and effort into your preparation and it really pays off. This past weekend I had to teach Gospel Essentials and I felt that, after watching you in IF, I should try a little harder to be prepared and make it more interesting. So I prayed harder about and I listened to a bunch of your music while preparing. The payoff was having a man in his 70′s, who is returning to the church, tell me that he had never felt the spirit stronger in Sunday School. I know that had I not seen you in Idaho Falls I would have done my last minute straight out of the manual lesson and he wouldn’t have had the spiritual experience that he and I both had.
It gave me the courage and confidence to keep rewriting, keep trying, and not give up.
As you might know, my new CD Say Love released last September. It was so hard to write. It took a toll on me. One night in June, I fell apart. The weight of it all was too much. I began to doubt myself. I wondered if the songs were good enough. I gave in to all my fears about failure – and I had a melt-down. I cried and cried all evening. I cried in front of my husband and my daughters. They were so sweet to try to console me, but the tears still came. I decided to just go to bed and try again the next day. As I crawled in bed, my youngest daughter (8) came to my bedside and began tucking me in. She gently pushed the blankets right up to my feet, then my legs. She worked her way up to my head and then leaned over, kissed me on the forehead and said, “I believe in you.”
There literally hundreds of other moments, memories, miracles and tender mercies that took place last year and for which I am grateful. I am thankful for the comfort of the Spirit in the very moments we need it, for kind emails filled with encouragement and for the strengthening words of a child.
Blog to you soon,