Friday, December 30, 2011

The Living Christ

In July or so, we got a new Young Women's presidency. Our president was young and wanted to tackle anything.
"Guys, Young Women's in excellence isn't until December, but I want each of us to do something different this time. Instead of just standing up and saying something we did for personal progress, I want each of us to pick something that will help us grow closer to Christ."
A week later.
"Oh, and we're memorizing The Living Christ."

If any of you know my Papa Smurf, you might know his knack for memorizing. In his mind are a plethora of inspiring poems, conference quotes, and scriptures. When we travel, all he brings is his phone and a conference transcript. In his phone, he has saved a list of quotes he wants to memorize, and one by one, by that end of the plane ride, he usually has knocked out ten or so.

So as my mother and I embarked on the daunting task to memorize such a large and sacred document, I hoped that maybe my dad's "sponge memory" would shine through.

It didn't.

It was more difficult than I hoped. We were supposed to memorize a paragraph every two weeks, and each Sunday I'd go to church feeling inadequate and unprepared.

As we go halfway through, a leader saw our struggle and invited us to go to her house each Sunday after church to practice together. We went over the parts we stumbled on, and made up silly signs for the things we couldn't remember.

For a few months, each morning when I got up, I recited The Living Christ along with a man reciting it in a podcast. Those early moments in my bathroom were, and are still precious to me. Simply because of the love of the Savior that I felt in there, his sweet spirit saying, "Aubrey, I am here. I am the Living Christ. I will always be here when you need me."

Last Wednesday the youth went to Temple Square. As we squished on couches surrounding The Christus, sweet Abbie leaned over and said, "Sister Clark? Could we recite The Living Christ in front of the Christus?"

After a thumbs up from the missionaries, we all stood up there, and began.

"As we commemorate the birth of Jesus Christ two millennia ago, we offer our testimony of the reality of His matchless life and the infinite virtue of His great atoning sacrifice."

Tears began welling up in my eyes as I stared around the room. I looked at the moon and the stars, the world beyond measure. I stood next to my Savior, as the realization filled my soul that of all the immeasurable people in this world, He knows me. He loves me. He will never forget me.

The words that I had uttered almost robotically for months now had a divine purpose, to bear testimony that He lives. That He is our Lord and Savior and that, after this holiday season, we can never be so foolish as to forget that.

"...Jesus is the Living Christ, the immortal Son of God. He is the great King Immanuel, who stands today on the right hand of His Father. He is the light, the life, and the hope of the world. His way is the path that leads to happiness in this life and eternal life in the world to come.

God be thanked for the matchless gift of His divine Son."

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Clean Blood

Imagine this ...

You're driving home from work next Monday after a long day. You tune in your radio. You hear a blurb about a little village in India where some villagers have died suddenly, strangely, of a flu that has never been seen before. It's not influenza, but three or four people are dead, and it's kind of interesting, and they are sending some doctors over there to investigate it. You don't think much about it, but coming home from church on Sunday you hear another radio spot. Only they say it's not three villagers, it's 30,000 villagers in the back hills of this particular area of India, and it's on TV that night. CNN runs a little blurb: people are heading there from the disease center in Atlanta because this disease strain has never been seen before.

By Monday morning when you get up, it's the lead story. It's not just India; it's Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, and before you know it, you're hearing this story everywhere, and they have now coined it as "the mystery flu." The President has made some comment that he and his family are praying and hoping that all will go well over there. But everyone is wondering, "How are we going to contain it?"

That's when the President of France makes an announcement that shocks Europe. He is closing their borders. No flights from India, Pakistan, or any of the countries where this thing has been seen. And that's why that night you are watching a little bit of CNN before going to bed. Your jaw hits your chest when a weeping woman is translated into English from a French news program. There's a man lying in a hospital in Paris, dying of the mystery flu. It has come to Europe.

Panic strikes. As best they can tell, after contracting the disease, you have it for a week before you even know it. Then you have four days of unbelievable symptoms. And then you die. Britain closes it's borders, but it's too late. South Hampton, Liverpool, North Hampton, and it's Tuesday morning when the President of the United States makes the following announcement: "Due to a national-security risk, all flights to and from Europe and Asia have been canceled. If your loved ones are overseas, I'm sorry. They cannot come back until we find a cure for this thing."

Within four days our nation has been plunged into an unbelievable fear. People are People are wondering, "What if it comes to this country?" And preachers on Tuesday are saying it's the scourge of God. It's Wednesday night, and you are at a church prayer meeting when somebody runs in from the parking lot and yells, "Turn on a radio, turn on a radio!" And while everyone in church listens to a little transistor radio with a microphone stuck up to it, the announcement is made. Two women are lying in a Long Island hospital, dying from the mystery flu. Within hours it seems, this disease envelops the country.

People are working around the clock, trying to find an antidote. Nothing is working. California, Oregon, Arizona, Florida, Massachusetts. It's as though it's just sweeping in from the borders.

And then all of a sudden the news comes out. The code has been broken. A cure can be found. A vaccine can be made. It's going to take the blood of somebody who hasn't been infected, and so, sure enough, all through the Midwest, through all those channels of emergency broadcasting, everyone is asked to do one simple thing: Go to your downtown hospital and have your blood analyzed. That's all we ask of you. When you hear the sirens go off in your neighborhood, please make your way quickly, quietly, and safely to the hospitals.

Sure enough, when you and your family get down there late on that Friday night, there is a long line, and they've got nurses and doctors coming out and pricking fingers and taking blood and putting labels on it. Your spouse and your kids are out there, and they take your blood and say, "Wait here in the parking lot, and if we call your name, you can be dismissed and go home." You stand around, scared, with your neighbors, wondering what on earth is going on, and if this is the end of the world.

Suddenly, a young man comes running out of the hospital screaming. He's yelling a name and waving a clipboard. What? He yells it again! And your son tugs on your jacket and says, "Daddy, that's me." Before you know it, they have grabbed your boy. "Wait a minute, hold on!" And they say, "It's okay, his blood is clean. His blood is pure. We want to make sure he doesn't have the disease. We think he has the right blood type."

Five tense minutes later, out come the doctors and nurses are crying and hugging one another - some are even laughing. It's the first time you have seen anybody laugh in a week, and an old doctor walks up to you and says, "Thank you, sir. Your son's blood is perfect. It's clean, it is pure, and we can make the vaccine."

As the word begins to spread all across that parking lot full of folks, people are screaming and praying and laughing and crying. But then the gray-haired doctor pulls you and your wife aside and says, "May we see you for a moment? We didn't realize that the donor would be a minor and we need... we need you to sign a consent form."

You begin to sign and then you see that the box for the number of pints of blood to be taken is empty. "H-h-h-how many pints?" And that is when the old doctor's smile fades, and he says, "We had no idea it would be a little child. We weren't prepared. We need it all!" "But... but... I don't understand. He's my only son!" "We are talking about the world here. Please sign. We... we... need to hurry!"

"But can't you give him a transfusion?" "If we had clean blood we would. Please, will you please sign?"

In numb silence you do. Then they say, "Would you like to have a moment with him before we begin?"

Could you walk back? Could you walk back to that room where he sits on a table saying, "Daddy? Mommy? What's going on?" Could you take his hands and say, "Son, your mommy and I love you, and we would never ever let anything happen to you that didn't just have to be! Do you understand that?" And when that old doctor comes back in and says, "I'm sorry, we've got to get started. People all over the world are dying," could you leave? Could you walk out while he is saying, "Dad? Mom? Dad? Why... why have you abandoned me?"

And then next week, when they have the ceremony to honor your son, and some folks sleep through it, and some folks don't even bother to come because they have better things to do, and some folks come with a pretentious smile and just pretend to care, would you want to jump up and say, "EXCUSE ME! MY SON DIED FOR YOU! DON'T YOU CARE? DOES IT MEAN NOTHING TO YOU?"

I wonder, is that what God wants to say? "MY SON DIED FOR YOU. DOES IT MEAN NOTHING? DON'T YOU KNOW HOW MUCH I CARE?"

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The things we take for granted

"I was born deaf and 8 weeks ago I received a hearing implant. This is the video of them turning it on and me hearing myself for the first time :)"

Monday, December 19, 2011

I have thoughts. They just change frequently.

At least once a week someone walks up to me and says, "Aubrey, did you know I had a dream about you last night?"
It seems like it mostly began this school year.
Have I recently begun inhabiting people's dreams?
Or are people finally getting the courage to tell me?

"You know Aubs, I used to be really intimidated."
"You? By what?"
"No, it's not bad. It's just like, there's so much Aubrey to handle when someone meets you for the first time. They don't know what to do with it all. It's really overwhelming. So you're kinda scared of it, and so I was intimated by you.
But it's cool. Because we're friends now."

When I was three I watched "The Wizard of Oz" for the first time.

I've made a promise to myself. My children will not be allowed to watch it until they are.... 8.

Maybe 10.

I saw the tornado, and that did it. In my young adolescence, I was immediately scarred.

I'm sure if my mother would have known the numerous traumatizing experiences that movie caused, I would have had to wait until I was ten too.

Folks, I was scared of the wind. Not a boogie monster, not some creepy thing under my bed. If a slightest breeze blew, I was clinging to the nearest stable thing. Whether that be a light pole, my father's leg, or in the best occasion - my primary teacher's waist.

Olivia technically isn't my first car.

You know, the white one with the red peace sign and cute seat covers.

For two blissful weeks, I owned a red car.

I love the color red.

She was a stick shift. I had never driven a stick shift before, but my dad in all his adorable love and patience, agreed to teach me.
That first time I drove it around the neighborhood I stalled what felt like every 20 seconds. By the end of it my poor father had whiplash.

Two days later, he got up and told me, "Why don't you drive yourself to school?"

I was absolutely terrified. "Daddy, what if I stall?"
"Then you'll just start it again."

At the time, it seemed so simple. But that was still so reassuring. If I failed to do something right, I could start over, I could try again.

I was coming home from work that fateful evening. I somehow stalled on the extremely steep 25 degree incline of my driveway. I slowly inched forward and somehow was veering off to the right. After stalling three times, frustrated, and tired from mopping and making sandwiches, I gunned it.

Straight into the side of my garage.

I pulled on the brake and swung open the door - car still running - to a large mass of smoke.

Before someone could say "Cue tears" I was running inside hysterical.
"Are you okay? Are you okay?"
My mom and Jason came running up to me.
I nodded and merely pointed outside to where the damage waited.

I sat on the stairs, my head in my hands as I stared at the tan carpet slowly grow dark from the tears running down my cheeks.
I heard the door open several times as Jason and my mom ran outside and in grabbing garbage cans, brooms and rags to clean up the glass and oil sprayed in my garage.

I couldn't think clearly. All I can remember is my tears. Perhaps it was the combination of hormones and teenage boys. I was absolutely hysterical, and I couldn't seem to fathom why.

My mom walked inside, put her arm around me and said, "Maybe you should go to bed."

I went upstairs, and immediately sat on my floor and informed my friends of my recent car crash.

The two minutes in-between their responses was too long and I simply laid my head down on the ground. I laid there for a half hour or so, as my chest bobbed up and down and my heart beat way too fast. I couldn't sleep.

My mom suggested I get a blessing.

I felt silly, and I walked down the stairs.

You get blessings for illnesses, for sickness.

I realized, as I sat in my parents dark bedroom, on the edge of their bed that that didn't matter.

All I needed was peace. All I needed was that sweet reassurance that "this too shall pass" and it would all be okay.

And my dad was able to give me just that, simply by being worthy and prepared when I woke him up late at night.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

I'm only a child

If you do not know how to fix it, please, stop breaking it.

Friday, December 16, 2011

The best days....

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The one, the only, The Miss Kim.

"Hey Mom.... What voice is that?"
"My icky romantic one."

"Go get the synonym dictionary."
"Mom, you mean the thesaurus?"
"Yeah, whatever they call it these days."

"Don't worry Mom, you'll like him."
"Good. I hope I like all my son's in law."
"Yeah, he'll even laugh at your jokes."
"Well I hope he makes me laugh."
"He better!"
"Yeah, sense of humor was #3 on my list."
"Under worthy priesthood holder and desirous to go to the temple?"
"No, good kisser."

Hey, at least she's honest.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Child-like Eating Habitat's

This morning I walked into my kitchen in the search of something delicious for breakfast, that would require little preperation. This criteria, naturally, let me to the cereal cupboard. I scanned the boxes, past the Cherrios and Rasin Bran, when two boxes caught my eye. Captain Crunch, or Cocoa Puff's? It was rather maddening, standing there, hungry and yet feeling particularly indecisive having recently woken up.
I chose the natural alternative: both.

When I was little, combining cereals was rather normal for me. It started one day when I picked up a box and poured it in only to see that there was only half a bowl full of cereal. This is the second worst thing that can happen to a cereal connisoure. The first being when you desperately hope that there is more cereal for you, but instead you are greeted with cereal dust.
I hate cereal dust.
Combining cereals was a game for me so when Daddy walked into the kitchen, and inquire after my breakfast I would chirpily respond, "Lucky Trix!"

Cereal, however, was not the extent of my ridiculous eating. I also enjoyed peanut butter and jelly sandwiches with pickles on them. And I regularly (even in my mature adulthood) eat cereal with yogurt.

I suppose what I'm saying is, I'm rather glad that since the age of three, I was expected to get my breakfast and make my lunch myself. It made life a whole lot more interesting.

What quirky things did YOU eat when you were a lil' nugget?

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Della Park Loosli

Our dear mother, Della Park Loosli, peacefully passed into the next life on November 19, 2011 at her home in Provo, Utah with her children by her bedside. She was born January 28, 1925 in Hibbard, Idaho to Amelia Gade Hooper and William Henry Park, the eighth of eleven children. She was raised by her widowed mother after her father died due to an accident when she was only ten years old. After high school, Del moved to Salt Lake City, where she attended LDS Business College and worked in a munitions factory while living in the Beehive House. She met our father, Laurence Jenkinson Loosli, who swept her off her feet at many a dance at Saltair, and later married him in the Salt Lake Temple on December 2, 1948.
While living in Salt Lake City, Del and Larry began their family. After serving in World War II, Larry reenlisted in the Air Force as a printer and Del accompanied him to Germany, then New York City, where she fell in love with the performances at Radio City Music Hall. The family moved next to Arizona, California and then back overseas to Japan for four years, where she taught English and learned the art of floral arranging and cake decorating. Their final assignment was Biloxi, Mississippi where she finished raising her four children and worked for a time as a florist.
After Larry retired from the Air Force, she worked long and hard to make their print shop, Loma Enterprises, a success. Following a second retirement in1993, they made their final home in Provo, Utah to be close to family where she became "Gigi" (G G for great grandma) to her grandchildren.
Her zest for life was contagious and she was game for any adventure, always enjoying dance. She had a great sense of humor and often made us laugh with her snappy comments. She had a soft spot for the youth and an ability to reach the shy and lonely. Most of all, she loved her family. She enjoyed her grandchildren and was their best cheerleader as she attended their many activities and performances.
Throughout her life she remained a faithful member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, teaching her children and grandchildren to love the Lord and His Gospel. We are eternally indebted to her for our testimones. We love her and miss her.
Del leaves behind her children, Greg Loosli (Joy), Bruce Loosli (Rose), Kim Snelson (Brian), and Curt Loosli (Sherry), 25 grandchildren, 25 great-grandchildren, and one brother, Leonard Park.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Dear BYU, I couldn't say all of this.

The Best Way To Spend My Summer

When I first walked into the floor, I was nervous and wasn’t sure what to expect. I felt like maybe I was in the way and didn’t belong there. But soon nurses, PCT’s, and therapists reached out to me and helped me feel included in several ways.

On my first day, I just stood there, scared to ask anyone what I should do, but one outgoing nurse, Fenise, soon had me getting meal trays, handing them to patients, and even sitting down and visiting with them. I soon discovered that all the patients had one thing in common: they loved to talk. Everyday at breakfast, I was invited to sit and tell about how I was “wasting my summer away in a hospital.” All of the patients had diverse and different pasts and I found myself drawn into the stories of their lives. Each week there was a new patient to meet, a new story to be heard, and a new friend to be made.

One important thing that my internship did was help me learn that I can relate to a variety of people. No matter how different from a person you may think you are, there is always something you can find in common. I found out during therapy that one of the patients loved to sing, something I am passionate about. He told me about all the places that he had traveled to and all the people he was able to work with as he sang in choirs and directed them.

I also became more empathetic. One of the patient, who was just a year older than me, crashed on his scooter, something I drive daily. I remember his first day in therapy, when the occupational therapist asked him a series of questions. They ranged from “How many days are in a week?” to “What happened in the Civil War?” As I watched him struggle to answer questions that would seem easy to most people, I found myself relating. His situation could have easily been mine if I hadn’t been wearing a helmet when I crashed on my scooter.

There was another patient who recently had his leg amputated due to diabetes. For over 70 years he had a perfectly functioning leg and suddenly because of one wrong slip with a nail clipper, he contracted an infection and he learned that he was going to lose his leg. And yet, he was incredibly upbeat and enthusiastic. Each morning, when I greeted him, my greeting would be returned with a resounding, “I slept horribly, but I’m alive!” Or in therapy, the therapist would ask, “Do you think you can do this?” and he would quickly respond, “Well, I can most certainly try!” In moments when I might feel frustrated with what I’m going through, I can always look back and remember his extremely optimist attitude during a very difficult time in his life.

I remember one patient who had a severe brain hemorrhage and lost most of her mobility. She was about the age of my mom each day I watched her struggle with the effects of this sudden impairment. One particularly hard morning, I was trying to encourage her to feed herself. We tried eating one thing at a time, first the grapes, then the eggs but she kept getting distracted. At one point, she started to cry because she hadn’t had her pain medication yet, and she was clenching the fork too hard. I gently rubbed her back, and massaged her hands to help her relax before the nurses could come. During the rest of breakfast she got frustrated and confused. At one point, I asked her what she wanted and she said, “Just to eat my breakfast in peace!” At moments like this, you could get frustrated and want to just leave. But this internship taught me that as the medical professional you have to patient and recognize that in this case, the patient is literally “not in their right mind” due to brain damage. You have to be very patient and understanding of what they are going through.

Overall, this internship gave me a whole new confidence within a hospital setting. I know how to behave properly around a doctor to show that I’m interested, but not get in the way. I learned how to interact with a variety of people, both patients and staff, and how to be a team player. Doing this internship was probably one of the best ways to spend my summer and I’m so glad that I had the opportunity to do this. Now I can’t wait to start my own medical career.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

When the Snelson's get together....

"What the heck? Why did I just hug Josh?"
"Hmmm..... sounds like a personal problem to me."

"Dad, ignore everything I'm about to say."
"I usually do."

"Grant, can you say crazy?"
"Good. Now say, Mimi is crazy."

"Dad said just to put him in a nice retirement home."
"What about Mom?"
"Mom's gonna be in a house next door. Probably attached."
"Just put a tunnel underneath. I'll wheel myself over in my wheel chair."

"Dad, I can't wear Kirkland jeans, and find a wife that you would approve of."

"Please make eye contact when I talk to you."
"You're not even making eye contact with me!"
"Oh yeah, sorry. I got distracted."

"Awww crap, I lost it."
"Boston? We lost Boston?"

"Hey, you saw that pregnancy test. You knew what you were getting yourself into."
"Hey, I just thought I had to keep you clean and fed."

"We can go horse back riding! Don't they have winter horses?"

"It's not a vacation if it's warm."

"Hmmm.... Well let's see. I have to speak in sacrament meeting that Sunday."
"Can't you just call in sick?"

"I hope everyone buckled up because I'm not the safest driver. Did everyone sign their consent forms and waivers?"

"Jeff, we really don't want you to be here. It was a much better three seconds without you."

"I think I might do some shopping myself..."
"Really Dad? What are you gonna go buy?"
"I'll probably get some fruit at Costco. Maybe pick up some eggs..."

"Chanelle I heard a story about you..."
"What? Stop it. It's not true. My little sister is here, and it probably can't be good."

"Stop texting! I just want to see your face."

"What does peanut gallery even mean?"
"It means no side comments. Like, no sassy things or I'll drop kick you in the face."

"Hi Aubs! Your-hair-is-pretty-do-you-have-a-boyfriend?"
"No siree"
"Yeah, but she could have any guy she wanted."

"I'm gonna... cut all your fingers off."

"Aubrey LOVES it when you tickle here. Keep doing that, you'll see how much fun she has. See? Look at her. Aubrey you having fun yet?"

"I swear Aubrey, if you're married right after high school I'm gonna punch your face. And lock you in a basement. With a dragon."

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Laziness is.....

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


"Daddy, I need your help. I have to write about a personal struggle, but I can't think of one."
"Hmm... let's think for a moment.
Oh! I know!
You could write about how one time on the weekend we went to go eat some ice cream, but we had forgotten to buy some ice cream, and so we couldn't have ice cream that night.
That was definitely a major trial.
Or, that one day that Jason called to inform me that Costco was going to quit selling Otis Spunkmeyer cookie dough! Oh geez, that caused a fright."

"Fantastic Dad, thanks."

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Disconnect from the world

"When I was a little nugget..." I began.
"Aubrey, you are a little nugget."
"Okay, then when I was a little little nugget..."

You got through that stage in your life when you're trying to find out who and what you are. And you try to act a certain way and dress a certain way.
Then suddenly, you realized, that all you have to do is impress God. Show him how much you love him,. You read his words and love Him, and then all that other stuff doesn't matter anymore.
You don't have time for Heavenly Father and half-heartedly say your prayers at night. Then one night, you read your scriptures and say, "Heavenly Father, I read this. It's amazing. I can't believe I never noticed it before." And He says, "I know. I've been waiting. And I'm so glad you found this out."

When you're in that stage you are so worried about how you act. You are so disconnected because even if you're trying to be awesome, do you really feel that way? Do you really feel beautiful and confident in yourself?
That is why Heavenly Father is so grade. You can say anything. You can wear anything. The only thing that matters is your relationship with your Heavenly Father and all his children.

Because in the long run, we won't care if we wore a red shirt or a blue shirt that day.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Finding joy in the little things

Tonight I wrote this in my grateful journal:
"When all the stress you have is slowly melted away and is replaced by a peaceful stillness."

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A Fine Frenzy

"Josh, I'm just really glad we can be friends"
"Ummm yeah, about that...."
"Well, I was wondering if maybe we could be more than friends."
"Woah there partner...."
"Like maybe, best friends!"

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Life Lessons: Presented by Gandolfo's

When JJ called Gandolfo's and asked, "Do you have a pizza?" for at least the tenth time.

Being considerate-
When a customer came in late one evening after I had already mopped half the lobby. When I do this, I block it off with chairs. This customer seemed to be oblivious to my well placed chairs, and simply went around it and walked on my freshly mopped floor.
To his horror he realized what he had done, and quickly ran up to the counter.
Flustered, he said, "I walked on your floor! I'm so sorry!"
"Oh, it's fine" I replied with a smile
"No, honestly. I'm really really sorry. Where's your mop?" Looks around. "Oh! Over there! Perfect."
"No, sir, really it's fine...."
Waves me off "You go make the sandwich, just let me mop this."

When a customer helped another customer picked a sandwich by pointing out another one on the menu he hadn't seen.

A woman and her husband walk in, and up to the register. The husband points to our sign announcing that we have gluten free things, and says, "That's what we're here for."
The husband quickly orders his sandwich. His wife is next. She carefully looks over the menu, asking questions, wanting to pick a good sandwich.
"I'm so sorry," she apologizes, "It's just, I haven't been able to have a sandwich in years."
Happily, and almost giddy she proudly said, "I need a knickerbocker please. Gluten free."
I rang up her order as she turned to her husband, so excited to have a sandwich.
"Wait, you have cookie's too?!?!?!"
I looked at the large platter of gluten free cookies, and after smiling and nodding at her, she turned to her husband.
He immediately said, "Well, looks like we'll have to get one of those too."
She looked like she was recently told she won the lottery, and was also going to Disney Land.

A couple were at the register and the husband says, "What do you want?"
"Oh, I don't know, you pick."
"Alrighty. Can we get an Urban Cowboy?"
I ring it up.
"Oh honey, does that have barbecue sauce?"
"Let's get the Hampton."
Smiling and laughing, he asks me to change the order.
Because he loves his wife.

A woman walks in Gandy's and after ordering tells me, "I'll be coming in here a lot. My mom just got into Jamestown" [the old folk's home next door]
"Yeah," she confides "She just got diagnosed with Alzheimer's."
"Oh, have you heard of the book "Still Alice"?"
"What's that?"
"It's a book about a woman with Alzheimer's. It's in her perspective, and you can really relate. It's helped me a lot with my patients at the hospital."
This woman looked up at me. I could see it in her eyes.
Love. Fear.
"I don't want to cry, but I want to let you know I appreciate that so much."
I could see it. She was so scared. Scared she would never completely ever have her mom back.
"Thank you. Thank you so very much."

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Social Peer Pressure

I had to giggle as I walked into school the other day. I was wearing a white top, white leggings, and a jean skirt. To top it off, a bright orange vest, tie, and beanie.
People stand in their cream lacy tops and cargo boots. At first I thought, "Yeah, they probably think I look crazy." But it seems like something else.

Wishing they could wear this?

"But," I thought, "They can."
Can they?
Because they have done something. They have given into social peer pressure.
Why do they do it? I honestly wonder. Why do you have to care so much? I hate it when people can't be true to themselves. They're scared. Of what? Their friends not liking them.
But why be friends with them in the first place? You should be friends with someone not because they like your clothes or your car. You should be friends with someone because they like your personality. Because they genuinely care about you.
That's why I don't care what I wear. That's why I don't wear make-up. I wear what I wear because I like it. If someone doesn't like that, or doesn't like me as a result, then I just don't care.
I don't want to be around people that I feel I have to impress. I want to be around people who make me smile and feel good.
It's like I said in a text the other day,

"Who gave them the status of "popularity" anyway? When it all comes down to it, aren't we all just teenagers who worry about zits? We're all on the same journey, and we're all sons and daughters of God, our time would be better spent helping each other than worrying about if they like our outfits."

Monday, October 17, 2011

Sunday, October 16, 2011


It's a tricky word to say.

I tell everyone I love 'em because I really do. It's like Kandy said,

"You can love others, because you love yourself"

So because of that I'm extremely open. I'm touchy, and tell all I love them.
But I really sincerely do.
I tell people I love them because I honestly think and believe they are great. Because I value their friendship.
I hug 1) because I love hugs. Honest to goodness. The best birthday present I can receive is a great big hug. Not a wimpy two second one. No, a good 15 seconds, when you hold 'em tight, as if to say, "You are wonderful. I care." 2) I love seeing people smile. And for me, I always feel fabulously happier after someone has given me a hug.
The best days are those when you walk through the hallway and you get stopped ten or so times to hug people, to yell, "I love you!" before quickly rushing off to class.

And then there's my mom.

"You say I love you too much. It's something you say but don't mean it."
Don't I?

There are so many good, beautiful, wonderful people, and it would be such a waste if we didn't love one another.
So isn't the best way to feel loved, is to let others know?
Example: my brother doesn't tell me he loves me. At first, I though, eh, he's in a hurry to say it before he hangs up.
But! I tried saying it, and never received a response.
So I think, maybe he really doesn't like me. He's always teased me the most.
"Chubby, why don't you say you love me?"
"I did."
"That was two years ago...."
"Yep. I'll let you know if it changes."
Thanks brother, I love you too.

-This is called Aubrey's mind rambling.
El fin.

Thursday, October 13, 2011


I found this photo while aimlessly browsing the internet
Everyone one of us is talented in a unique and wonderful way.
It is our job to go out there, and find it in everyone.
But most importantly,
in ourselves.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

he whispered as if telling me an intimate secret

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Then, and now

When I was a freshman
I decided that for one day I would keep track of all the compliments I received that day.

I was wearing a long pink maxi dress, the first of my collection, with a white shade shirt, and silver necklace. As I walked to my English class, I recall those who smiled and called me beautiful. I quickly rushed to my table to pull out my little notebook with the brown cover and little blue flowers. Turning to a blank page, I quickly wrote down the few people who had said things to me word for word to cherish them forever.
I felt on top of the world that day. I just felt so happy and bright and it seemed that every new thing I wrote in that notebook added to that widening smile on my face.

The thought occurred to me, "Can't I feel this way ALL the time?"

The other day
I thought it might be fun to keep track of how many times I'd smiled that day. Not just me, sporadically breaking out into smile, but genuinely smiling because of someone's kind actions.

I woke up, energized and feeling excited to embark on my quest. As my phone turned on while I brushed my teeth, I received a couple text messages. A good morning from Miss Lauren, a quick "Love you, Night!" from my mom, and a student counsel text ending with, "Thanks! You're great!" As I read this with my tooth brush hanging lopsidedly in my mouth, a smile crept across my face.
"Oh!" I quickly thought. I ran in my room, but no notebook. "Hmmm... I'll do that... later."
Then I walked into school. From the front door there was just a huge smile on my red lips. Mckeey-Dee warmly greeted me, other late comers quickly greeted me before rushing off to class. In my first period there were whispered greetings, sweet compliments, and other words of love.

By 4th period I'd given up.
I simply couldn't keep track of all the times someone made me smile.


Because it happens so frequently. There are always hugs, there are always sweet words, there is always that love of Christ so abundantly present in your life, that simply, how could you be upset?

Dear Freshman Aubrey,
I know that you feel insecure. That when a boy called you beautiful, it makes your entire week. But you know something? That's not going to matter as much. All that will matter is the love you feel. The love that you feel from others from the way that they genuinely ask how you are. From the way that they hug you.
And you know something else? You don't even have to wear make-up for a guy to say you're beautiful. It's simply the way you present yourself. If you feel beautiful, then you are.

Seni-man Aubrey