Monday, June 25, 2012

How I Know Heavenly Father Answers Prayers

(Loooong post)

"O, Remember, remember..."

One of the most important things about prayers being answered is first remembering, and then showing gratitude.  I assure you I have done both.

Last week was a baaad week for me.  And, subsequently,  for my kids.  And, subsequently, for my husband.  Let's not even get into what it did to my personal hygiene. 

I spent many hours in my scriptures searching for peace.  Several pages of heated writing in my journal.  It wasn't until I finally folded my arms and bent my head in humble agony and begged for peace and release from my struggles, that I found comfort.

I'm going to tell you what I prayed about, because it fascinates me how Heavenly Father answered those prayers.

First, I prayed that my husband would be more supportive.  That he would do more around the house.  That he would be more present.

The answer in my mind was that Brett would come home, tell me to go to bed, would clean the entire house, make dinner, play with the kids, and put them to bed.  Easy peasy, lemon squeezy.

My answer came in the form of a friend of mine.  Maybe she heard something in my not-so-subtle post on FB lamenting my woes (I may have said something like, "Kill me now..." I'm not altogether sure...) but the next day she said, "I'm coming over.  What's your poison?"

What amazes me about her support was that the day she came over was also the anniversary of the birth of a child she later lost.  She came over and gave me comfort on a day that she really deserved it.  I hope I reciprocated.

The answer to my prayer came as we talked about our spouses and marriage.  She told me about her husband (who sounded incredibly like me) and about herself (who is a lot like Brett) and as I was listening to her, I realized I was listening to what Brett would possibly say about me.  If he was a chick and talked about such things.

I love my friend.  I think she's amazing.  And so I felt horrible as I listened to her.  I felt like everything she said was something Brett could equally complain about.  I started to appreciate everything he did for me, for our kids.  He's by far one of the most amazing men I've ever known, and I was so down in my own dark depression that I didn't stop to think that maybe he was having a bad week.  Maybe he needed a little service.

I was humbled.

I hurried and hopped online as soon as she left and shot out an email telling him I was sorry for the previous email I sent (I'm sure you can imagine what it said) and I told him all the things I should have said in the first place.  Later, he told me how amazing it was, the turn around, the difference in tones.  I think he could feel the Heavenly help I was receiving through reading that email.

I had also prayed that Heavenly Father would take away my crazy emotions.  That He would make my thoughts stable.  That He would slow my anger.

Basically, I just wanted him to take it all away.  The perfect answer.

How the answer really came...

Later, that same day, as I was about to finally put Chloe to bed and lay down myself and let Cohen and Kembry have their way with the house, Cohen said, "What about swimming?!"

Oh snap.  That's right.  We go swimming on this particular day.  Physically, I was not feeling up to it.  Emotionally I was doing a little better.  I stood there and wavered, and the Spirit whispered to me, "Go."  I argued back, said that it was 111 degrees and I was an exhausted 31 week pregnant lady on the brink of insanity.

The Spirit whispered to me, "Go."

So, we went.  It's no easy task taking 3 kids swimming alone.  The sunscreen, the towells, the pool bag, the screaming, very tired toddler.  But we went.

And again, I lamented to a friend.

I told her how crazy I felt this pregnancy.

She said she was crazy with all five of her pregnancies.

I cried about how much I cry.  About how I yell at my kids all the time.

She told me that her brother, who is a psychologist, read an article that showed a woman on hormones has the same brain activity as a schizophrenic.

I don't know why this comforted me.  But it totally did.

I told her my biggest secret of all, because it all just came pouring out.  I said it out loud for the first time.  I told her how I just didn't feel connected to "this baby".  The fact that I even call Kian, "this baby" makes me break down into tears.  What was wrong with me?  How could I be so horrible?  When I think about this pregnancy, I just want it over with already.  I want my body back.  My energy.  My sanity.  I think about the affect it's having on my marriage, on my relationship with my children.  I hardly ever think about holding my sweet son in my arms for the first time.

She told me she didn't connect with any of her five babies.  Not really until they were a few months old.

We left swimming and again, I was humbled.

The rest of the day was not perfect.  The rest of the weekend, I yelled.  I cried.  But I also tried harder and I also remembered my prayers being answered.  I shared with Brett my experience.  I think he was as amazed as I was to see the Lord's work. 

I cannot express the joy I felt knowing that Heavenly Father heard my cries.  And how well He knows me, to go about sending angels in my life to help answer my prayers.  Not at all the way I thought they should be answered.  But in a much, much better way.

I am a Daguther of my Heavenly Father, who loves me...

I hope this helps anyone out there having a rough Monday.  Take a moment, kneel down, pray.  And then wait patiently and lovingly, knowing that your Father knows you better than you know yourself, and that you are surrounded by angels.


Afraid and wandering, we lost our way.
With no aid in sight, we began to pray:

“Please keep us safe in such hostile lands,”
Then came the warm touch of Heavenly Hands.

Perhaps one on our shoulder when we felt alone,
While another pointed the way which then led us home.

The help came unseen like the wind as it blew,
But we all felt it upon us, and that’s how we knew;

That angels still watch and sometimes send us a “rose” –
A gift to remind us that Heaven still knows

All that we go through and all that we need.
Surely Heaven is with us, if we’ll only give heed.

Greg Olsen - 2001


Cheyenne and Seth and Co. said...

love. My dad gave me a blessing a couple of weeks ago while seth was at work and I and my kids were in desperate need for some relief from my schizophrenic self. And I was told exactly what you just said. That He knows my heart more than I do. That He hears all of my prayers. And He wants to and will answer them. That if I will stop and take notice I will recognize all the sweet answers as they come throughout the day. Thank you for reminding me again, what I already know, but struggle to remember. love you!! Here's to a better week for us both :)

Kevin and SueAnn said...

This is a great post, it really made me think about a lot of things, including counting my blessings.

Some times I feel like hormones are an "excuse" I use, but they aren't! They are real and it is nice to know that other people are "crazy" too!

genderist said...

Excellent post. It's always beautiful to be reminded how blessed we are.

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