Thursday, April 29, 2010

*I LOVE MY COUSIN!*


On my birthday, my loving cousin wrote me these beautiful words. Needless to say, I was so touched and brought to tears. Thank you for making me feel so loved and appreciated. Thank you for noticing the details of who I am...thank you for being one of my best friends! :)


*PRICLESS TREASURE*
~by Teri Webb

On this day, March 28, 1974

...was the discovery of great treasures and gold

Your charm
…is the treasure that leaves us with a twinkle in our eyes

Your witt
…is the treasure that gives us the joy in our thoughts

Your humor
...is the treasure that fills our souls with laughter

Your smile
…is the treasure that fuels our delight and happiness

Your talent
…is the treasure that leaves us with a vision for a lifetime

Your spirit
…is the treasure that runs through us leaving us whole

Your spirituality
…is the treasure that lifts us up to the light

Your wisdom
…is the treasure that enlightens us with your insight

Your strength
…is the treasure that inspires us to never give up

Your kindness
…is the treasure that brings warmth to our lives

Your tenderness
…is the treasure that gently embraces us daily

Your generosity
…is the treasure that gives with an open heart

Your soul
…is the treasure that influences the depths of our being

Your beauty
…is the treasure that shines through you inside and out

Your love
…is the treasure that is the most precious one that binds us

Kimmy Curtis
...is the special gold that we so deeply treasure

Happy Birthday to you... my priceless treasure

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

*JOSH'S B-DAY*


Yesterday was Tiffay's (my niece) boyfriends birthday. We have loved getting to know him and having him be a part of the family. He threw us a show as he was celebrating his own life and the gift of his presence on this earth.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_lZwaO4qZTk

Happy Birthday Josh-Squash!

Monday, April 26, 2010

*RELEASED*

I will continue to celebrate the life of my friend Nate, as I have done so far. I write my blog for me and also in hopes that maybe one person will find a few things useful and be blessed by it.

This song came to mind as I was looking through my music. I have loved it since it came out a few years back. Being a huge fan of Glen Phillips (from Toad The Wet Sprocket)I continued to find great work from him. This song always gave me hope about the day I personaly would be released from some of my burdens in this mortal life. But as I listened to it again tonight, I pictured it through the eyes of someone returning home to the God that gave them life. Back into the presence of the Lord. Nate has now been released and HAS returned home...his real home.

In my mind I am in a crowded room and the lights are dim. I am on stage to introduce Glen Phillips...:) He comes out, pats me on the head and then say's this;

"Nate, this song is for you. You were released, the gates flew open for you. And not just one, but many people were waiting for you...just like they promised you. Family who have gone before you and all the lives of people you touched both before you came to earth and while you were here. No more tiny room...but a mansion prepared just for you. Enjoy it and Rock on sweet rocker! :) (Okay, I told him to say that last part! ;)



Clouds rumble, earth will shift
Walls tumble, hearts will skip
Things changing
Everywhere but here

Small window, tiny room
Sun hits in the afternoon
For one minute fills this space
Beautiful, illuminated

When I am released
And the gates fly open before me
When I am released
Will you still be waiting for me?

Some look and all they find
Are problems and alibis
But my cup is one sixteenth full
I'm getting there, but the getting's slow

When I am released
And the gates fly open before me
When I am released
Will you still be waiting for me?

When I walk outside I will see the sky
I will leave all this behind
When I walk outside
Sun to warm my skin, friends to take me in
When I walk outside

When I am released
And the gates fly open before me
When I am released
Will you still be waiting for me?

*WHEN SOMEONE IS TOO BRUISED TO BE TOUCHED*


This is one of the best articles on depression/mental illness/suicide that I have read so far. Please share it with another person...it is very accurate information. (Thank you Clixie for sharing!)

When Someone is
Too Bruised to be Touched
Fr. Ron Rolheiser
July 7, 2002

"A few days ago, I was asked to visit a family who had just that day lost their 19 year-old son to suicide.

There isn't much one can offer by way of consolation, at a moment like this, when everyone is in shock and the pain is so raw. Few things can so devastate us as the suicide of a loved one, especially of one's own child.

There is the horrific shock of losing a loved one so suddenly which, just of itself, can bring us to our knees; but, with suicide, there are other soul-wrenching feelings too, confusion, guilt, second-guessing and religious anxiety.

Where did we fail this person? What might we still have done? What should we have noticed? What is this person's state with God?

What needs to be said about all of this?

First of all, that suicide is a disease and the most misunderstood of all sicknesses. It takes a person out of life against his or her will, the emotional equivalent of cancer, a stroke, or a heart attack.

Second, we, those left behind, need not spend undue energy second-guessing as to how we might have failed that person, what we should have noticed, and what we might still have done to prevent the suicide.

Suicide is an illness and, as with any sickness, we can love someone and still not be able to save that person from death.

God loved this person too and, like us, could not, this side of eternity, do anything either.

Finally, we shouldn't worry too much about how God meets this person on the other side. God's love, unlike ours, can go through locked doors and touch what will not allow itself to be touched by us.

Is this making light of suicide? Hardly.

Anyone who has ever dealt with either the victim of a suicide before his or her death or with those grieving that death afterwards knows that it is impossible to make light of it.

There is no hell and there is no pain like the one suicide inflicts. Nobody who is healthy wants to die and no one who is healthy wants to burden his or her loved ones with this kind of pain.

And that's the point: This is only done when someone isn't healthy.

The fact that medication can often prevent suicide should tell us something. Suicide is an illness not a sin.

Nobody just calmly decides to commit suicide and burden his or her loved ones with that death any more than anyone calmly decides to die of cancer and cause pain.

The victim of suicide (in all but rare cases) is a trapped person, caught up in a fiery, private chaos that has its roots both in his or her emotions and in his or her biochemistry.

Suicide is a desperate attempt to end unendurable pain, akin to one throwing oneself through a window because one's clothing is on fire.

Many of us have known victims of suicide and we know too that in almost every case that person was not full of ego, pride, haughtiness, and the desire to hurt someone.

Generally it's the opposite.

The victim has cancerous problems precisely because he or she is wounded, raw, and too bruised to have the necessary resiliency needed to deal with life.

Those of us who have lost loved ones to suicide know that the problem is not one of strength but of weakness, the person is too-bruised to be touched.

I remember a comment I overheard at a funeral for a suicide victim.

The priest had preached badly, hinting that this suicide was somehow the man's own fault and that suicide was always the ultimate act of despair.

At the reception afterwards a neighbor of the victim expressed his displeasure at the priest's homily:
"There are a lot of people in this world who should kill themselves," he lamented bitterly, "but those kind never do."

"This man is the last person who should have killed himself because he was one of the most sensitive people I've ever met!"

A book could have been written on that statement. Too often it is precisely the meek who seem to lose their battle, at least in this world.

Finally, I submit that we shouldn't worry too much about how God meets our loved ones who have fallen victim to suicide. God, as Jesus assures us, has a special affection for those of us who are too-bruised and wounded to be touched.

Jesus assures us too that God's love can go through locked doors and into broken places and free up what's paralyzed and help those who can no longer help themselves.

God is not blocked when we are. God can reach through.

And so our loved ones who have fallen victim to suicide are now inside of God's embrace, enjoying a freedom they could never quite enjoy here and being healed through a touch that they could never quite accept from us."

Friday, April 23, 2010

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

*THANK YOU HEAVEN!*

Finally a little light after a very rough couple of weeks. Behold, my U2 tickets!!!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

*HEARTLAND*

This song has been playing in my mind all day and I am so happy about that. I get sick of the lame DJ in my head that spins songs like "Dancing on the ceiling." This is my second favorite U2 song and the words are awesome. I think they fit this photo I took too, and perhaps my feelings at this time. Here's my favorite verses.

"Freeway like a river cuts through this land
Into the side of love
Like a burning spear
And the poison rain
Brings a flood of fear
Through the ghost-ranch hills
Death valley waters
In the towers of steel
Belief goes on and on...
In this heartland...heartland..."

I did not put this video together and I'm adding a second version I love of it that is acoustic. I might have posted this last year but who cares...I don't. ;)





When or if I get married, my husband WILL learn to play this...even if it's the only song he ever plays and even if he doesn't play guitar. :)
This photo was taken in Moab, Utah

*BAVARIAN SUGAR COOKIES*

Thank you so much for this Valerie...thank you so so much!!!

This is from *Stranger than fiction* (which I love) and it is so true!



"Sometimes, when we lose ourselves in fear and despair, in routine and constancy, in hopelessness and tragedy, we can thank God for Bavarian sugar cookies.

And, fortunately, when there aren't any cookies, we can still find reassurance in a familiar hand on our skin, or a kind and loving gesture, or subtle encouragement, or a loving embrace, or an offer of comfort.

Not to mention hospital gurneys and nose plugs, an uneaten Danish, soft-spoken secrets, and Fender Stratocasters, and maybe the occasional piece of fiction.

And we must remember that all these things, the nuances, the anomalies, the subtleties, which we assume only accessorize our days, are effective for a much larger and nobler cause.
They are here to save our lives.

I know the idea seems strange, but I also know that it just so happens to be true."

While Nate's heart was still beating I got to hold his hand and say goodbye. I thank God for it. And thank you Clixie for thinking of taking this photo so I can always rememeber that in a small way I got to send my friend off with one last hug...even if it was just with my hand.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

*JULIE ANDREWS, BOB ROSS, AND ME*


My mom found this the other day and I laughed so hard. I think my mom looks so cute! And um the look on my face is classic!!! hahahah

Friday, April 16, 2010

*SOME WOUNDS CAN'T BE HEALED IN THIS LIFE*



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ISOoAYncLt4

*Nate's story + Kim*


So this is where the story starts...

In 2002 I moved into a condo on Universtiy Ave. in Provo Utah. I LOVED it. I was so excited about where it was and found out quickly that I loved the new church ward I was in. It was a family ward and I got a temporary calling as a teacher for the young adults...which I was. :) I walked in the first day of class to find a guy already in there with his feet kicked up on another chair looking terribly bored already. That guy or shall I say BOY was, Nate Larson. Each week he came to class with his smart alec attitude and each week I came with a quick wit. Those two mixed together made Nate and I fast friends. :) We started to hang out and I was quickly introduced to Nate's some what exotic world. First off, his "Pimp pad." Let me give you a quick run down of that. Bright red walls, a huge wood bed with LEPPARD PRINT sheets, pillows, and comforter! There were sculptures (a metal pineapple) every where, large candles, and some Japanese art. And of course he had all the electronics a man could hope for. The whole place was spotless and by the look on his smug face he took much pride in it. I couldn't bring myself to say anything other than, "Nice pad! Not bad for a guy!" And really without that nerdy comforter and such...it was kinda kool. One thing is forsure...it was him. Every little detail was a piece of who he was. He was an artist, an inventor, a historian, a designer, an entrepreneur, an adventuer, a buisness man, an animal lover and hunter (I have never understood how those go together), a smart alec, a lover of life and very much a good and kind person. We spent a lot of time hangin' in the pimp pad while he told me of his journeys and experiences with his travels (which were many), running around with all sorts of things he had planned for us to do, and we spent alot of time laughing. Most of the time him laughing at me over many things including how his beliefs that I thought he was so "CUTE" He would say, "You think I'm sooo cute! You like me sooo much!" I always rolled my eyes and told him that he was full of himself and that he had no idea whether I liked him or not. But he was convinced that I thought he was the cats meow. He loved to "get my goat" and tease me. I can see him rubbing his hands together and laughing every time he "got me" or made me blush. Stinker!
Me and my family agree that taking him to Mexico was the best idea EVER. He was SO funny. I can't count how many memories I have from that trip. It will never be forgotten. He had an infectious smile and laugh that were very appreciated by me. I really felt led to him at that time in my life. As I was struggling through all my depression and health, he was a bright light.

Now, one thing that has been asked of me many times over the last couple of weeks has been, "Was Nate your boyfriend?" The answer to that is no (kind of :) Nate and I DID date in 2002...but it was apparent that we were more friends than anything. I moved to Lehi in 2004 and we lost touch. But a few years later we connected again, and this is where part 2 of the story comes in.


In 2007 he called me and with MUCH emotion he apoligized for not understanding my illness or feeling that he had not been compassionate enough during the time we had spent together. He said, "Kim, I don't know how you've done it. I HAD no idea how much you suffered...but I do now. I never understood it, I didn't get it! You're an angel for what you have gone through! I then found out about his horrible kidney stones, depression, anxiety, and many of the things I suffered. For the first time in my life, someone only next to God, REALLY understood. I felt it with each word he said. So many of my dear friends have done their VERY best to love me, support me, be there, and understand. It's just hard for people. The battle of depression itself is so dark and so brutal, that only few survive and that is a FACT. Now...let me back up. Nate had kidney stones! If you know anything about these, you will know that when you pass one the pain is compared to a woman giving child birth without a drop of pain medication. Our family knew someone else who suffered these and I can tell you that what is involved is hell itself. With Nate, the pain was so great that it often caused him to vomit, scream in pain, roll around holding his stomache and beg to die. Now, imagine this...in over 4 years, he passed over FIFTY stones! FIFTY!!!!! That could kill most men/woman in itself. It shows what a mighty man he was in enduring that! My heart went out to him as I learned of these things as his did to mine. I knew nothing of that kind of pain...but I knew pain. My migraines were also a slice of hell.

Nate and I began talking on the phone almost every month or every other month for over 3 years. He became one of my closest friends. He confided in me many things along with his hopes of getting better, his desires for the future, offering me his service/friendship, inventions to help others in this world, and trying to understand what he was suppose to learn from all this and wondering where God was. We hardly saw each other in person because of our struggles...but I always knew he loved me and was there for me, and vice versa. We encouraged each other through phone calls, emails, and texts to keep going. To be honest I didn't think he would live as long as he did. His pain was unspeakable and I was always worried about him. I did everything in my own power to help him and love him.

In April 2009 Nate called in tears and told me that his older sister, Natalie had taken her life. We cried and cried together, he already felt he himself was on death row and I believe this was one more thing that took him to his own end. He loved her, he loved his family, but he was in darkness. I'm sure you can imagine that many drugs are given to patients with kidney stones in order to help them with pain management. Nate also tried a rediculous amount of other remedies that everyone and their dog recommended...but nothing worked. He of course became medically dependent and then completely addicted to opiates. I believe in modern medication but I have seen the effects of the addiction and their evil side effects. I have to take meds for migraines, depression, and anxiety. If you even miss a few days you feel HORRIBLE. I didn't have to go through the exact things like he did, but I never judged him and I NEVER will. The addiction turned him into someone he wasn't. If you knew him like I did, he was a fighter and I believe he stayed alive as long as his mind and body could handle. With this kind of pain/illness/addiction, people have to learn to seperate the person from the illness. Just like this quote. "Mental Illness creates an interference and chaos that conflicts with the core of the REAL person." Depression IS a form of mental illness. There are different degrees of course. The blues are not in the same category as clinical depression. Despite what most people believe it is a disease and it is as serious as ANY other one. Then top it off with physical pain (which actually accompanies deppresion as well) and you lose all clarity. I myself have fought these moments of zero clarity and total darkness. I have had to fight like a lion to keep myself alive too. This is one of the reasons we were so close. Very few understand that level of darkness. Nate's pure heart would never hurt anyone purposely.

On April 4th, Easter Sunday, I received a telephone call from his sister Clixie. Nate was in the hospital. He shot himself and he was brain dead. He had become a casualtie to the terrible epidemic that is suicide. This is my second personal friend I have lost to this. We last talked on the 24th of March. He was trying so hard to fight the darkness but he was living in his own private hell...a Liberty Jail of sorts...and I knew he wouldn't make it much longer if the Lord did not intervene. And with all of my heart I believe the Lord welcomed Nate into his arms with NO judgement and wiped away all his tears and comforted him over every moment of pain. If there is anyone who judges him or calls him selfish...I am bold enough to say that you should humble yourself and pray that God will help you understand. In NO WAY do I encourage suicide, we have to find a way to stop it and give people with no hope, HOPE! (I will help anyone fight against it!)...BUT nor do I judge those who have commited it. Judgement is Gods and I know my God...I know my Savior...I know them well. Their mercy is great and understanding far beyond ours. The Lord loves him in a way that is so precious. I have felt Nate near me the last couple weeks. He has even played a few pranks on me. :) His sister posted a photo of him that I had never seen and he had longer hair. And I admit that my heart skipped a beat when I saw it. And as clear as if he was sitting next to me I heard "You think I'm soooo cute! You like that long hair don't you?" :) hahah And then I heard that genuine laughter that I hadn't heard in years. I said out loud, "Um hello! I am mourning over you! Do you mind?!!!" And then I laughed a little...and then I cried. And in my minds eye, I saw him with tears in his eyes and I felt that he was giving me a moment of comedy relief that I SO needed, and he was crying for me and with me. He was mindful of my pain...always had been.

I had the opportunity to speak at his funeral and bare testimony of who he was and that God is making "All things NEW" for him. (Revelations 20:4-5) He is going to do a mighty work on the other side to help save people who suffer these horrible battles and once again help the string of suicides that are so pervasive these days. He WILL be a force for good beyond the veil. I love him dearly and miss him terribly. I have cried every day since his passing. Like I said, he was the only friend who truly understood me and my pain in such an acute way. We didn't walk in each others shoes...but we wore the same brand.

There is a good chance I will add more to this later, fix my billion typos, and add some photoz. But for now...this is our story, this is a piece of Nate's story.

Nate, "If I had a friend upon this earth...you've been that friend to me." Miss you, Nate the Snake. ;)

Ps. Nate often called me an angel when we talked on the phone. That was really special to me...he was mine as well. But even more special was that after the funeral his family and people who didn't really know me in person, came up to me and told me that he always said that I was his angel. :)

Pss. Out of all the songs that make me think of him, this is the one that most fits. "You don't know me...and you don't even care...you don't know me...and you don't wear my chains." (Nate, I knew you..and I CARED!)

Thursday, April 15, 2010

*THE WORLD SPINS MADLY ON*

It felt very strange reading status updates on facebook today. People mostly going on their merry way talking of spring break, inside jokes, funny things their kids said, work, sunshine, politics, movies, music, and so on. And I'm sitting here and thinking, "My friend died this week and I have nothing to say." Everything I say or think feels wrong...and everything that others say feels wrong. Not that it is at all. It's lifes plan unrolling like a scroll with permanent ink that states the cold hard truth..."Life goes on."

I can't help but think of one of my favorite poems, "Stop all the clocks." It describes my feelings perfectly. You want the world to stop...to pause...to be silent. But the world won't stop for you or the person you've lost. The gracious will pause and send a sentiment of sympathy but, the consistent lament of one girl is only heard by God in his heaven. There is no twinkle in the stars tonight and none in my eyes. I hear the small humming of a fan and that is all my ears will allow. I will stop for you, my friend. I will be perfectly still and reverent. I will breath in a memory of your love, kindness, bravery, and laughter. You're bright smile I will let stay in my mind until my tears stop and are forced closed from the fatigue of my sorrow. Even my lit candle dims itself as the sun did the day you left. For tonight my own clocks are stopped...but tomorrow they will begin to tick again...because "life goes on" and that's how you would want it to be.

Stop all the clocks
by W. H. Auden

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.

Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
Scribbling on the sky the message He Is Dead,
Put crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,
Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.

He was my North, my South, my East and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last for ever: I was wrong.

The stars are not wanted now: put out every one;
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood.
For nothing now can ever come to any good.

Monday, April 12, 2010

*A letter to Nate*

Dearest Nate,

Hi friend, just thinking about you and wanted to write you a letter. I miss you alot today. Kind of a dumb thing to say since I've missed you more than ever this week. My heart hurts so much...I know you're acutely aware of this. I have felt your spirit near, watching over me and helping me through this along with your other friends and family. When I went over to your house yesterday to visit with everyone, to talk of your goodness and adventures...I laughed at all the funny things you've said and done over the years! All of your pranks (you were/are such a punk! ;) I felt SO happy that God allowed me to know you. How many times you made me laugh so hard! I read in my journal last night these words,

March 2, 2002

"I have a new friend Nate Larson, from my new ward. He has been such a fun friend to have! He makes me laugh and that is something that has been very needed in my life. I have been struggling so much to keep my head above water. I feel like he has helped breath new life into me."

Nate, you did that! You helped me so much! And Your brattiness made you all the more charming and fun. (although I often wanted to punch you in the face, and you LOVED that. :)

I also loved looking at all your photo albums. I couldn't believe how much of the world you've seen. You could never leave this life saying that you didn't live it to the fullest that was in you when you were healthy...even in some of your darkest moments you still created adventures.

And last but not least, last night I spent two hours reading over some of your mission journal that I am going to TRY and tranlate for your family. Heaven HELP your handwriting! (Work on it buddy!) hahahah But my heart was full as I read about your consistant determination to have an amazing mission. Your love for the gospel was powerful and you never once wrote anything that was not about wanting to keep improving yourself, gaining greater charity, and serving the people of Japan. Your love for The Book Of Mormon was mighty and I KNEW that I was reading about one of Gods most vailient sons! I felt so proud of your PURE heart, your service to your fellowmen, and your bravery.

I love your whole soul and always will. More letters soon...until then, keep up the pranks once in awhile, I will need them.

Love,

Kimmy

Ps. I took this photo of the beautiful flowers on your tree yesterday. I'm sure you saw me, but it turned out pretty good didn't it? ;)

*NATHANIEL ALLEN LARSON*


This week I lost one of my dearest friends to suicide. On Easter evening he took his life and left this mortal world into the arms of his LOVING & MERCIFUL Heavenly Father. I was able to say goodbye to Nate that night at the hospital. Although he had been declared brain dead, his heart was still beating and they kept him alive as long as possible because he was an organ donor. I held his hand and kissed it, layed my head on his chest to hear his heart beating and wept as I told him I loved him, how brave he had been all these years, and that he was one of the best friends I ever had...that he actually was one of the only ones besides God who knew the reality of the pain I suffer, never judged me, and knew my heart. We had a special friendship...one in which I will share more about in the following posts. But for now, I would like to post his obituary along with my three favorite photos of him.

"Nathaniel Allen Larson, better known as Nate, died on April 4, 2010 in Orem Utah. Nate was born on July 18, 1977 in Lone Pine California to Pete and Clixie Larson. He is preceded in death by his sister, Natalie (April 10, 2009) and leaves behind his; parents, Pete and Clixie Larson, brother, Aaron and sister, Clixie. Nate served a mission for the LDS church in Sendai, Japan. He received his Bachelor of Science degree from Utah Valley State College, and was currently working on a Masters degree from the University of Phoenix. Nate wanted to become a high school history teacher after graduation. He took tremendous pride in the fact that in two year's time he traveled to the world's seven continents, along with over 20 countries. He had an innate gift of making others laugh, was always the life of the party, and made sure everyone felt welcomed and involved. Nate found joy in providing service to those around him. His greatest service was his choice in being an organ donor. Because of Nate's gift of life, at least five people will receive vital organs. Nate is preceded in death by his sister Natalie, nephew William, niece Zion-Grace and numerous grandparents, great-grandparents, and loved ones. Nate is survived by eight nieces and nephews, in-laws, cousins, aunts and uncles, grandparents, many friends, classmates, and his favorite dog, Flora. There will be a viewing on Saturday, April 10 at 9:30 a.m. followed by a memorial service at 11 a.m. at the LDS Chapel located 4775 N 300 W, Provo UT. His body will be laid to rest in the Orem Public Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his name at your local Wells Fargo Bank. Condolences and remembrances may be sent to the family at www.sundbergolpinmortuary.com "