On Sunday night, I took Robert to the airport to go back home so he could go to work while we (the girls and I) continued our vacation in WA with my family.
As I drove back to my parents house... trying not to fall asleep, I was about home when I drove through a little town just south of where my parents live. Shortly after high school one of my friends and I rented a little double wide trailer. It was fun at first, but went down hill from there as time went on. We nearly ruined our friendship through the choice we both made and the way we treated each other.
As I drove through the town, I thought I would drive by the house and see if it was still there. I couldn't quite remember the way to get there but I did remember the address so I was able to figure it all out.
I passed the house, I remembered my friend, Summer's dog that pooped in my room on a magazine and I picked up the magazine and put it in her room. (perhaps that was a possible reason for some of the fights we got into) That same dog that got outside and was lost for week if I remember right. I pictured her cat (that died years later) with the broken leg that never healed right and she looked like her foot was on backwards. I remembered when we moved in, it was pouring down rain, I had my sister's 4 or 5 kids with me, and Summer and I were unloading dressers and beds and couches out of the truck in the rain while the next door neighbors (guys) sat on their porch and watched us the whole time. I always wondered why they didn't even offer to help, although me being who I am with the "I don't need help, I can do it all" attitude, I probably would have told them no I didn't need any help. I did remember the laughing and goofing off we did all the dreams we made while living there, and all the processed food we ate. I liked the independence I felt while living out on my own. I noticed the big tree in the back yard and thought about the primroses I once planted around it. I remembered the small garden I made with strawberries, cucumbers, sunflowers, and pumpkins. I started my love of gardening there. (We never had a garden growing up because we were on a well that didn't have much water, sometimes struggling to water the horses.) I saw the back porch and remembered sitting there reading my scriptures one day sad and angry, and getting an answer I hadn't even asked yet, but knew what I needed to do. To this day, I have never found that scripture again. I pictured the fushias hanging from the front porch, the azelea's in their pots on the steps and the huge sunflowers in pots in front of the front porch. They were flowers that my dad just showed up with one day and left for us. I remembered mowing the lawn, perhaps the first time I ever had mowed a lawn. I had to smile when I thought of the snow we got overnight one winter, I had to get to work and I couldn't back my RX7 out of the drive way, so I drove through the yard of the neighbors and made it out since it was down a little hill. I remembered having our first Christmas tree there... buying curtains and wallpaper and all the fun stuff for the bathrooms and what not. I loved to go grocery shopping with Summer, usually near the middle of the night as we would goof off and be silly and do our shopping which normally consisted of junk food or mac and cheese and top ramen noodles. We sometimes bought stuff to make tacos. Thinking of all this seemed like such a lifetime ago!
As I was driving away I was reflecting on the harsh life lessons that I went through in that little trailer. I learned while living there what it really meant to be a friend and how it was up to me to make my life "happily ever after" and it was also there when I realized that IS what I wanted, I wanted to have a life that ended happily ever after. I learned my parents were wiser than I thought, and they knew what they were talking about. I learned that my family loved me no matter what, and nothing I did would ever change that! I discovered the importance of having the church in my life and how I really wanted that to always be there.
I always hoped that through the experience that I would be a happier person and that I would remember the pain enough not to make those same mistakes again. I hoped I would learn the value of both friends and family. I think because I lived there, I had a stronger desire to have an eternal family and to live the life according to Jesus Christ's teachings. I knew that those two things would make me the happiest. And then at that moment...while I was thinking all that through, I realized that I got what I wanted so long ago when I was little. I got that temple marriage, I got my little family, I got my wonderful husband. I am grateful for what I have now. I am grateful for my family both my family I was born into, the family that I have made with Robert, and the family I was married into.
Sometimes in life our poor choices bring us misery and pain, and it makes it hard for us to see those things we dream of, or we see them but they seem too far out of reach or they seem too good to be true. I don't think they ever are too good to be true, I think you just have to keep trying and believing you can have those things you dream of. I remember the despair I was in once, thinking those dreams I had would never come true.
I continued up the hill to my parents' house with a smile on my face as I was counting all the blessing I have in my life. Dreams do come true!