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Oct 1 2013

After Years of Infertility, I’m Losing My Faith in God

By at 3:33 pm

where was god?

Well, that was a colossal failure. Months of planning, 10s of thousands of dollars, two trips to Cyprus, a really promising early pregnancy–and we have nothing. We have no donor embryos left. Our last cycle resulted in my seventh pregnancy, with fantastic early signs, but I miscarried at six weeks. We’d already been tested for every cause of recurrent loss, and honestly believed the genetically tested donor embryos were the answer.

Apparently not.

What do we do now? Nothing has changed on the adoption front (we are still on the years-long waiting lists for domestic adoption here in Israel, and international adoption remains out of reach financially). We could try a gestational carrier, but both in Israel and abroad the costs and logistical hurdles just seem insurmountable.

For now we wait. We are in shock. We really thought this approach, and this pregnancy, would bring us at least one baby (and possibly a sibling in a few years). Read the rest of this entry →

Jul 31 2013

My Daughter’s Beautiful Day

By at 2:15 pm

sarah tuttle-singer beautiful day“Mama, do you know why today is so beautiful?” my daughter asked me while we walked to the pool.

It took me by surprise, her question. Because I didn’t think today was so beautiful: Today was freaking hot–like, sumo-wrestler-sweaty-armpit hot. The air shimmered in the afternoon light, clinging to my skin, and I was lugging my purse, a bulging laundry bag, a Princess Tiana doll, and small plastic bag with the remains of three snails. The hair that wasn’t frizzing like an 80s porn star was matted to my forehead, and about halfway between the gan (kindergarten) and the pool it dawned on me I had forgotten to put on deodorant.

I swallowed a sigh, and tried to see the world through her eyes. The pools of sunlight. A bedraggled butterfly that was still beating its wings against the turgid air. A crop of flowers that had just sort of perked up out of nowhere in the middle of the relentless summer.

“Tell me why today is beautiful,” I said.

“Because God is amazing.”

My mind skipped a step, because we hadn’t gotten down to the real nitty gritty when it comes to the God, because I like to use a wide brush when describing things that I’m still trying to understand.

“Mama, do you believe in God?” she asked before I could react.

“Yes, I do,” I said. And I mean it, I really do, even if I haven’t figured out all the nuts and bolts of what I believe, and even though admitting it out loud on a secular kibbutz is sacrilegious.

“Good. Because when you believe in God, God gets bigger and bigger and bigger and can do everything in the whole world. But when you don’t believe in God, God is very very small and just sits in a corner waiting for you to believe so He can come back to work and make things beautiful for us.”

And as I stared at the miracle that is my daughter and as I marveled at what she had just told me, I know this to be true: Today is beautiful.

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Jun 7 2013

The Stranger Who Spoke at My Father’s Unveiling

By at 12:39 pm

stone on jewish gravestoneI don’t believe in God.

I am uncomfortable admitting this here and I mean no disrespect to those who do believe. If anything, I’m envious. I have books on meditation stacked by my bed. I have a gift certificate for yoga classes burning a hole in my wallet. I’ve read studies and I’ve witnessed the effects of a strong spiritual center. There’s security, sometimes there’s even peace. I wouldn’t mind some of that.

And yet, I don’t believe in a higher power that calls the shots. I don’t believe that things happen for a reason (though I’ve repeated this cliché in an attempt to comfort friends). I believe that when bad things happen to good people, it breaks your heart and all you can do is get up each morning and try to be good to the people you love who are still here. I often fail at even this. It would be helpful to have a little faith. And yet. Read the rest of this entry →

Jun 3 2013

The God Poll: The Results Are In

By at 12:20 pm

pie chart from god pollLast month on Kveller was “God month,” in which we featured all different voices exploring how to talk to kids about God. One thing we learned was that the hardest part of talking to kids about God is often figuring out what you yourself believe. So, we posed a simple question to you, our readers: Do you believe in God?

The results are in, and they’re a little bit surprising.

In our (admittedly unscientific) poll of Kveller readers, 60.7% say they believe in God. 18.6% say they do not believe in God, and 20.7% claim “it’s complicated.” The poll included responses from readers in the United States, Canada, and Israel, all the way to Oman, Czech Republic, and South Africa.  Read the rest of this entry →

May 30 2013

Tell Us, Do You Believe in God?

By at 5:02 pm

do you believe in god chalkboardWith May coming to a close, so is Kveller’s month-long God series. We’ve heard from all different parents about how they’ve handled talking to their kids about God, including a mother who obsessively prays, a scientist who’s also a devout believer, and an ex-Mormon father who’s still figuring it all out. Read all of the posts here.

One thing we learned is that often the hardest part of talking to kids about God is figuring out what you yourself believe. So we’re curious: how many of you believe in God?

Luckily for us, the internet is magical and has just the thing to satiate our curiousity: a poll! Please take our one-click, anonymous poll below.


What God & Sex Have in Common

By at 9:37 am

let's talk about sex salt-n-pepaThis post is part of our month-long series featuring different ways that parents of various religions have talked to their kids about God.

God and sex have a lot in common.

Yes, you read that correctly.

God and sex have a lot in common. They are both topics that aren’t to be mentioned in polite company. They are both topics that make us uncomfortable to talk about with our kids. And they are both topics that are not one-time lectures, but ongoing conversations.

That’s right; there is no such thing as “The Talk” when it comes to God or sex. Read the rest of this entry →

May 29 2013

We Can’t Talk About God, We’re too Busy with Autism

By at 10:03 am

knife and forkThis post is part of our month-long series featuring different ways that parents of various religions have talked to their kids about God.

A week or so ago I was contacted by one of Kveller’s editors telling me about their month-long series on talking to your children about God and was asked if I wanted to perhaps write a piece for it. Being the mom of a child on the autistic spectrum might add an interesting voice to the series. “Sure, I’d love to.”

Hold on a second.

I’ve never talked to my daughter about God.

Why haven’t I done that?  Read the rest of this entry →

May 28 2013

Since Leaving the Mormon Faith, How Will I Talk to My Daughter About God?

By at 3:22 pm

heath wilcock god seriesThis post is part of our month-long series featuring different ways that parents of various religions have talked to their kids about God.

Fold your arms.

We say this to our 3-year-old daughter whenever food is about to be blessed at my parents’ house. She never folds her arms nor closes her eyes, but instead maintains her energy while everyone else stops conversations and becomes reverent. By this age, she should be well-trained in the Folding Arms & Bowing Head procedure, and maybe even saying the prayer, with some parenting assistance. Everyone finds this adorable. You see, we’re Mormon and Mormons typically teach children early on about how to communicate with their father in Heaven.

After a couple of attempts to get our daughter to fold her arms, we would look at my family, act frustrated, and say something like, “Ah well, she does her own thing. Can’t make her.”

But the truth is: we never taught her. Read the rest of this entry →

May 23 2013

My Son Wants to Know About God… and Bacon Too

By at 9:32 am

baconThis post is part of our month-long series featuring different ways that parents of various religions have talked to their kids about God.

“I want to try bacon,” my 7-year-old son Zack declared the other night.

“Well, bacon, like, really isn’t kosher,” I said tentatively, always careful of giving him the kind of “because Hashem said so” answer my Yeshiva-educated husband learned to resent early on.

“I don’t care,” he reassured me. “So can I try it?” Read the rest of this entry →

May 22 2013

My Catholic Daughter & Her Female God

By at 9:29 am

kids-bibleThis post is part of our month-long series featuring different ways that parents of various religions have talked to their kids about God.

I live with a little theologian. My eldest daughter has had a lot to say about God for as long as I can remember. The expected questions have come along about creation and death, and they become more complex and challenging as she gets older. What has not changed is that she has consistently referred to God using female pronouns. Until recently, she never asked directly about whether God is male or female. It has been consistent that God is She. “Why did God make dogs and cats Momma? Does She like them both the best?” Read the rest of this entry →

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