Sunday, June 13, 2010

Spirituality and Reflective Thoughts

Before discharge on Friday, we asked one of our oncologists about attending church. We understand that William can't be around crowds, but what about a nice little room just off of the chapel where we can still hear everything and the sound is actually piped into the room and it's just our family?

His response: "Spiritual health is just as important as physical health."

We attended church today as a family. It felt good. It felt normal. That's just what we do every Sunday. Today, I pondered a lot about spiritual strength as we all hoped to fill our spiritual buckets. Ryan and I have reflected upon our spiritual strength quite a bit the past two weeks. Our spirituality, our convictions about God, his plan for us, our purpose on earth, and what happens after death are all a huge part of who we are and how we view the world and act accordingly. Our beliefs have given us great comfort and continue to fuel our hope in the saving power of the atonement of Jesus Christ.

We all pass through very difficult times and trials. And I'm glad I have my trials and not some that others have. When I step back and look at what we are going through right now, I would obviously never wish or hope for this, but interestingly, I don't fear. I know that we are being watched over. We have felt an enormous sense of peace and comfort even in the moments we felt our world crashing in. We keep going back to those moments to draw strength. We also feel strongly that we have felt these things as a direct result of the many prayers offered in our behalf. Thank you.

I believe events in our life prepare us without our own awareness by providing growth and understanding to overcome things that may cross our path later in life. Many of you may know I have a twin sister who, due to complications at birth, was born with severe cerebral palsy and is a quadriplegic with abilities similar to an infant. My parents have cared for her in their home and raised 7 other children. But I must add, with a family that size, it was a collective effort! Having a family member with special and unique needs teaches things that are not easily taught or learned. I know I am a more loving, compassionate, selfless, patient and understanding person because I grew up naturally serving her needs. I am not even close to proficient in any of those categories, but I am closer than I would be if we had not been blessed to have her be a part of our family.

For our family, we can gain increased love and appreciation for one another and increased faith in the plan our Savior has given us. We have the unique opportunity to truly focus on the things that matter most to us and teach one another about sacrifice, love, selflessness, compassion, patience, humility.... Lifetime movies just don't cut it!

Today I squeezed each of my boys a little harder, kissed them all many, many times, and told my husband I still love him dearly.


  1. You are such a great example to so many people. thank you for keeping this blog and sharing your strength and growth for so many others to learn from your family. I am better off each day that I read it and take your strength and wisdom to be a part of my life. We are still praying for you guys and wish we could be of more help to your family in your time of need.
    Audrey Cox

  2. It's a privilege to be related to you and yours. It's a privilege to be allowed into your lives and to read daily of your heartaches and hopes. I know from my own experience that one can experience peace in the midst of great trials, and that knowledge of and appredciation for the Gospel is more deeply felt because of what we go through. We love you!!!!!

  3. I am so glad that you were able to attend church as a family. Did they clear out the mother's lounge for you? I hope it smelled better for you than it does on most Sundays! We continue to pray for William and your family. You are an inspiration to us all. Stay strong and keep the faith! XOXO
    The Lambs

  4. How wonderful you could attend! I think, for me, that would be the hardest part of total isolation - missing church. I need that strength I get every Sunday, even on a good week!

  5. I love this heartfelt post, Julie. Your faith is almost tangible. It's no wonder you don't feel fear--there's hardly room for it amidst so much faith and hope and confidence in Heaven's plan. Your sharing of this whole experience and your feelings about it are making lots of people, including me, hug their kids a little longer and express love to their families a little more. You're doing a wonderful thing here--thank you, friend!