Millions now dying will never have lived.
This phrase has been going through my mind over and over for the past few days and finally made its way out onto paper, and then here.
As my beloved grandmother, a "faithful witness of Jehovah" has hovered between living and dying for the past few weeks now, I have asked myself again and again what is the justice in her surviving all the things that she has in her 80+ years to come to the end of her faithful service only to be another casualty of the JW policy on blood.
I think about the fact that for almost sixty of those 80+ years she has lived and would have died at any point for her faith in the "faithful and discreet slave." That she has given everything to everyone, she and my (elder at the time of his death) grandfather literally saved many families from losing their houses, health insurance, cars, and who knows what else by making payments to help a family out. And no one knew about it until we found letters in my grandfather's belongings after his death thanking them for being there for so many. Made me wonder how they paid their own bills on their modest income.
Now, my grandmother lies in a bed far away from me, slowly bleeding to death not only because of the blood policy but also because of some plain stupid decisions by my JW relatives. Decisions over which I have no damned say at all. I keep asking myself, "This is her reward?"
I find myself wondering though if in all her years, did she ever really live? She has loved and been loved by many, but there were so many hardships and sorrows that didn't need to be part of her life, especially toward the end, brought to you by the tender loving care of the Watchtower B*****it Society.
I think about my entire family, about what many of their lives have become and I can't stand to see the wasted years. Forget my being shunned and what that has cost me and my child in the past several years as far as family love and comfort; I'm thinking of the career I might have had, the gifts that my sisters and cousins have let rot because it was more important to go spread the ferta...er, good news. Because you know, Armageddon is right around that eternal corner.
I look at my mother. She is getting old now, she is miserable, and questioning every single aspect of her faith. I know that she won't ever conciously leave the organization. A lot of people have left but they often lost years of their lives, just as I did, sticking it out, 'waiting on jehovah' and hoping that the big Happy Ending was going to come today, or at least tomorrow.
My mother bitterly laments the fact that she was 'never supposed to get old in this system." She says that not only were she and my father told not to marry and have children back in the 50's because the end was "so near" that now not only is she a grandmother but some of her children are old enough to be grandparents themselves. She keeps asking how this can possibly be. I can't tell her that it's because she's been had. So I will say it here. To all of you who are clinging to the Prize, do your homework. Seriously research what you have been taught, because
I have sad news for you folks. Armageddon? Yeah, it ain't coming. And the meter is running on your life. Every day (and this may sound morbid) none of us know what is going to happen. Don't die knowing that you never really lived.
Live now. Don't waste another day. If you love someone, tell them. If you need to move up, move out, or move on, do it.
I feel lucky that I got out during my twenties, with the ability now to salvage, hopefully, my daughter's entire upbringing for the most part. She has a range of choices that were never, ever even presented to me as possible when I was a child.
I know that where I've been makes me who I am. I just wish that I could impress upon my family that wasting time is a serious mistake; you can't ever get it back.
Once grandma is gone, I wonder if the theocratic stranglehold on the family will loosen a little. I don't hold out hope that the majority of the family will ever be free, or even that my elder's wife sister will ever speak to me again.
But some small part of me still hopes that one day, the phone will ring, and I will recognize a voice on the other end, maybe an old friend, or a relative, and I'll hear the most beautiful three words...
"I got out."
Live, people. Live. Life is too short.
edited to remove profanity...
Thank you for your moving testimony. Your grandmother and mother are, sadly, just two of the millions trying not to wake up to the fact that they are wasting the wonder of life for "all the answers" the WTS spoon feed them.
Taking your theme literally, I find it a bit ironic. JWs excuse the "delay" of Armeggedon on "Jehovah's patience": God is holding back destruction so that more may live. And yet if Armeggedon had come in your grandmothers day (say during WW2) few alive today would have ever been born.
Billions now dying would have never lived!
Good post Esmerelda! How awful to come to the end of your life and realize that you haven't really lived. Even worse is to come to realization that what you have lived for is false. Not to worry however, if we don't get it right this time we get to come back and do it again. I don't believe in death and I don't expect that armageddon will ever come. A Course in Miracles has a line which goes: "The end of the world will not be its destruction, but its translation into heaven." Although most of what happens here is illusion, there is nothing unreal about the love you feel for your grandmother. She is bound to feel it and benefit from it. Perhaps you just happen to be on the "fast track" for waking up.
(((( Esmeralda )))) That was very sincere and touching. I'm glad you were able to save yourself, and I hold out hope that one day soon your mother will join you.
xjw_b12 "Millions Now Living Will Never
Live now. Don't waste another day. If you love someone, tell them. If you need to move up, move out, or move on, do it.
Unfortunately, my dad is 78 and has lived as a JW for over 50 years now. He could have enjoyed life so much when he was younger, had he not been tied to meetings and meeting prep. He maybe could have been a more involved father had he not been busy going to meetings, going to elder meetings, preparing talks, etc. But now he is old and those chances are gone.
As much as I would like him to be out, I think there are many out there, my father being one, who would lose their will to live if they were shown the truth about their religion at this point in their lives. Right now, for all problems of the WTBTS, my dad has friends he has known for years. He enjoys seeing them. He has a purpose, even if that is not his will, but is dictated to him. Take that all away, take away his friends, have him realize the last 50 years were a lie, have him realize that perhaps his wife (my mother) died due to bloodless surgery, have him realize realize all the work he did was not God's work. It's not exactly something that's going to set him free at this time in his life. If he were to lose the JWs at this time, I believe he would also lose the will to live and start a steady decline.
We can regret the wasted lives, but sometimes that's all we can do. As much as we'd like to free them from the JWs, they may not be prepared emotionally to handle it. The days when it would have helped are in the past. So we have to let them continue on in this lie.
When my dad is gone someday, I will have to start working on my sisters, who are in their early 50's and have a chance for some life outside the JWs.
I understand the remorse that you feel for others lives...even when it's not in our control. I've noticed over the past year, that instead of feeling bitterness and anger towards my parents, I just feel sadness. And the sadness is not even for me. It's for them. They've missed out on SO MUCH and they have no idea how wonderful Life could be. They've missed out on love unconditional. They've missed out on a pretty wonderful daughter (me!). They've missed out on an amazing son-in-law and our future amazing kids. They've missed out on laughter, release, peace, and hope. And they don't even know it.
Like you, I do everything I can to live moment to moment. I do stress about the future at times, but Right Now is all I'm guaranteed. So every morning I stay and cuddle with my husband and pets a few extra moments. Even if it makes me late for work. I might get regret getting fired for being late, but I would regret even more not saying good-bye to my husband that morning should something happen to him. Every night I stopped what I'm doing to hug and say hello to my husband when he comes home. Even if it means burning dinner. I might regret a burned dinner, but I will never regret that my husband made it home safe and sound. Every night we say a prayer together at dinner, full of thanksgiving and love. Even if it means eating a cold dinner. I might wish my casserole were hot, but having a chance to pray with my husband will always outweight a hot casserole.
It is THESE moments that make LIFE. We are the lucky ones aren't we?!?! I am forever grateful for escaping that evil grasp of the WTS. I wish my family would join me, but I feel (like jws above) that some of those family members would not make it outside the confines of the WTS walls. They're better off where they are. REALITY (as we know it) would be too much for them to handle. We're the strong ones Es. We have the amazing opportunity to give that strength to our children, like you do to yours.
I understand our need to grieve over what those family members have lost. But don't let that keep US from Living like we should. You are a wise and wonderful soul, my friend. I am so grateful for your presence here.
Thank you everyone for reading my mental wanderings.
I understand exactly what you're saying; some people (especially the elderly) are not equipped to handle life on the outside and will stay in the organization for the rest of their lives, in security and surrounded by people they love. They're making the choice that is best for them, and I would never try to talk my mother, or grandmother for that matter, 'out' of the org. because I know it is the center of their lives. I love my family regardless of their religious affiliation. It's too bad that doesn't work both ways *smile* but yes, all we can do is love them.
And I do, and that's why it hurts still. So every once in awhile I have to write out the frustration like I did just then knowing that the only people in the world who could ever understand my state of mind is people who have lived it, or are living it.
I guess my secondary message to those JW's who may be lurking here and might happen on my post (if they got through reading it without fearing demons would come out of their CPU) I would say, please do not think that just because someone has left what you view to be the ultimate "Truth" that they ceased loving you. Likely it was the hardest decision they ever had to make, and their love is still alive, and real.
Andi, they are missing out on you, bigtime. I know that I would have loved to have been blessed with a sister like you, and if I had one I wouldn't be so quick to give them up.
My sister gave up me (mixed bag there...I can understand her reasons) but she chose to disappear from the life of an innocent child who worshipped the ground she walked on; I consider that a blessing in disguise though because she was trying to convert my child. My sister is not stable (JW or not) and its sad to say that my child is actually better off without contact with her.
I would never compromise my grandmother's faith (or my parents, and the situation did come up a few years back with one of them) as far as blood goes. Because I believe that people have the right to refuse medical treatment. Heaven knows I'm not taking half the crud my doctors want me on. I wouldn't violate that dear little old lady's conscience anymore than I could imagine myself going back into the organization. I would lose my will to live (as I had lost it when I was still a JW). So despite the frustration I expressed in my post before, I understand just what you all are saying.
More rambling, anyway, I wanted to say thank you for hearing me out.
James Thomas, I will definitely look up your thread, thank you for the link.
peace and hugs
It would be so easy if we could simply stop caring, but that would make us more like the JW's who seem to be able to turn off fellow feeling so easily.
You are one of those people who have a heart far roo large for their chest. (Our two friends in Pa have the same problem). You large heartedness is just one of the things that makes you one of the most loved at these discussion boards.
As hard as it may be, concentrate on your own happiness. Focus on the joy and success of your little Princess. The JW's won't change unless they want to regardless of how we feel. The best we can do is to be happy with ourselves and our own lives.
Know I love and cherish you always.
I will never forget a discussion with my mother in August. I made point after point with her that she could not refute. My mother! The door-knocker extraordinare! Nothing to say back. Finally she just looked at me with this very scary blank stare and said, "If I gave up my faith now, I would not know who I am."
There is this wall around her that is impenetratable.