13 October 2017

Self-Love


I've always been self conscious of my nose, but I'm learning to love it because it's big like my dads. (Love you, Dad) 

😜I've gained 10 pounds since I got married, but with those 10 pounds came lots of memories, weekly date nights & late-night ice-cream runs.

I raaaaarely wear make-up & 9 out of 10 days I wear yoga pants, but I'm more comfortable that way & I no longer feel self-conscious about it. 

If people question my motives or decisions I no longer crumble with self-doubt. I stand firmly without wavering; knowing that I’m incredibly worthy, wise & strong. 

There are days my anxiety is unmanageable, but rather than attacking myself for it I now chalk it up to a bad day & look forward to tomorrow. 

This year I have focused on self-love. I have focused on developing an indestructible sense of self. I have focused on setting realistic expectations & for the first time in a long time I feel like I not only know the in's-&-out's of myself but am so completely at peace & accepting of what I see. I'm infinitely more tolerant of my weaknesses & I treat myself with patience & understanding & acceptance; like I would anyone else. 

Self-love & self-compassion has changed my very core. Not only has it changed my relationship with myself but with all of those around me. I’ve learned that setting boundaries aren’t personal attacks, but often times lovingly necessary. I still have bad days & I still have my insecurities - but they no longer hinder me. I acknowledge them for what they are & then let it go. Life was not meant to be lived criticizing ourselves &/or others. We each have so much to offer the world & our “perceived” weaknesses can be the most defining marks of our character.

27 September 2017

Anxiety & me

I have anxiety; more specifically GAD.

Sometimes it's severe & sometimes it's not.

Sometimes I can overcome it & sometimes I can't. 

On Sunday I could not.

After attending the second hour of church my anxiety snuck up on me. The thought of interacting in relief society was just too much & I couldn't bring myself to go, so my husband took my hand, walked me to the car & held me.

Life isn't always easy & it's not always glamorous. My life isn't tidy & it certainly isn't perfect, but it's overwhelmingly good.

I'm one of the lucky ones. For the most part I've learned to manage my anxiety & it's not nearly as severe as it could be.

Anyway, I say all of this because tonight as I was going through my phone I noticed Joseph had - unbeknownst to me - taken this picture on Sunday. To me, it sums up marriage. It sums up love. It sums up life.

It's hard but it's good.
And I'm not quite sure how,
but it really is the hard that makes it good.

And for that I'm undeniably grateful.

16 September 2017

I don't understand hardness

“It’s the hard things that break; soft things don’t break. 
It was an epiphany I had today and I just wonder 
why it took me so very, very long to see it! 
You can waste so many years of your life trying to 
become something hard in order not to break; 
but it’s the soft things that can’t break.

 The hard things are the ones that shatter into a million pieces.” 



I don't understand hardness.

I don't understand not feeling everything with every bone & nerve in your body.

I don't understand feeling emotions half-way -- I never have.

I don't understand the concept of not caring infinitely
about people & places & things & animals & nature & God.

I don't understand hearts that refuse to feel & I don't understand
souls that are careless & reckless & intentionally negligent with another's.

I don't understand living half-way.
 I don't understand passionless life.
I don't understand lifeless love.

I understand tenderness & gentleness & 
sensitivity & compassion & empathy.

I understand feeling so much it hurts.
I understand getting attached to everything & everyone that crosses my path. 
I understand physically & mentally & emotionally experiencing someone
else's pain with them.

I understand softness.
I understand awareness.
& I understand love.

“Just because you are soft doesn't mean you are not a force. 
Honey and wildfire are both the colour gold.” 
― Victoria Erickson

03 August 2017

My heart is full -


It's a Thursday. 
There's nothing particularly special about today. 
It's just another day. 
I took my last final for summer semester today.
My dog Bella is having puppies next week.

Yada, yada, yada.

I think it's just another day,
but then I remember who I get to spend life with -

And then I realize that today is an exceptionally special day...
because the sweet boy in the picture makes every day a special day.

How I found Joseph I'll never know,
but I'm forever grateful and humbled that I did. 

He makes life more perfect than I ever hoped it could be.

And well... that's pretty special.

02 July 2017

Happy quarter of a century, babe

Joseph,

 You are my safe place,
my happy place,
and my favorite place.

So grateful you were born, love. 


13 June 2017

I'm the luckiest

As I look through these pictures I just get so unbelievably giddy that this is my sweet little family. I don't know how I got so lucky.







06 June 2017

“Don't bend; don't water it down; don't try to make it logical; don't edit your own soul according to the fashion.” - Franz Kafka


In February of this year I realized that my anxiety had risen to an unmanageable high. Feeling hopeless, scared and broken, I sought help. I started counseling and in desperation told my counselor I couldn't live like this anymore. I told her I didn't feel capable of maintaining relationships, because there was a level of depth I couldn't get to. I didn't want people to know who I was or the things I was feeling, because the fear of having it held against me was too great. Before people could hurt me I would sabotage every friendship and acquaintance that I had, and I simply wasn't going to let anyone hurt me before I could hurt them.

Every possible fear in every possible part of my life escalated, and I felt like life was a ticking time-bomb waiting for my life to blow up in flames. I broke out into hives and literally lived each day holding my breath until something went wrong, and for the life of me I couldn't seem to grasp onto anything stable or steady. There was nothing in my life that was reliable, and I woke up each day fully expecting my husband to leave me, someone to betray me, and everyone to hurt me.

As I attended counseling every week, the words couldn't leave my mouth quickly enough. The tears were endless and the countless feelings that I had were finally in a safe space, with a professional who was a complete stranger and couldn't possibly be judgmental or bias of my situation. Every week I felt like I could breathe a little bit easier. There were things from my childhood I hadn't ever forgotten - let alone resolve. Criticisms I had believed my whole life became my way of life, and in addition the emotional abuse from my ex-husband never left my head. I felt unfit as a wife, and I felt incapable of even thinking about becoming a mother. I felt like a waste of space; a tormented, helpless soul that was unworthy and undeserving of anything good in my life.

Things had to change, and with the support of my family and therapist I re-adjusted my medication and re-grouped. I starting becoming more aware of my triggers. I became more aware of my anxiety and what my body did physiologically when I was feeling too much. I took a hiatus from work and I started exercising more. I studied my scriptures more intensely, and I made self-compassion, self-forgiveness and self-love my number one goal. I intentionally reframed my negative thoughts and I reminded myself over and over again that perfection is unattainable. I came to a stark realization that the very pursuit of perfectionism is the pursuit of trying to rise above the human condition, and not only is that unreachable but inimical. In The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the culture inevitably at times gets to your head, and it got to mine. I started feeling this overwhelming amount of guilt when I didn't measure up, and when my anxiety interfered with my calling, my testimony, and my motivation, I was simply too discouraged to keep trying.

I had to let go. I had to let go of so many things. When my anxiety interfered with me failing to meet a commitment, I had to take a breath and remind myself that I'm still worthy. Imperfection is not a symbol of personal defeat but it is the natural lot of mortals, and I am better for it. I had to forgive myself for saying no, and I had to remind myself that I am responsible for my own well-being. If people identify my self-focus and self-awareness as being unfair, I have to remind myself I'm not always responsible for how things are perceived. For the first time in a long time, my number one priority was to understand my needs for physical, spiritual and emotional well-being... and for the first time in a long time, I could breathe.

I would like to say that this new-found steadiness and understanding will always remain with me, but I can't. I have been given certain limitations and weaknesses in life that are my personal plight in mortality, and it is up to me to cope with them the best way that I know how. Generalized Anxiety Disorder is a tricky little thing. It feels so unmanageable at times, (as do countless other trials we endure) but there is a level of empathy and compassion that I wouldn't be able to extend so freely had I not been given this specific set of trials. I guess that's the important thing in all of this, really. To understand our given condition in this life and to treat it with mercy, patience and understanding, much like our Heavenly Father and Savior do. Then, I suppose, we need to embrace our many blessings. I am undeniably grateful for the core set of human beings I have in my life. They strengthen me, support me, and love me. I am grateful to live in this modern day and age, where resources for mental limitations are so readily accessible. I am thankful to know that no matter what obstacles we encounter in our life, we aren't foreordained to be ruined by them. Our potential as children of God is limitless, and with God on our side, failure never has to be an option.

So... we take the good times with the bad; the peace with the chaos. And we take every day, each day, one step at a time.

23 May 2017

"If we’re not serving Jesus, if He’s not in our thoughts and hearts, then the things of the world will draw us, instead, to them." -Neal A. Maxwell

It's no secret that Neal A. Maxwell is my hero in more ways than one. The way he speaks penetrates my soul in a way that nothing and nobody else quite can. I came across a talk of his today, and although I'm sure I've heard it before I found things in his words that I needed to hear, which is so often how scriptures, conference, institute, and gospel-centered talks seem to work. There is a new message each time you listen to it. 


I so needed a reminder this morning to focus on eternity and value that which has eternal value. Spend time on things that will last forever, and forget the temporal and superficial issues that seem to weigh us down so heavily. 

28 January 2017

I changed my last name

I held onto resentment towards my ex for a lot of reasons, but one of them was because he peaced out WEEKS after I legally changed my last name. For every woman out there who has legally changed their last name, they know sitting in the social security office for three hours and changing names on bank statements, car and health insurances, work information, passports and everywhere else that displays your last name is just inconvenient. When I married Joseph, I refused to legally change my last name until he was married to me for one year. That one year came and went and my untouched marriage certificate and passport remained in the dashboard of my car. I drove to the social security office several times over the next year, only to find myself driving back out of the parking lot seconds later due to my fears of abandonment and honestly, my pride. To most it seems silly. I'm already married! The name on my church records show Kenna Orgill, and every time I enter the temple that's what the sweet old man checking my temple recommend calls me. 

"Welcome to the temple, Kenna Orgill."

That's what really matters the most, right? Yes, but still it wasn't silly to me. I figured if Joseph left me, it would be one less thing to have to worry about. 

Last week, days before our two-year anniversary I mustered the courage to wait in that social security office and present my marriage certificate to the woman behind the glass. What a range of mixed emotions. A couple of days later, the night of our anniversary, I handed Joseph a wrapped box with a bow, and inside was a paper verifying that I was legally, officially, an Orgill. 

He cried and I cried, and again, though that seems strange to some this really was the final step I had to make in order to completely, and totally devote and commit myself to this marriage. Above all, it was the final step in me believing Joseph is completely devoted and committed to this marriage. 

So today, I got a card in the mail. 

And I couldn't be more proud to legally be an Orgill.

23 January 2017

Happy two-year Anniversary

I remember the morning of our wedding day. I remember sitting in the car with my Dad as we drove to the Bountiful temple. I remember the peace and the excitement and the utter gratitude I felt. I remember Elder Callister's beautiful words as he sealed me and Joseph for eternity. I remember looking at Joseph across the altar and simply knowing without a shadow of a doubt, that everything which had happened in my life up until this point was leading me to this moment.

I remember that feeling of pure gratitude, joy, and complete peace so well, because every time I think about my marriage to Joseph I still feel the same way.

I don't know how I managed to find a man who is so kind and so good, and let's be honest, I wasn't the one who found him because my track record up until that point was disastrous. I knew then and I know now that only my Father in heaven could have found and set aside such a special individual. 

Throughout the course of my dating relationship with Joseph, I asked Heavenly Father multiple times to tell me I was crazy or to tell me I was wrong. I told Him that nothing in life could possibly feel this right.

But it did.

And it was.

I truly married the sweetest, most sensitive soul. I married someone who cries more than I do (sorry Jos), and I married someone who shows me the true meaning of Christ-like love every time he interacts with anyone. I married someone who drops everything to come and see me if I'm having a bad day; someone who holds me and reminds me how to breathe until my anxiety has passed. I married someone who lives to love people and more than anything he wants people to be happy. I married someone who is a friend to every stranger, and is as absolutely loyal as they come. It's not humanly possible for Joseph to turn his back on people, and he's never satisfied with himself because he's constantly trying to be better. I married someone who works harder than anyone I've met, and his desire and drive to provide for a family is and always has been his greatest motivation. I married someone who doesn't know how to remain angry, and I married someone who encompasses forgiveness and the Atonement more than I thought anyone possibly could. I married someone who deals with my weaknesses in a way that only he could and still manages to remain forever patient with me. I married a man who loves me, and not once in the time I've known him have I EVER doubted that he does.

He is in every way, the better half of me. Who he is, is who I hope to most emulate in this life and the next. I'm a better person for every day I know him, and I celebrate his devotion to me every day, but especially today. 

Happy 2-year Anniversary, love.

Forever could never be long enough.

2014
     








2015












2016












2017

10 January 2017

"The essence of being human is that one does not seek for perfection." George Orwell




I've always prided myself on the fact that I don't pretend my life is perfect. This blog for me has been an open and raw place for me to talk about the trials I've experienced in my life. I've openly shared that I'm no stranger to anxiety and depression. I went through a divorce and wrote all of the nitty gritty details. I think I learned fairly quickly that perfection (offline and online) is unattainable.

That simple concept was reinforced however when my sister sent me a link to this story the other day. Trying to maintain the look of perfection is not only a trivial (and superficial pursuit), but the pursuit of maintaining a perfect life on social media can be emotionally taxing and unnecessarily draining.

I've received emails from handfuls of people who once read my blog, saying that they feel like it is harder to relate to me now that "everything in my life is perfect." A lot of these people who have reached out are still smack dab in the middle of a divorce; still reeling from the whirlwind they call their life. Receiving these emails, and then reading this news story my sister sent me made me think twice about blogging. Just because I'm married to a great guy BY NO MEANS MAKES MY LIFE PERFECT. It means that an aspect of my life that once didn't make sense now does. There are a million other aspects to my life. A good marriage alone cannot make someone happy, and it certainly cannot fix all of your problems. In fact the very act of marriage alone, the act of caring and putting another human being before all of YOUR needs? Well that only brings more ish to the table.

One of my New Year's Resolutions was to begin blogging again, and honestly I didn't feel like I had anything to blog about until I realized that there really is so much more to my life than what this blog was founded on. I still worry about the future. I still have plenty of insecurities. I still have trust problems and anxiety up the wazoo, but with that comes a whole lot of happiness and a whole lot of good. Which is exactly what life is made up of.

A whole lot of ugly interspersed by some beautiful moments.

So here we go again.

Back to the blogging world.

We meet again.




01 January 2017

Easy Isn't Best

I initially considered 2016 to be the best year of my life, but when I started thinking about why it would be the best year of my life, the more I realized it really hasn't been. It's been one of the easier years of my life. And being the best and being easy are two very different things.

I then started reflecting on 2015. Then 2014, 2013, and 2012. The more I thought about it, the more I realized that ultimately, the best years of my life have been the hardest. And then I thought that makes no sense. The last thing I want to do is re-live those years, but had those years not happened 2016 wouldn't have been what it was. And the reason why the hardest years were the best years, was because I grew. I became better. I walked out of the year entirely different than I walked into it. And trials do that to us. 

Trials force change. 

When circumstances change we either choose to change along with them, or we don't.
And I chose to change.
And I'm so much better for it. 

In 2016 I learned so much. I continued my education. I realized the importance of family and I discovered how to embrace the not-so-pretty parts of me. I saw qualities within myself I wanted to improve, and I chose to take the initiative and do just that. My husband and I had an incredible second year of marriage, and both learned how to much more effectively help and communicate one with another. In fact I learned to more fully trust my husband, and I think I have finally gotten to a point where I actually believe him when he says he'll never leave me.

So much growth and progress happened, but I can't help looking back fondly on the years that so completely and entirely broke me - which in turn so perfectly and thoroughly restored me.

I am so grateful for a God that knew His children needed opposition to truly appreciate the good and the easier times in life. I couldn't be more grateful for 2016, but more than that I couldn't be more grateful for all of the years that led up to it.

Here's to hoping 2017 is a year of change, progression, and growth.