If you have read some of my other posts, I’m going to assume you have picked up on my subtle hints that I am not religious (see fear #4). That being said, I fucking LOVE religious mommy blogs. It’s a strange (not strange because there’s anything wrong with religion but just strange because I am neither a mother nor religious, so why do I need to know about the best Catholic-based homeschool curriculum?), six year long obsession I’ve been nurturing since I first started reading my cousin’s wife’s (let’s call her FiFi Trixibelle, after Bob Geldof’s daughter because, why not?) Catholic motherhood/lifestyle blog. I would link you to it, but I don’t know if she wants people who like my foul-mouthed rantings about butt cleavage reading about her kid’s favourite Catholic children’s books. Or maybe she would, I don’t know.
In some ways it makes sense, because FiFi Trixibelle is my cousin’s wife and they have cute kids and I like to see what they’re up to in their life. She’s also a good writer and it seems like we’re into pretty similar T.V. shows . I guess what is so interesting to me about religious mommy blogs is that in many ways we are so similar despite agreeing on almost nothing theologically or politically. For example, FiFi Trixibelle and I like similar entertainment (movies, books, etc.). Although our different points of views seem to leave us taking conflicting messages from them in cases of particularly nuanced shows, like Mad Men for example.
In some ways my religious family members, who (for the record) I love because they’re lovely, have been a great source of liberal bubble-popping frustration in my life. I think we often look at each other the way the abaca and plantain plants would look at each other. Like, sure we’re both part of the banana family, but like are we reeeeally related? Because our fruit doesn’t look the same and we seem to serve a completely different purpose. I sometimes find it really difficult to reconcile my loving, brown-eyed (I have this thing where if someone has deep brown eyes I automatically believe they’re the kindest person in the world) relatives that I see every couple of years, with the things they believe, the policies they support and the articles they post on various friendship-ruining social media sites (I’m obviously talking about Facebook). I’m sure they feel similarly about me. For example, I am pro-choice and queer, and they have a collection of pro-life bumper stickers and have posted articles about how LGBTQ alliance clubs in their province’s high schools would teach children the wrong ideas about gender and sexuality. I feel accosted by their fear of trans people being able to use public washrooms, and they probably are sick of my liberal, progressive idealism, inability to understand basic customs during mass services (like not taking the host when you haven’t been baptized) and New York Times article posting. Just guessing.
I don’t think what I’m talking about is hard for people to understand. I’m basically saying I think something and I know some people who think something else and that’s hard for us because we want everyone to be JUST LIKE US because we have it figured out and why can’t they just get on board? I might as well just have said “here’s a story about the right and left ideological binary. It exists and it sucks. The end.”
But back to religious blogs. I love reading them and here’s why. Take FiFi Trixibelle’s blog for example. YES, we both watched Mad Men and The Crown. NO we did not like them for the same reasons. BUT we both liked them. We’re submerged in the same pop culture. We both consume it and enjoy it. We both enjoy the fact that FiFi Trixibelle’s children are cute, that winter should just die already, and also cake is delicious. We both hated the American election because we both could see that Shitbag POTUS (I will never say it’s name on my blog) has a brain the size of a thumbnail with an even smaller conscience and that Hillary -the- candidate was questionable at best. Although I think FiFi Trixibelle would have a bit more to say about Hillary in the “cons” column than I do (because Mrs. Rodham- Clinton’s 2011 speech on LGBTQ rights made me cry and I printed out 5 copies for some reason and they have been filed away in a folder in my closet since 2011 and I will hold on to THAT Hillary forever).
FiFi Trixibelle’s blog has been like an insider’s scoop into the compassionate, intelligent, logical, witty mind of someone who genuinely wants the best for her and her family’s future and (understandably) doesn’t want to be called a right- wing religious nut. Because she’s not a nut. Kind of like I don’t want to be called a liberal snowflake. Just kidding, I actually love it when people call me a snowflake. Snowflakes are beautiful but cold and if enough land on you can make you wet and uncomfortable. So, that’s fucking rad. Why wouldn’t I want to be that?
But really, through reading religious mommy blogs (not only FiFi Trixibelle’s) I learned that some people actually believe in hell. And they actually, truly believe there is a devil in some form. And that the day to day shit I do (pre-marital sex, same- sex sex, advocating for abortion rights, wearing see-through bras to the bar and pretending it’s a shirt, etc., etc.) is sinful and therefore compromises my ability to have an enjoyable afterlife and just generally degrades my moral fibre here on earth, and yet they love me. Like actually. They believe I’m doing sinful things willingly and gleefully, they believe in the devil and all his temptation and they LOVE ME, and like willingly hang out with me. I’m not saying this is going to change my political opinions or that I’m going to convert to Catholicism (or any other religion), I’m just saying that is pretty fucking big of them. Like, I don’t think they deserve a pat on the back or anything but I’m just going to return the sentiment, you know?
By the way I’m not declaring this is a reason to suddenly support and accept all people though. Like David Duke can go light himself on fire okay? #PunchNazis #ItsOkay #EvenThoughMLKWouldNotLikeThatViolentApproach
But for the well-intentioned people of the world, WHY CAN’T WE BE FRIENDS? #WeAreAllBananas