Wednesday, October 15, 2008


Faith. It’s a loaded word, and not one that I take lightly. I have thought much about religion in my life even though I don’t go to church. I have questions, many questions. I don’t have many answers other than what feels right in my heart. And I find religion deeply, deeply personal, which is why sharing these thoughts is hard. But this is my outlet, and this is me being as authentic as I can be.

I would call my religious beliefs unconventional, at least for Idaho. Maybe not for Bend or California… In my house I had three Buddhas: one was a sand Buddha, white, quiet, contemplative; one was gold, bought in Chinatown in Manhattan, lively, almost; one was small, ceramic, happy. I also had a Buddha face in three panels hung in my bedroom (I just noticed this theme of three- always with religion, always). On my bookshelf I had Conversations with God, which I read in my teens, a book on ethics written by the Dalai Llama, a book entitled If Buddha Came to Dinner. In the lost childhood box I had a picture drawn when I was five of the color of my soul. I had drawn it at the Edgar Cayce Center in Virginia Beach. In my high school box were many letters from regional Unity church retreats.

In the last few years I have seriously questioned my faith, faith that seemed so solid as a child. I want to believe in something more, but I leave room for the possibility that there isn’t, that we are a collection of cells and live and die. I’ve had a particularly hard time finding a community in Boise in which I feel my beliefs fit.

The fire has caused me to reflect on my faith. I say things like, “The universe won’t give me more than I can handle” and “The universe knew we needed a good baby who would sleep through the night.” I like the term universe. God seems finite and loaded. If I believe that there is some power that is protecting us right now, I have to have faith… it doesn’t work any other way.

I am also amazed by the things that survived the fire and the way in which they were laid out. I suppose I could chalk it up to coincidence. It is possible. But it doesn’t feel right. It doesn’t feel coincidental.

I think the biggest thing that has made me question our existence and the likelihood of “more” is Kellen. Dan and I tried for a year to conceive. We had even seen the fertility specialist and been through a round of treatment. The month we got pregnant was a complete fluke. Given that our house burned down when I was eight months pregnant, I have thought a lot about timing. What if we had gotten pregnant when we first started trying or the month we were on medication? Kellen’s life would have been completely different. His birth wouldn’t have been front page news. His life wouldn’t have been started by the generous community. He just would have been one of the “victims” of the fire. And I wonder how much that will affect who he becomes. I couldn’t have known about what was to come. But I feel like the universe did. And he was timed perfectly.

I still don’t have answers, only questions. And reflection.



    Click on October 5th

  2. Click on Sept 28th -Is faith nonsense?