I found the bible I gave Julie when she was a teenager in 1994. On the inside cover it says "In here you will find all your answers". How interesting. This was the year Danny was told he needed a new heart. Over the next eight years I was very active in my church. I was an elder, "chairperson" of the board (although I never felt very comfortable leading a group of people who didn't really accept me in that position), sunday school teacher, and played in the band we created for the early morning service. I did other things too, just like any good dedicated believer. All this I did because I thought I was been "led" to do them. Even when I didn't really want to do them (like chairperson) I did anyway. Then Danny got his heart in 1997. I tried even harder to do more things because questions that had been hidden away for years started popping up. No one had answers so I tried to smother them with good works.
I was raised as a Methodist. I can sing all the old songs - memorized them when my mother and I sang them, sang them ALL the time. Someone asked me "when I was saved" like it was supposed to be another birthday. I had no idea, just always believed. Wasn't always a practicing christian but I knew there was Jesus and god.
Slowly but surely the questions started out weighing the non answers and I had to start looking harder or elsewhere. God was not helping me. Some say when prayers aren't answered it's because we aren't on the same time schedule as god. So how the hell do they know what time zone god is in? When I had questions I couldn't find answers for them I would say to myself "don't worry about this, god will take care of it".
2001 or 2002 our church split and I left. Too much discontent in a place of "worship". Christians aren't supposed to act like this. 2004 Danny needed another heart and I needed something. Not sure what but I gave church another try. I really do like the people there. I started going about every other sunday until Mary left. All my questions burst through the dam and I could not keep the feelings of hopelessness contained.
I still think someone, somewhere, somehow created the universe. But I do not believe he, she, it is involved in my daily life. If they were, Mary would still be here. BECAUSE, everyone at church is always asking god to take care of them on the trips they make. Take care of them doing this and that and everything. From my point of view it looks like god is taking better care of her killer than he did of her. I don't know if god is good, or just, or fair, or even "looking down from above". I just know life happens, not for any reason, there isn't any kismet, we are here on this earth, good and bad alike. I'm sort of hoping the good out number the bad. It's hard to tell sometimes. We, us, you and me, are responsible for our actions. I may take into consideration other people's opinions but I don't rely on someone or thing I can't see to guide me. If I'm blind I don't need some other blind entity telling me where to step. But I do need the people in my life that make me tick. My family and friends are worth more than a belief.
My counselor says rarely does a non believer become a believer after a child or someone close dies. And that many parents who do believe leave the church because they some how deep down thought that because they did believe they were "covered" against all the bad things in life - a kind of believers insurance policy.
Tony said one day during that first week - "I guess this is when I'll either turn to god or curse him forever". I think we both are just ignoring him, if there is a him.
Now that I've got that out of my system, I'll have to see what life brings and how much I and my beliefs change over the next decade.
Tomorrow is Tony's birthday. Happy Birthday my son from another mother! I love you. Mary does too.