That One Time I Was A Mormon – Pt. 1

* The following is a very true story. Sometimes, I use sarcasm to tell my stories. And sometimes, my sarcasm makes it sound like I’m being a big disrespectful meanie. Which is why I am writing this little note, to promise you that I’m not trying to be mean. I am not religious, but I once was. This is my story, with my personal feelings and thoughts. In no way am I trying to down-talk members of the LDS church, or any other religion for that matter. I try very hard to respect other people’s beliefs and lifestyles, because I think that is what makes decent human beings. I want to include the not-so-nice parts, the honest parts, because I think we could all (myself included) learn a thing or two about prejudice and preconceived notions. If I offend anyone, please know that I am regreful … though I cannot apologize for speaking my truth.
_________________

There was that one time that I was about to become a Mormon.

I was living in a 4 bedroom house with a batshit-crazy landlord (the homeowner), her son, and two other renters. I was doing important things like working night shift as a caregiver to patients with dementia, eating frozen dinners at 6 am, sleeping all day. I was doing important things like buying lifesize cardboard cutouts of Edward Cullen.

Then one day, one of my roommates approached me, “Want to go to church with me tomorrow?”

We had spent the night getting drunk off of Bud Light Lime. Of course I wanted to go to church. “Sure, I guess so. What kind is it?”

“LDS,” Linda replied, “That means Mormon.”

I wasn’t a religious person. As a child, I went to Lutheran church a couple times with my step-grandparents, but it was never really a thing.  I grew up like an agnostic Fox Mulder, I wanted to believe … but I really never found my niche. Plus, I didn’t like the close-mindedness of most religions. Which is why it makes perfect sense that I was all ‘LDS, huh? Polygamist prairie-folk gathering in a barn to marry of child brides? Sign me up!’ (In my head, of course).  “Okay,” is what I actually spoke. I’m polite like that.

The next morning, I walked out of my room in tight black slacks and a purple blouse. Linda looked me up and down in the ‘I am kindhearted, but also a judgmental bitch’ way only Linda could pull off.  “We don’t usually let women wear pants, but since you aren’t a member yet, I think it will be okay.”

Good. Because I wasn’t going to change. “Okay, I could change if needed…” I said, in the ‘I swear I’m a stubborn a-hole under this frightened and weak exterior’ way only I could pull off. We ate some breakfast and then drove the 10 miles to church.

There were lots of old people. Old people and kids. Old people, married couples and kids. No one my age. In fact, Linda and I were the only single people there (well, besides the yet-to-be-married child brides). There was also a distinct lack of prairie dresses, and I was very sad about this. But also happy to see that Warren Jeffs’ wasn’t standing in front of the congregation.

Lots of eyes were on me, the newcomer. Most of them looked friendly, some of them like dicks. I couldn’t really be sure about the old ladies, their smiles and pinched frowns all looked the same. I had come on ‘Testimony’ day; the day where men would come up and speak lightly about how they found God, and also the day that women would have full-on seizures trying to tell their God-stories. I seriously didn’t know what the the fuck was up with every.single.woman. having a complete mental breakdown up on that stage when it was her time to talk. I mean, the dudes were all like, “Yeah, I found God. He’s a great guy. Now I’m a good guy. Yeah, go God!”

The women? “AHHHHHHHHHHH lkdflkf dlfkduuuuuuurrrrrp GOD GOD GOD, JEEEEEBUS, fleerrrrrrpble gurgle.” I get that that is a little mean, but you have to understand, I wasn’t yet equipped with what I like to call “Joseph Smith Tears.” So I sat through that two hours trying to not laugh, and trying not to pick the itch out of my nose. Somewhere in there, boys in suits brought around water and little pieces of bread. I felt really special because I got to eat & drink with everyone (something I never got to do in the Lutheran church!). It was delightful, and I felt like I was part of a really special club. I wanted to ask for seconds, because Jesus really tasted good, but I decided against it.

After the service, two missionary boys approached Linda and I. “Hello,” one of them said to me, “What is your name?”

“Erica,” I smiled. I had no idea who missionaries were or what they did .. but I got the feeling that they were important. Soon, the bishop came up and joined in on the conversation. Soon after that, random old people came up and hugged me. “Welcome,” they would each say. And that is what they did. They made me feel welcome. I really really really liked that feeling, because my life was a shitstorm at home. I was lonely, miserable, isolated. I was drinking too much, smoking too much, popping too many pills. I had no life outside of drinking 5 cups of coffee to keep myself up at night while I was hallucinating at work, and sleeping during the sunlight hours. And my family and I weren’t really speaking at the moment. So yeah, the welcoming hugs of those LDS old ladies really felt good.

“Maybe we will see you later?” One of the missionaries asked.

I nodded my head, without really thinking, and left with Linda. I didn’t yet realize that I had basically sealed my fate with that nod.

We drove off, lighting up our cigarettes, and planning a night at the bar. “You know, Mormons aren’t supposed to smoke or drink,” Linda stated, as she sipped her Pepsi, “Or drink caffeine.”

I could tell, at that moment, that I had chosen the perfect person to become Mormon with.

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18 thoughts on “That One Time I Was A Mormon – Pt. 1

    • I have actually tried a Unitarian church, a couple years after I left the Mormon one. I just don’t think organized religion works for me … I just keep my spirituality fluid and curios.

      I actually just watched that film on Netflix. Intense, eh?

  1. Hehe oh man this is fantastic. I visited a friend’s church once. I wanted wine and they wouldn’t give it to me until I’d gotten baptized so I left and drank wine from my mom’s stash.

      • its an interesting community and if you are highly intelligent and very creative it can be a good support if you value giving up some of your self power for the cause. I know one thing, doctrine and covenants section 89 truly will make you run and not be weary, but I never was able to follow it because I read it, I just did it due to an interesting chain of events, and some of the spiritual abilities which manifest freaked everyone out so I hung out with them until I started to understand that i joined for reasons that others did not, and that I was able to be who I am, which is a highly independent person who likes to empower people and erase any kind of fear based faith, and that’s where I divulge, since I don’t know the way that is best or right, but I am unique and pretty much I am a Buddhist Humanist, because a human being will achieve whatever it is they have absolute faith in, so in a sense “whether you believe you can or you can’t in regards to anything, you will be right, and although I know the environment supports human life and we are in symbiosis with the environment and I don’t think that its a good idea to , but I have come to realize that when I feel good, I do it. and if people start to have a reaction, Then I know I’m alive, but, who the heck knows what is right? I just was to be an instrument for humanity a tool for the divine which is at once beyond and at the same time utterly non-existent without me, so there is a hidden power, and that is understanding that what is beyond the mind is permeated and made manifest in the environment, and this is the true mind, the reality, which the mind can perceive and either create or be directed, but its a weird area since you gotta always be honest with yourself, even if what you truly are is not accepted, thinks will be the best that way, “don’t worry if you make waves, the moon does it all the time” May Peace Be With You Always in All Ways, ALOHA! Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo! DJ SUPREME! YOU ARE AWESOME. I appreciate you saying thank you, look what it made me do, I just started talking to you without a filter (which increases your I.Q. btw, sensoring and filtering your thoughts is good if you want to realize your full potential, which is also why its good to write alot so you can reveal the more refined essence to people
        anyways BE TRUE TO YOU! GHANDI MARIN LUTHER KING, SHAKYAMUNI, PYTHAGORAS, ESSENE JESUS and HONEST ABE, DID THEIR OWN THING, DO IT! 🙂 MORMONS ARE AWESOME BECAUSE THEY ALWAYS PUT THE HAPPINESS OF HUMAN BEINGS AS THE OBJECTIVE FROM WHAT I KNOW, AND IF SOMETHING ELSE IS GOING ON WELL THAT ISN’T A REAL MORMON, A REAL MORMON IS A PERSON THAT HELPS OUT THEIR FELLOW HUMANS EVEN IF THEY AREN’T PEOPLE THEY ALREADY KNOW! THAT IS WHY I LOVE MORMONS THEY REALLY VALUE BEING HUMANITARIAN AND FOCUS ON BUILDING UP THE SPIRITUALITY MUSCLES, AND I THINK THEY ARE RATHER MIS-UNDERSTOOD BECAUSE EVERYONE IS HUMAN!

  2. Pingback: That One Time I Was A Mormon – Pt. 2 | Thoughts of a Lunatic

  3. Pingback: That One Time I Was A Mormon – Pt. 3 | Thoughts of a Lunatic

  4. omg I left out a few key words, filtering your thoughts is not good if you want to maximize your full mental abilities.
    an when I said hang out with ‘them’ I meant the Mormons. But if you really study you’ll discover there is a human being and there is a person who is trying to become a human being, you see, we have the choice to seek perfection and if we believe we can achieve it we can, but then it comes down to definitions and meanings which are very difficult to transfer to others any other way besides feeling, and that is where communion with the universe happens, when you become silent, and then expend energy in an activity that generates more energy! and that’s prayer! and sincere prayer for another’s happiness is the best, that’s when you know you have become a more truer version of yourself, when you find someone outside you that gets you to move the universe in their favor through sheer pure love. its amazing.

  5. for instance, my goal in life is to eradicate misery from the world, well, it always starts with you, can you think of anything more practical that eliminating Misery from humanity? Seems like an eternal goal or at least a very long time I can’t comprehend, but I know misery seems to disappear within me when I determine to conduct myself in a way that is moving toward a actual plan in which involves happiness based off of doing normal stuff, happiness is such a simple thing, its a mode of conduct, like peace, but most people don’t know what happiness is because they think they know, and once you think you already know then you better not be wrong, and that’s where sincerity comes into play, being honest with yourself, if you wanna go in a park and walk around on your hands and beg for food, and that’s your vision, well then you should probably do it! so many people are afraid of the future that they never tap into the only place that truly is and that is the place where you are, which is wherever your mind is headed Einstein said the body follows

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