Yesterday (well, this whole week) was impossibly long and hard. Thursday night/yesterday were my time to crash and burn. I almost cried at school. Luckily, it was during my favorite class (my catering class-nine students), and they are so amazing in there. I mean, it was a very awkward moment, but I just told them it wasn't them, it was me, and I was simply having a rough day. They love me, and they held me up. Then the rest of the day (I have one of those students three class periods in a row, and four others of those students two class periods in a row), they let everyone who was even remotely rude to me know that I was having a bad day and to knock it off. The rest of the day, all of my students were very protective of my emotional state. They fed me with compliments--telling me that I'm a great teacher, they love me, and that I'm beautiful. It was so amazing to feel that power and love around me. As a high school teacher.
I'm supposed to be in Branson this weekend. My friends are having a girls' weekend without me. That's a story in itself, and all I'll say is I had too much work to do, so I chose not to go as an act of self-care. Going was supposed to be self-care, but with progress reports going out Monday (and how backed up I am in grading and other things with school), the idea of going became pure stress. I decided to stay home so I could get as much as I can done because next week might be hell-week at school. I have so much to do. Plus I woke up feeling sick yesterday and worse today, so I'm glad I can just lay in bed doing my school-work and not be walking around outlet malls in the cold.
Last night I was at school until seven. SEVEN! On a Friday. Did I mention I got to school around 7:10 am? Right when I was feeling sorry for myself (around 5:15) two of my favorite students came in to say hi. They were setting up for the cheer competition today, and decided to take a break and see if I was still there...What kinds of students would expect a teacher to still be at school on Friday at 5:15? Inspired ones. Actually, they wanted some cookies that they were supposed to come get after school but forgot about. Nevertheless, I felt very blessed that they came to visit me and chat for a bit, and I do think it was inspired. About an hour later, a couple more students came to borrow my vacuum to vacuum turf off of something as they were setting up for the competition. These are my two funniest students (and I can never get enough laughs in, especially when I'm depressed that it's 6:15 on a Friday night, and I'm still at school), and it was another little blessing that I knew was from God.
I have stress hives. Not to mention the pain in my back, neck, and feet, which are constant. I wanted to do some form of exercise today, but I'm sick. So, I'll just lay here and do school stuff while I'm wrapped in blankets trying to keep warm. Things could look really down, but I know I'm so blessed. Throughout this entire week, which has had incredible highs and lows (Seriously. Insane amounts of tears, but insane amounts of joy too), I have been blessed. I'm sure later today I will get depressed again, but I'm just grateful for the moments of clarity I have when I know I'm extremely blessed.
Last night, we had pizza for dinner, made a fort with my 13-year old sister, and watched a movie with her. Today I might paint (hopefully...it would be amazing if I could paint!), and I'll for sure do some ADDO and study my scriptures.
It's actually a tender mercy that I had so much to do that I couldn't go to Branson. I am getting some necessary time for myself. Everything I had to do was too much to do after coming home from Branson, but it's not so much that it's taking up my whole weekend. Well, actually, it was, but I crossed some stuff off my list. I'm simplifying for myself. Kind of like how I chose not to grade some assignments because it was too overwhelming. Anyway, right now I'm supposed to be at a Stake Leadership Training for Young Women's, but I skipped it for self-care. And I think God understands that. When I prayed about what to cross off my weekend, I felt very strongly that I need to take care of myself this weekend. What a blessing.
God sees me. He knows me. He knows exactly what to do for me. And I have the Atonement to lean on.
Christ has felt pains, afflictions, and temptations of every kind (Alma 7:11). That means this kind. The kind I feel when I'm severely depressed. The kind I feel when I'm struggling with the responsibilities I have at school. The kind I feel when I'm stuck with the addiction in my life. The kind I feel because I'm not wearing my wedding ring, and the kind I feel when I put the ring back on.
He has taken all of our infirmities (physical and mental weaknesses) upon Himself (Alma 7:12). Because of that, He is filled with mercy, and He knows exactly what we need to be lifted up. He knows because He has felt it. He knows when I need merciful students to feed me with love and compliments. He knows when I need my husband to buy my favorite pizza and decide we're making a fort and watching a movie. He knows when I need my sweet sisters to make me laugh. He knows when I need my principal to email me telling me how great of a job I'm doing and that my work doesn't go unnoticed. He knows when I need my young women's president to ask me how my week is going and expect an honest answer (there is another person I opened up to about the addiction this week :) woot!). He knows when I need students to come talk to me about their own trials. It gives me perspective, and it also shows me that I am in the right place right now and am making a difference for them. I love my students. He knows when to prompt me to cut down and give me peace about cutting down on things in my life. He knows when to give me moments of peace and clarity. This list could go on.
He sees me. He knows me. He is always there for me. And, even though I know that, sometimes I still get a little mad and prideful because things are so hard.
But He is always there waiting for me with open arms. In the meantime, He sends angels to help lift me up.