I had a really nice date with Jonah last night. I just love him so much. I love spending time with him and talking with him and being with him. He really does make me very happy, and he seems to feel the same way about me. I am now comfortable kissing him, and I feel like when we are out together I'm not as self-conscious as I once was about whether people think we are a couple. I know many people in the theatre department where I go to school suspect we are a couple, and I'm fine with that. I see no need to make it everybody's business, but I don't mind that people know or suspect.
What has made me really happy is that I don't feel guilt about our relationship. You know, so long I have been taught that this kind of relationship was wrong that when we initially started kissing or holding hands, it made me uncomfortable because I've been conditioned that it's wrong to express love for another man in that way. But I don't feel that now. And I'm glad. Because I love Jonah, and as I told him last night after we kissed goodbye, he makes me feel all tingly inside, and I haven't felt that way about anybody in years. And it really isn't just a physical thing. I love who he is and how he makes me feel, and I feel good about loving somebody more than I love myself (which is how it was for a long time in my life (family excluded)) and how Jonah's presence in my life makes me want to be a better person.
We actually talk about our relationship in terms of long-term. We've talked about marriage and household duties and finances, etc., and it's weird, but also exciting, to think of ourselves in that way. Jonah's very domestic (likes to cook, iron, etc.) and he said something that made me laugh. He said, "See, I'd make an ideal Mormon wife."
Our families are adjusting as well as they can, I suppose. I don't think anybody's wild about it, but I at least feel some support. I'm just glad my mom likes Jonah. It's good when your mom likes your boyfriend. I'm still not necessarily comfortable talking to her about my relationship with Jonah in intimate terms, but she does realize he's bringing me a lot of happiness, and I think she's happy for me. I think, at heart, she wishes this wasn't my path, but she's adjusting.
I went to church today with the prayer in my heart that nothing that was said today would make me feel guilty about my relationship with Jonah, and that prayer was answered. I pondered whether I was worthy to take the sacrament because I don't know that I've done anything wrong. If Jonah and I were having sex or being overly intimate, that certainly would be cause for me to abstain from taking the sacrament in my church, but we've only kissed a few times, which I haven't felt guilty about. I asked Heavenly Father whether I was worthy or not and just to give me a simple answer of "yes" or "no," and I felt the answer was "yes," it was okay for me to take the sacrament.
It was interesting. My bishop asked me how things were, and I was honestly able to answer that they were good because I feel that way. I feel at peace with my relationship with Jonah, and I certainly feel happy, so things are good. I guess as far as my standing in the church they might not be so good, but I haven't felt weighed down by that thought.
We watched a video in Sunday School about the life of the Savior, and many thoughts ran through my head about how loving and merciful the Lord is. Here was a man who hung out with publicans and sinners, wasn't afraid to touch lepers, healed those who were both physically and spiritually blind, was merciful and loving towards the woman taken in adultery, healed the soldier who was in the act of arresting him, and even said of his perpetrators as he was being crucified, "Forgive them, Father, for they know not what they do." It just reminded me very strongly, that whether or not I am right or wrong about this relationship, my Savior loves me and is merciful and forgiving.
This relationship feels right to me, which is confusing because it doesn't correspond with what I have been taught and believed all my life. And, as I've stated before, I still believe my religion is true, but I believe somehow God has another plan for me and that things are going to be okay. It may not make sense now, but it will. And I feel I can look at my Father and tell him I did my best to live the best life I could.
I think Jonah and I are both good people, and I think we have a lot to offer each other, and I feel we as a union have a lot to offer those around us, and I feel God will take all of that into account. As long as I feel at peace with all this, that's what counts.
I just know I've tried my very best to live my life a certain way most of life, and it just hasn't worked. I gave it my best shot, and that's all I can do. This relationship feels like a blessing and a good thing, and if "wickedness never was happiness," then I don't see how this can be wicked because I feel very happy right now. In some ways I feel more free and less guilty than I did when I was trying to do all the "right" things, and in some ways I feel like I'm getting a new point-of-view about the gospel that I've not had before which is making me appreciate God's love and mercy even more.
Things are still scary and awkward at times because I have lived my life in a certain way for so long, and I'm finally giving myself permission to make other choices, but the benefits right now seem to outweigh anything else.