Saturday, April 17, 2010

Adventures in Rollerblading

I have a confession to make….I love ROLLERBLADING. Yep, I do. I just love it. When everyone else gave it up at the age of twelve, I just kept on going. I like to blame it on my California upbringing. You see, down there at the beach, rollerblading is still super cool. However, in the desert and mountain lands of Utah, I feel a little bit of judgment come my way every time I mention how much I still love it.

Well the other day I convinced my lovely friend Katie to go rollerblading with me, and we had quite the adventure. Here is a picture of Katie with her skeleton friend.....she's pretty neat, working with skeletons and such.

We were both a little wobbly at first, but once we got back in the groove it was like we were back in our 12yr old bodies – getting major air off jumps, throwing in some 360 air spins, and pulling off some tricks I don’t even know the name to! Okay, so maybe that’s a slight exaggeration, but I think we were doing pretty good. I mean, there’s some pretty steep downhills on that trail, and we didn’t die. Not only was it a glorious ride, but I came to some interesting conclusions during our excursion. Please allow me to share:
#1: Judgmental People are Just Insecure
This is a very, very, important life lesson. Anytime you feel judged, just recognize that this person is probably too insecure to admit that they are simply jealous. Okay, so maybe this isn’t true in all cases, but Katie and I decided that in the case of rollerblading, it is most definitely true. As we were out there on the trail we definitely got some different looks from people:
Look #1 - Goofy Grin that said, “Really, rollerblading? You know you look stupid right?
But good for you!”
Look #2 - Nostalgic look of, “Awww…rollerblades. I remember those carefree days
after school of street hockey and night games.”
Look #3 Scornful look of, “You look like an idiot. What do you think you are…five?”

We don’t like look #3 people. Hopefully you are not one of those people. But you know what…Katie and I decided that we really couldn’t care less what those scornful people thought, because we know that underneath that glare was just an insecure person wishing that they were confident enough to be right out there with us. You know it’s true….

#2: Some Things Will Bite You….Even if You Love Them
You would think that if you just love something enough, it will never hurt you. Well this just isn’t true…on SO many levels. And yesterday I learned just how untrue this is. Anyone who knows me well knows my absolute love for dogs. At least once a day the thought comes into my head, “I wish I had a puppy.” I’ve always thought that dogs have been able to sense this, and so even the meanest ones have never chased me or jumped on me, and definitely NEVER bitten me. But yesterday as we were rollerblading, this stupid, huge, black, mangy dog grabbed hold of the flesh of my calf and dug in. When I tried to shake it off, it let go but let its teeth drag down the rest of my leg. And I’m not gonna lie…it hurt…bad. And THEN it kept trying to nip at me again and its owners just stood there calmly calling it back to them. What?!? Luckily it didn’t draw blood, just left a super huge nasty bruise with teeth marks. I still asked the owners if it had any diseases…..ick. Needless to say, my love for dogs just went down a notch.

#3: Boys Are Definitely Held to Different Standards Then Girls
As Katie and I were out on the trail, we ran into a few other rollerbladers. The first of these were two guys. Our first thoughts at seeing this were, “hmmm…two girls…two guys….rollerblades…..magical meeting moment.” But then as Katie and I continued to ponder over this, we rethought how “magical” this actually was. Call us hypocrites, but we decided that two girls rollerblading – definitely okay. You may look stupid, but you can get away with it. Guy and girl rollerblading – cute. Either they found each other, or one of them is risking looking like a complete fool for the other, and that’s just sweet. But guy and guy rollerblading – it’s just a little sketchy. And the more I thought about this, the more I realized that it’s this way for a lot of things. Girls can just get away with a lot more than guys can. Sorry boys.
Well, hopefully this post inspired all of you to brush off the dust from your old blades and give it another go. I give you fair warning that you might be judged for this, but it's definitely worth it. And if you care to join Katie and me for our next adventure...give us a call....we're ready.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Finally....after two years of waiting

So, for all of you who have anxiously been checking my blog for the past two years that it has been in existance, I am FINALLY doing my very first post. I's an exciting day for all of us ;) My roommate Kristen has been pushing me to write on it for the past year, but I always told her that my life just isn't exciting enough to blog about anything. So I kept waiting for life to become exciting. And that day has finally come. Okay...not really. Life is still just life. Life is good, but not terribly exciting. I actually was inspired to start my blog after watching the movie Julie & Julia this weekend. In the movie, Julie's husband tells her that maybe a blog would be a good idea because she listens to people all day and it would be a great outlet for her. So then my dad turned to me and said, "Hey, you listen to people at work all day. Maybe you should start a blog. It would be very validating for you." First of all, let me just say how proud I was that my dad used the word "validating". Apparently my social worky terms have rubbed off on him. And then I thought...he's right, it would be validating. Whether anyone in the world actually reads any of these posts or not, at least my thoughts are out there. for the actual first post part. This weekend was General Conference, and I have to say it was probably one of the best sessions I have ever watched. Why, you ask? Becuase it called me out on all of my crap. Which was much needed. Sometimes I feel like the talks that are given are really empathetic and consoling. They tell me things like "you're doing great", and "trials come but don't worry because you'll be blessed in the end." But not this time. This time the overall message I heard was, "Adversity happens. And it's most likely going to keep happening, so get over it and let it actually make you into something instead of just crying about it." Of course these things were said in a very kind and loving manner that made me really want to change myself rather than just give up completely. I'm actually not really sure whether that was the message that they were truly trying to get across, or if it was just what I heard because it was what I needed to hear. I think this is also something that has been on my mind the last little while. I've been reading a book entitled "The Continuous Atonement" by Brad Wilcox. Wow. It is an incredible book and all of you who may possibly stumble upon this post should read it....right now. In the book it talks a lot about how the purpose of this life is to mold us and to make us into Celestial beings. Here's one of my favorite quotes from it: "

"We don't walk into the celestial kingdom simply because a debt is paid, whether it is paid by Jesus or - as difficult as it would be - by ourselves. The Atonement is not just about paying debts but about transforming debtors."

The whole idea I am taking away from this book and from conference is that it's not just about enduring's about learning from life. Like Elder Martino said, "It is not WHEN we will face adversity, but HOW we will face adversity." At my work I always call out my kids for playing the "victim". I talk to them about how just being a victim of our lives and experiences keeps us from ever becoming better and growing as a person. We get stuck at this point where we can never move forward because we just blame everyone and everything else. So here's my commitment to be better. To take life's experiences and not just close my eyes until the bad parts are over, but to actually let them mold me into something new, and something better.