20 October 2011

These Boots Were Made For Walking

***a couple items of business before this post starts... No this is not the post by Ronnie we have all been waiting for. He said he would write it a couple weeks ago and email it to me, but my inbox is still empty (hint hint R) **** This could very possibly turn out to be a long post but I promise it is a quality one Ok, sorry, onto the meat and potatoes It is no mystery that I have a thing for going on walks. (And when I say walks, I mean walks. Not jogs or runs. I despise those.) I am sure I posted about my love for walks on my last blog, but I feel it is a subject worth revisiting. You see, this post has been sitting in my "to post" list and tumbling around in my head for quite some time now, but I hadn't done it yet. Well, here I am, wide awake at 5 am, thinking about it. I think this is the time Ronnie usually gets up to go to the bathroom and then comes back and snuggles back into me, helping me doze back to sleep. I am on my first trip away from him. Suddenly the queen sized bed that was way too small for two just yesterday has quickly become way too empty for me. In a few hours, my sister Chelsey will come wake me up (like the good old days from college breaks home) and we will walk around the neighborhood. Wen will comment on yards, house paint colors, and eventually dive into deeper topics, and most likely end the walk with a laugh that leaves my belly aching. I think I love walks so much because they are always a time of bonding. Whether it be with my best friend/next door neighbor to kindergarten everyday, with new found friends through the streets of Jerusalem, or with the sisters I have grown up idolizing, long walks always were the medium for connections made far deeper than most. Now, you might be thinking to yourself "So how is it that you ended up marrying a man that can't exactly take you on a long walk?" Well, to answer that, let me back up a little bit. My calling in life as an advocate for individuals with special needs (*Ronnie does not fit in this category to me) became pretty clear to me early on in life and was the motivating factor for choosing a degree in Early Childhood Special Education at BYU Idaho. I think it was here that the Lord started preparing me for the man I would one day marry. As I learned about strategies for providing quality services for young children with special needs, it changed how I viewed a lot of things. You see, the best thing I could do for a child with special needs was help them succeed by making an accommodation, or doing things a little differently than usual, but find success in the end. I learned that every person learns and does things is such unique and different ways. My education helped me to be ADAPTABLE. Well, that, and being #7 of 8 kids and the girl that was smooshed between all the boys. You learn to be pretty adaptable when you grow up with that many strong personalities under one roof. Phase two of Ronnie prep academy of life: I remember that towards the end of college, I became fascinated with The Resurrection of Jesus Christ and how it effects are so often over looked. When I did a semester in Jerusalem, The Garden Tomb was my favorite spot and I visited it probably twice as much as I visited The Garden of Gethsemane. It was there that I began to have an understanding and respect for the knowledge I have that Christ was resurrected. In my faith, we believe that Christ atoned for our sins so that we may repent and do good works in order to save our spirits or souls. But, Christ was resurrected and we all receive that gift freely so that one day our bodies will be perfected, or whole again, and our spirits can be reunited with our bodies. Just like Him, we too can live again! You see, without the resurrection, even the Atonement would be void. Since meeting Ronnie, my testimony of the Resurrection has only deepened and made my love for him even more eternal. I am so proud of all his accomplishments and am happy to do things a little differently with him. I consider the walk from our house to our car much more rewarding that the longst walk I could take with anyone else on Earth. I really don't think of his injury much, and when I do, I am grateful for the knowledge I have of the Resurrection and the hope it can bring to all of us. Here is one of my favorite quotes from the apostle Elder Oaks : "The assurance of resurrection gives us the strength and perspective to endure the mortal challenges faced by each of us and by those we love, such things as the physical, mental, or emotional deficiencies we bring with us at birth or acquire during mortal life. Because of the resurrection, we know that these mortal deficiencies are only temporary!" What wonderful news! Doesn't it make you excited? One day, my "emotional deficiencies" won't need chocolate. And best/worst of all, Ronnie will not only go on a nice long walk with me, he will probably turn into a nice, long run.