I sat at the kitchen table, looking at my son, wondering if I had heard him correctly. Did he really just say he wasn’t going to serve a mission?
Time seemed to stand still, yet a million thoughts flooded my mind. How could this be? We had talked about missions, saved for missions, he knew the gospel, his brother was across the world serving a mission, and yet here I was listening to my son speak the words I somehow knew were coming.
But even though the spirit had whispered to my heart this was coming, I wasn’t ready. I wasn’t ready for the flood of thoughts that poured into my heart and soul when the words were actually spoken out loud, “Mom, I’m not going to serve a mission.” Thoughts like, “Where did I go wrong?” and “I’m not so sure about this ‘agency’ thing” and “What does this mean for his spiritual future?” and “I wonder how other people will treat him when they find out” and “This confirms what I’ve long suspected ~ I really am a failure as a mom.”
As we left the kitchen table that rainy afternoon I was determined, even with a hurting heart, to navigate this situation and my relationship with my son with love and understanding instead of blame and guilt. If you find yourself struggling because your son isn’t serving a mission and want to talk about your flood of emotions, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org we can set up a free 20-minute mini-session. I promise you, despair is not your only choice even though you might be devastated right now.