Things can be better tomorrow than they are today.
How beautiful is that promise? Like everyone else I have been thinking about change. Not only change within myself but how much can change over a span of 3 years or even 18 months. How something could happen today that could change the rest of my life. I returned home from a mission approximately two months ago and though I miss having that purpose I have faith in the future and what it has to bring me. When I was nearing the end of my mission I was talking to a few of Sisters that grew to be great friends. One of them said that when missionaries get home the only reason it's hard is because they make it hard. I agree. I think we sometimes use it as an excuse. We need to continue to do what we have taught the last 18 to 24 months.
One Sunday night while visiting an elderly couple in the ward I was currently serving in I had the exact thought I mentioned early. Something could happen in ten minutes that could change my life. I had no idea why I thought that. I later came to find out. I went on with introducing my companion to this couple and left the spiritual thought. We got into the car and we noticed there were quite a few missed calls from President Samuelian, our Zone Leaders, and the Assistants to the President. One of our Zone Leaders called back and I had asked him what was going on. I had many thoughts going through my head as to what was happening. He asked if everything back home was okay. Right then I thought about my mom. I had a calm assurance that whatever happened-- even if it wasn't okay-- was okay. I then called President Samuelian back. He asked if my companion and I could come into the mission home that night because there was something he needed to talk to me about. Of course I was still panicking at this moment but I agreed.
We show up in Newberg at the mission home and after President finished up a few things he asked if I could come into their bedroom to have a kneeling prayer. At this point, I knew my mission was coming to an end. We had a kneeling prayer and afterwards President and Sister Samuelian sat next to me. President had told me that my stake president from back home had called. My mom. Right then I knew. He went on telling me that my mom had passed away. I wanted to ask, why me? I again felt peace. I flew home the next day to be released as a missionary and to be home with my sisters.
I think of her everyday. I realized I miss her in the small moments; when I want one of her recipes, to let her know I made it to Provo safely, to call when I'm sick so I can hear her voice, to just see how she is doing. I sometimes wish it would have never happened. Then I think of what a loving Heavenly Father we have who has presented a plan to us. He has promised me that I will see her again. My mother knew the battles she would face in this life. She knew I was going to serve a mission. She knew at the end of 18 months, she would be gone. I was weak. I still am. My mission gave me strength-- the strength I needed to handle this. The day she passed away, she was going to send me a key-chain sized telescope. In the box she had wrote a note saying, "I'll be watching out for you." I know she is here with me in those small moments. I love my mom. I never spoke highly of her-- and yes, I regret it. I wish the world could see how wonderful of a lady she was. I hate to admit that even though I was tempted, I would never trade my mom for anyone. She really was a wonderful women who, from the beginning, knew what was going to happen.
Heavenly Father has a grand plan. What a privilege it was for me to see a glimpse of it. I can't ask, why me? Because I know why. Death seems so final here in this mortal life but it's only the beginning. We hear over and over again how it's never meant to be easy. I read a blog the other day about a women who lost her father and kept hearing the phrase. She diligently sought the scriptures but could never find it. However, she found that we need to give our pain over to our Savior, Jesus Christ. I'm a firm believer that we grow from pain. We learn and progress. We cannot, however, do it alone. "And he will take upon him death... he will take upon him their infirmities... that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities." Christ wants us to give over our pain to Him. Why? So He can understand us. So He can help us. I have had to practice a lot of Faith in this throughout my life. I learned on my mission that if I'm afraid, He can't help me. We know that where there is faith, there cannot be fear. He wants to help us but when we are fearful, we bind Him from helping us.
Some days are a lot harder than others. I understand now. I get it. I'm a 23 year old who lost her mother. She wont be at my wedding. My future children wont know who their Grandma Laurie is. She wont see me graduate with my degree. That's all very unfortunate. But my mom wouldn't want me dwelling on those facts. All I can do is remember her for what she taught me and what a beautiful women she was. She is now in a place where she's healthy, happy, and progressing.
Things can be better tomorrow than they are today.