Wednesday, March 5, 2008

a place to chat

I'm enjoying a new group on flickr called "Do You Believe?". I'm so shaky every time I make a comment. The regulars are going to get to know me, and that's still something I'm getting used to. Coming out atheist helped me finally feel comfortable around other people. I knew if too many people found out, my mom would find out. I knew she would still love me and accept me and treat me like an intelligent person, but I also knew it would break her heart, because "what about heaven?". I didn't want to make her feel that way. I didn't want to be the cause of more sadness or worry in her life. She's had enough problems she never deserved.

You know, and just like coming out anything else, I had to be confident enough in myself to have the conversation. I had to know what I could say to her to make everything okay. I told her that I was a happy person, the thing she said was most important in life. I told her I was able to live my dreams, and they weren't evil, and they made me happy. It's the biggest motivator for me to keep up this blog, my photography (hey guys, I'm booked for a month with the e-mails still pouring in), give children the tools they need early on to find happiness (yeah, I know 'em, my mom told me). I want to make her proud, and I want to do that by doing what it takes to remain happy. It's WORK. It's hard work. I can't explain away needless suffering. I'm not that arrogant. maybe? whatever.

So I'm reading over there and it's inspiring. I love hearing the old way I thought, because it's a reminder of how much I've changed and how much easier my life is now. Not because I can do whatever I want, I pretty much do all the same things I did as a Christian. I did the best that I could, and I still do. My life is easier because I'm not sitting around all the time trying to make sense of the bible. I'm not getting glares from the parents of my friends. My husbands parents are both Christian and they adore me. I love them, too. If we had a Christian relationship they would not like me. I was an annoying Christian. It's why I'm so comfortable annoying people I like now. I'm used to it. It's comfortable.

I asked a lot of probing questions that an atheist might ask their youth pastor. Only I honestly didn't and still don't understand. I approached it believing 100% that it was all real, because why would all these people say it's real if it's not? That's insane. And when I learned something that contradicted something else I would ask a questions and everyone would get pissed off and shake their stupid, old, wrinkly fingers at me. I don't like the circular logic. I don't like how they think their history is more correct than real history. It's creepy.

Seriously? Yes.

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