30 December 2012

Year End

It is painful to reflect on 2012. i can't think about where i was, but i can reflect on where i am now and where i want to be at the end of 2013.

Where am i? i am in an absolutely beautiful apartment. It feels like...me...my own, my home. i have never had a place before that shouted so completely: JENNIFER! i am in a solid job with an amazing boss and incredible employees under me. i am surrounded by friends who are surprisingly insightful, thoughtful and loving. i am in a family ward that has done a decent job so far of accepting my unique circumstance. i have space to set my own schedule...or not. i am in counseling to help me to heal and learn and grow. i am coming to terms with my new reality and with myself. i am a mess...but i'm an optimistic mess.

At first thought, the only "goal" i wanted to put on my list of resolutions was "2014." That still is something i would like to do...to survive the coming year. But as i've said before, i also want to ENJOY. i am laughing more these days. i smile easier. And it feels good! i want to give myself more reasons to smile, laugh and be happy.

Several weeks ago in a Sunday School lesson, the teacher asked about the purpose of life. i felt that the purpose of life was to be perfected--to become more like Christ. The only way to be perfected is to go through trials that will strengthen me. In other words, my life will mostly be going through trials so that i can improve.

While i still believe this, last week in the temple i received an overwhelming feeling that my Father in Heaven wants me to feel joy. Yes, i am here to learn and grow, but it's not all about the trials. God wants me to have happiness and enjoy my life as well.

That feeling has prompted me to make only one resolution for 2013. In two words:


i am still allowed to mourn sometimes. Or be angry. Or cry. But it will be the exception, not the rule.

Is anyone else done with 2012??? Bring on the New Year!

"It's been a long December and there's reason to believe maybe this year will be better than the last..." -Counting Crows

22 December 2012


Awhile ago i posted about my bucket list. Since then, i have actually crossed a couple things off. Man, does it feel good! :)

This is what i've accomplished.

*Get Scuba Certified

That's Maui. That's me scuba diving. That's a sea turtle. That's right. :)

*Beat Jacob at Texas Hold 'Em
Little did i know how hard checking this off would be. Little did i know what an amazing bluffer he was...a pro, really. Little did i know that i would be dealt a royal flush. But when all the cards were on the table and there were no secrets anymore, it turned out that he lost--big time. And i'm still standing, so i guess that means i beat him. Game Over.

*See a show on Broadway
I actually saw two shows! i went to "Evita" by myself and then "Peter and the Starcatchers" with my cousin, Leon. It was hard to choose what to see but both performances were phenomenal. Oh the voices some people have!

*Have a follower on my blog that i've never met
Welcome, friends! When i, in desperation to find someone who understood my situation, reached out to others, they reached back out to me. Amazing.

*Go to a midnight premier of a movie
My friend, Benjamin took me to see Peter Jackson's version of Tolkien's "The Hobbit." It was amusing to see people in costume (especially with bare hobbit feet when it was so very cold outside!). The  movie was....interesting. i'll have to give it a second go, i think. Mostly i was really sleepy but enjoyed the experience nonetheless.

*Museum hop in New York
MoMA (Museum of Modern Art):

Metropolitan Museum of Art:
And they were lovely.
The world didn't end yesterday as predicted. Part of me was a little bummed...after all life can be exhausting. But then again, it would be a shame not to put a check next to every item on my list. And who knows what's next? Peru? Petra? Possibly!!

11 December 2012


It's been over five months since i've seen him. i'm starting to forget. You know, the little things like the exact way his laugh sounds, the way it feels to have our fingers intertwined, the way he smells, the exact color of his eyes. And i can't flip through pictures to remind myself...it would completely undo me. It's like looking back at our life through a dirty window; the images are still there but not very clear anymore.

i don't want to remember. i don't want to forget.

It hurts.

Oh, it hurts so exquisitely.

This is why we are friends

i recently reconnected at the home of one of my mission buddies. It had been a long time since we had seen each other and much had changed...in both of our lives. Although some of the conversation was somber as we discussed the difficulties of life, we also spent a good long time laughing at mission memories. Some of my favorites happened with this companion.

For example, there was the time i took my nylons off in the middle of the street, or the time we were talking to a bus driver and made him run into a pole, or the time i accidentally kicked some stray dog's fresh droppings on the back of her skirt.

During our conversation, her cute little weiner dog ran into the room, clearly excited to see company. He jumped up on the couch in order to get a better look at me and say hello. Within seconds he had rolled onto his back for a belly scratch. As soon as i stretched out my hand to rub his stomach, he began to piddle...all over my hand and my leg.

When i arrived back home, the following text conversation ensued:

"i have to say--
1-It was wonderful to see you.
2- i can't believe your dog peed on me and i think you put him up to it as revenge for the poop kicking incident
3-i still love you"

"Jennifer, I have three things to say to you:
1- Likewise
2- Damn straight--you know you deserved that &
3-No, I haven't taken up swearing. I just felt like making you smile and thought profanity might do the trick"

It worked. i laughed for at least 5 minutes. i love you, Hermanita!