Every Sunday, I think about it. I wish I was the church-going type, but I just can't bring myself to walk into a church for some reason since Matt's death.
I wasn't raised going to church on a regular basis, even though I grew up Catholic. I don't know if I can necessarily blame the lack of routine growing up for my lack of routine for church as an adult, but my desire to go to church is even less now since Matt died. Maybe I'm just using that as an excuse - I blame Matt's death for everything these days...
I believe everyone is entitled to their opinions and beliefs, and I would never begrudge anyone theirs, but I'm not looking for explanations for why I should start going... Even though I don't attend church, I have very specific spiritual beliefs.
I pretty much decided in 7th and 8th grade when I attended a Catholic school that I wasn't going to be Catholic anymore. There are just too many things I disagree with about that religion, and I felt hypocritical calling myself Catholic.
Matt's dad belonged to a Methodist church where we used to live, and it was such a beautiful, old architectural landmark. Because Roy attended church there, Matt and I decided that we would get married there. It was a gorgeous setting.
When I got pregnant with Jacob, I was beyond thrilled. I felt the spark of life inside me, and knowing that I had a little life growing in me that was part Matt and part me was such a miracle to me. Matt said I was the happiest pregnant woman he ever saw, and I felt like I was, too. I looked like hell because my face broke out so badly, but I still never felt so beautiful in my entire life. I can't even put into words the joy I felt the whole time I was pregnant. I loved every single moment of it. So much so, that when Jacob was born a month early, I felt robbed of that last month of pregnancy. (I know better now since I had the lovely experience of that last month with Sydney...)
Being pregnant with Jacob, I felt I had more of a responsibility to attend church. For two reasons - to show gratitude for the blessings that were bestowed upon me, and to give my children some religious background to draw from. I didn't feel qualified to teach anyone about God. I even told Pastor Frank (awesome man and teacher) my reasons for joining the church, and that I couldn't promise to attend every Sunday, but that I would try. He appreciated my honesty.
Even though I still feel a responsiblity to my children, I can't bring myself to attend church. Part of my responsibility to them is honesty, and I feel like I would be dishonest to myself and to them if I force myself to go. Maybe someday I can bring myself to get back into it, but for now, I accept the fact that I'm not.
Jacob frequently asks me questions about God; the most recent one being, "Where does God live?" My answer for him was, "In our hearts." He asked, "EVERYone?" and I told him, "In everyone who invites him in. Not everyone does, but God still loves everyone the same." Maybe I'm more qualified than I thought to teach about God... at least the basics, anyway.
I don't believe that one has to go to church to be a good person. As long as you are honest and good to yourself and to others seven days of the week, you're good to go. These days, my home is my church.