"Begin today and write in it your goings and comings, your deepest thoughts, your achievements and your failures, your associations and your triumphs, your impressions and your testimonies. I promise you that if you will keep your journals and records, they will indeed be a source of great inspiration to you, each other, your children, your grand-children and others throughout the generations. Remember, the Savior chastised those who failed to record important events." --President Spencer W. Kimball

May 10, 2011

Life's Lessons...

Isn't it amazing how much things change when you get your priorities straight?  A couple months ago I could have sworn my life was falling apart....everything that could have gone wrong, was....and I didn't seem to know what was going on.  Ova lost his job at Dannon, that was the biggest heart-breaker.....Dannon was a HUGE blessing for our family and losing it hurt alot.  Honestly when I heard about it, I felt like it was the end of the world (I know that sounds super dramatic, but that's what I felt like at the time)  With Dannon becoming a union company, they are fighting to get him his job back, but there's no time frame on how long it could take to get an answer.  So we just wait.  Also at that time, Ova and I had been arguing a lot....over stupid things that didn't make any sense.  I found out I was pregnant around Valentine's day and we were so excited.....but a couple weeks later, I lost the baby with what would have been one of the worst miscarriages I've ever had (and that was my 4th one)....I was devastated....Something was not right.  I felt like we were doing fine, and I didn't understand why these negative things were happening.  Then I read a quote on one of my friend's blogs and the light went on in my head....this was the quote I read:

"When we put God first, ALL other things fall into their proper place OR drop out of our lives.  Our love of the Lord will govern the claims for our affection, the demands on our time, the interests we pursue, and the order of our priorities."  -Pres. Benson

Ova's schedule at Dannon was Sun-Wed from 6am-630pm...that meant that he NEVER went to church.  I was really good about taking the kids to church every Sunday at first, but then I got lazy.  We missed a Sunday here and there or sometimes we would be late.  I always complained that church was too early (9am) so I just brushed it off as not a big deal if we were late. (Keep in mind that I usually work at 4am or 5am and I'm never late for work)  My mindset was completely in the wrong place and even though I look back on it now and see how crazy my thinking was, during that time I didn't think anything of it.  With Ova not going to church, his spirituality went way down.....and instead of me picking up the slack....unfortunately so did mine.  I'm so ashamed to actually admit to that because we're both returned missionaries, we both have strong testimonies, and we both know what is right.  Ova started drinking kava again and I would find us fighting all the time because he would go a couple nights a week and stay out all night.  I was not happy.

I'm so grateful for Makai.  He truly is a blessing to our family.  He was the one that was constantly reminding us to say our family prayers and to have family home evening.  He's the one who helped me every Sunday to get ready for church by packing Lautala's diaper bag or helping Mone get dressed.  He's got such a strong spirit, and more than once he's helped me to do what I know I need to do.

I was lost and didn't know what to do.  Talking to Ova about the kava thing was like talking to a brick wall.  He didn't think anything was wrong with it because he was just hanging out with his friends.....but I saw how much it was affecting our family.  Me trying to tell him not to go would only make him more mad and we would fight even more.  I cried many nights when he would go.  Then I finally decided to follow Pres. Benson's counsel.  I went to the bishop.  I cried to him and talked to him and asked for his help, his guidance and his counsel.  That would turn out to be one of the best decisions I've ever made.  I had to take some steps to show Ova how much his kava habit was affecting our family.......because talking just wasn't working.  Ultimately, with a lot of prayer, patience, and persistance.....Ova was able to see where I was coming from.  He finally understood why I was so unhappy, and he was the one that decided to make a change.  Since that incident, he hasn't gone out with the boys to drink kava.  He made the choice that me and the kids were more important to him than his late night sessions with his boys......I'm so grateful he did!!  His boys still call him on the weekends asking him to come out.....and I don't even say anything to him anymore....he chooses not to go and it's made all the difference in the world!  He was teaching a lesson in church one Sunday and the lesson was on the word of wisdom.  He brought up kava because it is a big problem among the young polynesian men.  He said a lot of the guys in the class slouched down and covered their faces, because they knew they were guilty of it.  They asked him questions and he was honest with them.....he said "I realized I didn't want to lose something eternal for something so temporal".....I was so happy to hear him say that!

The Lord truly does work in mysterious ways.  Losing one of the best jobs Ova ever had has actually turned out to be a huge blessing.  Now we're going to church ontime every Sunday together as a family and Ova has a calling that he fulfills 100%.  We have FHE every Monday and family prayers every night.  Like I said at the beginning, it's amazing how much things change when you get your priorities straight.

Now I just hope and pray that the Lord will bless us with another job for Ova.....a job that will allow him to support our family and still go to church.  I know if we continue to do what we need to be doing, he will bless us!  He always does!

6 comments:

ANNA BANANA said...

Oh Monica, that was just beautiful. I'm so happy for you. We always as humans want to take the easier road rather than the road less traveled. But when we are forced into it, it seems harder at first, and then like a lightbulb we get it in a switch :) I am so happy for you two and your beautiful family. I will pray for Ova to get a better job. Much love to you guys :)

MARCIA said...

Monica, thank you! I am going through something very similar and thought that no one would understand my struggles. That only I had problems, when in actuallity we all stuggle. One persons struggles may not be the same as mine, but it is still a struggle. Thank you for being open about your personal life. You've helped my put mine into focus. I cried the whole time reading your blog, because I can feel your pain. I know your pain. I pray that I am able to see the blessings during my struggles as you did in yours. It's good to know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Congrats on your faithfulness as well as your husbands. Thank you again!!

Andy and Elise said...

Thank you so much for sharing. I think everyone can learn from this. Your little family is amazing. Thanks again for sharing!!

Fiona and Hoko Tuakoi said...

This post is seriously so inspiring, Mon. I'm so happy for you n Ova. Way to go on setting your priorities in order n moreso, for being able to be so honest about. We all have our separate trials n tribulations that we go thru cause I swear I felt the exact same away around the exact same time n really wondered 'why me?' But I was able to find comfort in the gospel n have been able to move forward. Thanks so much for sharing such personal feelings. My hat goes off to you.

Monika said...

And this is why I love love love blogs!! To read the inner you and to be able to pull out lifes lessons from them. I learned so much from this blog and I could see alot of my life in it. Thanks for sharing a bit of your heart with us....it takes a strong women to puller the inner strenths out and to reap your eternal blessings!! Rock on to you and your adorable family!! Love ya Mon & Ova!!

Klarah said...

You are Ova are truely inspirational! I wish to one day be at the point where you guys are now. I need to bring my hubby over to chat with yours to see if there is any way Ova can persuade him to stop drinking Kava. I really can't stand his late nights out with his boys. It is killing me because with this pregnancy I can't sleep at this point and when I'm in pain my husband isn't there for me yet when he is home his friends are constantly blowing up his phone to come out:( Maybe I too should put my priorities in line before I can expect anyone around me to. I am usually late to church every Sunday cause Toa works mornings and I am left to get the kids and I ready as our church too does start at 9am as well:( Thanks for sharing and providing me with hope that there is a light at the end of the tunnel! Love ya..