This weekend I went to Time Out for Women in Fresno.
Yep, I did. A whole weekend of full-on Deseret Bookness with cheese on top. I even paid for it, but not very much, because I was offered a generous pay-what-you-can "scholarship" for the event. (I guess there are some benefits to being married to a grad student, even when you do work full time and make a perfectly reasonable salary.)
Springing for stuff like this does not come naturally to me. It takes up my money and time. It sometimes feels a little priestcrafty. It sometimes grates on my inner snob.
But I am learning not to be proud of that last one. What's the use, after all? Maybe if I get disgusted enough with that snob she will finally beat it.
I think I managed to kick her out for the weekend. I really enjoyed the whole thing. Well, except for one whispery-sweet musical group. I don't wanna be mean, but everything doesn't have to be my style, does it?
It was so nice to go and just be fed - not chase kids, not distribute Cheerios, not sing in the choir, not remind a Primary class that we are talking about the Holy Ghost instead of the dead mouse you found at the lake. I really did come back with a renewed spirit and determination to do some things better.
Specifically, the Sabbath. Not that anyone really talked about that much, except a brief mention from Sharon G. Larsen about how she negotiated that in the early days of her marriage. It's just something I felt like I could work on and improve. And yesterday, we had such a sweet, peaceful day, just because I said no to Star Wars and video games. Simple, yes?
And G gave a talk in sacrament meeting, and I sang in the choir, and I walked the halls with Z. S and A talked in Primary, and G taught Elders' Quorum while his friends entertained Z in the classroom. I told my 7-year-olds about the time the Spirit told me to slow down to 55 mph in the Nevada desert and I coasted into the gas station in Fernley with literally nothing left in the tank.
When I was at Time Out, sitting in a darkened auditorium listening to dynamic speakers and contemporary-inspirational music, it felt a lot like the time I visited the local non-denominational megachurch with a woman whom we were helping our missionaries to teach. Not a bad experience. There was a good feeling there. It was focused on the Savior. I think the Spirit was present. But it would have been the same without me. It required nothing of me but my money.
I'm glad the Church is not Time Out for Women. When it seems hard, I will remember that.