Sunday, August 9, 2009

Question . . .

It's late at night and I'm desperate to stay up two more hours so I can take Ben to the airport at 5:00am.

And I'm thinking --

What is it about me that makes the gentiles assume I'm not LDS?

Even after I say I'm from Utah, a common response is, "But you're not Mormon?"

Even when I lived in Utah, after I was a return missionary, I had several classmates and professors shocked to the core that I would be so conformist as to go on one of those mission thingys. I took it as a compliment at the time, I figured the girl underneath all the dreads and tattoos had probably never been befriended by a Mormon, so she assumed I wasn't one. And I don't consider myself a conformist, so their assumptions made sense.

But I think I'm a good Mormon.

Sure I don't wear my CTR ring anymore.

But what is it?

Sometimes I think even other LDS people don't think I'm one of them.

I pass people from my ward nearly everyday in the lovely neighborhoods of Crystal/Pentagon City.

And none of them even second look. They really have no idea I'm one of them, and we've been sharing a chapel/gymnasium overflow/junior banquet room for our Sacrament Meetings for two years now.

yes, my ward fills three separate rooms just for sacrament meeting.

So, can you please give me tips on how I can me more Marmin? Thanks!


Casie said...

Okay, I totally have an opinion about this, but I don't want to offend anyone, but I also want to share my thought with you. I have always thought this (not being originally from Utah) that Utah mormons tend to be extremely "clicky", so when you get outside of Utah and people find out you moved from Utah one of two things happens: either the non-Utah people automatically assume you are a "clicky" (can come off as snobby) Utah mormon OR it goes the complete flip side where people are shocked to learn that you're not a typical, clicky Utah mormon. I've been lucky in Nevada because usually the second thing is what happens to me and people are just chill instead of snub me from a geographical stand point. Now I'm reading this and I'm not sure it makes sense (it is past my bed time.) But in my head it sounds great. Anyway, there's my two bits for you. Enjoy.

Heidi said...

Is anyone surprised I have an opinion, too? :) Interesting dilemma you find yourself in...and not that I have any ideas for you personally, but I have really come to believe that as the times get crazier in the world, the time for us as LDS people - and Christians in general - is more urgent for us to walk farther away from the things the main stream is doing - even if it means that we will not be as successful in our careers or not have as wide of a group of supportive peers, but it will be I really have no idea what in you makes them think that, but I wonder if people are looking more for people who are so very different than the world that there could be no mistake that we are Christian people. Like Casie, I don't know if my thoughts make sense or if they even answer your questions, but it was a good Sunday epiphane for myself anyway. :)

Liz Szilagyi said...

Both of you make sense, and I agree with both your answers, which is why I'm so confused. At USU I always took it as a compliment cause I felt like people's surprise in finding out I was LDS was simply that they were flummoxed I had been so accepting of their own personality. And some simply explained that that really is what it was, "Oh sorry, it's just that most Mormon's haven't been as friendly to me."

I've also come to realize it depends on people's interactions with later-day saints. My colleagues who grew up admiring the Mormons in their schools were eager to ask me if I was a part of that culture. Those who still had a sour taste in their mouth from the last Mormon they met just simply didn't want to believe I was one of "those people." One co-worker kept forgetting that I was actually a Mormon from Utah, I hope I eventually sent his stereotypes up in flames.

What really gets me is how the members of my Ward really have no idea who I am. I mean, plenty do and it is a HUGE ward, but I've always been a really outgoing (dare I say remember-able) person. So I worry I'm not as friendly and accepting to those of my faith as I am to those of other religious cultures.

I guess that is what I really have to work on, which goes along perfectly with your epiphany Miss Draper.

Mom and Dad Bassett said...

So when did you join "the church?" I was totally surprised to learn that you were a Mormon. Are you Christian? You will never cease to amaze me girl!

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