I have moved, approximately, close to 30 times in my whole life. The majority was before 7th grade. I was at a new school every year until 7th grade (and then I spent two years at the same school and then moved to a different state).
Starting at a new school is the absolute best when you don’t start at the beginning of the year, IF you’re not a shy person. Me, I’m about as shy as a puppy in a room made of tennis balls. Everyone is curious about who you are and so they come to you. Easy peasy friendships!
When you start a new school at the beginning of the school year it’s completely different. No one cares who you are, they don’t realize that you’re new, and they stick with who and what they know. Why? Because the majority is new and how nice is the comfortable and everyday when you’re thrown into the strange new ways. This type of move is lonely, if you’re me- the puppy, lol.
We recently moved to Utah. You know, the plural marriage, everybody is Mormon, blah blah blah, state. We moved from a place that has a very high number of introverts that are spooked like deer in headlights if you say “Hi” or smile. Seriously, I had people almost make a run for it because I smiled and said “Hello”.
Moving here has been quite the experience. I am a Christian and have many of the same beliefs and morals as someone of the LDS faith so I never imagined it would be too big of a deal.
When we got here, I wasn’t able to get out much cause I was 28 weeks/7 months pregnant and had a 1 year old and a 4 year old, all I saw -any time we’d drive around or I’d be looking out our windows- were blondes. BLONDES EVERYWHERE. In our neighborhood (not counting the ones who had turned gray/white) there was one other with BROWN hair. Not light brown, not dirty blonde, not dark blonde, but brown- actual brown hair. I felt like I stuck out like a sore thumb.
Then, we started getting visitors and the very first thing our very first visitor asked was: “Are you LDS?” BadumTSSS! That’s right! Utah began to live up to it’s very special stereotype. I had never been asked that question in my life. 4 states, 30 moves, countless new faces, never once had I been asked what religion/denomination I was.
Why is this a thing Utah? This should not be a thing. Love on people no matter what. Who cares if you talk weird or people give you funny looks when you talk specifics into your religion. Give this denomination/religion thing up.
The thing that has got me the most though is this: Utah seriously ROCKS for families. This place is complete perfection if you have kids. Schools, playgrounds, parks, museums, aquariums, zoo, hiking, biking, you name it! Everything is family oriented. You go somewhere and your kid starts throwing a fit, 1 out of 10,000 will give you a dirty look. The other 9,999 will want to help you or just give you a sympathetic smile, depending on how big the fit is. It’s NBD (no big deal 😋). Kids can be kids. Sure it’s loud everywhere you go but you don’t feel like an outcast for having children. There’s no pressure to keep your kids at home because Heaven forbid they might disturb the peace of the public.
This move however, has been the loneliest moves of them all. It’s hard to make friends with people who aren’t completely sincere with their friendship. Many of them want you as their sweet shiny button at their ward. I can’t and won’t be that shiny new button. There are things about the LDS faith that just don’t sit right with me (don’t bother debating it out or trying to convince me because ya’ll have too many different directions of thinking for some stuff and I need more stability, consistency, and one book to live my life by that is unchanging.) so I will not be joining the church. This does not mean that I am against the church. This doesn’t mean I am a horrible person who is going to thrash everything around me and get pass-out drunk and do drugs and terrorize the earth. (Yes, there’s a backstory to that hahaha!!!)
This does mean: I am a Christian. I believe that Jesus died on the cross so that I can have a relationship with my Creator and so that I can someday spend eternity in Heaven. I will make mistakes (just like you, and you, and you. I may have over-numbered this blog’s readers but… here’s hoping I reach 3 people). I want to be the best person I can be and shine the light of God’s love into a dark world around me. I won’t always succeed at that. I want to raise my children to also shine that light and love. I don’t want to condemn or judge people, that’s seriously not my job cause there’s not a true way for me to know anyone’s heart of their actions or words. I won’t always succeed at that either, come on though, if you’re going to have a mullet you have to be expected to be judged by anyone with the sense of sight. Seriously cut the mullet out. I am a sinful person who struggles with everyday temptations and some of my struggles are different than yours but thankfully (specifically, thank God!!) I am blessed by grace and mercy and He is not finished with me yet. When He is finished with me I hope to have left His imprint on the world and beyond maybe 😄
That is who I am. No, I’m not LDS. Yes, I am a good (sometimes) person.
We have seen the best of the best (though I still question their motives since I haven’t heard much from them since we moved from our first neighborhood) and some pretty sad examples of the LDS church.
The night before I went in for my c-section, the neighbor ladies (about 99% LDS) threw me a baby shower and the place was PACKED! The blessed me with sweet words of encouragement and advice and friendship, even if for some it was only that night.
But then when we went to find a smaller place to live (seriously HUGE houses here. HUUUUUUUGE!!!! Small is typically around 2,500-3,000 square feet.) we are wanting to rent because we still are unsure of our future here and we looked at, I don’t know how many, places ranging from; basement apartments to houses to townhomes to actual apartments. The reason we looked at actual apartments? Because we were at our wits end. We had been asked every time (in the end it was every time but twice) if we were LDS. One lady took a look at the tattoo on my foot (it’s of a turtle with a plumeria on it’s back) and quit talking to me unless I specifically asked her a question. We were repeatedly turned down after being DISCOVERED! Our shame! The HORROR!! We were terrorists that would BURN THIS PLACE TO THE GROUND with our unholiness!!!!!!!!! We ended up turning in a couple of them to HUD but nothing became of it because that’s something that is quite difficult to prove. We talked about doing some undercover work and recording the entire process of “trying to rent a place” and turning people in that way but we just don’t have the time. It was all pretty unbelievable.
We now live in a nice neighborhood where it’s a mix of LDS and non-LDS. I’m beginning to see how the LDS can get the view of- if you’re not LDS then you are seriously off and we need to stay far away- though. There are quite the extremes when it comes to LDS and non-LDS people here. Unfortunately that still doesn’t make what happened with the rental situation ok. Don’t go judging a book by it’s denomination. Unless it’s a book about a denomination. I mean, the satanic bible is pretty straight forward with the whole- it’s a satanic bible thing. I belong more in the NKJV (New King James Version- cause theethouthy is just too lispy for me) section of books.
All I’m sayin is, give people a chance. Just like anyone, LDS/non-lds, people can suck or they can be AWESOME!!!! So make the choice to be awesome. Please.
A huge thanks to the many who work very hard at being awesome and a BIG “How do you do it?!” to those who achieve awesome without even knowing. You know who you are you king/queen of awesome you!
Pretty sure our current landlords are LDS. I don’t know. I haven’t asked. But they’re pretty cool whether they are or aren’t.