Wednesday, September 30, 2015

#Blessed ;)

I know I’m not the first missionary mom ever or even at this moment. There’s several women I know right now with a son or daughter out. There’s some with more than one kid serving at the same time! Heck, my husband’s uncle and aunt have sent 7 boys on missions. Yes, SEVEN. With how my heart feels right now I’m looking at my 12 year old son and already dreading the day he leaves. It IS hard and my son has only been gone a week. I have a countdown on my phone and I can’t stand to look at it flashing it’s 700+ days until “Elder Alec Gordon returns home from the California Anaheim Mission - ASL.” Boo you stupid countdown app. But I would be a total loser if I didn’t share the blessings that have come to our family in the last seven days.

I talked about how a mission is paid for by the missionary or his family in My First Missionary Mom Post. It can be a financial strain on a family. $400 a month isn’t easy to come by- especially if you’re working with a police officer’s and stay at home mom’s salary. ;) But we had been planning and saving and felt confident that we could do this. Well, then, about a month ago a part time security job literally (ok, not “literally” but you know what I mean) fell into Seiuli’s lap. And it pays well. So we were thinking, “Wow, they say you’ll be blessed when you send a kid on a mission. And wow, we are.” We were thrilled and content with that. Then along comes my parents, wanting to help, wanting in on a little of the blessings-action. So, they offered to make a monthly donation towards Alec’s fund for the next 2 years. Awesome! #Blessed again. THEN when Sei was in Utah dropping Alec off in Provo, he had lunch with one of his old mission companions, with whom he served in Venezuela. Y’all, this selfless man slid a check over the table to Sei… a $2000 check. He said he’s been so blessed by Heavenly Father to make really good money, so he wants to be a really good steward of that money. What?!!? There’s more y’all. Seiuli went back to work on Monday and calls to tell me that he got a raise starting on Oct.1. It’s not a huge raise, but it’s a little more each month. Between my parents, the mission companion, and his raise, the mission is basically paid for. 
So, that’s just a few blessings. But that’s not all. The other blessings aren’t monetary. These are more of a spiritual nature and pretty personal, but I feel like it’s wrong not to share. The last 2 years (ok more like 7, but the last 2 have been intense…) I have really, really struggled with my testimony. I can’t even really put my finger on what I struggled with exactly, but I felt very negatively towards church, in general. I started having a lot of doubts and feeling very frustrated. Then Alec received his mission call in May and these feelings intensified so much. I found myself thinking, “What the heck kind of church makes a mom send her kid away and not see them and barely talk to them for 2 years?!” I cried at the drop of a hat (Idk what that saying means, but if it means I cried all.the.time, then it’s appropriate.) I stopped going to my church classes other than sacrament meeting. I felt like my “failures” as a Mormon- I’m not a good scriptorian, I don’t like answering questions in class, I have tattoos (I love tattoos btw), I’m not out-going at all, or a very good missionary- stood out like on display. I started really questioning if I should let my son go teach about this church to people. I didn’t tell anyone about how deep my struggle and fears and doubts were, but I’ve never felt like that ever in my life. Then, a few weeks before Alec was suppose to leave, he broke down crying and told me that he didn’t think he was ready to go on a mission. He said he didn’t feel excited about it anymore like he had before. Every time he thought about leaving he wanted to cry and wanted to stay home. Now, I wanted to say, “SAME! Don’t go!!! Stay with me!!” But you know what came out of my mouth?
“Alec, you ARE ready and you know you need to go. Satan knows you’re about to leave and he knows the work you’re going to do. He’s working extra hard on you, grasping on to any tiny piece of fear or doubt you have and using it against you. He doesn’t want you to serve a mission. He doesn’t want you to reach people or serve people. He knows you’re gonna be awesome and change lives and he can’t have that.”
Then Alec said, “How do you know?” and I said, Because he’s been trying to do the same thing to me to stop you.”  
What the WHAT!? Where the heck did all that come from!? That talk was a huge turning point not only for Alec, but for me as well. I finally realized what the heck was going on with me. I wasn’t crazy. I wasn’t a bad Mormon or Christian or person. Misery loves company. Satan is miserable and he wants others to be as well. He doesn’t want people to know God or feel happiness or be an eternal family. He cannot stand missionary work. So, if he can’t get the youth to decide to not serve a mission, who better to convince their kid to stay home than their mom? 
Satan sucks. 
He’s played such a game with my heart and mind these last couple of years and now it all makes sense why. Yes, in this last week my heart has been hurting on a continual basis and my eyeballs feel like they are constantly sucking tears back up and I can see heartbreak in the eyes of my other kiddos. I’ve had to bring Sonic drinks home to comfort a 16 year old sister who’s missing her best friend and encourage siblings to help with silly care packages. But I feel differently than I have in a long time. I feel at peace. I don’t know all the answers and I am not very articulate at expressing my feelings or beliefs. I’m not even a smidgen close to perfect. I have an attitude and I laugh at inappropriate things. I’m totally not a scriptorian and I can’t remember a lot of things that I’m probably supposed to know. But I can honestly say I KNOW Alec is where he is suppose to be. I KNOW he is going to do amazing things. And I KNOW Satan is pissed off at me, which is really cool. I’m very competitive. I love to win. I hate losing. If you’ve seen me at my kid’s games you know I hate for them to lose as well.
Well, take that Satan.  
My kid is out there, ready and willing to serve the Lord. And I’m here, praying for him, encouraging him. Our whole family is and so many other people. I’ve released a secret weapon into the world who is going to bring people unto Christ.

To put it plain and simple Satan, YOU LOSE.

Elder Gordon and his cousin, Sister Greco-AhYou
Entering the MTC
Elder Gordon is off! See you in 2. 
Tell me this kid isn't awesome!?!? 


Klin said...

Love you. Love your testimony. Love that you all won. Love that you shared this. Thank you for being my friend. You rock!

Janene Wawro said...

Oh my goodness, I love this post, Tori. It's reality. Sometimes reality hurts and is hard. And you are so right - Satan is sooooo good at what he does...for the love, he's been practicing and honing his skills for thousands of years. So the fact that you came out on top shows YOUR strenth! Get it girl - love you and I'm super proud of you. Everyone struggles, it's just the reality of life. Thanks for sharing your heart!