Thursday, August 29, 2013

Journal: Just a Bunch of Updates

Hello friends!

I'm so sorry that I haven't been writing.  I swear I have not disappeared, and things are still progressing a long nicely.  I'm behind schedule with my book, and yet, I'm ahead of schedule at the same time.  Sounds weird, I know.  My goal was to have the book finished by the time school started, but the first 9 chapters were somewhat slow going.  I injected a lot of myself into them.  I revisited dark memories, and put them to a flow of words that most anyone can relate to.  As awesome as it has turned out, it took somewhat of a toll on me.

But, the Lord was mindful of me, and sustained me every single step of the way.  He is amazing!

I am excited about the editing process.  I was really nervous when I first started writing because I had no clue who to ask to help me edit it.  But, the right people have taken their rightful place.  My good friend Stephanie jumped out of the woodwork with "I want to help, I'm REALLY good at editing!"... I couldn't deny that outstretched hand, and so I accepted.  My dear husband has been a great help, too.  We sit together at night, on our bed.  He reads the chapter out loud while I follow along and, together, we nitpick it... striving to find just the right word or phrase.  If something doesn't sound right, I'll spend some time explaining to him my feelings surrounding it, and how I want it to sound, and the specific message I am trying to portray.  After patiently listening he says "I get it" and then together we work to make it perfect.  My good friend, Annette, has also been a big help.  She is the perfect pick me up when I'm down on the chapter because she always comes back with how amazing it is.  It's just what I need to hear, because through this, Satan has really worked on me, telling me how crappy the chapter is, and that I should just toss it and start over.  I never do though, I always have someone read it first, because I've learned to be weary of all my negative thoughts.

I have some amazing editing lined up too.  I am currently working on Chapter 11 and Chapter 12 will soon follow.  I expect the entire thing to be finished in the next few weeks.  Once it is finished, I will print three hard copies and divvy them out to three trusted individuals.  One is my female addict friend.  I want female addict eyes on it, because that is my target audience for the book.  Second is my female non-addict friend.  I do know that I will have a non-addict audience as well so I want to make sure the book is understandable, and no one is left hanging.  Third is my dear friend Toni Handy, one of the founders of the Healing Through Christ Foundation.  She also helped Dr.Donald Hilton with He Restoreth My Soul.

Once I have their copies back and I implement their thoughts, I will print one final copy.  I have asked a dear friend of mine, an author, as well as an leader in religious studies at BYU to look at it.  He is amazing, and I hope he accepts.  I want him to get an overall feel for the book, as well as make sure it is doctrinally correct.  I don't talk specifically about Gospel Principles, but I do generally, and even though I feel pretty secure in my understanding of them, there is always room for error.  So I want to cover my bases.

Once HE is finished, then it will finally be ready to send to the publisher!

This book is going to be one well kneaded beast!!!

I feel impressed to ask if any of you might have published author friends that would be willing to read it (once a publisher accepts it) and comment on it - for the comments at the beginning of the book.  That's a long way off, but I want to get a jump on that as well.

Lets see....

Oh, I joined Twitter again.  Mostly because I was able to connect it to my Instagram account so it makes it much easier.  So I'll be posting the meme's that I create and post on FB and Instagram, on Twitter too.

You are welcome to follow me at either:

Instagram: @iamsidreis
Twitter: @iamsidreis

I think that is about it!!

Love you guys:-)

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Journal: Invitations, Whisperings and Drum Roll's

WELCOME!!

Tomorrow is going to be a special day.  My dear, awesome friend Jacy, is posting a blurb about me on her blog.  If you haven't read her blog, you should.  She is amazing.  A true trailblazer. An angel, and a very good friend.

I had the opportunity to extend an invitation.  The invitation is to others who might be struggling in the shadows of sexual addiction, and feel that hopelessness is swallowing them whole.

I remember writing the blurb, and pausing toward the end, trying to figure out how to conclude.  And then it came, the invitation, it just poured out of me.

I have learned to not deny or disobey such promptings.  I have little doubt that the article is meant for someone specific.

Is it you?

If so, please know that you are not alone.

You are loved, by God, by Jacy, and by me.

Reach.  I'll listen.

~~~~~~~~~~ 

I had a hard day today.  I worked on final edits of Chapter 8 - Whisperings of the Adversary, and let me tell you: Satan HATES this chapter.  He is throwing a huge tissy fit over it.  I had so much mental noise while working on it that I could hardly hear myself think.  I heard so many lies being whispered to me as I was editing past lies he has told me!  It was kind of humorous actually.

But, I put the chapter away for a while, and just concentrated on listening to good music and reading uplifting material.   Later, my awesome husband helped me look at the chapter again, and together we did a sweep edit, and as hard as it was to write (because I listed very specific lies Satan has told me) it was still amazing.  Truth is amazing.  Truth, even hard truth, even dark truth - is light.  I think sometimes that gets skewed in our heads.  We can't talk about things we have done because it's dark.  Well in order for them to become un-dark we must bring them into the light, and to do that we need to talk about it!

~~~~~~~~~~

So as you know, I recently filmed a commercial for a local recovery organization.  Well, I found out today that they have purchased a 'conference package'... which means...

DRUM ROLL

That the commercial I am in will air all throughout General Conference weekend.  Awesome right!?  So crazy!!  I can't wait!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Dear Bishop: Will Heavenly Father Forgive Me?

Dear Bishop,

Right now, this moment I am anxious to meet with you. I have spiraled out of control and when I think of being in your office it feels safe to me. And that's what I need: a safe place to share, process, be encouraged, feel compassion and hopefully feel the spirit. 

I messed up again. I know I'm bound to slips and am not expecting perfection of myself, but some slips are greater than others. My slip has shaken me to my core. For the first time in my life I have actually began to believe I've done too much. Will Heavenly Father forgive me? Sure, I think so. But I believe now I've forfeited my right as an heir to the Celestial Kingdom. I don't know if that is true or not, but I know it's not healthy (or helpful) to keep my mind fixated on that thought.

I feel a lot of shame. Thankfully through the small web of support I have now I have been reassured that my worth remains unchanged despite all of this. I don't quite understand that but that is a thought I will keep my mind fixated on.

Bishop, my relapse has seemed to make me weak to my knees, but my pride refuses to let me fall onto them. My soul and body are in conflict with one another. I can't think straight. It's as if I'm looking through fog. This fog is so thick & disorienting that it seems every other hour I forget why I even need to meet with you. But then something or someone shakes me back to the reality of my situation so then I anxiously await our appointment again.

I don't feel like I'm in a centered enough place to tell you what I need, so please seek inspiration on my behalf. Help me feel the spirit. Please help me remain connected to helpful resources and good people. 

I know I need my Savior. But I don't know what that means. He seems so out of touch for me. The Atonement seems so flat and unattainable. It seems like an abstract idea. I can't grasp it!

I have a lot of fear. But I also have a testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I believe that Jesus Christ walked the Earth. I believe in His existence even after death. I believe that Joseph Smith restored this church through the guidance of our Lord. And I really do believe a whole lot more. It's because of this testimony that I'm pushing past the fear and do what I know is right. But don't underestimate the power of this addiction. I fall back into fear and shame far too regularly. 

I feel like a good person locked inside a flawed body. I feel unworthy of love. I really do. If you disagree with me about that, please tell me. I probably won't believe you at first, but I need to hear it. Thank you for your service, Bishop. I'll pray for you and hope you'll do the same for me.

A Beautiful Daughter of God

A contributed post in response to A Call For Input: Dear Bishop Letters.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Random Stuff!

Hey Guys,

Just wanted to let you know that I am safe and sound, back in Utah, and back in business.

Disneyland was amazing.  I hadn't been in upwards of 17 years so it was fun to visit all the old haunts as well as the new attractions.  I loved the feel of Disney and the childlike innocence it brings.  It is pure goodness.

As fun as it was, though, I am happy to be back.  I've lived in my Happy Valley "bubble" for so long that I'd forgotten just how worldly the world really is.  Innocence may have prevailed in what Disneyland had to offer, but it was hardly prevalent in those that attended.  I'll just say I was triggered multiple times, and saddened at the lack of clothing people wore.  Apparently it's the new fad for women to have as much of their bra showing as possible, while still wearing a shirt.

Why?

Bra's are to hold the girls UP people - that's it.  Sheesh.

~~~~~~~~~

I was grateful to attend church yesterday.  I felt so much comfort among my ward family.  I am truly blessed to have so many people around me who nourish my soul.

I have some catch-up to get done at work so I won't start blogging again for a few days.

Also, school starts here in a couple of weeks and I'm taking 12 credits.  Wha'?  Ya, I just want to get done so I'm busting it out.  I'm tired of working and going to school.  I just want to be home with my kids.  So I'm busting it out so I don't have to be out of my home longer than necessary.

~~~~~~~~~~

Hmm... what else...

Oh, the book.  My goal was to have it completed before school starts.  I don't foresee that happening, but I'm still pushing for that deadline anyway.  That gives me two weeks!  Ya, wishful thinking, I know.  But I really don't want to have to worry much about it once school starts.  We'll see. I don't want to rush it either, so I'm striving for a healthy balance.

~~~~~~~~~~

OH!!!  The phone meeting is tonight!  So if you haven't already signed up, there are spots still available!  Email me at bythelightofgrace (at) gmail (dot) com if you are interested!

I think that's it for now:-)

Friday, August 2, 2013

Thirty Nine Years Closer to Home

Today...
          is my  birthday.

And, I am having so much fun!

I was asked if it bothers me if others know my age.  The question made me
                                                                                                              think.
There was a time...
                   once
                                          ...when it bothered me.

It bothered me because I had a deep seeded fear.  I hated to be reminded of the years ticking by, because I was scared.  I was scared to die and face God.

But now...
              I want to go home...
                                           I long for the day when I can, once again, dwell in the presence of my King.

I want to be reunited with my family,
                                       and
                                                  .....bask in rich celestial light.

No, I am not afraid to share my age.
                        Because  ...each year that passes, is one less year I am away from home.

Ezekiel 34:11-12,16

"For thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I, even I, will both search my sheep, and seek them out. As a shepherd seeketh out his flock in the day that he is among his sheep that are scattered; so will I seek out my sheep, and will deliver them out of all places where they have been scattered in the cloudy and dark day. I will seek that which was lost, and bring again that which was driven away, and will bind up that which was broken, and will strengthen that which was sick"