Growing up I was really involved in church. I’d go to Sunday study, and Wednesday night worship, and small group. I lived with a few Christian girls from my church right out of high school, and worked at my church too! I had great times and made great memories with my church groups.
I met my husband when I was almost 20. He was weeks shy of being 25. As cheesy and cliche as it may sound, we pretty much had an instant connection. I pretty much knew instantly that we were going to get married. Which we did, a mere 9 months after meeting each other. We met at work. I was the receptionist and he was the IT guy. A classic love story. ;)
I began telling my friends about him. How much I liked him and at the time “I think I love him already”, etc. 2 weeks into my relationship with Mike, a couple of my Christian friends and I were talking about him. One of them asked if he was a Christian. “No” I answered. “Mike is agnostic”. I may as well have told them that Mike was the devil himself with the way they looked at me. It was then that my Christian friends began not talking to me anymore as word got out that “Shey’s boyfriend isn’t a Christian!” <— That is literally what was said.
In all my life I had never seen such ridicule and hatred. Until that day. The love of my life was being ridiculed and hated on because his beliefs were different. And after the umpteenth round of judgement and whispers I stopped going to church.
To me being a Christian was about loving others as you’d want to be loved no matter your differences. I love my husband for who he is, as a man, husband, and father. I don’t love him any less because he’s agnostic. I don’t judge him because he doesn’t believe or know or have solid proof that God exists. In fact, I love him more for his need of facts and for his questions.
When Mike and I had been together for 3 months we got engaged. And then 3 months later we found out we were going to have Angelina. We were married 2 months later. I remember going to an old friend’s wedding shower (I was the first of my church friends to get married) and I had to be about 7-8 months pregnant. I remember hearing all the guests talking about whatever they were talking about and then I walked into the room. Huge belly and all. No one said anything mean, but it was the stares and the side ways glances and the whispering that almost made me run out of there. I had never felt more uncomfortable in my life. I felt judged and I hated every minute those scrutinizing eyes were on me. Needless to say, I didn’t stay long.
Years later, here we are. I’m reflecting on this, because I have been feeling this judgement again. But let me be clear first. I too am guilty for judging others. I am human. I make jokes with my mormon neighbors and tease them (and they tease me back big time too), but I’ve also expressed to them how much I adore their friendship and how I like having them in my life. I may not agree with all things Mormon’s believe in or Buddhists or Catholics, but I don’t judge them because of what they believe. I may think some of the things they believe are strange, but I think some things about Christianity are strange too. I have judged others for how they eat, dress, drive, talk, etc. We all do this. It doesn’t make it right, of course.
I haven’t been writing much of my feelings here lately, because I’ve been trying to be less negative and more positive. Which has been great. But sometimes I need to write down how I’m feeling even if it’s not positive. Sometimes I’m hurt and I need to get out my hurt on here. Sometimes I feel judged and coming to my blog and writing it down helps.
I’ve been feeling judged and ridiculed lately because I don’t openly talk about God on here or most anywhere. Because I don’t talk about my walk with God or how often I read my bible (which honestly isn’t often) or how often I pray, etc. Why do I have to make all of this obscenely open in order to feel “welcome” anymore? If I don’t want to write out the details of my walk with the Lord, why is it anyone’s business to judge me for that? I married a man that’s agnostic. So what? He’s an incredible man, and my life is better with him in it. I can’t express to you how heartbreaking and hurtful it was to hear my Christian friends pass judgement on my husband so easily. It hurt. Not him, but me. Because they were missing the most important part… the man he was.
Like I said. I’m not perfect by any means. But today, I had to write this out, because I got an email that made me feel bad about myself. Made me feel bad for being pregnant. Made me feel bad about having an opinion and venting my feelings and thoughts. Briefly made me feel bad for just being a human being with all my faults and flaws.
Then I realized… why do I feel bad? This is ME! I LOVE ME, God LOVES ME. My husband LOVES ME. My kids LOVE ME. My parents LOVE ME. I may not have but 2 friends, but that’s ok, because lately… I’m realizing what’s more important. And the hurt brought with emails, tweets etc… not worth it. In this day and age we rely so heavily on technology for just about everything… and that’s including friendships. Problem with having online friends? They never truly know who you are, and it’s easy to pass judgement. It’s easy to just toss a “friend” aside when they no longer suit your “end goal”.
I’m tired of being hurt. I’m tired of being told who I am and why that doesn’t work for others. This is why I have trust issues and hold a lot of people at arms length. When I’m friends with someone… truly friends with them, I hold on tight to them. They are dear to me. No matter what they’re going through, no matter what they say, no matter what, I want them in my life. If they’re truly my friend. Because we can communicate our differences with one another, we can argue but still remain friends. We can tell each other that we’re being hateful and need to stop. A friend is someone who is there for you through all those times. If you’re so easily cast aside… that person wasn’t a true friend in my opinion.
Everything is for a season, right? Thanks for letting me vent my hurt.