Levi and I don’t have fathers in our lives, which is a very sad fact we live with.
My father died a little over 8 years ago of a very tragic illness with cancer. During his last months, we bound together as a family and reveled in our love. We cried together, laughed together, reminisced together, and had true moments of vulnerability when we had some “real talk” with our Dad and we knew that he loved us, accepted us, and would always support us throughout all our decisions, no matter what they were. Although he is gone, there isn’t one day I still don’t feel that unconditional love I had from my father, or think of (and know) what his opinions would be of things. Every day, his support is with me, and he is watching over Levi and me as a couple.
Levi’s Dad, on the other hand, is alive and well, but he is not Levi’s father, nor is he my father-in-law. While we choose to live our lives as simple, art-loving people, who enjoy the earth and the mystery of our existence for what it is, Levi’s Dad has chosen to turn his back on us for his love for “Jehovah”. As a Jehovah’s Witness, he has told Levi that his “lifestyle” has rendered him unworthy of communication with his father and communication with him is a threat to his relationship with Jehovah (God). As a result, he has made the conscious decision, at the advice of his Elders, to cut all ties and communications with his son. He will never talk to his son again as stated in a recent letter. He has made it clear that his relationship with Jehovah is primary and more important than “even family” as he stated.
What a shame, a frustration, and something utterly heartbreaking. As logical and reason-based people, we hold no power against a cult, which a documentary we recently watched described a cult as a “man-made mental illness”. As our little tiny Moodie family, we’ve had to resign ourselves to this, while still being perplexed by how a “lifestyle” of going to the beach, working hard and going to bed by 8pm every night can be a threat to someone’s own personal faith with their Maker.
Despite this all, I’m a very proud to be married to someone who had been “awakened” very early about the cult, and left early enough before he became victim to the same man-made mental illness that the rest of his family has succumbed to (save for his wonderful younger brother Zach and his wife, who we’re proud to share the Moodie name with).
Despite not being shown the love he should have had by his parents, he’s remained one of the most open and loving men in the world. He is curious about my Dad, and in my husband, I see that adage that you marry a guy like your Dad ring true. He’s kind, he’s considerate, he’s caring, he’s open, and has so much love to give, unconditionally. In this way, I feel like the influence of the man my father was has come full-circle to remain a fixture in my life, while we learn from other’s grave mistakes.
It’s a crazy life isn’t it? Love the one you’re with.
Oh, and cults are bad. Don’t join one.