I finally put new sheet music on my Kerby Music website: Love is the Key. It’s a solo that I wrote in 2014 and performed for a Stake Musical Fireside with the same name. Though the song meant a lot to me then, I had no idea how much it would help me get through the next very difficult years of separation and divorce. I think it was evidence that God knew what I needed – to stay focused on keeping love in my heart, despite the difficult circumstances that were ahead. I’ve learned a lot and I’m so grateful for the gift of love.
Last Sunday, I attended a fireside with speaker Kevin Clayson. He talked about his divorce and his path that led to the wonderful marriage he is enjoying now. His talk was inspiring to me. He said that after his divorce he could see down two very different roads. One was paved with anger, frustration and even revenge, while the other was a path of forgiveness, warmth and unconditional love. He took the path of forgiveness and love and ultimately it led him to the life he is enjoying now. He is now an inspired motivational speaker and author and just wrote a book called Flip the Gratitude Switch. I can hardly wait to read it. He talked about how love helped him to become the kind of person that attracted the women of his dreams into his life that he is now married to.
I know that love is that powerful. Love has been the key to helping me feel peace in the midst of trial and adversity. Throughout my whole marriage, I learned how to find God, love others, and be grateful. It was always those things that helped me to be happy in whatever circumstances I was in. Without all the things I’ve learned, I don’t know how I would have gotten through the difficulties of divorce, court and everything else I’ve been through these last couple of years. I’ve been so grateful for the path I chose to love unconditionally. It’s been the key to my happiness.
Before I got divorced, I had wanted to share my songs and experiences that have helped me to learn how to love unconditionally. It wasn’t an easy road but it was invaluable in helping me to have hope, stay positive and be able to feel peace no matter what situation I was in. Before I got divorced, I was learning about differences in perception and how easy it was to misjudge people and misunderstand them. I was learning how to love in a deeper way than I ever had before. I realized that if people could understand the things I was learning, it had the potential to save marriages, help with difficult relationships and help people be happier generally understanding each other better. After I got divorced, I worried that no one would want to hear from me. Why would anyone want to learn how to save their relationships, when I couldn’t even save my own marriage?
It was the adversary that was keeping me in that thinking pattern. Of course he wouldn’t want me to share the things I had learned. He wants us to go down the path of anger, resentment and contempt. My message is about love and choosing to love no matter how difficult the circumstance. I would never have learned the concepts that have changed my life except for going through the experiences I did and choosing to love unconditionally. I want others to benefit from what I’ve learned and to have more successful experiences than my own. I know it’s a lot easier to love people when you understand where they are coming from. The concepts I’ve learned can help with that, and it’s exciting to think what could happen when some of those barriers come down and we stop having to protect ourselves all the time.
I feel happy not having any of those barriers. Despite my divorce, I know that God still loves me and has a plan for me. He is helping me to share this message. I’ve had amazing miracles happen and I have had the opportunity to attend workshops, receive mentoring and opportunities to learn from amazing people like Tammy Anderson Ward, Gerald Rogers, Kirk Duncan and others. I’ve learned how to help others and how to be a good mentor and speaker. I’m excited to share the things I’ve learned. I no longer feel afraid and I’m excited to share my message with others.
My first introductory class is called “Tuning into Happiness”. It will introduce the main concepts that have helped me to love unconditionally. I’ll follow that with a class on relationships and how to understand opposite perceptions. I’m really excited about that one. It will help explain the differences in perception and unlock some secrets into understanding those hard-to-understand people in your life. You might be surprised to find that things you thought were being said to be rude, were actually meant to be kind and respectful. Understanding these differences and intentions, when coupled with the desire to love can change your life forever. It certainly has for me. I genuinely love people. I hope to inspire others to feel the same joy, peace and happiness that I’ve felt despite the difficult circumstances that have come.
I’m also excited to share my music again. Music is still a big part of my mission and purpose in life. It’s helped me to become the person God wants me to be. I want to share the songs that have helped me so that they can help others along the way. I’m also planning to do personal mentoring sessions with others and write personal songs for the clients I work with. How would you like to have a personal song written just for you to help get you through whatever trial you’re dealing with at the time? I’m excited to write those songs. It will be fun to see where life takes me. I hope you’ll follow me on the journey and take courage to follow your own promptings and impressions. Choosing to love may not always be the easiest road, but it’s SO worth it in the end! It’s the door to true happiness and Love is the key!
It’s always a little scary to do something new, but when it’s something you’ve been dreaming about and wanting for most of your life… I think it’s okay to be a little scared – as long as you still do what you’ve been dreaming about all along.
It’s been amazing to me all the things that have happened that are making this dream possible. Some of the things I’ve experienced have not exactly been positive – like getting divorced, having my kids be away from me every other week, having to leave the fruits of my home, having my parents gone on a mission while all of this was happening, having seizures, and not being able to drive, dealing with the court system and worrying about money, trying to find and keep jobs, when all I really want was to be able to stay home with my children. There’s been so many hard challenges and things that that have happened that you would wonder how anything good could ever come out of it.
At the same time, I’ve had so many blessings and help from people than I ever could have possibly imagined. God has been working through others to help take care of me, send me love and offer assistance in so many ways that I have needed. Neighbors have kindly given me a home in their basement to live in. They have become my parents, while mine have been away and I will forever be indebted to them! Church members have cared for me and offered me rides and assistance when I was having my seizures and couldn’t take care of myself. So much love was offered when I couldn’t drive and needed so much help from others. My parents were able to Skype with me and help me emotionally as I needed them. My son has been well and happy on his mission. I’m building back trust with my children after a divorce, and things are starting to get a little better. I was given scholarships that allowed me to meet amazing people and receive mentoring that has helped me rediscover who I am. God has been taking care of me financially through jobs and others that he has brought me into contact with. I am making friends with other singles and know there is still hope of future happiness. The greatest blessing is that God is whispering that it’s okay to start sharing my music. It’s finally becoming that “season”.
I remember feeling the call to share my music earlier, but the whispering I kept getting from the spirit was that it wasn’t time yet. I needed to keep my focus on my children. It was frustrating then, I thought I could do both. How grateful I am that I listened and waited. With everything I experienced in the court system, it’s very possible that I might have lost custody of my children had I ignored the prompting. No one can dispute the fact that I was a vigilant, loving mother. My children have always been my priority, and they will continue to be.
I shared my “Beauty Queen” song on a live video on my Facebook page. People liked it and it gave me some courage that it would be okay to start sharing. I feel God’s hand directing my path. He’s got some plan for me, though I’m not exactly sure what it is yet. I was talking with some of my singer/songwriter friends that I used to perform with when my children were very young. We are all in the same type of place, feeling the call to share our music.
We’ve decided to start an inspirational music podcast. We’re going to do it on Facebook live. I’m so excited about it. I’ve always loved performing and sharing the stories behind my songs. It’s even more fun to do it with friends. I think people will like it.
It’s 6:00 a.m. Christmas morning. It’s quiet and for the first time in over 20 years, I do not have the excitement of children waking me up to open presents Christmas morning.
My children get to spend Christmas with their dad this year. It’s very different, and I’m not used to being alone.
Even growing up, there were always children around. I am the oldest of 11 and my house was always loud and full of people. Last night I was invited to spend Christmas Eve with a family in my neighborhood that also has eleven children. It felt like I was back home. I enjoyed spending Christmas Eve in their home. I was grateful I had a place to go.
Last night we watched a short video about the first Christmas. It struck me that there was no place for Mary and Joseph to go. I can only imagine how Joseph and Mary must have felt as they realized that the Savior of the world was going to be born in a stable.
I wonder if they felt, like I have, that maybe they had done something wrong to be in the situation that they were in. If they only knew the significance of having their child being born in a stable. It makes Jesus relatable to any person in any situation. He descended below all, and I believe it was necessary for him to be born there – but how could Mary and Joseph ever have been able to understand that?
I’m sure to Mary and Joseph it was something they could not understand. Why ever would the king of Kings have to be born in a stable?? But it was for a purpose, a purpose they may not have fully understood at the time.
I don’t understand fully why some of the things that have happened to me have happened. I don’t know of any greater purpose for it, and it’s hard not to feel worried that I’ve done something wrong, or that something’s wrong with me that it happened. Thinking about the Christmas story has helped me to think that maybe there’s something else. Maybe a greater purpose that I just can’t see yet. Hopefully I will be someday be able to understand someday.
I am grateful for the Savior of the world and for His blessing to me that humbles, teaches and inspires me to keep going and to be happy. I’m grateful for his atonement and for His love that makes it possible for me to be able to return to live with Him again.
This Christmas won’t be easy, but it doesn’t have to be a bad Christmas either. It will just be different.
I get to talk to my missionary son today. He’s been serving in the Chili Concepcion mission. I’m so excited to talk to him. He gets back in July of next year. It’s getting closer, and I’m excited to have him home again.
Merry Christas everyone! May your Christmas be Merry and Bright!
This morning, I found myself on the highway in the left hand turn lane, behind a car that had their hazard lights on. I had just seen someone going around them, but hadn’t realized that the left turn signal wasn’t working. I drove up carefully between the car and the busy highway, preparing to make the same left turn around the car without the safety of the light.
As I pulled up, I realized that there was a young women in the car and that I was close enough, I could actually talk to her. l rolled down my window and asked if there was anything I could do to help.
“Are you okay?” I asked.
“I can’t get my car to start, and I’m not sure what to do.” She told me.
She also mentioned that the light hadn’t changed for over 20 minutes. There were cars backing up behind her. I told her I would try to get some help. My daughter was in the car with me and because our house was not far away from the intersection, we went home first and then called 9-1-1. The dispatcher said she would send someone to help. It felt good to be able to do something. So many times I’ve driven by people on the side of the road and wished I could do something to help. It felt wonderful to be able to help.
This morning, I also had the opportunity to help a refugee learning how to read the English language. It was my first time to go and it was SO much fun. The hour I spent with her flew by. I loved seeing her face light up when she could remember or figure out a word. I’m so excited to keep working with her and be a part of her progress.
I was feeling really good about the experience and loading up my car with the books and activities I had brought, when a man came by the side of my car. He asked if I could help give his car a jump start. It wasn’t a great area of town, but I felt okay about helping him and thought it was interesting that I was having so many opportunities today to serve. I drove over to where his car was parked and tried to figure out how to open up the front hatch. It took us a little while. =)
The man put on the cables and tried to jump the car, but it wouldn’t start. As he tried to push on the gas and get the car going, I could tell that the car was just not in good condition. He was going to need a lot of repairs. I wished I could do something to help, but I knew he was probably going to have to get it taken into the shop. We couldn’t get it started.
I felt bad leaving him like that, but there really wasn’t anything more I could do. Then I realized, there was.
Two days ago, I had one of the best days I’ve ever had. About 8 ladies came over to surprise me wth a special luncheon and a present. One of my good friends had organized a service project for me. Though 8 were there, 20 were involved in the gift. They presented me with a beautiful quilt that had been stitched together with love. Many had donated their time, talents, money and love, moving the quilt from one person to another in order to create the beautiful quilt they had made for me. I was overwhelmed with their kindness. The blanket was put together with my favorite colors and had each of my children’s names embroidered into it. Each of their names were even spelled right. I couldn’t hold back the tears. In a card, they gave me some extra money. They said they had gotten more donations than they had needed to make the quilt. They wanted to give me the extra.
I was so grateful for the blanket, their gift and their love. It’s something I will treasure forever.
This morning, I realized that I still had the extra money in my purse. I wanted to share it with him. I rolled up a few of the larger bills and gave it to him. He thanked me and I wished him well as I got in my car to drive away.
He didn’t see what I gave him, but I was excited to think how surprised he would be when he did see. Maybe it would help.
I drove away with tears in my eyes. I couldn’t believe how good it felt to serve!!
Nobody wants to be a “service project”, and it’s no fun to have to serve someone who isn’t appreciative, but if both sides are done with genuine love, it can be one of the happiest experiences ever. That’s not to say it’s easy. It’s been difficult these last two years to let so many people help me, but I’ve needed their help and I’ve been grateful for every bit of it. It’s helped that on occasion, I’ve had people come up to me and afterwards thank me, with tears in their eyes, for the opportunity it was to serve.
Service is a blessing – both to the server and to the one being served. May you look for opportunities to serve, and also let others serve you! I truly believe it’s the best way to true happiness!
Since I first starting writing music, I’ve wanted to be able to write for orchestra. It’s my dream to stand in front of an amazing full scale orchestra and have them perform something I’ve written.
It’s a pretty big dream. The only instruments I play (so far) are the piano, a little flute and a little violin. It’s one thing to dream about doing something like that, another one to actually do it.
This last week, I went to Riverton Music and found out that they were looking for substitute music teachers. It seemed like something I could do. I imagined teaching piano students, or group music classes. I feel very confident leading music or working with young children.
Unfortunately, they were looking for substitute band teachers. I’ve never been in a band before and I have little to no experience with instruments other than flute, guitar and violin all of which is pretty basic. They assured me that I could fill the position. It was mostly just helping them know rhythm, phrasing and if the notes were correct. I felt like it was probably out of my sphere of ability, but went ahead and applied thinking that maybe if I could substitute enough, maybe I could someday take a more professional music type job later on down the road.
I went to the interview yesterday and not only did they want me to substitute, they wanted me to teach an after-school class – like every week!
The lady who was interviewing me was confident that I could do it, but I wasn’t. I went to the temple and prayed about it. I actually felt good about the idea, which scared me actually. I went to an after school class that the lady who interviewed me was teaching that night and afterwards I told her I’d take the position. I couldn’t believe I was going to do it. She told me that she’d see me the next day (today!). I was expecting that it would be at least next week before I started.
I went to my first band practice today. The whole way up there I was saying, “I can’t believe I’m doing this! I can’t believe I’m doing this!” I was so scared. I did okay though. I had the kids play the piano with me while they were learning one of their first songs. They thought that was pretty cool. As for helping them with their instruments – not so good.
I stopped at Riverton Music on the way home. I rented a trumpet so I could actually learn how to play it and help them. This job is going to teach me to play all the instruments.
It was something I always thought I would do someday in the future… I feel like maybe God is giving me a push in that direction. I usually need a little bit of pushing to get started, but then once I’ve done it once, it’s not so bad.
I’m excited for the next time. I’ve already got a bunch of ideas. It’s definitely out of my comfort zone, but who knows where this will lead… Crazy, huh!
Have you ever had the experience of trying to help someone who had given up trying, deciding they couldn’t do something, or that it was impossible for them? Maybe that someone is you…
This last week, I struggled as I tried to help a child learn how to write his letters of the alphabet. He was trying to make each letter look the way he knew letters were supposed to be written – like they are typed. I tried to convince him that he wasn’t a computer and it was okay to make mistakes, but with each passing attempt, he would throw his head back and tell me how dumb he was. He just couldn’t do it. It was seriously painful to watch.
It continued as he began to color. He would get slightly out of the lines and crumple up the whole page, telling me he was a terrible colorer. It didn’t matter what I said to encourage him, he had decided there was no hope for him and he was done trying.
It made me remember when I was first starting to write music. It was so hard at first.
I wanted to be able to write music that sounded like the professionals and I wanted to make it sound like that from the very beginning – before I even knew what I was doing!
I finally gave up trying to write songs with words because it was so hard, and decided to just stick with piano music. It was easier for me, and I started writing bunches of piano songs. It was getting easier to do the music, but I still had the desire to write songs with words.
When I started my sheet music website (www.kerbymusic.org), I wanted even more to be able to write vocal songs. I tried again, but again it was so hard. I decided I needed to get other lyricists to help me and wrote several songs with other people’s words.
I was finally writing vocal songs, but it still wasn’t the same as writing my own songs. I tried again, but it was still hard. Everything I wrote seemed so dumb and I wondered if writing lyrics would ever be something I could be good at.
One thing I learned was that I couldn’t just write a song for the sake of writing one. I needed a reason to write, something I could get specific about. I tried to think of reasons I could write, but nothing was coming. I was again ready to just give up and not ever try again. That day I told Heavenly Father that if He really wanted me to write songs, He was going to have to help me. He was going to have to give me some reason to write, and until that happened, I wasn’t going to worry about it anymore.
The next day was the Sabbath and the Relief Society President caught me in the hall. She asked me if I would be willing to do a musical number for Relief Society. She told me the very specific purpose and scriptures that she wanted the song to be about but that she hadn’t found anything that quite fit the purposes of her lesson. She asked me if I had any ideas. I knew it was Heavenly Father was answering my prayer. I told her I could probably come up with something. I didn’t mention that I would try to write a song, wondering if I’d even be able to.
That week I wrote the song and it was so much easier than any of my previous attempts. I knew Heavenly Father was helping me. It wasn’t a great song, but it was a song with words. I sang it in Relief Society and afterwards one person came up and told me thank you. I think she was only trying to be polite, but her comment meant so much to me. I didn’t tell her or anyone else that I had written the song. It took me awhile before I was willing to be that vulnerable, but the blessings have been immeasurable.
I’ve been grateful for the gifts and talents God has blessed me with. I know God gives us talents and abilities, but that doesn’t mean we don’t have to work to get good at them. I’m still learning and trying to get to that place that I have in my mind. I’m not there yet, but I know I can’t get there unless I keep trying.
If you know someone who is struggling with self doubt or even if it’s you, tell them not to give up! Keep trying and believing and someday soon they’ll learn to fly.