When You Hear That High Lonesome Sound

About ten years ago, I started making some of my writings public on this blog. Since I last wrote anything, I’ve finally met my daughter and things are….well, they are what they are and I’ll leave it at that. Out of respect for her, I won’t say anything  about the state of our relationship but here’s what I do have to say:

I am no longer an active, practicing Mormon.

After 25 years of wrestling with the LDS version of God, I came to a place where I could no longer, with any fidelity to my soul and my core values, continue to participate in a religion that thought so little of me as a mother and that thought so little of my daughter.

I came to understand that giving my time, talents, and all with which I have been blessed to an organization that systematically stripped me of my motherhood was an affront to common sense and moral decency.

As such, I officially resigned from the LDS church in January of this year.  My husband, my mother, and my LDS bishop were all extremely supportive and understanding as they know on an intimate level the cost the LDS church has extracted from me. They all agree that there are few who have tried harder to make things “work” than me. If there is a God (of any version), I know He/She/It/They will understand my heart and my choice and judge me accordingly.

For much of the last decade, this space has been where I told my story with a high lonesome sound. It’s been a place where I worked through the heart ache and sorrow of being a natural mother, while at the same time trying to hold space and hope for a joyful reunion with my daughter. But since my resignation and subsequent reunion I no longer feel the high lonesome in my soul. While things did not turn out as I had longed for in my reunion, my resignation has allowed me to engage with my life and relationships in an authentic way.

For the past few months I’ve wrestled with taking this blog down completely or leaving it up for others to read. Do I let it stand as a witness to my experience? A testament to my pain? My truth? I know this blog is polarizing on many fronts. I am also under no illusions that my story is somehow unique or special. However my gut tells me to let this blog of high lonesome remain as is.

Whether this be folly or wisdom, only time will tell.

9 thoughts on “When You Hear That High Lonesome Sound

  1. I also left the LDS Church post-reunion but for a variety of reasons. I am thankful for the reunion but it fizzled after a few years and I was discarded without warning or explanation. Sharing your story is of value to others. And it is never really over. It has been twenty-two years since I last saw him and it still affects me every day. I have tried to find some relief but most strategies failed. Finally have decided to accept the reality or maybe it is better to say I am resigned.

  2. Your writing is moving and your story resonates with some of my own. I appreciate your years of tender vulnerability. I will miss your reflections.

  3. Melynda, sharing your soul helped me as much or more than any other in healing, and facing all the rough, jagged, raw emotions that were bottled up inside. I do hope you will leave this testament to motherhood in adoption loss for other mothers. You are a friend who was there when no-one else was.

    Here’s to being authentic. It’s a pretty great place to be.

    Thank you my friend. You are a blessing.

  4. Melynda, I am glad you are leaving the blog up. I think yours has been a beautiful, yet painful, testament to the pain of mother & child separation through adoption. I am glad you have chosen to leave the LDS church and am heartened that those in your family and the church are supportive of that decision.

    You write that “While things did not turn out as I had longed for in my reunion, my resignation has allowed me to engage with my life and relationships in an authentic way.” I think that the journey we first mothers share is certainly a difficult spiritual journey and coming to terms with difficult realities can only be fully dealt with by raw honesty and authenticity.

    Be well as you continue your journey.


  5. Words to free your soul!

    “Blessed are those who can’t breath inside a church because of the pain it has caused, for God will meet them elsewhere.”

    Tweeted 9/17/17 by Steve Wiens

  6. Please let them remain here for others that are searching for answers in their own journey. I know that my discovery of the Mormon faith has been a long and arduous one and when I found your writings it revealed so much to me that I did not know about Mormonism and adoption. As painful as it was to discover the truth of what was done to me and my daughter, at least I now know and can work to accept those things I cannot change. Thank you for sharing all that you have.

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