Tuesday, September 17, 2013

That One Time I Joined a Dating Website...


I did.

One time, I was bored, I mean REALLY bored. I saw the LDS Planet ad on my facebook. I casually wondered over. I thought it would be funny to join and read people's profiles and just check out the scene. Then my dear friend Kendra stepped in. With a cheesy line she convinced me to join for a month. I agreed somewhat hesitantly, but curious. What would it be like?

I had 4 unread messages when I activated my account. I was a little disappointed to see they were all close to 40 or older. That was when I realized, older men like younger women. And being 21 is quite an appealing age for said men. But still, I was shocked that a 70 year old widower favorited my profile. His "about me" section ended with this statement, "willing to relocate for the right gal." Now, I've always wanted to be a widow at 25, but he didn't say how much money he makes so I just disregarded the notification all together. ;)

As another blogger so casually stated, online dating websites are for recently divorced people to flex their social muscles in a more guarded environment. Unfortunately, I've found or been contacted by A LOT of 23 to 25 year olds who have been married and divorced already. As if I wasn't already terrified of divorce, I'm more so now!

Back to "older men," a lot of them seem to be on the defense about their age. One guy at 36 messaged me asking if I would date a guy in his mid-thirties because he didn't want to "rob the cradle." I laughed a little at the statment and how straightforward it was, and answered him honestly saying that I would prefer to date someone 10 years older than me at the most. I wished him luck in his search and figured I wouldn't hear from him again. How wrong I was. Another message followed: "I totally understand. It has been tough to find a girl that has not already been married and/or has children. Not that it matters but I would like to take the journey thru marriage to preferably be w/ someone that has not been married before. The fact that my winter home is in Scottsdale & my summer home is in Utah makes it tough as well because every 6 months I alternate back & forth. Thanks for your reply. If u decide that age is simply just a number (with age comes experience no doubt) then I would love to keep in touch. Thanks!" Maybe he was trying to guilt me into responding again, but though I feel bad, I have to stand my ground. Another line I hear a lot is, "What is age to the eternities?" Oh, how I wish I could have such an eternal perspective. I think the age gap gets smaller as you age, but since I've only seen 21 years, I feel the age gap gaping wide between us. It's a reality I can't ignore.

Some people are less than tactful online. I was on the website when a chat box appeared and some guy started talking to me. It happens sometimes and it usually results in interesting stories. This time did not disappoint. The casual, "Hi, how are you's" were exchanged and then out of no where he asks, "Are you shy?" I responded in the negative. The following question was just WEIRD. "Have you ever waxed?"


Have I ever waxed!?

Come on!

"Um.... No..... That's a weird question."

"My friend is studying to be an esthetician and she needs some practice."

"Well, Idaho is a long way to drive just to get a wax."

"Sorry if I offended you. I am bold."

Obviously. The next few questions got weird and sort of inappropriate so I stopped talking to him altogether after that.

I also learned that some people make their username their real name. They express interest and I find them on Facebook. Usually, it's bad for them because I can get a real idea of who they are as a person and it makes me 100% not interested. Like the guy who made a comment about never getting along with his room mates. His mom said something about him needing to look within himself to see if he is the problem to which he totally freaked out at her. Cute. This is why I fully believe the best way to meet someone is in person without any preconceived notions. Online dating is all about the perceptions you read, and since you have to be careful online, you have to use proper judgement. Yes, that judgement can be harsh, but you can't be too careful.

So, yeah. There are weird people out there, but even so, this has been good for me. I mean, really. Guys have been interested in me, told me I am beautiful, I have a cute smile, etc. and it's been nice to hear. Another guy I've been talking to, who I might add is 27 (within normal age parameters), said something really profound that fit perfectly with my situation. He said, "Achievers are not perfectionists, they are improvisers." So, though I am going to end my membership when the month runs out, it has been a great learning experience and I feel good about trying it out at least once. I've also, learned that there are some real weirdos out there. And that is why I love the internet.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

50 GOOD Things About Me

I'm HOME! I've been home from China for nearly 2 1/2 months now. I had an incredible experience, so thanks to those of you who supported me, sent love, and followed my other blog. You are all great!

It's preeeetty easy for us as humans to focus on the negative things surrounding us. Since negativity has been my constant companion for a while, I've decided to do some things to combat it. For starters, I am making a list of things I like about myself or think are good. Sometimes I feel so run of the mill, like I'm a copy of everyone around me, but I hope this list reminds me that I am unique and special.

I am....
  1. faithful to my religion
  2. obedient
  3. dedicated to the things I love
  4. passionate
  5. curious
  6. a reader
  7. always trying to be a better me
  8. able to admit when I am wrong
  9. stubborn
  10. responsible
  11. both scheduled and spontaneous
  12. always planning ahead, but able to handle it when plans have to change
  13. intelligent
  14. accepting of other cultures
  15. open minded
  16. able to give people the benefit of the doubt.
  17. a good speller
  18. emotional (some people use it as an insult, but I am happy that I can express how I feel)
  19. not afraid to love and care for those around me
  20. good with kids
  21. trusting to those close to me
  22. charitable with my time and resources
  23. adventourous
  24. curvy
  25. a fast learner (especially with languages)
  26. a decent singer (I can carry a tune!)
  27. empathetic
  28. compassionate
  29. forgiving
  30. friendly and outgoing
  31. a dreamer and idealist
  32. silly (sometimes)
  33. strong
  34. blessed
  35. giving
  36. courteous
  37. good at keeping in touch with others
  38. good at communicating
  39. a good cook
  40. pretty
  41. a fast typer
  42. not afraid to say what I think
  43. good at trying new things (unless it's eating pigs feet)
  44. fast at adapting to new situations
  45. reliant on God
  46. nostalgic
  47. family oriented
  48. a traveler
  49. a dog lover
  50. hopeful
50 is HARD, but you can do it, too! We are too hard on ourselves. I could easily make a list of 100 bad things about myself, but the good news is, I'm human and I can't be perfect. The even greater news is that if I am faithful and work hard, my weaknesses can become my strengths and I can add them to my list of good things. We can all do that! 50 good things. GO!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Another Adventure!

Tomorrow I will start another China adventure! If you want to follow me while I'm there, you can go to my China blog here. I wish you all the best of health and safety while I'm gone! Thank you for your love and support!

Thursday, January 17, 2013


Thank you, gracias, merci, ありがとう, danke, or 감사합니다. Every language has a word for "thank you." It's interesting that we all know this word, but we don't allow our vocal chords to form the words for us quite as often as we should. Of course, I include myself in this "we." I'm sending this thank you out into the cosmic void where it will resonate forever (or until the internet dies).

When I felt alone, there were people constantly reminding me that I wasn't really alone. When I told you how I felt, you didn't tell me I was letting Satan in, you told me you understood. When I needed to cry on your shoulder, you let me. When I needed a hug, you gave me one. You sent me a text saying you were thinking of me. You cried for me. You shared a church talk or an experience because you thought it might help. You told me crying was brave. When I complained, you helped me think more positively. You let me stay at your house when I needed a change of scenery.

It's not easy to admit that I've got problems that I don't exactly have control over, but I just wanted to say thanks to the people who were there for me and still are.I appreciate you more than you could possibly know. Thank you, thank you, thank you! I'm a lucky girl, or as someone wiser than me once said, "There is no such thing as luck, only blessings."

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Welcome To A New Age

The title is from a song I like. I  used it instead of some cliche New Years title. :)

The New Year is always a good excuse to make new goals and start fresh. I usually feel terribly normal when I start to think of New Years resolution and reflect on my year. Usually, I think of cool things that happened and how much weight I gained that year, but this time, it was a little different for me.

I looked back on 2012 with both a sense of longing and a sense of loathing. Imagine the best year you ever had. Maybe you sorta wish you could re-live it. Then think of the worst year you ever had. You definitely avoid it like the plague. 2012 was both for me. After searching my whole life (20 years), I finally discovered my passion; the one thing that empowers me, motivates me, and fills me with love all at the same time. China. It's difficult to have this passion because so few people understand. All I want to talk about is China, the people, my time there, etc. People get bored of it, or they don't see how I could love it so much. People hear scary things on the news and in the media, but I assure you, the China I experienced was magical and the people are very separate from their government (for the most part). I will admit that I am overly obsessed, but it's my passion, so find fault with me, I dare you.

When I left China, I literally felt like I was being ripped away from the place I was needed, wanted, loved, and admired at every moment. I know I'm needed wanted, etc. here at home, too, but it doesn't always feel that way. One point being the amount of free time I have now that I didn't have in China, another point being the tiny calling/contribution I make in my Young Single Adult ward compared to the important calling I had in China and the contributions I made to the Branch in Nanjing.

Think about your passion. The one pass-time or hobby you have that you could never give up for any reason. For my example, I'll use a musician. This person lives, breathes, and even sleeps music. It makes them whole. It completes them. One day, they are in a horrible accident and they lose any ability to hear. Imagine how deeply they feel that loss and how it just might throw them into the depths of despair and depression. When I boarded that plane in Shanghai that was California bound, I lost my music. I lost the part of me that was completely mine. It was the hardest thing I have ever done. I just wish there was someone out there who understood who could hug me and say, "It's okay, Sarah. It's okay to be so sad. I know how you feel."

Now, you've lost your music and suddenly, the boy you've fallen in love with who has given you high hopes, shoots them down in 2 minutes. The other half of your heart that wasn't broken, is now split in two.

I found that I didn't have a smidgen of self-esteem anymore. What boy could possibly like me? Who could even think I was pretty or nice or worth getting to know? I was awkward with my peers (possibly still am) and felt like I didn't really fit in anywhere. I see all the great things in other people and wish I was like them. I wish I had more depth, more creativity, and an ability to think for myself. I felt like the currant bush in that New Era article. Crying out to the Gardener asking why he had cut me down when I had so much potential and I was growing so beautifully. It took me a lot longer than the currant bush to hear the Gardner's loving response. He knows what my full potential is and I wasn't growing toward it in the way he wanted, so he cut me down so I could start growing again to become what he knew I could be. I feel it more now as I see what qualities he wanted me to develop. I don't fully understand, but someday, I will understand better than I do now. Until then, I'm working on continuing my journey with faith and hope.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012


I know all 48 countries in Asia including the Middle East. I tried listing the first 100 hundred Pokemon (and failed). I do word ladders, trivia questions, and random Harry Potter quizzes. It's Sporcle and it's the best website ever! You can take quizzes on almost anything you can think of. Ever wonder what countries eat the most turkey per capita? Take the quiz and find out. (USA is first and Israel is second, go figure!) Maybe you have a fantastic memory of all things sports, then prove it by taking a quiz. History buff? Go to the history section. Language, literature, geography, science, entertainment, movies, television, music, religion, gaming, and holidays. I could waste hours on this site. Oh wait, I already do! Click here to go check it out!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Smacking Myself in the Head

I said I'd smack myself in the head for my poor thinking in my last post, and this is letting you know that I kept my word.

After saying how alone I felt and how I didn't want to talk to anyone, Heavenly Father sorta "forced" some people on me. This humbled me and made the past two weeks better. Though I spend more time than I'd like sitting at home doing nothing, I still had people asking me to come around. One friend asked me if I'd like to go to lunch with her almost two weeks in advanced. She said she wanted to see me but didn't have time for awhile. It made me feel good. An old friend asked me to come hang out with him twice in one week.  Another friend invited me to go with her and some friends out to dinner at an authentic Vietnamese restaurant. And again today, she texted me randomly asking if she could come say hi to me at school for a few minutes before her class.I went and visited an old teacher who is very dear to me. She listens to my stories and always tells me exactly what she thinks. She caught me off-guard with some suggestions that could very well change my life forever. It's these small things that are making a big difference for me. They may seem like nothing to you, but to me, they are everything right now. I'm being reminded that I am surrounded by people who care I'm still trying to figure out why, but it's good to know they care. Especially my friend in the "Holy Land" who texts me to see if I'm okay, to tell me funny things, or talk to me about something she is dealing with. I miss her, but I'm so glad she is still there for me even if she lives "far" away.

Sure I still have breakdowns and I still feel sad sometimes, it's like I'm looking at a light at the end of the tunnel and it's slowly approaching. It had to get very dark first before the light could come chase it away. The darkest moment was the hardest and it was then that I wanted to shut out the world and disappear for awhile. I wanted to stop trying, but I didn't.

Heavenly Father gave me a way to deal with my problems more positively. He told me how to buoy up my spirit. At first it seemed like a strange idea and not something I really thought I needed to do or something that would really help, but then I realized that I was being like Naaman in the Bible. I always wondered why the idea of washing himself seven times was so ridiculous he wouldn't even try it until I was given my own "healing potion" and I thought it sounded too simple. I put aside my pride and did as he suggested. That's when the light appeared at the end of this long tunnel. Like I said, I'm not out yet, but I'm getting there and I feel his love and the love of those around me. I've accepted that I'm not in China. I've stopped thinking that I'd be more happy in China. I need to face these problems and deal with my issues instead of running from them by using the "if I was in China..." excuse. Though it would be nice to run from my problems, they will always catch up to me in the end, and I'd much rather deal with these problems while they are small. I have a lot of things to be grateful for. Instead of finding so many reasons to be sad, I am finding the reasons to be happy. That's one good way I've learned to find joy in my journey.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Ups and Downs in Life

So lately I think my blog has taken a turn for the more dramatic side, or maybe it's always been, but it's really just a good place for me to let out all my feelings and really think about them.

I feel like I'm kind of in the down part of life. This said, I know how fortunate I am to have a family, a home, a good job, school, my body etc, etc. Even though there are so many people I could turn to who would try to help me or comfort me, I feel alone. I don't feel like talking to all these other people. Not because I don't think they could understand, but because I don't see how it can help. This is poor thinking on my part and I will smack myself on the back of the head for it later, but right now, I don't want to. I've been struggling for a long time. I've struggled to get back into life again. I keep asking myself where the Sarah is that worked two jobs and still got all her homework done, or had little time for friends and was okay with it. Where is the Sarah that had higher standards and made less mistakes. She's not there anymore and I miss her. She didn't cry so much or care what other people thought so much. She laughed and smiled a lot more and things seemed simpler because she always had a plan and knew exactly what she wanted. She didn't have to fall to her knees in despair and cry to God in desperation. She didn't have to pretend to be okay because she was okay. I feel broken and I'm carrying a lot of baggage. I don't know how to get rid of it or really deal with it. It's hard to deal with baggage when you aren't really sure what's inside and you can't find the words to express it. I recently wrote in my journal that if life had to get hard now so China could be so great later, it'd be worth it. I'm trying to keep that attitude, but sometimes I get lost in all the feelings and forget that I'm going back. I actually forget. Can you believe that? I'm just riding the waves trying to get through the storm. I hope the sun comes out soon. I really need to see the sun.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Chinese People

When I came home from China, I found myself struggling with a lot of emotions. Sadness at having to leave and a deep feeling of longing for my friends in the Middle Kingdom to name two. To keep in contact with these friends, I often wake up early and get on QQ (Chinese MSN) to talk to them about life in China and America.

I feel comfortable telling them the way it is. How I really feel and the things I'm really dealing with. In response to my troubles, I feel so loved and understood by my friends. They offer encouragement, support, and a look into a bright future. I know I was meant to meet the people I did. I know that God's hand was a part of every second I spent in China. I am overwhelmed with gratitude to these people for their real love, support, and friendship. Even though they are half way across the world in another time zone and another culture, they have the time to be there for me. They often tell me, "Hope you happy every day." when we say goodbye and they go to bed and I start my day. It's just what I need to continue pushing through the hard times. I suggest everyone gets some Chinese friends like mine. They are the best. Joy, Carl, Tony, Richard, William, Guo Ying, Derek, Robin, and Shirley, I love you!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Peace, Love, China!

It's official! I'm going BACK to China! I was given a fantastic scholarship from China Horizons (check them out by clicking here). I applied for the scholarship on a whim without thinking I'd actually get it. Then, the email came with congratulations. I have the opportunity to live in a "foster home" in China for three months working with the staff and children there. The children are all between 0-4 years old and have special health needs. They receive health care and love until they are adopted by families all over the world. I can't tell you the feeling of joy that swells inside me to know that I once again get to live in China. I never dreamed it possible that I would get to go back so soon. The Lord works in mysterious ways, but let's just say, I'm not complaining!

When I went through all the pages on the Starfish Foster Home webpage, I bawled like a baby. Maybe you will too. I love the people in China and I can't believe I get to go and serve them more. They have given me so much and I can't wait to repay their kindness. I can't wait to hold these babies and love them with all my heart.

My tentative departure date is Valentine's day, but so much can change and since this is the first time CH is doing the scholarship, it will be a process, but I am honored that I was chosen to pioneer this adventure. Here's to yet another adventure! China, here I come!

P.S. I waited until I wasn't freaking out to write this so it wouldn't be so crazy all over the place. You're welcome! ;)