Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Insomnia-Induced Fantasies

I'm writing this at 3:00am on a weeknight. I'm suffering from one of my occasional bouts of insomnia. And in this sleep-deprived state I had a crazy fantasy about how I would leave the church.

This train of thought began as I was contemplating the current state of our Relief Society presidency. The Relief Society president has been having really terrible health problems lately. I am not privy to what those health problems are, but they have caused her face to swell up so much that she doesn't even look like the same person any more. She has consequently been absent from church a lot. The other counselors have been having very spotty attendance as well because of health concerns or other reasons.

The absence of leadership has been causing a lot of confusion and problems in communication. There was a recent mix-up over the lesson schedule that caused me to teach two weeks in a row---and one of the lessons I had to make up off the top of my head just a few days before teaching it. Plus, there have been other problems with communications about activities that have made it so that no one has shown up for the Relief Society Activities Formerly Known as Enrichment except the people presenting.

Even though our current presidency has only been in for less than half a year, I have to wonder if it's possible they might get released. And in pondering that possibility, I began to have a fantasy in which the bishop called me to be the next Relief Society President.

Let me be clear that I've never wanted to be Relief Society President---I never really wanted to be that engrossed in the church even when I was a TBM. But I've also always felt in my heart that I would make a really, really good Relief Society President. Part of me is sad that I can never be one now because, in all modesty, I seriously would have ROCKED at it.

So here's how the fantasy goes:

Bishop: Sister, we would like to extend a release to you from your current calling as a Relief Society teacher.

Me (inwardly feeling a great sense of relief at having my last ties to the church finally cut): Thank you, Bishop. I gratefully accept this release.

Bishop: And the reason we are extending this release to you is because we have a new calling in mind for you. The Spirit has told me that you should be the one who should serve as our ward's new Relief Society President.

Me (chuckling with amusement): Well, Bishop, it's good that you are so in tune with the Spirit. I do think that I could do a good job as the Relief Society President. I'm a very well-organized person who puts 110% into everything I do. In particular, I would make it my mission to reach out to all the sisters in the ward. I would work my hardest to help every sister feel loved, appreciated and welcome at Relief Society. (Pause.) But I'm afraid that I cannot accept this calling.

Bishop: Uhhh... Why not?

Me: Because I don't believe in the church. At all. Not one bit of it. I haven't believed a word of it for at least a year now. I'm not even sure I believe that God exists any more. I've only been coming because I didn't want to make waves when I left. I just wanted to quietly recede into inactivity without anyone really noticing. But you've unfortunately forced my hand here. I'm sorry. What I'm going to do next will probably comes as quite a shock to you, but...

(At this point, I take out my temple recommend and walk over to the Bishop's paper shredder and run it all the way through.)

Me: From this point on, you will not see me here at church any more. I don't want you to try to talk me out of it. I don't want any home teachers or visiting teachers. I just want to be left alone. And I would also appreciate it if you never mention this conversation to anyone else. Sorry to drop such a bomb on you, but, well... That's how these things go sometimes. If you don't mind, I'd like to end this conversation here and I don't really wish to discuss it any further. And I do not authorize you to discuss this conversation with anyone else. Ever.

(Walks out of office.)

Ahhh, me.... Fantasies....

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