My Ideal Life

Family

       According to Youtuber Lavendaire, dreaming and writing about your ideal life or day  can really help you achieve your goals.  If you want to learn more, check out Lavendaire’s video HERE

I decided to give this a try.  My “Ideal Life” is below.

 

       I awake to my alarm and smile as I remember my plans for the day: work at the hospital from 8am until 5pm and then a date with my husband Liam at 6pm.  I am jolted from my thoughts as I feel three little bodies jump onto my bed.  Liam has already left for work and I realized with a start that the kids were going to be late for school.
I hurridly get them ready: Sam in his favorite dinosaur shirt, Olivia in her light-up princess shoes, and Ambrielle in her pink ribbon pigtails.  “Okay, kids.  There’s the bus. Have a good day.”  I watched as Sam and Olivia ran out to meet the bus.  “Love you”  I called.
       I then got Ambrielle in her car seat and drove to her kindegarten, about 4 blocks away. “Mommy?” Brielle asked. “What’s for dinner?”  I laughed as I realized that the apple didn’t fall that far from the tree.  Probably leftovers I thought.  But, not wanting to dissapoint, I told her, “It’s a suprize” Her face turned into a pout but quickly brightened as I unbuckeled her carseat.  “You have fun, now” I said, waving goodbye as she joined her friends.  “Daddy will pick you up at 2pm.”  “Bye Mommy” she called back.
I smiled to myself as I got back in the car, driving to work.  It took me about 15 minutes to reach the hospital so I usually listened to the radio.  Today, though, I decided to hum some hymns instead.  It was my last shift of the week, and was 8 hours instead of 10.  That means date night!  I thought, thinking about the restaraunt menu.  I’m as bad as Brielle!  I shook my head as I pulled into my usual parking spot.  Let’s deliver some babies!
      I have been working in the labor and delivery department for 3 years now and having had 3 of my own, I know how stressful the process could be.  This gave me a lot of empathy for mothers having babies, and I loved quieting all their fears.  “It may be an ordeal, but it is worth it!” I would assure them.
The most magical part of my job would definitely be the babies.  Yes, I have yet to deliver an ugly baby; but more importantly, each baby had a special glow that always reminded me of our heavenly father and home.
      My shift passed quickly as I delivered 3 babies and helped work in the Nic-U.
Before I knew it, the clock read 5pm and I needed to go home and make dinner.  After saying goodbye to my coworkers, I drove home.  I opened the front door and was welcomed by Sam and Brielle’s laughter.
“Hi, honey” Liam called, giving me a peck on the cheek.  “Hi. How was your day?” “Pretty good.  Sealed a deal with an important client.”  “That’s great, Liam!”  I exclaimed, suddenly distracted by Brielle’s poking.  Resting her on my hip, I asked her how she was doing.
      “I’m hungry” was her standard reply, so I was suprized when she replied, ” Mommy, guess what?  I made a new friend today.  Her name is Isabell and she drew me a horse– see?” She handed me a colorful drawing of a stick-figure horse. “Very nice!” I told her.  “It’s great you are making friends”.
After somehow turning leftovers into something my picky eaters would eat, I sighed gratefully as our favorite babysitter showed up.  “Hi Natalie.  Just to warn you, the kids are a little hyper tonight”  I said, watching Olivia jump on the trampoline.  “Just the way I like them” she joked, and I thanked her for always being so flexible.
      Our date was at our favorite restaurant, a local chineese place in town.  After a lovely evening, Liam and I returned to find the kids in bed and the house tidied up. “I don’t know how you do it” I complemented her, handing Natalie some money.
After exchanging thank you’s and goodbye’s, Liam and I got ready for bed.  While brushing his teeth, Liam asked, “So how was your day?”  We had speant most of our date celebrating Liam’s buisness deal at work.  “Good.  I got to work in the nic-U for the second time this week.  We got to send a baby home today.” Liam and I both smiled at this news and his toothpaste nearly fell out of his mouth.  “Carefull there”, I teased, patting his side of the bed and encouraging him to join me under the covers.
      We then watched an animal documentary, always in awe of God’s creations.  After the show we talked for a while and then said couple prayers.  “I’ll say it” Liam said, sitting up and bowing his head.  “Dear Heavenly Father.  We’re very grateful for the success at both of our jobs.  We thank thee that we can afford to eat out and for the means which we have to take care of our family.  We ask thee, if according to thy will, to bless Sam that he might be able to make friends at school and that Olivia may learn to control her temper.  Also, if it’s thy will, we ask that we may have thy Spirit to be with us and to be able to grow closer as a family.  In the name of thy son, Jesus Christ, Amen.”  “Amen” I said, smiling as I thought about our many blessings.  We then retired for the night, filled with the peace and light that living the Gospel brings.

 

Meditation: More Powerful Than You Might Think

yoga

You’ve heard the hype: daily yoga practice will help you find inner peace.  Meditating daily will help you deal more effectively with stress.  While meditation practices may not be your cup of tea, they are more effective at improving your mental health than your daily coffee or stimulant.   In fact, according to a recent Science Daily article, mind body interventions (MBI’s) such as yoga or Tai Chi, “‘reverse the molecular reactions in our DNA which cause ill-health and depression..”  Read on to discover how it works.

Experts concentrated on gene expression, which is, “..the way that genes activate to produce proteins which influence the biological make-up of the body, the brain and the immune system.” 1*  When you are stressed, your Sympathetic Nervous System (SNS), which is responsible for your “flight or fight response” is activated.  Your SNS then activates a molecule called the nuclear factor kappa B (NF-kB).  This molecule is in charge of your gene expression.

NF-kB then activates genes to produce proteins called cytokines.  These proteins cause cellular inflammation.  While this inflammation can be helpful with flight or fight responses, its benefits are short-term.  If this inflammation continues, your risk of cancer, accelerated aging and psychiatric disorders like depression dramatically increases. 1*   On the other hand, as many as 18 studies conducted over the past 11 years have found that individuals who participated in MBI’s experienced, “…a decrease in production of NF-kB and cytokines, leading to a reversal of the pro-inflammatory gene pattern and a reduction in the risk of inflammation-related diseases and conditions.” 1*  It turns out, those who do yoga or meditate might be onto something.

According to Lead investigator Ivana Buric from the Brain, Belief and Behavior Lab in Coventry University’s Centre for Psychology MBI’s are, “…leaving what we call a molecular signature in our cells, which reverses the effect that stress or anxiety would have on the body by changing how our genes are expressed. Put simply, MBIs cause the brain to steer our DNA processes along a path which improves our wellbeing.” 1*

While you may still drink your daily coffee and think you don’t have time for this meditation mumbo-jumbo, these gene-expression benefits just might be too good to ignore.  After all, what’s more important: increasing your life-expectancy or completing everything on your to-do list?  That’s what I thought.  😉

 

NOTE: For more information, please visit Science Daily (or paste this URL into your browser: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/06/170615213301.htm)