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Hi I'm Mandy

I'm a Mormon. I'm a mom of 2, step mom of 2, work full time, triathlete, and suffer from depression.

About Me

My story is no different than most - I've experienced a lot of amazing things, been to some cool places, and experienced a lot of heartache. Over the past 7 years, I've gotten divorced, finished my Bachelor's degree, finished a Master's degree, completed my first (and more) 5k, 10k, half marathon, marathon, sprint triathlon, Olympic triathlon and duathlon, and half Ironman triathlon. I didn't finish my first full Ironman attempt, but I did receive a marriage proposal at the finish line. I've had heart surgery (and placed first in my age group in a triathlon 9 days later). I've gotten married, blended families and 4 kids together, remodeled a house, laid off from a job, been unemployed, and finally found a new job. You know, the usual ups and downs a lot of people face. But over the past few months, I've been fighting the hardest battle I've ever (unwilling) entered - depression. I try hard to cherish the good days. And on the bad days, my husband, family, friends, and faith are the only things that keep me going - even keep me alive during my darkest hours. Without my Heavenly Father's help, I probably wouldn't be writing this today.

Why I am a Mormon

After 35 years on this earth, and with many recent events taking over the media and social media universe, I've really had to dig deep to know what I believe to be true. It's hard sometimes when everyone has a different opinion. But, there are certain truths that I can't deny. Just like I know training consistently makes me faster and stronger for my races, I know consistently trying to do what is right will bring me peace and joy. Just as I have to fuel my body with healthy nutrient rich foods to become a better athlete and fight the depression that tries to overwhelm me - I also have to fill my head with good and wholesome things such as scriptures, uplifting music, and videos from modern-day prophets. These things inspire me to not give up, even when I feel completely alone and hopeless with the seeming never-ending darkness. I know I have a loving Heavenly Father who cares about what I'm going through. I know that Jesus Christ is my Savior, and that when I am feeling alone and hopeless, he knows what I'm feeling, because he felt it. I know the Book of Mormon is a true witness of Jesus Christ. And I know that there is no other church where I could feel at home than in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

How I live my faith

Since I started suffering from depression, prioritizing has become absolutely essential in my life. I simply can't do as much as I used to sometimes. And I have to be okay with that. It's hard. I want to achieve more, do more, help others. If I could stay awake 24 hours a day, I would! But I can't. Depression drains me, sucks the life out of me sometimes. So I have had to really take to heart "by small and simple things shall great things come to pass". I do my best to serve the young women (girls ages 12-18) in my ward (congregation). I visit a few women as much as I'm able. And I do my best to teach my kids to love others - no matter what their circumstance in life. "Jesus said love everyone and treat them kindly too". Often my efforts are small - like writing a quick email to someone telling them I'm thinking of them. Or posting something uplifting on a friend's Facebook page. Heavenly Father only requires us to do what I can, and if we each do a few simple things, everyone will feel just a little more loved.

What blessings can we receive through the gift of the Holy Ghost?

For me, the biggest blessing I've received from the Holy Ghost is peace, feeling loved, and finding my way when I'm lost in the darkness. Show more Show less