I spoke with my mother today. Our relationship has been more than a little strained for a little over a year now since my 16 year old son was sent by his father to live with them. It was due to a violent incident that occurred in my home. This incident was the climax of the previous 6 months filled with endless streams of profanity, physical threats, lies, insults, and name calling; arguments with my husband (my son's step father) regarding how certain situations were handled by me; and many, many hours of trying to pray for help while sobbing.
My parents did not disown me due to the decision that my son could no longer stay in my home, as they don't believe in such things, but there has been more than one time I wondered if I didn't wish they had. You see, my son has a personality disorder and violent tendencies. I was so affected in the 6 months he was in my home, that I cut my hair to one inch in length, asked my husband to leave, very nearly lost my job, and had a nervous breakdown. All of this while not missing a single day of work and holding a leadership calling. My parents did not care about any of this. I am a horrible person because I rejected my son. Okay--I accepted this and have been trying to move on from there.
This past May, my only sibling-a brother-passed away unexpectedly due to cancer. He had shared with no one that he was ill. I did travel there for the funeral, etc. It was made quite clear to me the entire time I was there that my presence was not wanted, but my parents did not want to deal with explaining why I would not have attended, so I was allowed to attend. Not allowed to participate in any decision making or service. My opinions and thoughts would not even be heard. I spent the week in "my" room with a 1300 page Stephen King book, which I almost completed.
Recently, my mom and I have been doing a little better it seemed. I felt bad as I had not spoken to her in several days, so I gave her a call on my lunch break today. The topic turned to my brother's death as they had finally selected a headstone. I shared with her that he had communicated with me that he would like his temple work done as soon as it is possible and so I have made arrangements. My parents are not active in the church and don't show any signs of becoming active in the near future, so I didn't think it would be a problem. And I don't suppose the arranging of the temple work was the problem. The fact that I felt my brother had communicated with me was the problem. My mother went into great detail about the hard feelings my bro had towards me before he died because of the decisions that had been made regarding my son and mentioned that she was shocked he would want anything to do with me at all. Even from Heaven.
So-in addition to suffering years of abuse from many situations, and the ordeal of leaving the children as a result of my divorce--I was forced into giving my son up a second time when I could not give him the love and support he needed. I was judged unfairly by my parents, my friends, my husband, and some of the people I attend church with. Don't misunderstand, I do have friends who have comforted and supported me the best that they could. And did not judge. But through all of this--my testimony is the same. I have been thinking this afternoon that I know of many many people who have left the church over less and similar occurrences. I have had many trials in my life--some of my own doing, and some not, but I do not wonder if these trials translate into Heavenly Father not loving and caring for me. I translate these experiences into things I don't understand now, but will at some later point. We will all understand the "whys" of every trial, every struggle. But for now, when I am feeling low and know it is not right, I turn to Him--the ONLY one who truly knows my heart and truly knows that I have always and will always do the best I can with the information and abilities that I currently possess.
I guess I just wanted to say those things "out loud". It is not important for my parents, or anyone else to understand the decisions I make. Heavenly Father understands them. My Savior understands them, and they will help me through them. Every time.