Not an Option

A dear friend of mine sent me a message on Facebook the other day after reading about my mister’s day off and our united devision O:-)  He told me how fascinating he finds our, uh, ‘situation.’

He said I’m tough.

hahaha

So, some days I feel pretty tough. I feel like this is SO STINKING HARD.

But most of those days have passed.  I’m kind of over it.  It’s just how we are, now; we’re different.

And what are my options?

I’m married to a man who has different religious views than mine.  He’s a WONDERFUL man and a fantastic father.

So…I’m supposed to leave him because he doesn’t wanna be Mormon anymore?

And I’m supposed to give my girls a confusing, broken home, just because we can’t agree on this one thing?

I don’t think so.

Giving up is NOT an option.  My family is waaaaaayyyyy too important for that.

Speaking of, the baby needs me!  Ciao for now. Thanks for the support; you’re an amazing readership!

United front

I have had some people not really understand or agree with my “letting” my mister off the hook on Sunday and take the day off.  And while I understand my reasons and what went on, I think basically, it boils down to Aesop’s oft-quoted wisdom above.

Unity is power. A couple years ago now, I think, Elder David A Bednar spoke at a CES training session about the immense importance of unity and the destructive power of division and/or contention amongst us.  He shared some brilliantly insightful thoughts and illustrated these opposing ideas with aplomb. I loved increasing my understanding of this principle of life.

So in my marriage, where we are SERIOUSLY divided in ideology, how can we possibly be united?

Honestly, that’s what makes it so hard; it’s hard to know how to discuss things that previously were as easy as pie to talk about.  If I want to pray and go to the temple to seek out the Spirit to help with a large family decision, how on Earth can I take those desires to my husband who thinks I’m completely insane?  How do I take money that we SO DESPERATELY NEED and give it in relatively large quantities to the Church as I pay tithing?

But it works.

We are united.

We unite in our mutual respect for one another and our opposed belief systems.  He respects me, my beliefs, my upbringing, my desires for our family and children.  I respect his struggle to come to terms with his new views, his new understanding of life, the universe, and everything (42!), and I am SO grateful for his courage and honesty.

So yeah, I need to back off sometimes, and just let him be.  He lets me, and I let him.  It’s how we go.

I probably take it for granted that we’re going to raise our girls in the Church, but I am TRYING to do it with their being very aware and informed about their Daddy’s position, that no topic is taboo, that they are comfortable coming to EITHER of us with their questions as they strive to find out the truth for themselves.  I cannot FORCE my beliefs on them, nor can he his.  And as we have currently agreed to take the girls to church, together, it is more likely they’ll have that ‘background’ to lean on, which as I AM a believer, I am very grateful for, but they absolutely MUST know and understand their dad, his position, his feelings, and WHY.

Just pretending everything’s a-okay and ignoring HIM, well, in my humble opinion, that’s just a recipe for disaster!!

And so yeah, I gave him a day off.  Because he needs to know I’m not just paying lip service and that I do respect him.  Because we are united even in our disagreement.  That we are one in purpose of love and raising as happy and healthy a family as we can.  And that we work together to make each other happy.

End of story.

Don’t fight. Don’t argue.  Just don’t.  In or outside of the Church CONTENTION is one of the WORST things EVER.  If you hold to the scriptures you know that contention is the food of the devil, that he uses it to turn us against each other and ruin friendships, families, countries, lives.   If you don’t believe in scripture you can see the horrific things brought about in your life, on the news, in the world, as contention runs rampant.

Just, just don’t do it. Nothing is worth it.  YES the odd argument and/or fight is totally okay and HEALTHY even – please don’t misunderstand me. We OBVIOUSLY disagree!  But don’t let it run your life.  Don’t let it stand in the way of the things that will make you happy.

And THAT, my friends, is that for today.  Cheers!

A day off.

Now that we live closer to (and with!) family we’re seeing a lot more of everyone. And we are LOVING it. Especially our girls.

Our oldest especially loves playdates and sleepovers with her cousins, and this weekend she got to go up to their house, go to their ward Christmas party, see a baptism, go to church, and play until dinnertime at Grandma’s house.

Which meant Sunday morning, she wasn’t home with us.

Now, I need to tell you a little bit about my apostate: HE’S AWESOME. He may not believe, may think I’m totally wrong, a little insane, a lot brainwashed, and may not in his mind affiliate himself with the Mormon Church, but with the odd exception for illness or other extraordinary circumstances, he comes to church with us EVERY WEEK. He comes to be supportive, to make it easier on our kids, (and me, let’s be honest), because while he doesn’t believe it’s true he doesn’t think it’s BAD.

So he comes.

I woke up Sunday morning, to my alarm instead of my six-year-old climbing on me for morning snuggles,  and realized….he doesn’t need to come today.

I mean, really. I believe in the Spirit and that one is possibly more likely to experience it in the Lord’s church than sitting on his/her butt playing plants vs zombies at home, BUT…

…if the person in question doesn’t want to be there…

How many weeks has he come for me? Done that for me? Why not on a week when the kid is away give him a day off? He can apostasies to his heart’s content while I worship without worrying about people’s testimony-bearing and lauding of biased histories offending or further swaying him against my position?

So I got up with the baby, brought her back to bed, roused him a bit and asked “do you want the day off?”

He was so cute; he lit up like a kid at Christmas! “Sure!” And then….”what’s the catch?” hahahahaha

He got up and got the baby ready while I primped myself to go – what’s a day off if you’re stuck parenting all day? hahaha – and then baby and I left and he stayed home.

And you know, I think he really enjoyed not coming for a change. And it was so nice to do that for HIM instead of him doing the opposite for me all the time.

…don’t worry; he’ll be back next week. 😉

 

On being wrong


What does it feel like to be wrong? Please take 20 minutes and watch this excellent talk by Kathryn Schulz as she dissects what being wrong feels like, and why it’s important to know the answer to that question. And don’t think that reading this post can substitute for watching, because I will be going way off topic. I didn’t see this video until just recently, but I feel it describes well parts of my experiences in the last year. I used to be so sure that God was in his heaven and that I knew who his prophets were. Now, I don’t. My wife, my father-in-law, and many other people have asked me in on one form or another “What if you’re wrong? What if Joseph Smith was right all along? What if Satan has deceived you and is dragging you down to hell?” I think I may have responded with something along the lines of “What if you’re wrong?” If I didn’t, I’m sure whatever I came up with in that moment was equally as compelling. So, how can I be sure that where I stand now is right and where I stood before, where my wife stands, is wrong?

The plain fact is I can’t. That is the great truth here: I don’t know. I didn’t know. I probably will never know. But that’s not a bad thing, and it certainly needn’t be a scary thing. I could dilute myself into thinking I have it all figured out for certain and I am right and my wife is wrong, or I can accept that I don’t know, and just focus on being good and trying to approach an answer.

If I die, and come to stand before a god to be judged, will I regret how I lived my life? I hope not. I hope that a god responsible for the creation of all the universe, who cares for our actions here, will actually care more about how I lived my life than whether or not I offered him my oblations. I do not believe in God any more. So what? I believe in doing good. I believe in honesty and integrity and curiosity and inquest and discovery and improvement and security and human kindness and community. I am opposed to cruelty and arrogance and tyranny and selfish hedonism and complacent ignorance. And I believe in raising my children to believe in all that too. And if there is no God, or if there is but it does not pay much mind to us small bipeds who have lived for a fraction of a moment on a small speck of rock in some small pocket of its creation, then so what? Our live spans are measured in years and our domains are measured in kilometres. Let’s all do the best we can with the time we have and let the chips fall where they may in the end.

But I digressed into a small rant. Please forgive me. Am I right? I don’t know. Do you?