While I have no qualms writing about my own parents I generally refrain from mentioning my in-laws. This is for a few reasons. One being that while he doesn’t read it with any regularity, Patrick DOES read this website and those are his parents I am talking about. It’s no secret between he and I that the relationship is strained at best and that we rarely see eye to eye on… anything. But that’s no reason he needs to read about it on the internet. Another reason would be that while I don’t expect his parents to stumble across this website, it could happen. I stand firm in that if I won’t say it to your face, you won’t read it here but the shock of finding yourself mentioned on your son’s wife’s website could prompt what I imagine would be an uncomfortable phone conversation. Much as would her fondness for the word “fuck” and all its various uses…

But I am breaking that rule because this has been on my mind all week.

In what will probably become one of the biggest mistakes of my life, my mother-in-law and I had a rather frank discussion about religion (and life in general) this past weekend prompted by her asking me why we had not yet found a church. I’m quite certain alcohol had to be involved otherwise I would have NEVER stepped a single foot onto this minefield with her. My in-laws are the people who go to church every Sunday morning, sit, stand, pray, sing and then go home. Fine. Whatever helps you sleep at night. I attempted to very rationally explain to her my frustration with the religious “environment” in our area and how sad the general attitude makes me but from our conversation I was left with the distinct impression that I am somehow viewed as… less… because I have no interest in just going through the motions like I think they do.

I have no doubt that I am a good person although when held next to Patrick’s, my halo is somewhat tarnished and crooked. I maintain that this gives it character. But this conversation was re-visited later while we were out running around and my mother-in-law expressed her distaste for this small magnet I have on my car…

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We once again ventured into the area of the general attitude of the churches we’ve visited in this area and why you couldn’t pay me enough to raise my child(ren) around that kind of hypocrisy. Bearing in mind, we live in Augusta, GA and so far, it’s been my experience that I don’t care what word they slap on the sign it’s one big giant Baptist church. She questioned how in the world I could put a Muslim symbol on my car after what “they” had done to our country. But my feeling is this. Those extremists are no more accurately representing the god they claim to worship than “Christians” who bomb abortion clinics and kill the doctors who perform the procedures all the while believing they are serving their god and that theirs is the only way.

I, on the other hand, want to teach my children to learn about everything and everyone. To find their own truth and to make an educated decision based on their own heart. And for my part in this I will do everyhting I can to raise them to be good and kind people. To accept every idea and to hunger for knowledge. But the decision will be theirs and it will come from their experiences and beliefs, not mine.

This, naturally, led to an uncomfortable silence until I said “Look! Shoes!” and bought some adorable four inch platform wedges with embroidery all down the sides. I was quite excited to wear them yesterday until I busted my ass while brushing my teeth. I ended up wearing flats instead. The shoes did have one huge benefit though. When I was standing in front of the fridge that morning I was able to see just how much dust accumulates on the top. Thanks new shoes.

Other things my mother-in-law and I disagreed on? That I will feel old in 6 months when I turn 30 (she thinks that is ridiculous) and antique stores are creepy because they are full of dead people’s furniture (a principle on which I stand firmly.)

So. To recap. No to church in the south. Yes to cleaning the house in 4 inch heels. No to sleeping in a hundred year old bed.