Dale and I had been married for 2 years when we had our first child. I was still very much of the mind that we should be responsible and have children when we saw fit. The idea of “letting God plan your family” seemed crazy to me. I mean, I was only 20 years old and I remember saying, “For crying out loud, if I did that, I would end up having 10 kids!!!” Actually, I have 11. The control issues started after the first few years of marriage. I remember my husband and I arguing over what kind of clothes I should wear. I mean the Bible does say in Deut. 22:5 “A woman shall not wear a man’s clothing”. I guess that meant that I was commanded to wear dresses. But I hated wearing dresses. Heck, I quit Brownies when I was a kid because I HAD to wear a dress. My young husband told me that he “couldn’t love me the way he wanted to” when I insisted on wearing pants! So I wore dresses. And I hated him for it. As time wore on, I got used to the dresses. They were really just over clothes that I wore over my leggings and shorts. Sort of like a full body apron. After we had a child, my mom wanted so badly to be a grandma to him. But we had our rules. She was NOT to take our son to her home to meet my other mom. It was as if my other mom was a non-person to be feared and despised and definitely stayed away from. I went along with all this and as time went on I really believed that by keeping my children away from their loving grandmothers, I was protecting them from evil. Who knew what these feminist, pro-choice women would say or do around my children. When my mom couldn’t stand it anymore and took our son to meet my other mom, we found out and that “privilege” was ended immediately.
Dale worked and his business grew and we saved money and we prayed and hoped for a piece of land of our own somewhere where we could raise our kids and not be influenced by “the world”. When our fist born was 5 years old, we found a farm in Nebraska and away we went. Dale had always had this dream of having a ranch where troubled kids could come and he could counsel them and help them find Jesus. I never wanted to take in a bunch of problem kids but being the dutiful wife, I followed along. That was my position, the follower. I didn’t dwell on the fact that my now husband had guilted me into giving up my financial aid and grants to go to college. That he had challenged me into marrying him, that he had driven an ever growing wedge between me and all my family. I didn’t dwell on the fact that my grandfather disowned me for following Dale’s god. I didn’t think about any of that stuff too much. In fact, I didn’t really think about anything at all. I let Dale, my “head” lead and interpret the bible and the sermons and all, for me. I let him follow after his dreams and my dreams of going to college, having a career as a singer/actress, going to Chile to visit high school exchange student friends and many other things died from disuse.
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