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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Some serious thoughts...

(kind of long post, but it's what's been on my mind.)
I've really been thinking a lot lately about the image we present to the world. Having a blog, many more people see a bit of me than probably normaly would on a daily basis. (sorry, all you people out there who think I'm a psycho, unbalanced woman.... it's sort of true!) And often, things we write can be completely taken the wrong way.

When I taught the Beehives in Young Women, I really grew to feel kind of like they were my own girls. True, I didn't have to tell them to clean their rooms or get off the phone, but I was in charge of their spiritual guidance every Sunday, and had to be there for them during the week any time they needed me. I really started to think about the image I was presenting to them. Was I overly concerned with my appearance? Was I spending too much on clothing- trying to be hip and trendy? Was I watching television shows that weren't uplifting? Was I listening to music that helped to welcome the Spirit? Was I writing things on my blog that showed I was trying to rise above the dirt and filth of the world?

When I was in High School, I was on the seminary council. (I know... me???) I truly loved every minute of it, although I felt I was unworthy to hold such a responsibility. I was a good girl in high school- never drank, never partied too late. But I made a poor choice in retrospect when I went to prom. After the dance a bunch of us got a hotel room and hung out for the night. True, there were something like 5 couples in one room, how bad can that be, right? But when word got back to my seminary principal- well, he was less than thrilled with my actions. He told me some people had come to him concerned that I had done something bad. It made me really mad that someone would think that of me, and who's business was it anyway??? But he reminded me of the position I held, and that- although I felt it was ridiculous that anyone would, there were people that looked up to me and watched my actions.

I left that meeting feeling very low- like I had let him down, but angered as well. I didn't ask to be watched and judged, yet people felt it was their right to do so. However, through the years following, I've realized that, although I hadn't technically done anything wrong that night, the image I portrayed was not the best. I should have done better.

Having a blog has been really fun. It's kind of cool to be able to spew your thoughts onto the screen and have people comment on them. You get cheered on, patted on the back, probably glared at as well, but that's the cool part too--- you can't see or feel the glares! However, my husband was reading it one day (wonder of wonders!) and he was concerned that I was complaining about a particular thing too much. I told him of course I was being sarcastic- as I always am- and not to worry, no one would take me seriously. Well, a few days later someone said something to him- they had taken me totally seriously! At first I was shocked that they could have gotten that idea from my blog, but then my husband's words came back to me. I realized, I can't control what other's think about me, but I can control how I present it.

One day in our Young Women's class, the YW president talked about the music we listen to. She played a song that was a popular song on the radio at the time. It felt sooo wrong to listen to that in church. It was base, and degrading, and left me feeling dirty and guilty. Then she put on another song- this one was uplifting, spiritual, soft, and acted as a cleanser to wash away the icky feeling the other song had left. She then threw the first cd in the garbage and said, in front of all the young women, that she had loved that cd and had listened to it all the time, but she realized it wasn't good and she didn't want to have any part of it in her life anymore. I was so impressed that she would do that- show the girls that she had a weakness, but was willing to throw the disk away to help herself.

I am not in the Young Women anymore, but I still have a few of them come to me for advice from time to time, and I am in charge of 3 cub scouts every week now. I realize I am being watched without always being aware of it. I hope I can try to be a strength to them, and a good example of how Christ would want his daughters to live and to act. Oh, I'll probably always give someone the wrong idea about me in some form or another, (it seems to be a gift with me!) but I hope that I can try to be more mindful of what I put on my blog, what I watch on television, what I talk about when I'm with others.

Thanks for sticking with me through this! And remember, almost never take me seriously- unless I really want you to! (which, of course, would be now!)


Anonymous said...

I want you to know that I think you are a good example to others in every way. To people like me and the young women. I have always known you to be a beautiful woman, who shows that through her actions. I love your blog, and you spouting off any weaknesses reminds us that we are all human, just trying to be a little better. Thanks for keeping it real!

AHHH, and I didn't email you the recipe. I forgot. Sorry. I will do that this second! :)