I recently realized something about myself. It's not pretty, and I'm not proud.
It's honest and I am trying to come to terms with it so that I can alter my way of thinking.
I proclaim to be open-minded to anything. Should my children be homosexual or hetero, artists or engineers, wealthy or nomadic; I just want them to be happy. I have always stated that this applied to their religious choices, as well.
"As long as they truly believe it and aren't force fed a religion, I don't care what religion they are. I just want them to be happy. I don't care how they reach their spiritual peace, just that they reach it!"
You know what? That was complete bunk. I am just as prejudiced as the people I pity; the ones who can't accept their children for who they have always been. I'm no better than the parents who turn their backs on their homosexual kids and instead hold onto their religious tomes. Because it's obvious to me that the thought of my children becoming Christian or Jewish or any other religion that has strict Rules makes my heart clutch and palms sweat.
Apparently I'm only open-minded if my kids are open-minded in the SAME WAY as I am.
But how would I react if one of them came to me and professed a wish to study a religion at a place of worship more in depth? Corinne recently asked to go to our neighbor's church and I had to tell her I thought she was too young to fully digest what they would preach without having the adult mind to process and decide for herself. Turns out, she just wanted the damn goldfish they served after Sunday School and was appeased by buying some at WalMart, but there may come a day when it's not so simple to sway them to wait. And then what? Do I attend with them? Do I become the embarrassing mom in the background raising her hand and asking questions? That's what turned me off to organized religion in the FIRST place! They don't generally like 7 year old girls in Catholic CCD classes who badger the teachers with questions like,
"What about kids in the jungles? Are you telling me God really wouldn't let them into heaven because they didn't have a bible nearby? What about the millions of people who believe in God but in a different way? You're telling me they're all WRONG and we're RIGHT and I just have to have faith?!?"
I was a precocious little brat, eh? The teachers were quite happy when my mom told me to just be quiet and get through the classes. I got my first communion with a fake smile on my face. I received my confirmation AND wedding vows in the same Catholic church without a true belief in any of what was told to me. Just nod and smile and be a good girl and no one will look at you weird.
It has taken me my whole life to be able to stand up to ANYONE (including family and friends who believe in the bible verbatim) who tries to convince me that my way isn't ok with God. I won't argue their belief with them. They're allowed to believe whatever they want and I am honestly of the mindset that whatever lightens your spirit and brings you happiness is good for your soul.
So why can't I allow my kids to be ok with God in a different way than mine?
If I keep the doors of communication open and allow without judgment any and all questions about God and the Universe, then I have to have faith in my kids that they will follow no one or group without first questioning and considering all that it may mean...
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