an ‘okay’ day with depression

The nights linger on but sleep still evades, people ask if I know how to silence my mind. It’s not the noise or thoughts keeping me here in the dark unable to rest… it’s a white noise that no one else can hear that pulses not just in my ears the through my veins and swirls around in my head as though trying to wash out something that is not there. The exhaustion builds and my body can only handle so much.
some days or nights are a cold black coma where even after twelve hours of apparent rest, trying to wake me is near impossible. laying there with a body like cement and a fog over my mind that will. not. lift. The hours have passed, yet no energy has been granted. A thirst nothing quite quenches.
I roll out of bed and sit on the floor, I am not sure what is really going on. There is nothing, no emotion, no desire… I am just here. I bow my head to speak to Father in Heaven, I know here is there. I just cannot feel it, this disease separates us. The words are hard I’m not sure what to say.  I get off my knees and try to start my day.  I walk aimlessly around the house, but with no purpose.
I sit to try and organise my thoughts, things to be done today seem like a lot, but at the same time, there isn’t much. By this time it’s almost 12’o clock … I haven’t eaten yet. I should probably start with this.  I look for food but I am not very hungry.
I must eat. Eating is important. The Idea of food makes me feel rather ill. a hand full of sultanas is at least a start.
I sit in the bright sun filled dining room, aimlessly scrolling through my phone. not particularly reading anything, mindlessly gazing outside to the blue skies. It’s probably warm out. I should feel like going outside. but I don’t, so maybe later I’ll go out. maybe fresh air will help me focus, maybe I’ll enjoy it.
Eating these sultanas is taking way too long so I will finish them as I study.
okay just this page, just start with reading this.

” despite
the
above
counter –
arguments
to
challenge
the
Alfred- myth ” *

Crap… what was the first word again… okay read the sentence again…

“despite
the”

crap what happened in the last paragraph. The brain can you please retain something.

” to
challenge
the”

I can’t remember what I just read. my head is pounding and words are swirling

“despite”
“Vikings”
“great”
“failing”

I want to do this. But it’s not working. I am trying, brain, please.
Please just work!!!
The tears are wetting the book making it impossible to see what I am attempting to read. Head swirling and hotly frustrated with my own lack of ability.
I flop on the floor trying to clear my mind.
It’s now 3′ o clock, I’m not sure how long I’ve sat here.  I’m still not hungry, I don’t feel like cooking but I should. I don’t exactly feel like sitting here either. I don’t feel like anything. the white noise still courses through my veins, numbing fog. unable to connect to the reality surrounding me even when I try.
you can do this. Just get up. simple.
one foot at a time.
okay good.

I’m not quite sure what I am eating, but I’m sitting and I have some food in front of me. Just eat it. You need to.
I shovel the food down so I don’t have time to pick at it. I feel like I over ate. But It must be a normal portion.
phone buzzes

” you coming tonight? ”

Oh right, we have a family home evening tonight. I don’t feel up to going. I should want to, but I don’t. Being around people just doesn’t draw me in. However, I don’t want to sit here all night either.
Do you really have the energy? you are a mess. you have under and hour to look decent. make your choice.
You don’t want to be here, but you don’t want to be there…. what do I even want? why don’t I want anything. I should want something right?

” sorry I think I won’t be able to be there in time” 

See no problems. but why do I feel guilty? maybe it could be fun. you aren’t doing anything better. common stop being useless.

okay fine… I’ll try.
I shower, makeup…. okay I  am barely going to make it.

my heart beat is growing louder, it is throbbing in my ears… each step along the road feels like I’m going to fall.
maybe this was a bad idea. you can’t even get there. you are stressing over nothing. you’re fine.

But I’m late, well I feel late. that’s rude. If I’m late I shouldn’t go at all. you haven’t seen them in ages so what if it awkward. okay, you’re over thinking.
great you are crying. Calm the heck down. too late to back up now.
thoughts swirling, but nothing is coherent, head dizzy and heart echoing in my bones.
you are on the train. play with snap chat something. distract yourself.

cool so just a short walk. I got this.
sing hymns.. and walk.

no … no, I don’t got this. It’s not too late to go home

phone buzzing. crap.

hey do you think you will make it at all?”

you still have time to say no and go home. it’s gonna be fine

“hey yea I’m almost there”

crap.. okay breath and walk.
people are probably late anyway. so you are fine

oh yea.. I am the second person here.

small talk. please let me disappear.

more people. I feel sick.

this looks like fun, but why do I feel like I am participating through someone else’s body. This isn’t me, why am I not laughing? they are. this should be fun right? My chest is tight.
you cannot cry here. not now.
okay, talk to someone.

okay .. I can’t sit here any longer. I’m exhausted. I’m going to break if I can’t leave.

fake call?
text someone?
just leave?
bathroom and not come back?
lie?

okay…. just say you need to go.

Okay done. just to get home.

….
….

where did the past hour go? what was I doing?
well, I guess it’s time for bed.

I flop on my bed exhausted. I can’t focus on anything.
But the white noise. the numbness courses through my body…
How can one be so beyond exhausted and not fall asleep?
how useless I didn’t even cover half of what I was meant to do today.
crap. how am I going to do this?

Self-annoyance and guilt are sickening to my stomach, the pain makes me curl into a ball and try hold the pieces together as I feel them fall apart. Can someone please show me how.  why can I not keep up?   I want this to stop… please Just stop

I should be better than this.
I need sleep, I need rest.

I need energy if I expect to do this again tomorrow.

I roll onto my knees. ” Heavenly Father. I miss you”


Thank you for reading this.
I know mental illness can and will be different for each person who experiences it.
Mental illnesses are complex There are bad days, meh days. okay days… and there are good days. we cannot Judge everyone according to one experience we have or one person we know.
If you feel like you are struggling with any of these things, or you don’t feel okay. I encourage you to turn to someone you trust, to medical professionals, and your church leaders. Life can be easier and better!
It is something worth fighting for.

Love ,
391570539593422220117

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Lessons of a Wedding Ring

This world is full of symbols, some private and some public.P1110680

One of the most internationally recognised is that of a ring on one’s left hand.  symbolising to the world Love and loyalty to the person they have committed themselves to.

However what happens to these symbols as time goes on?

I have inherited one of such rings, the Engagement ring of my Mother to my biological Father, but as many people are aware my Mum is married to this wonderful man I am blessed to call my stepdad.
So this ring belongs as a symbol of a previous marriage, and I wear it on my right hand.
this has raised many questions in the months I have worn it more frequently.
When I explain what the ring is, I get mixed responses… I guess people seem to find it sad or a little strange. However, although this ring no longer symbols Love, commitment and loyalty to another Person, this ring stands daily as a personal Reminder of the things I learnt earlier in life from observing my parents relationship, and specifically my Mother. Who through example as taught me a lot.
Understand Love
Understanding Love is something that I find personally an essential part of life.
Learning how we as individuals first recognise and understand the presence of Love in our lives. Knowing that there are more ways to express and receive love than to have someone state it, and to know what we as an individual need to recognise it’s presence.
Hand in hand with that is understanding that everyone is different and that those around us may not recognise love and appreciation the same way we do and learning how to express love to those around us in ways that they can feel and understand.
However we must also understand that at times through no fault of our own, some people struggle to recognise love, appreciation, and affection in any form. This can be due to many different experiences through their personal lives, and we must not take that personally. Nor should we stop expressing love towards the person, although at times it may be incredibly hard because we feel as though all efforts are in vain, and that they don’t love us in return. However, if they can’t recognise love, they are probably incapable of expressing it. You can work through it, and you can be Happy. you just have to be prepared to put the effort in.
110%
Put your best work in, no matter what it is, relationships, study, family, friends, work, and in all aspects of life. Give your best in those circumstances. Your best may differ from day to day, and what you are capable of will change. But always give it. Try to make things work even if you feel like your efforts are failing. Keep trying, Keep finding new ways to make it work. The best things in life are not easy. They will take sacrifice, time, commitment and effort. Sometimes more than we think we have, but if you keep trying and give it all you have. You’ll be surprised what you can achieve.
You’ll be at peace knowing you have done all that you can, so when things don’t work out. You will have a clear conscience,  that sometimes despite your best efforts things won’t always go the way you hope.
Work with the Lord
As we do all that we can in life, and put our best foot forward, we need to realise that we cannot do everything alone. The Lord will aid us, give us options and help us build on that which we are already doing. We cannot make it through the manic journey that is life alone. We need our Father in Heaven and He will help us. However, He cannot do it for us. That would break His own law of agency and His desire to see us learn although He would love to save us from heartache and pain.
We must pray like it is all up to Him, and work like it is all up to us. Miracles, can and will happen!
and sometimes things still will not work out how we hope, not because God doesn’t care… or because we have not done our part. But other factors, including things just not being right for us and our future. Other people and their agency… the list could go on forever.
However, in moments of darkness when we feel we can’t do anymore. When things don’t go to plan and we feel hopeless, and we blame ourselves. He will be there with us. He will uplift us and strengthen us. He will comfort our souls, and give us the courage to press on and accept that which we cannot change.
 
Acceptance
Life is not perfect, things change and fall apart, but with help from the Lord and our own conscious choice, we can learn to accept the things in life as they come, or as they may sadly they go.
People we may want around forever may leave. career paths may come to a sudden halt.
This does not make all of that event, person or situation bad or wrong. There is more than likely good and bad amongst it all.
We need to accept it as it is, embrace the good memories, and keep the reality of the bad.
as my mum once said about her relationship with my Father “it wasn’t all bad, good example. I got you didn’t I ?!” However of course in the Long term the bad, or the personal directions of these individuals didn’t align.. and that did outweigh the good. We must embrace things as they are. Take off the rose tinted glasses (or in some cases, black tinted) and accept the reality. Don’t regret those things. Forgive where we can, and learn. Then prepare for what will come next.
                                            Move forward
P1110692Never stop progressing, always have goals, and look into the future .. but do not spend all your time so far in the future that you forget the present. Set goals, make plans and be prepare to give 110% all over again, with the open knowledge and acceptance that it may go wonderfully or it may not. But no matter how it goes, do it. Move forward and embrace the messiness that is life. Don’t be too afraid to be vulnerable and raw.
Be Vulnerable
Don’t give up opportunities when they scare you. Turn to the lord, find courage… grasp the bull by the Horns. Give 110% and be honest. Express those concerns, express your dreams and hope to someone you trust. A friend, a family member, or significant Other. Most importantly express them to the Lord.
Be prepared to feel out of your comfort zone, and keep on moving forward. Knowing that better things May come.
A brightness of hope
Be prepared that the Lord has better things in store than we can ever imagine.
My mum for example probably was not expecting to meet her wonderful eternal companion after ending a 16-year relationship with my Father. However, the man she deserved came along, the man of her dreams… although not a perfect human being… they are working on it.
Life in the future will never be perfect. However, there will be joy and happiness in it, even when we cannot see it at the present time. Know this, hold onto it and keep pressing forward giving your all… and one day you will look back and see how far you have come and how you have progressed. You will be thankful for those curve balls that came your way when even at the time you felt as though your world was crashing around you. You will understand those learning experiences better and you can feel at peace with your past. The good, the bad, the glorious and the ugly.
then you’ll look to the future and feel as though the task at hand is more than you can achieve. Take a moment, look back. You came this far. Now look to the future… if you could go through all that you have. Of course, you can accomplish this!
I hope we are all able to keep progressing, to apply all that we have and to see that bright future ahead even if we feel our world crashing around us.
I have my reminder of these things every day, a symbol of strength and hope.. in a ring once worn by my mother, a woman who has taught me so much without saying a word of it.

P1110674

love,
391570539593422220117

Mental illness an invisible war

Dia dhuit!

I hope we are all well and pressing forward. Because sometimes this isn’t easy.
I’ve thought about this post, and discussing this openly for a while. But unsure on if it will sit well with people. I want to discuss the daily effects of living with mental illness.
we will often hear about the crippling stages of depression or the all consuming effects of severe anxiety. But often I haven’t seen much aimed at those who have maybe fought their way out of those depths. Those who think they have mastered the illness and learnt how to be well healthy. But in reality they still suffer from the effects of it in their daily life.

I would in reflection of my own personal experiences  joyfully say I have come leaps and bounds in happiness and recovery compared to where i was 3 years ago. But am I truly 100% ?  well to be honest I may have never been. not until the Resurrection. Clinical mental illness can be things we may struggle with for a life time. Just as any other disease. Some may be born with diabetes, some develop it later in life, others may eventually beat the diabetes to be fine, others may not. So it is with Mental illness. No matter when, where, or why we struggle. It is real, it is hard and we cannot do it alone.
So although I was diagnosed with such illnesses at the age of 15, I had very clearly been seriously ill for at least 2-3 years already and with in hindsight years before. First clear signs probably before the age of 10, specially as i go back and review the things i used to write in journals or just the way i felt. Now in my early 20s I see what has changed and what hasn’t. Having spent time with counselors and psychologists, having been on medication. I’ve made massive progress, I am a completely different person compared to whom I once was. However this illness it still remains.

I want to focus specifically on two things I have personally struggled with, ones that are more common than we often want to Admit. Both depression and Anxiety.
I remember the moments when I was almost crippled and held down by the dense mist, unable to make connections mentally at the speed I had used to, the empty weight in my chest that slowly felt as though it was consuming me. To randomly be replaced with such intense panic as though my pulse swirled in my own head. where my Body would literally forget how to function for periods of time. Through much assistance, of medical professionals and the Lord I have overcome the severeness of the illness. For those who are still in this place it is possible. It may seem like it is not. But as it reads in Ether 12:27 :

 And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.”

We cannot do this alone, this is where humility comes in. We need to accept the help we need, medical and spiritual. We can however follow the counsel in Alma 37: 35-37:

“Yea, and cry unto God for all thy support; yea, let all thy doings be unto the Lord, and whithersoever thou goest let it be in the Lord; yea, let all thy thoughts be directed unto the Lord; yea, let the affections of thy heart be placed upon the Lord forever.
     Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings, and he will direct thee for good; yea, when thou liest down at night lie down unto the Lord, that he may watch over you in your sleep; and when thou risest in the morning let thy heart be full of thanks unto God; and if ye do these things, ye shall be lifted up at the last day.” 

Give it to the Lord, pray unto Him for everything. Put your trust in Him, there is strength here. As we do so, we can make it through.
However we may wonder why sometimes when we do all that we can, we try our hardest and keep the commandments. That we may not feel the Joy or Happiness we have often been promised. We may question why, or what we did wrong to cause us to become that exception to the rule. we may ask ourselves if this promise was for everyone else but us. That maybe we have failed God and He doesn’t love us like he Loves others. This however is false Doctrine. He loves you and He want’s you to be happy. With mental illness, our brains do not let the correct messages to be passed, making it hard for us to feel these things. Or maybe they do pass through but not as completely as a healthy person. This is not your fault!
This is something we need to Pray and find ways to push through, learn to express these emotions with those around us so they can support us. It worries them. You are not being a burden on them. No they may not understand perfectly. But Jesus Christ does.

As is reads in Isaiah 53: 3-4 :

“He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
    Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.”

He has gone through every heartache and pain we have, He knows how to understand, He does. He went though all of this so that we Hopefully will turn to Him and draw strength from Him. As we apply his Gospel, all of those beautiful teachings into our lives.

There is a beautiful Promise in the 38th chapter of Alma in the Book of Mormon, found in verse 5:

 And now my son, Shiblon, I would that ye should remember, that as much as ye shall put your trust in God even so much ye shall be delivered out of your trials, and your troubles, and your afflictions, and ye shall be lifted up at the last day.”

This promise is for us also. He never said “as soon as you do this, things will be easy”
The key thing is it will happen, in this we have an essential principle; HOPE. we can try look forward, no it isn’t easy. But this promise is sure;
In the Last day we will be free! and we shall be lifted up among the righteous to meet our beloved Saviour and Redeemer!

But even if we aren’t in the deepest depths of despair we still live a life different to that of others.  Sometimes I feel as though because I was no longer where I once was that I have no reason to feel as though things are hard. I would be hard on myself and try push myself.
However through attendance to the Temple I have discovered a crucial thing about myself.

although I thought I was free,  that the illness had left. The moment I step through those beautiful doors I experience something. This may not be the same for others this is a wonderful tender mercy I receive and I live for.
I walk through those doors, and those things that I have been bound by on earth cannot have any hold. I feel the mist lift and my spirit lighten and I experience for the time i am within those walls a glimpse of is to come. The freedom that I long for, and thanks to the goodness of God will receive.
However I realize upon leaving those sacred walls That I am not yet free. That I still rely daily upon Grace (the Enabling power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ) to strengthen me through this. I don’t have the same energy levels as others because I am daily fighting against this to Just live a normal life. It’s like walking through water compared to walking on a track course.
Each day is a new day and every hour can sometimes be a small step to focus on in itself.
People often forget that Just because we may not show that it is hard because we manage to live normal or to hold a Job, or even get out of bed, that maybe, Just maybe it took us a world of effort. Some days it may seem absolutely impossible to even fathom moving out of Bed.
But there is Hope, it is possible, even if at the current time it may seem like it isn’t. You can do this.  One of my favourite scriptures is Doctrine and covenants section 24:8 it contains one of my all time favourite promises from the Lord:

“Be patient in afflictions, for thou shalt have many; but endure them, for, lo, I am with thee, even unto the end of thy days.”

we are not in this alone,  take each day, each hour, and each minute as it comes.
One day dawn will break and we will be free, until this time we must hold onto hope and do all we can and seek the Help of those around us!

I can promise you the Lord will strengthen you!

I love you! But more Importantly the Lord loves you!

Sister Priston-Turner xx

Another one bites the Dust!

Hello everyone!
So it is another transfer done and dusted!
it’s crazy how time flies!

well I guess I’ll d my end of the quick updates.
Monday I worked the whole day!
Tuesday I worked the Whole day!
Wednesday I worked the whole day!

Thursday I had a doctors appointment, then ventured myself to the pools by about 8:40am and had a nice spa and sauna. whilst sitting in the sauna a little Korean lady comes in and starts talking to me, as we are talking she mentions she is christian. so we talk about that and her church for a little bit. next thing I know I am halfway through explaining How the Gospel of Jesus Christ was restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith! thus making our church different to others. As I left i openly invited her to church and said she is always welcome to talk more and strengthen each other.
I then went and got some nice Vegan Sushi with a friend, followed by blood tests (will find out the results this coming week hopefully) I did some adult things. Such as attend the place called a Bank and try update my accounts. fall asleep on a beanbag in the library reading scriptures on my phone. Awkwardly watch my friend speak to everyone he knows and watch from a 2 meter distance. But then He asks me if we believe in hell. so next thing i know I am explaining the entire Plan of Salvation to him, drawing it out on the back of a receipt. telling him to talk to the elders and stuff (he’s met the elders)

Friday I worked all day, and practically died in bed upon arriving home.

Saturday i went to work feeling extremely unwell and got sent home early
(due to all the stuff i am getting blood tests for) I curled up in my anti social bed room and napped most of my day.

Welcome welcome Sunday Morning!
Church today was just pure incredible, the strong tangible spirit. The witness that it is true, that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ live, they love us and they lead this ‘church’. That the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day saints is the Lord’s kingdom once again established on the earth preparatory to the second coming of the messiah.
The elders had investigator they had never met at church today. He had been referred from another area. met on the street and was given a pamphlet… that’s it. He’d been texting the Elders and he came to church!! miracle right?!!?!?
He was telling me this and explained he had never come to a latter-day saint meeting before. well right at the end of sacrament, He gets up and bears his testimony! all on principles others have spoke and he was clearly emotional and feeling this new strong sense of the spirit and he said ” I am glad I came today, to sit here and to know that this id the True church of God on the earth today” then after sacrament meeting, He practically pleaded for the elders to go visit Him this week!! Crazy right?!?!?!?! tender mercies and miracles. as he was bearing testimony I looked at one of the elders and my head was just screaming in pure joy, and his face mimicked that of my internal thoughts. He was practically crying, in shock and grinning. Best feeling ever!
I then got to meet a lovely new YSA girl who is staying in the area for a few months, from America! we had a lovely lesson on Justice and mercy!
I got to teach my CTR class for the first time this week, an adorable bunch of sweet little intense spirits!

After church I got set apart with a calling as a ward missionary. Second calling success!
then we sat and watched the women’s session of General Conference at home. So beautiful.  The messages were wonderful! they also went along well with what I wrote earlier in the week about facing the Future!!

I also have one potential Job interview back in Sydney and I am flying back on the 10th of October! So one week and I am going home xx

anyway, I love you all from the bottom of my hear!

Sister Priston-Turner

Facing the Future

Well hello everyone,

I hope you are all well, and pressing forward with a steadfastness in Christ. Allowing your faith to grow through action and facing those trials that come your way.

One of the interesting things that happens as we return from serving the Lord, is like everything hits us all at once. Suddenly we’ve gone from focusing purely on everyone else and the Gospel. limited distractions and worries. Plus of course we have the missionary mantle. Strength greater than we could even describe.

But next thing we know, we are chucked the real world. No protection above that which we ourselves choose to keep. Working, Studying, Dating, Living circumstances, and everything that will ultimately lead to our future and where we will end up. It is to be rather blunt. Absolutely terrifying.

“Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life.
     And now, behold, my beloved brethren, this is the way; and there is none other way nor name given under heaven whereby man can be saved in the kingdom of God. And now, behold, this is the doctrine of Christ, and the only and true doctrine of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, which is one God, without end. Amen.” ~ 2 Nephi 31: 20-21

I love these Verses. Because ultimately it reminds me of the essential thing of keeping perspective. We are Children of God. This life is only a short moment. No matter what happens, what trials come our way. Those things that in the moment feel like everything is crashing down. there is this beautiful truth; God Lives, Jesus is the Christ. They love us. Their church has been restored upon the earth, with all the ordinances essential to our salvation. Including the correct priesthood authority from God to perform these ordinances. So that Families can be together forever! I know this. I will continue to testify of these truths.
Our goal isn’t just to get the next good Job, or have the biggest and best house. It is about refining ourselves and preparing ourselves for the Lord’s kingdom. If that means I have to walk my through the fires of Mt Doom to do so.. so be it. Of course I know what you are thinking right now  one does not simply walk into mordor”  well one does not simply walk into exaltation in the celestial kingdom  either. But Mordor is a lot more achievable in this state of existence.
Honestly though, learning eternal lessons in this short period of time isn’t designed to be easy. Diamonds only form under extreme pressure and heat for extended time periods. For us this life is short, but the pressure is extreme. We all have our individual limits and capabilities. However we will each be tested time and time again to that which we feel is our breaking point. At times we may feel as though our very being is on the verge of being torn apart. But as we hold strong and rely on the Grace (Enabling power) that comes through the Atonement of Jesus Christ we will find more strength than we knew possible. It doesn’t mean things suddenly become easy or even feel bearable at times. But they become possible.
Through all the years of fighting depression, the enabling power of Jesus Christ (mixed with professional help) is essential to who I am currently, and how I continue to fight and move forward.  It is real. we can rely on it! We need to get on our knees and pray Like it is all up to God, then get on our feet and work like it is all up to us! because this involves effort and team work.

So as we return from the mission, we find ourselves again figuring out our way through this mucky reality. Trying to climb and scramble to where we need to be. But the Knowledge that we need to keep the Lord and His will above our own. Apply the things we have learnt and remain who we have become. We are able to do this because of the enabling power that comes from the Atonement of Jesus Christ.
We push forward. We take leaps of faith, in directions that may seem completely insane. We seek to go beyond our comfort zones and reach those things the Lord is preparing for us.
For myself I am currently trying to process in my head the current options I have. Having confirmation I need to branch out of the country to grow, to Learn, and to become more than what I am already. I am currently weighing up between Australia, and the United States of America. funny how things change right?
Between university options and the things that will put me in a better position to do those things the Lord will ask of me. Sometimes finding complete answers and direction, makes me feel like I am running into a brick wall. I wonder if i am doing my part and asking the correct questions with the right desires.
Ultimately I just want to do as the Lord sees fit. But I am an agent I am free to act for myself (Helaman 14: 30-31) he wont Just hand me a gold plate with all the answers. I need to have that desire to do those things and to then seek if it is right. Make those decisions and try for myself to progress. I know that as I continue to press forward, having Faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, seeking the Will of my Father in Heaven. Studying the Scriptures, keeping open communication, and serving those around me. I will find my answers. I will see the ways open and He will lead me by the Hand to that which He will have me do!
However whenever things get hard there is a wonderful verse in Hymn 85 “How firm a foundation” verse 5 :

When through fiery trials thy pathway shall lie,
My grace, all sufficient, shall be thy supply.
The flame shall not hurt thee; I only design
Thy dross to consume, thy dross to consume,
Thy dross to consume and thy gold to refine.
These things are here to refine us. The paths we chose, the way we seek the Lord’s will. Our obedience. Our trials and temptations. They are all here as a refiners fire. Things we must walk through. To become the best us we can be.

I love the Lord, I love His gospel. I am so thankful to be a part of it. I pray that we may all be able to seek His ways before our own. That we may be able to progress together back to our Father in Heaven. That we may stand as beacons for Good in these the Last Days.

I love you all,
Sister Priston-Turner xx

It’s Raining, It’s Pouring …

Happy Monday!!!

I hope this email finds you well, and rested.

As for myself, this past week has been.. well wet.

But it has been good.

On Monday We had a YSA Family home evening, typically only two of us were there with our YSA parents. we Played a game out of the Friend magazine about the Apostles. Turns out all of us sucked at placing them correctly. So I think I have some study to do.

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Obligatory Pre-Run Selfie

Tuesday is the pouring down with rain all day. So after cleaning the house and doing a little study I headed out on an 11km (6.8 miles)  Run around the River. May have got just a little wet. Spent the rest of the day doing the mundane things of life. cleaning, cooking, feeling a little out of place hahaha Of course looking after some of the animals in the weather is always fun. I got a letter from a good friend serving in the Australia Sydney North Mission, Longest letter I have yet received ( Brown Johnny Bravo, Thanks a Bunch)

Wednesday I hit the Gym for the Morning, always a great start to the day. I love listening to conference talks whilst there. I don’t have to listen to the stuff playing on the radio. Plus it is a great time to think… may occasionally lose count of my reps.  I then was blessed to have a great phone call with an RM i served with in the New Zealand Wellington Mission. I made some delicious Protein Pancakes, will a home made blueberry sauce. I also made a small loaf of banana bread, just free form. Turned out great. I packed this as dinner for at Institute.

Institute was way better this week. I hung out with a Girl from my YSA before hand for a little bit, then we had Class. The group I was slightly disappointed in the week before walked in 30 minutes late. -deep breaths- I don’t handle people disrespecting our Teachers well. But it was a great lesson. D&C 25, discussing about how we can apply the things the Lord asks of Emma Smith into our own lives.

Thursday We had a break in the rain, so I headed out for a little day hike in waikanae.. may have got a little Lost… what is really kind of sad because the trail is literally right beside the primary school i went to for 8 years. Spent a bit of time with Mumma at the Gym office, introducing myself to people.  I also worked on my lesson for YSA on sunday

Friday was literally non stop heavy rain all day, a few small land slides along some of the tracks around the property. . what is causing us to only be able to lead one horse at a time. I literally spent most of the day hiding inside doing a deeper clean, studies, and working on fixing my mission blog (who knows how my mum did some of these things) Also during my night time planning for saturday I found out we had a ysa activity in the evening.. so my daily planning looked like this
“The nerve of those Whos. Inviting me down there – and on such short notice. Even if I wanted to go my schedule wouldn’t allow it.
Four o’clock, wallow in self pity;
4:30, stare into the abyss;
5:00, solve world hunger, tell no one.
5:30, jazzercize.
6:30, dinner with me. I can’t cancel that again.
7:00, wrestle with my self-loathing; I’m booked.
Of course, if I bump the loathing to 9 I could still be done in time to lay in bed, stare at the ceiling and slip slowly into madness. But what would I wear?”

(That was for you sister Spainhower)

 
Saturday:
Cleaning, studies, Hit the Gym again.

Ran some errands, Did a few other mundane life type things, including breathing. made home made Pizzas with Home made bases. SO GOOD! Followed by the YSA activity… and guess what?!?!? 3 of us went!!! we played some card games and watched some rugby.

Sunday:
Well this is the Best day of the week. We had church, with some lovely speakers talking about the Atonement… seriously who doesn’t love a sacrament meeting that is entirely Atonement focused.
YSA lesson went well. we discussed Chapters 36-39 In Alma.. so Alma talking to his sons.What happens when you teach YSA Then applying it to ourselves so we can not only follow the example of those righteous influences, But also become as it says in 1 Timothy 4:12 an example of the believers .. in ALL things. Because we all know that  EXAMPLE IS OUR GREATEST MESSAGE.
  Relief society was all about honesty…A wonderful Principle!
After Church we had a ward lunch, that is always nice. it is freezing and wet so there was lots of Soup.. mm Soup.
we then came home, and for the first time in i think forever i lay down and fell asleep for a bit reading my scriptures.. Now Elders and Sister this is why on page 22 in Preach My gospel… under the Heading “Search, Ponder, and remember”
The second bullet point says “Study at a desk where you can write (not lying down or sitting on your bed), organize your study materials, and remain alert.
I have corrected myself and will not do that again. I then started some letters to people.. planned when would be best to have the Elder and their investigators up for a cottage evening. The sat down with My wonderful parents and made them watch Ephraim’s Rescue… too many tears shed, not enough tissues in this house.

Ultimately this Week I’ve been Pondering a few scriptures in one concept.
moses 1:39, 2 Nephi 2: 25, 1 Nephi 3:7, Mosiah 18:8-10, Mosiah 2:17, D&C 18 : 10-16 (well actually the whole section)

People keep asking me why i love helping others and why i love serving
(i’ve typed this out once already to only lose the internet and lose the best paragraph of this email, so this may not be anywhere near is good)
So ultimately it is simple, God loves us, his entire focus is to help us progress and be happy. Because of this He gives us commandments to be safe and to feel joy. He gives us no commandments that we cannot achieve. We even promise to keep the commandment of strengthening one another and serving at baptism. As we align our will with God’s will. My purpose too becomes to help others receive immortality and eternal life in complete happiness. Of course as we act upon this we feel a part of God’s love for the person we serve, a part of His love for us, and pure Joy. Simple.
We are not here to do this alone.

I am just so thankful to have a father in heaven who love us enough to want to see us progress. Who blesses us with more joy and happiness than we can imagine. who gives us Commandments for our protection and happiness.
I know He lives, i feel his presence in my life constantly. Every single day i grow even more thankful for this knowledge.

I pray for you daily. please let me know if i can help in anyway.

All my love and prayers,
Sister Priston-Turner

Rain, Shine, and a Bit of Mud

Hello!

I understand that time is short. You probably dont even read this. I know those facts ahaha.

Anyway I thought I’d still do updates.

This past week has probably been the weirdest yet.

Honestly, nothing overly thrilling happened.

I’ve been to the Gym most mornings

Wednesday I ventured out into the big lone world itself. Saw a friend and got street contacted by a Hare krishna lady, and I accidentally started teaching her about the Plan of Salvation and how this knowledge aids us. My friend just laughed telling me “habits die hard don’t they?!?!”

We had institute Wednesday evening, what was rather disappointing .. I don’t think I have ever sat socially with a group of YSA who were so rude to each other or swore as much as they did.

However the lesson itself was great we were discussing Temple ordinances and how they aid us in fulfilling our divine potential as Son’s and Daughter’s of God.

Thursday morning hit hard. I just wanted to be out proselyting.  the whole day seemed weird.

Friday was great. Mum made, cheeses and ice cream, I read the King Follett discourse to my mum and we had a great discussion on it.

Saturday I hit the gym hard, it was great. I was dead at the end of it. However we ran errands most of the day.

We had a RS activity that was about RS through the years. I then came home and built a tent with the Niece and Nephews. Where we cuddled just had fun before bed.

Sunday always will be the best day of the week. For multiple reasons.

Despite the fact I only had 45 minutes of sleep church was a spiritual feast.

Also getting to sit there and listen with my nephew on my knee just makes life feel a bit more complete. There is a comfort and peace with those you love being united. I also got to teach the Restoration to the Senior Primary kids, getting to explain the priesthood and How much God loves us to restore it after the apostasy was great. But Just the feeling of getting to bear testimony was amazing. That is probably the thing i miss most, getting to bear testimony constantly and the power behind it.

So getting to bear Testimony of the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the power i felt behind it was an absolute treasure.

Elders came up for dinner and we compared scripture Lols,

then we went to a fireside about Family History and the Temple.

It was a wonderful Sabbath and I am so grateful the The Lord gave us the Sabbath to take time to remember Him, to Renew our covenants, and to put aside the things of the World.

if there is anything I can do for you please let me know.

Many Prayers,

Sister Priston-Turner

P.S. most of this week was pouring rain, hail and bits of snow…. I miss Aussie heat 😦

Black eyes, spiked heels, and piles of children

Good Merry Monday!

First I want to say I hope you have had a good week and have seen the many miracles in your life.

Something I’ve been pondering recently is “Forget not the why of the Gospel”

throughout the scriptures peoples downfall often seems to be either .. forgetting things the ought to remember or remembering things they ought to forget.  Throughout the scriptures we are invited to remember many precious truths and to not Forget many things. However somehow we can seem to forget.

We forgot our life before earth, we had to. But simply if we had remembered, how much easier would of our life here become? How much more clarity would we have, and I believe we would look at everything with a more eternal perspective.

But we all fall short, forgetting is a Part of Human nature, something we need to fight to over come, to constantly draw closer to God. Learn and embrace His teachings. As we do so he influences our lives, we stay close to those teachings and we are less likely to forget because we are actively applying them.

Hence why The lord asks us to do things… to actively do those things that help us remember.

we are the ones who turn our backs on Him… this is why I love the song “Come thou fount of every blessing”
specially these two verses :

Here I raise my Ebenezer,
Hither by Thy help I’ve come,
And I hope, by Thy good pleasure,
Safely to arrive at home.
Jesus sought me when a stranger,
Wandering from the fold of God,
He, to rescue me from danger,
Interposed His precious blood.

Oh, to grace how great a debtor
Daily I’m constrained to be,
Let that grace now like a fetter
Bind my wandering heart to Thee:
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love.
Here’s my heart, oh, take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.

well this week honestly has been mildly uneventful.
I’ve been living between my home and the gym, occasional church activities. I’ve applied for work.
Early Thursday morning, i tripped on something my cat had knocked onto the floor and landed eyes/head first on an old column heater. resulting in a nice black eye, and a few cuts. Not to mention the Solid headache I’ve had from it! because that is what everyone wants at 5am in the morning. Hahaha
Spent all of friday with mum making sheep cheese, Yoghurt and Ice cream!
made 8Litres of milk into feta. then 8Litres into Ice cream. and 2Litres into yoghurt.
   We had a Japanese YSA evening, where the small group of us made sushi and played traditional Japanese games.
Honestly, I think one of the greatest blessings about being home is seeing the way My step dad (a still fairly new member, with no previous religious upbringing) is as a Bishop. The calling has changed Him, the Lord guides and magnifies Him daily.
He has become one of those priesthood Holders who respects that power, who strives constantly to magnify that calling and rely on the Lord, He is the convert we all wish we could have. If those I was blessed to serve are in for years time as strong as He is now, I will be insanely proud.
We celebrated Fathers day the only way i know how, practical man gifts for the man who likes Roasts, and a Card full of Dad worthy Puns!
Also being my step sisters 30th birthday we all got together and had dinner, I got squished by the three kids who wanted cuddles and then in the end my youngest nephew kept saying “you aren’t leaving im keeping you” and hugging tighter. then when I had to leave he yelled “BYE MUM, IM STAYING WITH KITA”
he was not happy to be forced off me, and i wish i could’ve had him for the night. But this just makes us having them next weekend so much better!
I just often Find myself so very thankful for all of the things the Lord blesses me with, including you!
I love getting messages from the members in Australia (if only they would stop using guilt to get me to come back ) messaging and hearing from investigators about all of the things they are applying, The work is moving forward. There are changes in peoples lives that you may not even be aware of.
So keep pushing forward, keep seeking the Lord’s will and giving your all.
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My love and prayers are with you always!

Love Sister Priston-Turner
xx

Transfers o.O

Well Hello!

I hope you have had an amazing spirit filled week!

so it has been that time again, and transfers came and went.

I hope we are all seeing our purpose for where we are and what we are here to achieve.

It has been crazy and it was the shortest trip of my life to get to my new area. It came way too fast.

It took about 3/4 hours to get to my area. The ride wasn’t bad, it was a little bumpy. However we got food along the way.

I was blessed to speak to a lovely lady from England who was on the same transport as me. She was on her way to visit her brother. She actually was an inactive Jehovah’s witness. Incredibly lovely.

Arriving to my new area was quiet a sight. People were there to greet me, but my companion wasn’t there. so that was strange.

This week has been a massive culture shock for me. The weather has dropped dramatically (17 degree drop Celsius, or 62 in Fahrenheit) It also is raining a lot more in this area.

The Culture is so different, people sound different. they have their own kind of weird messed up accent and I am not sure what they say at times.

I found out within 3 hours of landing in this new area  that I have been called to be a no-badge missionary. Crazy right?

SO new area, new culture, No-Badge, No area book, and No companion. Well it looks like I am heading out on and adventure!

I have to get to work, get to studying and Find that companion 😉

Ultimately I am so thankful for my last four areas. It was been a blessing to serve both in Australia and New Zealand.

To meet wonderful people such as yourself, and to learn from you and your example. They never said going on a mission would be easy (I’m sure it is called a mission for a reason)  But we know it will be worth it.

The Lord works many miracles as we strive to remain close to him through willing obedience to all that He asks. Obedience is an act of faith, accepting the Lord’s all knowing wisdom over our limited knowledge.

We however can continue to act in faith, striving to become as close to the Lord as we can. Pushing forward everyday giving our all and seeing the miracles that Will come.

I am so thankful for everything you do and continue to do.

If i can help in anyway at all please let me know!

Lets all go smash it this transfer!!!

Much Love and Many Prayers,
Sister Priston-Turner

Down hill From here!

‘ello everyone!

So believe it or not I am officially past half way of my mission.
Do you have any idea how crazy I currently feel?

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On monday I saw saw 4 naked men at a hidden beach in part of our area…. NOT COOL!
there is a reason our mission president has Red Zones!
Tuesday we went to the temple as a zone and had a wonderful temple session!

Wednesday we had interviews with our mission President!

Thursday we had a wonderful district meeting and then a great day!

Friday we had some appointments and went to different parts of our Area

Saturday we talked to people all day, all day  then had transfer calls. I had been assigned to the University Area working on campus here in sydney. I  got told by a Japanese lady that the little Japanese i could speak was beautiful and on point with pronunciation, That really made my day!

Sunday I gave a talk about raising an eternal family. my companion gave her farewell testimony along with both elders. late at night President called me and said that there is a visa Waiter coming for a few weeks and she needs to be close to the airport. so He is reassigning me to claremont meadows for the next transfer. so thus I move yet again!

I LOVE MISSIONARY LIFE SO MUCH! I HONESTLY WANT NOTHING BUT TO SERVE THE LORD AND MY FELLOW MAN.
SIMPLE!

I know I said i was going to be 100% honest with the blog posts to express the honest side of serving with previous mental health issues.
To be honest I have been blessed my entire mission thus far. I have never been happier, or has this much energy.
I am the last person to admit to struggling, honestly. But the past few week have been really tough, I really didn’t want to admit this, specially to anyone who knows me personally back home.
I haven’t felt so consistently anxious in a very long time. It is hard to go out and talk to people all day everyday when your stomach is permanently in a knot, and you feel sick all day. But you force yourself to move forward. you pray and do a Mild Enos at every given chance to have strength. your sleepless nights (because everyone knows i suck at sleeping) become a weird blurr of thoughts on what to do better, how you need to improve and all your shortcomings. What are a lot if you’ve seen my height. (some humour to lighten up the mood?)
Appetite drops, and nothing seems to kill the anxiety. But you know that this something you have to deal with. Its scary and weird. Something you know need to try push through but the shaking hands and occasional crying that you manage to somehow conceal from your companion doesn’t help.
you cannot help but feel completely ridiculous Because you love being a missionary, and you love everything about it. But the anxiety is there and it makes everything harder than it should be. I hate it, honestly. the constant pain in the stomach and heart pounding. It feels mildly never-ending. But I know that the Lord will provide a way. I am here for a reason. I will do what I can. I know the Lord will help me make all the right choices!

I love you all very much, if times are hard, stay close to the Lord

Love,
Sister Priston-Turner