Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The Brick Wall and the Easy Path

Once upon a time I asked Heavenly Father, "What can I do to prepare myself for getting married?"  He gave me an answer.  I contemplated it, and never did it.  Not long later, I asked, "What can I do to become a better person?"  I got the same answer.  Again, I contemplated it.  Sure, I'll do it, eventually.  Later I asked, "What can I do to help this person?"  Answer: "Aubry, you really need to focus on this one thing.  When you get this one thing done, you will better be able to focus on others."  And so it continued.  I would ask a question and the answer, no matter the question, was always the same.  Then one day I received this answer, "Aubry, you will face a brick wall until you accomplish this one thing."

So now when things don't work out the way I planned, instead of trying to fix them, I say to myself, "Oh right, there's a brick wall there.  It can't be helped."  What's really funny is how often you'll find me trying to run up the brick wall.  "Look how far I got!  I almost made it!"  Meanwhile, surrounding angels are doing face palms.  "Aubry, that wall was not meant to be scaled.  Plus, even if you did make it up that wall, it would not take you where you want to go."

I have a lot more respect for Naaman now.  (You can read his story here).  Elisha says, "Go wash in the Jordan River seven times."  Naaman grumbles to himself, "What?  Wash in the Jordan River?  How is that going to help?  And why the Jordan River, it's so gross.  Abana and Pharpar are better rivers.  I don't want to."  Of course he gets sense knocked into him, he does it, and he is cured.

So here I am looking at my brick wall and the pathway that was outlined for me.  There's nothing ominous about the pathway, but something still holds me back.  I know what I have to do, but I keep making excuses not to do them.  And then I throw a back kick at the brick wall, and crumble in pain.

Monday, October 28, 2013

...And in the Darkness Bind Them

I'm one of those people who type gmail.com or blogger.com when I want to sign in. Well, today, in doing that, I come to a page that says,


My first thought was, "One account to rule them all.  One account to find them.  One account to bring them all and in the darkness bind them."

Yep.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

I Feel Like a Scary Monster

It's sad when we blame ourselves for things that aren't our fault.

On my way home from church, I was listening to soft Sunday sounds.  A song came on.  I don't remember what it was, but it asked the question, "Do you ever feel alone."  My immediate thought was, "Yeah, but it's my fault."  That's normally how I feel, but today something inside me rebelled.  "No it's not.  I may make mistakes, that's true.  But also true is that I often don't know what I can do to change so that I won't feel so alone."

I thought back on the Ropes Course our ward went to back in July.  One of the biggest take-home messages for me came from the Peanut Butter River.  Long story short: a friend fell into the "river."  As a consequence, he had to wear a blind fold.  From that moment on he was dependent on us.  I always think, "I messed up and I need to fix it."  That's not the case in real life.  We all make mistakes and we all depend on each other for growth.

I had one goal for today at church.  I failed.  I chided myself for failing.  If I had just tried a little harder... I came home and realized that this goal depended on someone else's actions that weren't done. No matter how hard I could have tried, I would have failed.

This isn't a pity-party post.  This is a reminder to myself that I don't have to blame myself for everything that goes wrong.  Yes, my life will contain failures and disappointments; but I don't have to bear the weight of it all.  I don't have to chastise myself for my inadequacies.  I am doing my best.  This is why Jesus Christ atoned for us.  He will make up the difference.  I can count on Him.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Fear of Being Alone

I feel more alone when I'm alone in a crowd than when I'm home alone.  That's one reason why some of the worse words you could say to me are, "Hey, let's meet there."  I get anxiety of what will happen when I get there before you.  I will awkwardly stand there and not know who I am.

Moving to Orem has helped me deal with this a little.  See, for the longest time, I didn't have roommates who would go to church with me.  Going to church alone gives me anxiety because I either sit alone, or I find someone to sit with.  I no longer have automatic friends that come from having roommates.  Often I will find someone to sit with, but I'm proud of myself for also being able to grow comfortable sitting by myself.

Last night I did something that I don't do.  I went to a play all by myself.  I knew the stage manager, so I didn't feel entirely alone; but I sat alone in that I sat by people I didn't know and didn't talk with them.  Hmm, maybe I should have made friends... They looked like they were on a date though, so I didn't want to get in their way.  But do you understand?  I WENT TO A PLAY ALL BY MYSELF!

Maybe instead of being proud that I went by myself, I should chastise myself for not being more inviting to other people.  Maybe.  Still, though, I feel like this is a monumental step for me.  Fear paralyzes us.  If I can let one more fear disappear, that's one less obstacle holding me back.  I don't need to be dependent on others to enjoy myself even in a crowd.

Now just you watch, I'm going to turn into that awkward loner who does everything by herself because she has no friends.  This fear conquering thing might be a step backwards...

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Someone Watch The Kid

Tonight was fun.  My ward went to Cornbelly's.  My old ward also went to Cornbelly's.  It was fun running into many people that I know and love.

Once upon a time my ward all gathered at the stake center before heading over to Cornbelly's.  There was this kid there that seemed a little lost.  He said he was part of the 5th ward and he thought that this was a combined activity, the 5th and the 11th wards.  Well, no one else was there from the 5th ward.  This guy looked young, but I figured he was probably fresh out of high school, a newbie to the Young Single Adult World.  A girl in my ward really didn't want him to feel left out, so she went out of her way to make him understand that he was welcome to come with us.  So he did.

While driving in the car, we decided to learn a little more about ourselves since this kid and another guy weren't in our ward.  That's when we found out this kid was 15 years old.  Boy, was there a major misunderstanding.

At the corn maze, I was told to look after the kid so we didn't lose him.  And I failed.  Then we found him again.  Then he wondered off.  Don't worry, we all made it back to the Stake Center.

I just thought it was funny.  I hope he enjoyed his night with the Young Single Adults.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

I Am not a Man

Lately I've been chiding myself for not memorizing my lines as much as I need to.  So I made a big push to remedy that.

Tonight I found out that we won't be able to perform because we don't have a location to perform at.  So instead we will film it.  That means there will be no double roles.  I will only be a girl.  (I'm actually very happy about being a girl and I still have lots to learn about that).  That also means that more than half of my lines in the play are now cut.  All those lines I just memorized...


Sunday, October 20, 2013

Megreogres

I had a dream that there was this fruit called megreogres that squirrels eat.  We had some because I was feeding some squirrels, I think.  Anyway, I decided to try it because I was curious.  And it tasted great! Then I had my friend look it up on google.  It said nothing about it being edible to humans.  I started thinking that I must have just digested some tasty poison.

And apparently it doesn't exist at all, so none of you will ever get to try what megreogres taste like.  Sorry.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

I Am Proud of the Human Race

I'll admit it, last week I was a little upset that the only people to turn zombie at the end were girls.  (Granted, one had gone straight to the zombie jail because she didn't feel like actually playing, and I'm not sure how much into it the other girl was; but I for one was playing for reals and I'm a girl).  It actually made me want to lash out at the feminists.  "Oh, you think we're just like men, do you?  You think we can do all the same things as they can, do you?  You think we should run just as fast and be just as independent, do you?  Well you're expectations are unrealistic!  And watch as all the women of the world get turned to zombies because everyone expects them to be able to run just as fast and we can't all!  And what then when only the men survive because all of the women were eaten by zombies!"

This week gave me hope for the human race.  No one got turned into a zombie tonight, from what I understand.  The game still has some kinks to it.  As a zombie, I only caught one person.  When I walked her back to the zombie jail, I overheard a male voice exclaim in sadness, "You got caught again?  After I just rescued you?"  This brought joy to me because it told me that someone was looking out for her.  And apparently she got rescued again because no one became zombified this round.  We don't have to live in a world where only the fastest (/insert a single characteristic here) survive.  We can live in a world where we use our strengths to lift each other so that we can all win.

Tip for running from zombies: run in groups.  This was probably one of the reasons I became a zombie to be honest.  I went into the zombie realm in a group, but I got scared when I saw a zombie.  Instead of running forward with the group, I ran backward.  It left me alone and an easier target.  Also, I didn't have a chance, really, as a zombie for catching people at all.  I can't run with a straight leg very easily.  Still, the times I got closest to an individual was when they were alone.  Also, there was this time when a bunch of guys were running by me.  They all made it, except for the one that held back.  No, I didn't catch him, but another zombie swept up and got him. (I was really good at leading people into the path of other zombies who could outrun them with a straight leg).  His hesitation was his downfall.

Moral of this tale: If we want to win, we must stand together.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

The Girl and the Boys

Remember how I auditioned for a play?  Yep, that happened somehow.  And I got casted.  I am Audrey from Shakespeare's "As You Like It."    

I'm also a bunch of guys.  Audrey doesn't have very many lines.  Actually, there is one gentleman that I play who has more lines than Audrey; but Audrey is a more main character, so I identify with her.  

Today I found myself with Celia and Rosalind.  Rosalind, who is our stage manager person, was explaining to us about our roles.  Since we are the three main women in this play, we are each to compete for being the most beautiful on stage.  *Gasp/spew out whatever you're drinking/make some sort of shocked noise now*  Me compete for being beautiful?  I'm the girl who hides in a corner.  I'm the girl who comes from a loud family and instead of getting loud to compete for attention, I got quiet.  I can tell already that this play is going to shape me into something new.  

I've already learned a lot about being a woman.  "Aubry, inside you, there is a beautiful woman screaming to get out through the layers masculine expectations."  That may not have been the exact quote, but you get the idea.

Then tomorrow I get to learn how to be a man.  

Saturday, October 12, 2013

I Am a Zombie

I would make this an advertisement for Pandemic, but I'm pretty sure anyone who reads this either doesn't live anywhere near me, or knows our fearless leader already, and thus already knows about Pandemic.

Anyway, the story goes like this: A zombie epidemic broke out.  Somehow a group of us survived and we congregated in the mountains.  Chris, being the awesome, fearless leader that he is, decided to show us a few that he had found.  Well, gimp Chris got caught.  I'm still not entirely sure how that happened because I'm pretty sure he had to try to get caught.  Anyway, our fearless leader then informed us of how we could save Chris.  The zombies had taken him to "zombie jail" type place.  If we could get him back to our camp within 30 minutes, we could save him.  If a zombie touched any of us, however, we would then have to go to the zombie jail.  Anyone still in the zombie jail at the end of the game would end as a zombie forever.

Well, for most of the game, I wasn't really sure what use I was.  Not much to be honest.  Anyway, so at some point I decided to stick out my neck and try a little harder.  I crossed with several others into the zombie lands.  I saw a zombie.  I ran.  I tripped.  I fell.  I skinned my knee.  I got up and ran some more.  The zombie beat me to the bridge.  I didn't know where to go.  We danced a little.  I was trapped.  Another girl came up.  She danced with us to a little.  Finally, I decided to make a mad dash for the zombie jail.  I may run quickly compared to a zombie, but I'm not good at dodging.  As soon as there were multiple zombies surrounding me, well, my psyche gave out and I was caught.  It was zombie Chris would tagged me (not to be confused with Mr. Gimp or our fearless leader.  I swear there were other people playing this game other than those named Chris.  You'll just have to believe me though).

Then I got rescued.  As in a living person came and touched me, which restored some of my natural human juices...or something.  (That living person was Joe, not Chris.  I told you there were people with other names).  I was then left with the task of getting out alive.  I ran for it.  I could hear the zombie behind me, but I ran for all I was worth.  The problem was there were zombies in my way again.  It's kind of hard to dodge zombies when 1) you're running right towards them and 2) they're blocking your exit.

Needless to say, a zombie tagged me.  Hoping to distract the zombie so as to offer help to the living people, I shouted out obnoxiously, "Don't you have to escort me."  He nodded, and escorted me.  "You were running really fast."  Small talk with a zombie, what can you expect!  It was a nice compliment, but it fell on deaf ears because what does it matter how fast you ran if you get caught in the end?

And then the time ran out.  So I died a zombie.

So if I was wrong with my first statement, as in you do live in this area, but you don't know about Pandemic, and you want me to chase you next week, please let me know.  We zombies need more humans next week so that we can have a feast.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Should I? Act Now Or Forever... Not Have Acted

When I say maybe, I mean maybe.  As in I am thinking about it.  As in I haven't decided yet.  As in I have no clue which way I'm even swaying.  As in maybe.

Once upon a time I had some friends who enjoyed acting.  That's great.  I love watching.  I'm pretty darn sure everyone who has met me has noticed that.  "You're quiet."  "Why haven't you said anything."  "Say something."  I've heard those comments many a time in many a social circle.

Of all the arts, actually, drama was the only one I dared try. I enjoyed it especially in middle school.  After doing little exercises here and there, our teacher made notes on who should play certain roles in two plays we would perform.  There were more people that parts, so if you didn't get a part, you would be an understudy.  This is how the parts were distributed: first our teacher would have the different people she had in mind for a certain part read something.  Then she opened it up.  If you wanted that part, you rose your hand a read it.

Well, our teacher had me and several other girls read a part.  I was the first one, so I wasn't sure what I was doing.  Another girl snatched the part away from me, but I vowed I would not be an understudy.  Several readings later came the perfect part for me.  See, I had spent most of my childhood making fun of valley girls.  Then my mom tried to convince me I was a valley girl because I lived in the valley.  No, there is a supreme difference between my valley and the one that brings girls like in Clueless.  Anyway, the part I read was a for a girl obsessed with clothes.  I saw others perform it first, so I knew what I was doing.  And I got the part.  Haha, but of all the parts it was probably the character least like me.  I didn't know what a cardigan was or other articles were and I was supposed to bring them as props!  Ha!

Anyway, I digress.  (Do you like how I have to reach back to my middle school days to reach a story relevant to the present...not a good sign).  So I have a friend who wants me to audition for a play tomorrow.  Part of me wants to just because it would be something different in my life.  Another part of me doesn't think I'll be able to say two words in front of a group of people.

Okay, let me tell you one more thing just so you can understand  how pathetic I am.  So I talk to myself, sing to myself, you name it.  However, when I think, "I do this all the time and it sounds wonderful, I should put it on camera;" as in when I try to record myself, I freeze up.  No need for an audience to help me practice getting stage fright, I can get shy when I'm by myself!  Ugh.

Plus I just don't want to commit all my evenings forever and ever and till I die.  I like wasting time on facebook too much.

But I think I'm going.  Why?  Because I am a girl.  And because blue stripes eat yellow triangles for breakfast.

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Post 500 My Purpose

I created this blog seven years ago this November.  In this post, I stated my purpose. I’ve changed a lot in seven years, and I am still very much the same. 

This last weekend I participated in The Millionaire Mind Intensive.  There are some things that are better if you experience yourself rather than having someone tell you about it.  So I'll be vague so as not to ruin it for you.  One of the exercises, we did a physical action as a metaphor for breaking through something.  The thing I wrote down was to break through my lack of self-confidence.  When I first tried, I panicked.  It hurt and I insisted I couldn’t do it.  Everyone around me told me I could do it.  “Close your eyes and take a step forward,” someone said.  I did that, I broke through, and it didn’t hurt the second time. 

Part of my problem of late is that I don’t know what my purpose is.  It’s hard to take a step forward when you don’t know where you want to go, or where this step will take you.

Recently I had a friend try to teach me a butterfly kick.  Well, I was still failing at it, so I decided to youtube it to get some more pointers.  I quickly found out that the butterfly kick is one of the easiest kicks to learn.  What does that say about me that I’m struggling so much with it?  Yeah, exactly.  From youtube, I learned that there is a lot of power that comes from one extra step.  I experienced that power when I put it to practice.  However, I still didn’t manage to perform the kick properly.  It got to a point where I would tell myself that I only had to try it five times a day, and then I could quit.  Five times is not very many.  However, you won’t believe how hard it was for me to even try five times.  Taking the first step was always hard because I never believed I could finish the sequence.  I still haven’t been able to master the kick.  A stubborn part of me doesn’t want to give up, but what’s the use of trying if my attempts are only half-hearted?

I don’t know a lot of things, but I can tell you one thing: if I had given up on the MMI exercise after the first time I tried, I would have only remembered the pain.  Some things are worth trying over and over again even if it means failing over and over again. 

So what is my purpose?  I have no idea.  I’ll decide that after I master the butterfly kick…