disguised blessings...

 

Sometimes I just have to sit back in awe of how life unfolds before me. I have always been a planner, and I like to have control when it comes to what will happen next in my life. Over the past several years I have had so many experiences where I realize I need to let things happen the way God wants them to happen for me.

While I believe God lets us make our own decisions, I also believe there are moments in our life where he is strongly guiding us, and if we have the right attitude and are open to the spirit, we will receive amazing blessings. Lately I can't help but think about the past year and the amazing blessings that have come to me, even though I didn't see them at the time.

I went to the University of Utah and got a BS in Social Science Teaching and a minor in History Teaching. I have always had a passion for history, and cultures, and have always wanted to share that with others, especially youth. I want to help young people think about their futures and the world around them, and help them decide what they love and believe in, what they care about. Teaching has always been something I want to do, and it still is.

Trevor applied to many different places for Law School, and we thought for a good period of time he would be attending school out of state. Because of this I graduated with my degree but did not finish my student teaching certification so I wouldn't loose any credits when starting at another school and I would just have my degree. There really was no point of starting a student teaching program in one state, just to have to pretty much start over in another in a year or so. But as life usually goes, the plan changed, and BYU Law School was where we were headed.

I looked into all the different ways I could do the program here in Utah and at the end of the day, the best plan was to still do it at the University of Utah. But we now lived in Provo, no big deal, an hour commute isn't so bad. Yet once we realized I wouldn't be able to work much while doing student teaching (if at all), and Trevor couldn't work while attending law school, that would mean no income, and continued student debt. Then my student loans from my Bachelor's degree got called in and I had a better idea of where we stood, and the whole idea of it financially didn't make a lot of sense.

I feel like deep down I had known for awhile it wasn't a good time to do it, but I stubbornly didn't want to believe that. I had my plan, and my plan was to be teaching and then to be working on my Masters. I remember perfectly one day while trying to figure out what to do I was driving in the car and I just started sobbing. My heart and brain and finally matched up and I just knew that it was not the right time. I didn't expect it to be such an emotional decision for me, but I just knew the right thing to do was to hold off on the Student Teaching and Masters Program and pursue some type of job.

At first I was a little bitter, giving up what I wanted to do so Trevor could pursue his Law degree. But deep down I knew it was the smartest decision at the time for me and our future family. Trevor was so loving and supportive of how I was feeling, and I really appreciated him just letting me figure it all out on my own. He didn't try telling me what to do, but let me come to the decision on my own, and in this situation that is exactly what I needed. He gave me the time I needed.

So after that emotional break down and then coming to a sense of peace about the decision, I started to apply my heart away for a ton of different jobs, and like most job hunting goes, it felt like I was getting nothing back.

To make a long story short, I landed an amazing job doing Paralegal work for an Attorney here in Provo. Over the past two years I have worked for him and he has been the most amazing boss, I look to him as a family member and he treats me the same as well. I have also learned so much about the legal world I would have never been able to learn without experiencing a job like this. I feel like I have gained a connection to Trevor's experience in Law School that we would have never had without this job. We can talk about what he is doing in school and I can understand and even contribute to the conversation! The experience, knowledge and friendships I have made through this job have been a true blessing.

The Paralegal work was part time, so I had to get something else to do so I could be working full time. I ended up getting a job as a part time Financial Aid Advisor. I almost couldn't believe that two schedules would match up so perfectly. I have been learning a whole new profession, I get to work with students which is something I love, and I have the best co-workers I could ask for! I am surrounded with a bunch of smart, powerful and driven people at my Financial Aid job, and I absolutely love the work environment and friendships I have made.

I just look back to that time in the car where I had my break down and realize now what God had in store for me. I have been able to experience totally different avenues in work experience that I would have never thought of doing that I love! I feel like it has made me more well rounded and it has definitely been a resume builder. I am able to support Trevor and me while he is in school, and I know that down the road I will be able teach, but until then, these two jobs have been our biggest blessing while he has been in school.

These experiences have opened up my idea of what my future could look like in regards to a career, and has sparked different interests and passions of mine. Growing up I always wanted to be a teacher thinking that I would be a mother and a teacher and that was it. Now I realize I can do that, and so much more as well. The sky is the limit!

I could write a gazillion posts about all the many blessings that God has blessed Trevor and I with this past year and half, or even throughout our lives, but I think some of the most meaningful ones come from our willingness to let go of "our plans" and let God help guide us.

Sometimes it can be hard to remember that God has a better plan for us then our own, but if we listen, we can have a life even we didn't know was possible for us.



49 comments

  1. I just found your blog from LIY, and I'm so glad I did. I totally needed to read what you wrote today. I have been struggling with what I thought were unanswered prayers. I need to trust that HF has a plan for me and that it might not be what I want it to be, but it will be what is best for me. Thank you so much for writing this post!

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  2. I love this post. I totally agree, sometimes God does have a better plan for us. I'm still learning the "let go" process.

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  3. Eeee!!! Love this post. You are so right, sister!!!!! Letting go is the hardest part but trusting Him is SO worth it. :)) I did the same thing, worked while my hubby was in law school after I finished my bachelor's but it was the best for us and our future. :) xoxoxo

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  4. this takes me back to that night in the "coffee shop" - it is so wonderful to be able to look back at life with a perspective and see His guiding power.

    lets catch up real soon :)
    love,
    elisabeth

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    1. Yes! Lets! Haha last time wasn't nearly as yummy as it should be :)

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  5. It's so crazy how similar our stories are. I connect with every word you just wrote! Thank you so much for sharing!

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    1. I love when you find those similar experiences with people! Makes you feel more human and less alone! :)

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  6. Wow. This just gave me chills!! I don't even know what to say besides, I needed this. I needed to read this. Thanks for sharing. From the student teaching & "what the heck am I gonna do with my life" stress, I can relate! God works in strange, yet truly amazing ways! This was one heck of a post! Loved it! =D

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  7. Thank you for sharing your story! I can definitely relate! God works in such mysterious and profound ways!

    P.S. Pictures in the snow are so stunning! :-)

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  8. That was such an amazing post! I have been having a super hard time trusting in the Lord's plan lately and I loved reading about your experience too. Thanks!

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  9. I'm dying over how perfect that picture is...

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  10. What a great story! Sometimes things happen for a reason, sounds like that is what happened in your case! I am so glad you have found a new "niche" for yourself! You are so talented and so selfless to do all that for your family! Oh, I love your cute picture too! :)
    -Bridgette
    http://bridgettenicole.blogspot.com

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  11. this is such a beautiful post. you are amazing for being so positive and thank you for inspiring me today. eleanor xxx

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  12. Thank you so much for this post. It's beautiful!!!
    May you always be open to what God tries to tell you...

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  13. I love this beautiful post! Sometimes I sit and think about the things I've cried about in the last year, and God has turned them all into blessings.

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  14. Seriously, love. Isn't it so funny that you can tell God your plans and he laughs? I have to thank him all the time for the 'blessings' he didn't throw my way when asked.

    Just found your blog and I love it!

    astoldbykendahl.blogspot.com

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  15. I'm so glad that you've found two jobs that you love! That is quite a rare find. God always has our best interest in mind & His plan is always the best. =)

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  16. You're so right! I am so impatient though! I know that once I've decided something or I want something in my life - I want it yesterday. I have to constantly remind myself it is all in God's time!
    Patience is a virtue! Eek!
    Much love, Bailey from Vanilla Blonde

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    1. Oh I understand bailey, hence the break down I had in the car over this whole thing! haha It can really be hard to "let go!" esp. if you have had your heart and mind set on something else!

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  17. I think it's so cool to reach a point where you can look back a little and recognize just how much the Lord's hand is in our lives. I totally went through college with plans of being married by the time I graduated and maybe working for a couple years while he finished, but then just being a stay at home mom. The majority of the classes I took were, in my mind, focused on potential "mom jobs" or things that I could do to earn income while still being at home. I ended up not getting married before I graduated and suddenly was like "Oh, oops. What do I do now?" And suddenly, the stars aligned for a wonderful job with wonderful people and I've been there for a year. And things are still changing, but with every new idea or choice I end up making, I can see how the Lord is leading me there.

    Anyway, sorry for the novel comment. I really love this post.

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    1. Elise, keep the novel comments coming! It really is surprising how the Lord's plans can turn out to be even better then what we thought for ourselves!

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  18. spot on. def needed to hear this today! thanks!

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  19. Beautifully said. I am so proud of you. You are indeed blessed :) Love you lots!!

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  20. I didn't know you have a degree in history- my favorite! I love your positive attitude!

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  21. WOW WOW WOW, I read a lot, but don't often comment. But this post hits the nail on the head. (I also got my undergraduate degree in history) Its so easy for us to plan and forge ahead with what we want. To be consumed in the 'I'. its so much harder to step back and allow God to work, or even to recognize his hands in everything. GREAT post

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    1. Thanks for commenting Katy! Yes, being consumed with the "I", you said it perfectly! Happy we can learn though and step back to appreciate the blessings God has bestowed upon us :)

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  22. Amazing post and an absolutely beautiful photo!

    Rachel

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  23. I loved this post! I think we all experience this. I have so many friends who thought they'd be moms and it just hasn't happened, or thought they'd serve missions, be career women, you name it- but life is so different for most than they think.
    I thought I'd teach for 2 years and be a mom of 4 by age 30. I'm almost 30, and I'm a woman with a 7 year teaching resume, an MBA, and a successful career. As a Mormon that seems so shocking to me, but life has been wonderful and perfect for me- God really does know what's best!

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    1. Loved this Camille, its amazing how our expectations and lives change from what we originally think they will be sometimes!

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  24. I definitely experienced the "breaking down in the car" period a couple months ago and am still learning to accept the outcome while balancing my career choices and relationship. I love this post because it gives me more hope and reminds me to trust God more in the decisions he makes for us. My New Year's resolution is to trust Him more in big life decisions, but also to be happy in the here and now.. I really am so blessed! Thanks for the story, it is truly encouraging for all us needing a little more encouraging every now and then :)

    <3Casey @CayMcCoy

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  25. I'm currently catching up on some of your posts and while I love all your posts, I really loved this one. I'm currently going through a rough time with a lot of things and this post was very inspiring. Thank you for sharing :)

    xo
    Rachel

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    1. thanks for stopping by and am happy you could find some comfort in a shared experience! It will all work it, it always does!

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  26. Love this! I, too, wanted to be a teacher but God had something else in store for me. I had to change my plans the hard way and now I also work at a University! :)

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    1. haha I would say mine was pretty close to the hard way, I mean, I had to have a bawling breakdown session to accept it haha but things work out don't they?! :)

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  27. This is such a beautiful post :) I def have had a few moments in my life where I had a "plan" and it didn't work out the way I had hoped. Then like you, I was able to see later that the Lord did have me in His best interest and didn't forget me! I am so glad that you are able to see all the blessings and that you were able to gain so much from your experiences :) Sometimes I think we get too caught up in thinking our lives are supposed to be perfect and we are always supposed to have it all put together, but that is not how life is. It comes with it's ups and downs and we just have to figure out how we're gonna take it once it comes :)

    xoxo,
    Shio

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  29. I love this post. I am currently having my share of dicculties. It is nice to read so inspirationnal posts. Thanks a lot.
    "Let it go" must really be my new motto

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  30. I just re-read this post as it is applying directly to me now. Sometimes I get really frustrated with being "the woman." I'm not trying to start a gender roles debate, but I just find it frustrating that as soon as I got married...my goals/dreams/etc. got put on the back burner. I appreciated this post because you're right, everything has a time and a place. I just need to be patient and see the plan that He has for me. Thank you Alycia!

    www.opportunitiesforadventure.blogspot.com

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  31. I taught high school English for four years, and now I'm home with my first daughter, Blythe [down to one income, hence my debate about cloth diapers! Eek!].

    What does this have anything to do with this post? Well… it was a REALLY tough decision for me to stop teaching right now, a dream I'd always had and something I discovered I was really good at. But after a lot of prayer, my husband and I realized that our daughter needed to be my new dream right now. And the beauty of a teaching career is that it will always be out there. There are schools everywhere full of children that always need a good teacher.

    Life is full of ebb and flow… and God is in control. Isn't it beautiful that when you realize that, you let HIM determine how your dreams pan out? :)

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  32. Alycia! I just recently discovered your blog and this post, and I really love both. I too am finishing school/searching for work as my husband starts professional school (medical) and I can relate to your feelings. Glad you've found some great, interesting jobs. I would love to hear more about your financial aid job if you are still there as I am looking into academic counseling. Thanks for sharing yourself!

    Also, I am a U student too and I think we have some mutual friends...do you know Abbi Aird? I worked at a girls camps with her and saw her in one of your pictures here.

    Anyway, thanks for your great posts!

    Megan Brewster

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