Today I thought I'd share what this experience has been like for us...
How have your families reacted?
Our parents are both very orthodox Mormon. Danny's mom was very understanding and said: "Danny, you are ONE in a million and you married a woman who is ONE in a million. You deserve each other!!!" Isn't that the best thing you could ever hear?
I've had one or two conversations with my Mom & Dad. The Mormon religion is very meaningful to them (which I understand completely) and I know they wish my path was different. Though I think they're used to their 6 kids being extremely independent. So this is a dynamic that isn't brand new for them.
Did you receive any negative feedback from readers?
The truth is - only TWO Facebook comments seemed off to me. TWO!! And they came quite some time after the fact. This is unreal to me as this topic is EXTREMELY sensitive for Mormons and I've seen people write just horrible, disrespectful things to each other as they defend their identities on Facebook and elsewhere.
On my end, I'm trying to navigate this shift with a "heart at peace" instead of a "heart at war" - and I hope the post reflected that. Did it feel that way to you? I didn't want to shame anyone else or attack anyone's identity or push anyone's buttons as there is no need to do that. And I think it made a difference as no one seemed defensive. yay!
What About the Timing?
I've actually had a post in my drafts for over a year. The draft evolved over time. A few days before posting it, I had been in a discussion with a few people about gearing up to publish it in a few days. And then, coincidentally, a major shift in a church policy affecting gay families was made known shortly thereafter. It just felt like a good time to share my post, especially as many Mormons were eager to discuss and share their thoughts. So I posted it on a Saturday instead of waiting for the following week.
Why Did You Wait So Long To Share It?
I held back from sharing earlier in the year as I knew the topic was a sensitive one. I have many Mormon readers whom I adore and I wanted this space and our retreats to continue to feel like a safe space for them - and I'll admit I was worried they would feel otherwise. Due to a shared background, I know many of the experiences of Mormons and Mormon women, and I've always had a soft spot for teaching them my message. Our message helps people to be better Mormons. It helps Catholics to be better Catholics. And it helps Atheists to be better Atheists. I hope all will continue to still feel comfortable conversing here and being a part of this community.
Do You Regret Sharing It?
No. The experience has been better than I anticipated.
Also, it was beginning to feel like an elephant in the room for me. I was beginning to feel uncomfortable by not saying anything about it, mostly because this is a place where we all desire to connect in real ways. It feels SO MUCH BETTER to have shared my thoughts openly. It feels more natural to have it out there than to not.
Danny left some massive comments in the comments section and I love every word he wrote! We share in all of those beliefs. So you can see why we say we feel very united in our spiritual path. One thing that might be surprising to some is that the kind of spirituality we both try to live by can take place in a church, or not in a church. In a marriage, or not in a marriage. With a child, or without a child. With a job, or without a job. It's a spiritual life not based on circumstances. :)
Also, many people had questions and I tried to answer them all in the comments section. We absolutely loved the discussion that took place there.
THANKS AND LOVE TO YOU ALL!!!
P.S. TODAY we have some family coming to town for Thanksgiving. They just barely wrote and asked if they could come and purchased tickets that day!!! How exciting is that!? We'll see how many blog posts I get out this week. Ha. I think I better say Happy Thanksgiving to you now just in case! :) I hope you have the most beautiful day with friends and family.
Also...some dear old Thanksgiving posts...
In Case You're Wishing You Were in Love For the Holidays
My Prayer for Today