Monday, June 29, 2015

A difference in opinion

Recently, after I tucked my kids into bed, Blake came back out to ask me a question.  It was a question about something that he learned in church that was really bothering him.  A principle that he had been taught that made him very uncomfortable.  (And hearing it from his perspective made me very uncomfortable as well.) When he asked me about it, I shared my opinion and explained that my opinion is probably a little different than what he will learn at church.  I calmed him down, and then assured him that it is Ok and said "You don't have to believe everything they tell you at church".  I have been working hard to teach my kids (and myself especially) how to sift through opinions vs doctrine.  If you are LDS you know that there is a tendency for those lines to get deeply blurred. I have been trying to teach my children (and again myself) the Power of the Holy Ghost to teach us and to lead us.  I'm doing this with the hope that they will not find themselves hurt from "leaning on the arm of the flesh" but to always know that they are trusting in the Lord.

As I tucked him back into bed, I was praying that he understood and that I had helped calm his fears.  Then he looked up at me, in a very tender and innocent way, and said "Yeah, and you don't have to believe everything your parents say".

That hit me like a ton of bricks.

For the better part of my life I have been on the Child end of that spectrum.  I only became a Parent 8 years ago.  As the child, it has been easy for me to recognize that I don't have to believe everything my parents tell me. (After all, what teenager doesn't think that they know more than their parents?)  Sometimes they have been right, and I have seen the consequences of not believing them.  In other times, they have been wrong, and I have seen the benefit in believing differently than them.  Neither of those situations have been all that difficult for me, because I have been on the child's side of the coin.  But now that I have flipped that coin, and become a mother myself, I am seeing the other side.

Of course, as a Parent, I think that I am probably right. (Honestly, I am a know-it-all anyways who always assumes I am right!)  I think that every one of my children  should probably believe me for the simple fact that I believe me.  Why wouldn't they? But when Blake said it in such a clear statement I realized that the day is coming when my children may not believe some of the things that I believe.  And suddenly, from this side of spectrum, I can understand the struggle that other's have felt as some of our beliefs change. I can be much more sympathetic to the shock, surprise, and hurt that a parent may feel as their child decides not to believe some of the things that they were taught.  I can see the risk in teaching your children that they don't have to believe everything that they are taught.  Then there is the chance that they won't believe me! But the greater risk and the greater harm would be in not allowing them to do this.  The greater danger is in not trusting my children to be able to follow the Spirit and follow their own conscience.  Whether or not it is the path that I have chosen.  (I know, some of you are snickering and thinking how you are going to read this back to me in 10 years when my kids start making their own choices and I want to eat my words.  Please, do read this back to me.  Remind me that I was once able to trust my kids. I am sure I will need it.)

After the moment of pure shock (and Blake's life passing before my eyes) I was able to agree with Blake.  I was able to tell him "Yes, that is right, you can pray about it yourself, and it is absolutely OK to not believe what I say." (SOOOOO hard to say out loud!)  To my pure relief he responded "But this time I do believe you".

Score one point for mom. Next time may not have the same outcome. And the Parent in me will probably cry like every parent before me who has watched their child choose differently.  But for now I will take comfort in having a son who is willing to faithfully question and seek out the answer that he can believe in.

Monday, June 22, 2015

TSA and me

I'm a girl who needs my sleep.  Almost as much as I need food. No one wants to see me when I am starved for either of those things.  I had an old boyfriend that would pull into the nearest Taco Bell anytime he sensed a fight coming on. He knew that 90% of the time, I wasn't angry, I was just hungry. The birth of "hangry".  (We had to break up, he was making me fat.)  But since I have a talent for taking all things to the next level.  Being hangry isn't enough for me.  So if I add sleep deprivation I can reach all new heights of crazy.  Feel free to coin a new word using Angry, Hungry, Tired and Katie.  (I threw my name in there so that future generations would know that I am the one behind "Hangry Tiratie". Or whatever word sticks.)

Some of you may have seen on Facebook, my recent adventures in Seattle.  Actually, most of my adventures took place before I even left Las Vegas. And then after I left Las Vegas again and finally made it to Seattle.  (Where my adventures mostly ceased and I pretty much just ate a lot of Taco Time with friends.)  The adventures began at 1:00am in the Las Vegas airport when they cancelled my flight.  It was past my bedtime, and no one had thought to feed me in 7 hours. (That's right, I take no responsibility for the job of feeding myself)

I had been counting down the days and hours until I could visit my friends in Washington.  To say I was excited would be an understatement.  I was so excited I hardly slept the night before. (That should have been my first clue that something would go wrong.) My flight to Seattle had already been delayed 4 hours "due to weather" back east.  And, like I said, I was hangry.  After a long stressful ordeal I was able to secure a flight for the next morning at 8:00am to Seattle via Oakland. At 3:00am (the time I finally got added to another flight and found my luggage) it was not realistic to go home to sleep. (JT would have had to wake up the kids to come get me, then wake them up again at 6:00am to return me to the airport. Not gonna happen.) I had about 5 hours to kill in the Las Vegas airport before my much anticipated flight and I was in desperate need of sleep. (Oh, and food.)

After I found my luggage I wanted to go back up to the gate and sleep on one of the super comfy airport chairs. Really, airport? Why can't you make the chairs more comfortable? Or more accommodating to sleep on? Maybe a designated "sleeping area" with soft music and fluffy pillows. You know that is what all of us want to do. Do you think that if the seats are too comfy we might not leave? "Oh, there goes my flight to Paris. I would have gone, but the chairs here are sooooo comfortable I just can't bare to leave." I don't think so.

Anyway, I grabbed the two suitcases that I checked. (Ok, one was practically empty, I was looking forward to bringing home an entire suitcase full of fresh strawberry jam from Washington. Yum.) And I started to head back up the escalator to go through TSA to get back to the gate where I had already been waiting for hours. At 3:00am there is no line at the security check.  I highly recommend traveling at that time to avoid waiting for the jerk in front of you to unlace his shoes before fumbling for another bin. Seriously, dude, wear Toms like the rest of us. As I approached TSA I noticed it was just me and the GIANT security guard (is that what they are called? you know, the TSA guy that scrutinizes your Drivers License before letting you go through to the metal detecter).  I was pulling no dragging (my suitcases are 100 years old, with crappy old wheels not designed for lugging across entire airports) my two suitcases when I suddenly realized I couldn't bring those monstrous things through the check point.

This is when the tired hit me. Not the Hangry.  The Tiratie. (You see what I did there? Tired + Katie = Tiratie) When I am extremely Tiratie I cry. Or I just fall apart.  Or I just about get myself thrown in prison.  I stopped about 3 feet from the TSA podium with just me on the one side, and the "guard" that was twice my size, on the other.  I let go of both suitcases and put my hands to my head in a quiet sob to myself "I can't go through with this!" My mind continued to say: I can't go through the metal detecters with bags that I want to check! What will I do?! But all the TSA guy heard was "I can't go through with this."

Let's just say, he jumped up from his seat with his hands in a sort of karate pose before I even knew what was happening. And with a very nervous, but upset voice said "Girl, you're scaring me."

me: huh? oh, no, I am just so tired and this is so hard and I just don't know what to do.

TSA: What are you talking about?! (His hands still up, now he is looking around to see if  there is anyone near that he can shout to.  Of course not, buddy, it's 3:00AM!)

me: (My hands over my tired eyes trying to focus on how 3:00am hungry, tired, sad -that -her -flight got -cancelled -Katie is going to make it another 5 hours) Huh? What? No, I'm not trying to scare you. (But too tired to make any coherent sentences)

This is when I see the actual fear in his eyes. I'm tired, but not too tired to notice that this guy is about to lunge at me for some strange reason.

TSA: You are scaring me. What are you talking about?!

me: I am so tired, my flight got cancelled, I got my bags and I realized I can't take them through the metal detecters.

TSA: (confusion, mixed with some relief, but hands still poised in karate chop position)

me: Sorry, I didn't mean to scare you. (Now I am very awake and aware that this guy is scared, and probably trained to know how to hurt me. Are they trained to know how to hurt me?)

TSA: Ohhhh, you have some liquids or something in there?

me: Yeah, just shampoo and hairspray and stuff.  But I was planning to check these bags, not carry them on.  I'm just so tired. (Do you think he realized that I am tired? I think I am starting to cry. But I can't be sure.)

TSA: (looks around, sorta sheepish, edging back to the seat at the podium) Girl, you were scaring me.  Saying all this 'oh no, I can't go through with it' and talking all crazy! And I'm like, 'Oh Sh*t, what is the girl going to do?! What is she suppose to 'go through with'?!

me: ohhhhh!! (catching on) Oh no! Oh no!  I am not going through with anything. No, no, no, I am just tired and sorta confused. I don't know where to go.

TSA: You need to go check those bags right now.

me: I'm so sorry! (still rubbing eyes, because even a near death experience with TSA can't totally wake me up)

TSA: Just go check those bags. You're still scaring me.

I turned around, pulling my dilapidated suitcases, in search of a sign telling me where to go.  Looking over my shoulder I can see he has still not sat back down at the podium, and he is watching me like an eagle.

Turns out, saying "I can not go through with this" Sounds a lot like "I have a bomb in my suitcase, and I am too afraid to die.  I can not go through with this."  Especially to a karate chopping TSA "guard" (will somebody please tell me what they are called?).

If only there was a universal word to let someone know when I am extremely tired, and hungry, and mad that my flight was cancelled.  A word like "Hangry Tiratie"