Back again.

I know. I know. I keep disappearing on you. I would apologize…except, I’m not really sorry about it. So much is floating around in my brain and my tidy compartments have all exploded and I am sifting through the mess. Just haven’t felt up to sharing, I guess.

So, I am sort of living at Jennifer’s. I don’t know for how long. I end up staying a night, which turns into two, and then three, and then two weeks. He usually gets sick of me and then sends me home. I stay there for a few nights, and then end up back at his place. It’s…an adventure, I guess. I can’t tell what’s going on in his brain. Does he like it when I stay, or does he just tolerate my presence? No clue. Too afraid to ask. Meanwhile, Mom is upset that I am not living in the place I’m paying rent for, and doesn’t think it fair that I am utilizing my bedroom as a storage unit while I’m staying at Jennifer’s. She wants me to move out–but in to where? To her house? To Jennifer’s? It is complicated, I guess.

I do a lot of guessing, these days.

Faith! My missionary brother wrote me a letter and sent it via snail mail for my birthday. Oh, yes. I had a birthday. It was mostly fun and involved delicious food, including cheese fries and raspberry sherbet (though not at the same time). Chuck sent me a letter, telling me to seek out God, to do the things I have been taught are good, to not do the things I have been taught are bad, and that there are people praying for me. I was touched, and then got confused, and now stand conflicted. I miss the Church. I miss the structure and the well-meaning people. And then I remember how many times I was told that I was going to hell because I was immodest. And how many panic attacks I had while sitting in Sunday School, listening to lessons about how I need to submit to the will(s) of the Priesthood leader(s) who had charge over me. And how the abuse I experienced in my last relationship was justified by the words of the Prophets, according to my ex.

There is this void in my heart where a love for my Father used to be. My dad has been dead for almost 13 years. I used to pray, and I have never been able to decipher if my prayers were directed toward my father or my Father. God is a concept I desperately want to believe in but cannot justify against the ills of this world. Either God is good and imperfect, or is perfect and therefore can be neither good nor evil. God is just and merciful. Either way, He cannot be everything I want Him to be, or need Him to be. That is, He cannot be both good and perfect. Neither is my father perfect. But he is…was…good. And so I don’t know how to separate my father from who I want to believe my Father is.

I am reading about many LDS women. My intention is to write (and hopefully, someday, present) a paper about LDS women, feminism, and the ERA. The goal of my paper is to explore how a legacy has been set forth by many women seeking for equal recognition under the law, and how that legacy might propel us — that is, we who identify as Mormon women — forward. My secret hypothesis is that in demanding that the US Constitution be amended to guarantee protection for all under the law, regardless of gender, we will find a way to achieve gender equality within the Church.

That is my hope. My prayer, I guess.

In the meantime, I’ll keep on reading.

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