Let's talk for a moment, or rather you listen while I talk, about my five minutes of LDS fame.
Back at the end of January I got wind from our ward choir director that the church was looking for volunteers to be in the Women's Conference Choir. I thought it sounded really fun so I sent in my application. They were upfront about the fact that they were mainly choosing families as this would be the first Women's Conference where girls from the ages 8 and up were invited. I didn't think I had much of a chance, but at the same time I knew if I made it, it would be an amazing well needed experience.
A few weeks after my submission, I received an email congratulating me for making the choir. I was thrilled. To say I needed a spiritual boost would be a huge understatement. I was drained and exhausted. On the application they asked what I wanted to get out of the experience spiritually. I wrote that I needed to bring the spirit to my home with me and that I wanted to be a better mom. Now, I'm not saying our home was in terrible shape spiritually or anything, or that I was questioning my beliefs, it's just like I said. I was feeling weighed down by life. I needed to feel that I was loved from my Heavenly Father.
At our first rehearsal I learned just how lucky I was. There were over 20,000 applicants for this 360ish person choir. They said they ran out of time to read each individual application so they eventually just prayed that they were grabbing the papers of the women that were meant to be there. I truly felt I NEEDED to be there. It wasn't that I was an amazing singer or deserved it any more than anyone else, I just needed it. Out of thousands, I was picked. Little old normal me. A tender mercy I was shown to know that I was loved and that He knows me personally.
At each of the practices we had the opportunity to hear from one of the women in the general presidencies. It was so special. I learned so much from them and our awesome director. The spirit was strong during every meeting. Even the lady in charge of making sure we were wearing the right clothing was such a great example to me. I realized I had work to do personally. I wanted to be more like these women. I wanted my relationship with Gregg to be stronger and more spiritually based. I wanted our home to be a home of comfort and peace. Not always easy with a special needs child with behavior issues.
My favorite song was "Daughters in His Kingdom." The Primary, Young Women, and Relief Society all had their own parts. I cried every time the primary started singing. It was the sweetest thing. During dress rehearsal the director had us sing it while looking around at all of the other women. There was hardly a dry eye in the choir.
My favorite line of the song is when the Relief Society sing "Faithful and courageous, I choose to do my part." It hit home to me. I am choosing to not only survive raising a special needs child, but I am choosing to do my best. I could give up at any point, but I continue to fight for her. I would be lying if I said I didn't have moments of complete despair and disappointment in myself, but I CHOOSE to grow and learn. I won't give up.
Here's the video of the song. So good!
|I took this photo at dress rehearsal the week before the conference. Isn't the conference center beautiful?|
The outfits we were asked to wear were um....not so much my style and I made a huge mistake going with orange. Orange is not my color. I had a few clothing malfunctions if we're being honest here, which I think we are. My skirt did not want to stay up. Once during dress rehearsal I looked down to see my skirt almost to my knees. Um...embarrassing much? Then I was so worried it would happen again, that I hiked it up so high that it gave me a big belly. Oh I forgot we're being honest. It showed my belly. The belly I usually try to hide. Argg...I also didn't take into account that the fabric I chose showed sweat marks like crazy. I'm usually not a sweater, but I was that night. Just what I wanted for something that was shown world wide. Good thing I'm not a public figure ya'll.
My mom, sister in law, and two of my nieces came down to attend. I'm so glad they were there. It made it much more special.
|My niece and me.|
|My mom and me.|
|My SIL and other niece. Oh and a big orange giant.|
|The General Presidency addressing us before the performance. They were so sweet.|
|Who's that jaw dropper? I took things very seriously.|
|This song apparently caused me pain. Lol! The faces of singing are awesome.|
|After the conference.|
I have always heard stories of being in the presence of a prophet and how amazing it is. The stories are true! When President Monson walked in the room the whole building went silent. I immediately felt like someone was pushing on my heart. The spirit was so very, VERY strong. All I could squeak out after was, "wow!" He is a man of God. I know this for a fact. I also know we are all loved so much by our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. They know us. They know of our needs. They know what trials we need in order to become like them. We are not left helpless though. There is always a way to come unto Christ.