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Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Mormons and Big Love on the Blog Frog

Something I have learned while blogging is that every single thing I say matters to someone.

When I first began blogging a little less than a year ago, my posts were random and sometimes sporadic. I consider my first six months or so of writing as practice and learning through trial and error. Kinda like when your English teacher asks you to write for ten minutes as a warm-up. I was sometimes careless in how I worded my sentences and at times I verged on the border of rude. If I came across someone else's blog and didn't like something I read, I would forget the Golden Rule and say whatever I thought.

I was totally careless.

This last year, I have really tried to make a concerted effort to speak with meaning and to be positive. I felt it was time for me to get real with myself. I asked myself a few questions, namely: What is the purpose of this blog? What story am I trying to tell? Am I leaving a good mark upon others who pass by? I had to get real and I had to get honest.

I had to get real honest with myself and with you.

Nonetheless, I can be someone who can't seem to keep her mouth shut when the opportunity presents itself. What I have learned though is that I can present my thoughts constructively and coherently and still be myself. Thus the day I hippity-hoppitied over to CJane's blog and came across Mormonism Monday. I saw my favorite television series, Big Love, mentioned. The thought, oh Dear God help me please, entered my thoughts immediately. Why? Because I knew I was about to read something I would probably comment on...and I don't comment that often on CJane's blog (can we even comment anymore on her blog?).

My comment must have appeared on the front page, because before I knew it, I literally had hundreds of new visitors to Fresh Confessions of a Screwed Up Texan. I gained new readership in a matter of hours. Holy hot dog I am still gettin' new readers...which is great.

Which brings me to another point. For the first time I can remember on someone else's blog, out in the unprotected internet world where I couldn't immediately hit delete forever, I openly admitted I am Mormon. (Did you notice the badge in my right column?) I've always tried to hide that part of me, because I was afraid of others judging me based on my religion and because explaining theology really isn't the overall purpose of this blog. So, I was pleasantly surprised when I was welcomed with open arms and understanding from both members and nonmembers.

On a side note, for all y'all that are squeamish about using the word "Screwed" my name is Allie.

May I honestly conclude by saying Thank You for all your support and kind words--whether it has been from a regular post like this or from reading my personal story, Screwed Up: My Life, I can't begin to tell y'all how much I really do appreciate all y'all's camaraderie (oh, you'll find a lot of Texan slang here too).

Screwed Up: My Life chapter tomorrow and you can now follow publically.
Winner for the Spring Give-Away will be announced Saturday (TIME'S UP).


Mr Spooky said...

Hey Allie,

I'm Alex. Firstly I like your new look blog!
Secondly, good for you coming out of the closet! I don't 'know' any Mormons. But I used to be a mortician.... And I attended 1 Morman funeral and I had a lot to do with the family prior to the funeral and I will say that the Morman community where I used to work were unique in that they were so welcoming into their lives and their church, they were just lovely people. Considering that they had just lost a loved one and were grieving, they still made time to make other feel wanted and welcome.

oddharmonic said...

I'm Melissa, but you already know that. (:

Religion can become a sticky, messy topic on the Internet. I choose to think of it as an attribute like eye color or hair color -- everyone is what they are. I do not try to change others and hope they do not expend too much effort in trying to change me unless doing so makes them happy. That's how my family coexists fairly peacefully with members of different faiths.

Also: please do not include me in the Spring Give-Away drawing since I recently won your photo contest.

Amy said...

Interesting that people who are LDS aka Mormons tend to be a bit shy about coming out of the closet that way. I'm the same way. I like to get to know people and have them get to know me before I tell them my religious affiliation simply because I have felt that they stereotyped me if they found out I was LDS right off the bat before getting to know me personally. I want people to like and respect me for me. Not because of any other reason.

Michele said...

I found your blog this week from that CJane post. I converted to the church about three years ago and I liked what your response said :-) I'm going to agree with you that "the bubble" does exist.

I've never seen the show (we don't subscribe to HBO on our cable) so I didn't pipe in. But now I'm wondering why everyone has their panties in a twist. Maybe Netflix has it?

I also agree with Melissa's comment side of our family is made up of numerous faiths. It can become a sticky situation, and my husband and I have chosen to just remain respectful (no matter what crazy things are said to us about the church!) In our situation it has been the best way to keep the peace.

Anyway, I am glad that I stumbled over there because I found your blog! I've enjoyed reading your posts. And I think that your honesty is refreshing!

Richard Reeve said...

Ah...So it's Allie!
For those who would belittle another's faith and judge another to the point of not participating in a blog anymore, we can only hope that the walls they live behind will someday melt. None the less, the world is full of such judgments and all we can really do is work on our own. I've become very conscious of the fact that those I point the finger at as being "bad" or "wrong" or "weird" really represent parts of myself I am not in touch with.

Screwed Up Texan said...

Spooky Alex, I enjoy keeping up with you on your blog. Yes, families are very important to our religion, which is part of the reason I had such a tough time as a child.

Melissa, I agree, religion is like an attribute. It is nice to not wear colored contacts anymore.

Amy, you're right, I've been very trepedous about "coming out of the closet". There have been many times I have been prejudged not only on the internet, but also in my every day life.

Michele, my family is too made up of a variety of faiths so I know what your talking about. I too dont judge them on their religion or lack thereof.

Richard, what I like best about your comment is: "I've become very conscious of the fact that those I point the finger at as being "bad" or "wrong" or "weird" really represent parts of myself I am not in touch with." So TRUE!

Isle Dance said...

((Thank you)) so much for sharing what you're sharing on your blog. It's amazing to hear. And relate to. Even if the circumstances were so different. You are not alone. That's for sure.

Karen said...

Hi! My name is Karen and I'm Mormon! :) Great post, as always!!!

Screwed Up Texan said...

Isle Dance, thanks for the hugs..keep reading and you'll find out why that is important to me. You were not alone, words spoken so accurately as I am finding out.

Karen, like I said before I am glad you came out of the, um pantry. :) I thought that maybe you were.

Chino Blanco said...

Tom Hanks puts this brouhaha into perspective (and waxes prophetic) at the 3rd season premiere of Big Love:

"There's gonna be lies, and secrets, and discoveries, and problems. Television!"

Screwed Up Texan said...

"Chino Blanco", What I have learned through sharing my own story of abuse as a child is that every person has the right to their side of the story. We'll find out Sunday night just what all is involved with Big Love's epidsode about temple ceremonies. I am a devoted MEMBER fan to the show. If the Big Love story writers stay true to their commitment of being descent and respectful of the LDS faith (which I believe they have thus far), then I am sure what ceremonies Big Love does depict in the temple (if they do) will give nonmembers a greater respect for those ceremonies. I cant expect nor demand anything less than respect.

Anonymous said...

Found your blog via Our Front Door, and wanted to post to say hi. don't you love how a random comment can gain readership. Its great.

I will be checking your blog out and reading your stories.

Anonymous said...

I just found your blog from your comment on "The Pioneer Woman". I just want you to know that I enjoyed the read and will be back later to read more. And my mother's name was "Allie". Doris

Screwed Up Texan said...

To the anonymous person from California who left a comment, I have chosen not to publish your comment here. However, I want you to know that not publishing your comment has nothing to do with you've being lesbian--honestly, I dont care what people's sexual orientation is. My grandmother came out of the closet in the 1940s and was ridiculed for the rest of her life for doing so. I never knew her, but I am sure she was a strong person to have lived in the open during a time period that homosexuality was not generally accepted and then also to have her family disown her. My grandmother was not Mormon, but was Catholic rather, as well as my family. Like stated before, I dont care if you are gay or lesbian, I personally dont judge you one bit, because by doing so, I am also judging my own blood--my grandmother. However, I also believe that Americans should be able to profess what they believe (or dont believe) even if it has religious/spiritual roots. Perhaps next time GLBT group will get what they want so badly, and perhaps not--that is for the voters to decide.

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