07 July 2009

Adopting to Mormons

I mentioned in passing a couple of posts ago that I'm pregnant. Let's get a little more specific about that.

I'm 26 weeks preggers at this point and the pregnancy itself has been free of nearly everything that usually makes pregnant women miserable: no morning sickness, no weird cravings (although eggs are not my friends at the moment), no swelling or just about anything else. I just have a baby in me. (I do have some uterine fibroids that may become a problem at some point, but they've been behaving so far.) Pregnancy is fucking weird and I'll be glad when I can go a whole four hours without needing to pee, but that's really not what I logged on to talk about today.

Instead I logged on for Mormonism.

See, Steve and I are adopting out our unborn son, and the family we chose happens to be Mormon. We've met them, we really like them, they're fantastic people. We wouldn't be giving them our kid if we didn't think they were the best family possible for him. But damn, this has given rise to a lot of discussion in the house. Our roommate Varina used to be Mormon; now she's trying to decide where to get her "Daughter of Perdition" tattoo and all but filling out paperwork to officially leave the church. She's been trying to explain the theological and social aspects of Mormonism that we'll want to know about for our kid. She thinks we're a little mad for adopting to Mormons, but not nearly so much as a friend of hers who actually was adopted by Mormons and made a long, wrenching post about how much the religion fucked her up, no matter how much she loves her family. It's been around my brainpan a bit of late. Oh, and the local Mormon church is right across the street, anytime you look out the kitchen window or leave the house, there it is. (It's actually pretty scenic; a lot of our weather comes over the church and the clouds look very cool against its spire. But it is weird to have around.)

I guess what's bothering me is that I don't know why this discussion is happening. I know I want this family to raise my child. Maybe this is just part of that looking into the unknown of the future that's inherent in adoption. I have no idea. I don't want my son to get fucked up by his religion, but I also know that if he does he will still be okay. The couple in question are sane, understanding, emotionally competent people and I believe they'll help him deal with the religion in a way that makes sense for him. And if the religion itself becomes a problem, then hell, his birthparents are heathens and we can help him figure his shit out. The support structure is good. He'll have all the people around the he needs. I mean, if Steve and I for some reason raised him we'd teach him to be a nihilist in a beautiful world, and possibly a Thelemite. Thelema is one of the best religions out there for getting your head on straight and looking at the world, but in all honesty 90% of all religion is identical. That's why I'm not a Thelemite on my own or a member of any other religious institution.

I know my kid's going to be okay because while that identical 90% can be damaging and the remaining 10% is necessarily crazy-looking, religion is a system that you can grow with and that can grow with you if you deal with it as something that should grow. A stagnant system is useless to everyone inside and outside of it. But if you look at your faith as an organic process, as something that ought to change over time as you explore it, then I think it can be positive. I didn't. My religion (Episcopalian) was just this thing I did on occasion without much interest, so when my disinterested fakery became a serious emotional sinkhole that kept me from respecting myself as a person, I just left the church. Leaving is easier when you don't believe. I spent awhile half-heartedly trying to find a replacement before I admitted I didn't need or want one, that they all felt just as fake as the institution I'd left, and that I wanted to go it alone. My worldview has grown up since then as a fairly cohesive universe that does everything I need it to and nothing else. I don't understand doctrinal belief; why do you need all these precepts that you didn't invent, that somebody else came up for you, that often get in your way or become points of strife between your desires and your prepackaged morals? That seems like a lot of unnecessary hassle just to get a lens through which to understand the world. (I know a lot of the sociological reasons people join religions. They make sense, in a way. But it's such a bizarre, narrow, fear-based way of dealing with a welcoming, expansive, free reality.)

Perhaps what I'm getting at is that this whole discussion about whether it's a good idea to send a kid into Mormonism isn't part of my reality anymore. There is no possible manner in which this child's life could not turn out in the best way possible. Bickering over details like where one religion falls on a scale of 1 to Crazyballs is moot -- beyond moot, it's meaningless. They are all Crazyballs and they are all perfectly reasonable and they are all useful only to the degree you use them instead of vice versa. It's a meaningless discussion. The universe wants me to give this baby to this couple, and the universe knows what it's doing. Everything else is idle chatter.

No comments:

Post a Comment