Wednesday, April 2, 2014
My Journey: Rummaging Through My Belief Boxes...
The next leg of my journey came within a month or so of my prayer (see bottom of this post for previous post). We had originally planned to wait at least 3 years before considering conceiving again after our previous pregnancy. Physically and emotionally it had been a challenge for our little family and we were afraid because of unanswered questions and the possibility of a repeat.
Within a month of my prayer, I began to realize that pregnancy was going to be sooner than 3 years. Our baby was 6 months at the time. As I brought the promptings to my husband, he shocked me by asking, "When are you thinking to try again?" I had expected to be met with resistance or at least discussions of our previous pregnancy. I told him I wasn't sure yet. As we prayed over the months, we realized it was going to be MUCH sooner than 3 years.
We prayerfully decided to conceive in August. Which we easily did. (Infertility has never been our challenge). We lost that baby and conceived Leland in November.
Leland's pregnancy taught me some incredible lessons! I sensed early on that my being his mother was going to be life-changing. It wasn't that my previous babies had not changed me. I just sensed something of great significance was about to take place. As I shared in his birth story, an eternal truth I was taught is the type of faith that moves people and things (more another day).
Also equally important to my journey was Hypnobabies. Because of the Hypnobabies program, I became aware of my subconscious mind and beliefs. I had never before rummaged around in my "belief boxes," or what I believe. I had never before considered that I may have things in my belief boxes that weren't really true. We believe what we believe to be true...that is why we believe it, right? What began as considering beliefs about pregnancy & birth quickly turned into a full out deep cleaning. I was amazed at what I found as I turned over every box and barrel. There were things that were flat out lies. There was "good advice" that I had elevated to be truth. There were opinions or voices from others or even myself that I had instantly received, again, as truth. There was truth that had been brushed over and not seen for the significance it held.
I prayerfully brought every belief out and examined it. For the first time in my life, I began to seek to align my truth with God's truth: D&C 93:24 24 "And truth is knowledge of things as they are, and as they were, and as they are to come"
I had been seeing through my own perspective, not His. I held each belief to the light. Some were easy to spot now and quickly given up. Others were so deeply woven into my life while others glimmered promisingly. Those took more time to recognize and were more reluctantly released. When I thought I had been through everything, and would prayerfully ask, He would show me yet another box or a hidden compartment in a box I thought I had already emptied the contents of. This was the major purge. Sometimes this process was joyful. Sometimes it was painful or even embarrassing. Sometime it was actually humorous. I was blown away at what I had allowed myself to believe to be true. One by one He began to show me the mis-truths and replace them with His truths as I allowed Him to.
I am still occasionally blessed to find new boxes and beliefs. Keeping my belief boxes organized has been and will continue to be a daily process for me. It has come almost in layers. As I am changed and shed old beliefs and patterns, a place is carved out for me to hold more light and truth.
Simultaneously as this rummaging began, I was blessed to have a living testimony of what I was beginning to understand in theory unfold before my very eyes. As we sought to align with Truth in our pregnancy and baby---to understand things as "they [really] were, and as they [were] to come," we were blessed with the otherwise unexplainable miracle of a full-term, healthy baby.
This light and knowledge almost came faster than I could bare. Afterwards, I literally had to ponder on the events for several months before I could begin to articulate what had happened and what I had been taught.
Are you in a 12-step program? Even if you don't feel like you fit the bill of an addict, have you at least worked through this workbook? It is my person opinion that any person in any circumstance can benefit from putting these principles into action regardless of the details of their life. If you are in a 12-step program, do you go home from the meetings and actually work the steps (as in open the book, prayerfully tackle the questions and exercises)? If not, I challenge you to go check it out AND take action on it.
What I described in this post was God walking me through my very first inventory (even though it would still be a few years before I knew that by a name). Start this workbook/keep working through it or something similar that works for you. It's critical to note that the inventory is step 4 (NOT 1). Once I had a firm foundation of humility, hope in Christ, and trust in God, I was willing and able to do whatever was needed to look at the inventory honestly as well as take the actions to put my life in order afterward. Start with step 1. Read the step, pray and seek the help of the Holy Ghost as you do the exercises and answer the questions. It's okay if it takes weeks or months (or even years) to work through one step. There is no set pace. The details of what needs to be addressed for you is something only you can work out with God. Although we all must work through the same steps, the details are perfectly tailored to you. Although there may be mentors, friends, leaders, or loved-ones who can offer some support or suggestions, ultimately, working through this process requires a direct connection and communication with your higher power. Mine is God and because of His son, Jesus Christ, I can have the strength and power to take these steps
While I am talking 12 step, below are two other manuals specific for those supporting a loved one through addiction. Because of the timing of changing manuals and when I started attending groups, I have actually used all three of these manuals to work my recovery. The Healing Through Christ is what we used in our groups at first. I really liked it overall and especially found the inventory step (4) in particular to be the best help out of all 3 manuals. The ARP manual (linked above) is what we used for a few years after that. Initially I was really mad about it because I didn't feel like I was an addict and I resented working the same steps as my husband when I didn't "need to." It didn't take long of really diving into it to realize that even though I was acting out with things that were socially acceptable like chocolate or Facebook, I was turning to things (or even people or emotions) to fix me. I was doing the exact same thing as my husband. I realized that God doesn't care WHAT it is that I am turning to instead of Him. He wants all of my heart. So even though these manuals below are really great helps for those supporting a loved one with addiction, I would strongly recommend you considering looking at all 3 of these and praying about it. These are the three I did. There are plenty of other programs out there. Find what works for you and whatever that is, DO IT.
1. LDS spouse support manual
2. Healing Through Christ
My journey. Go back a post HERE
My journey. Next post HERE