Knowing that General Conference has been approaching these last few weeks, I've been trying to come up with a question I need answered or a topic to look for--I guess mostly because that is always what we are told to do, and then we read stories all about people's special experiences in the Ensign. I admit that I approached the idea a bit lazily, mainly because my issues and questions are just about always the same. The answers are also obvious, and easy to address in Sunday School--though not so easy in practice. Plus, I really didn't think anyone was going to give a sermon over the pulpit about the difficulties of finger puppets and cheerios in Sacrament Meeting, let alone how motherhood can cause boredom and guilt.
So I never put my finger on a particular topic or question for conference. I knew I needed something but I didn't really want to think about what it was. I have "problems" that need help or encouragement--unfortunately when the help and answers came I was dealing with both those little problems and they were on my lap trying to steal my pen to draw on the couch and poking each other and whining at me. Despite the chaos, I believe I picked up the gist of the message. Although my notes weren't extensive (again, Lou Lou wanted my pen), I remember the feeling well, now three hours later. I felt that someone understood my life. Someone saw what I do everyday, and not only that, they knew how I felt about it. When has Elder Ballard ever been to my house?
I knew at that moment that even though I didn't ask my particular question (at least in particular for Conference) I have been searching a long time for encouragement in the motherhood arena. After Elder Ballard's talk this afternoon I feel reassured that the Lord knows me, my situation, and the thoughts and intents of my heart. "Ah!" you say "that talk could be applied to any young mother, and probably all young mothers that heard it felt the same way you did." It probably can and they probably do. I'm glad for those mothers. But mostly I'm glad for me. I have received understanding and been given direction from the Lord in a specific way on the topic I deal with everyday--motherhood. Motherhood is wonderful and meaningful, but it is also difficult and at times exhausting. But it is doable. And I can do it. Successfully. Without doing permanent damage to my children or myself:)
Thank you Elder M. Russell Ballard. When the Ensign comes out, I will cross-stitch your talk and put it on my wall.