I have come to the realization that I don't consider myself part of the LDS Church anymore. When I think about the Church, it is something that I see as part of my past. It isn't part of my future.
In the present, the ripples from my involvement as a member continue. The reflections and shadows that are cast by the LDS Church still exist as well. They always will, I'm sure, because of my family's devotion. And after all, I still live in Utah. As long as that is true, the LDS Church will have some presence, despite my best efforts to understate it.
Regardless of how you leave the Church, the absence of something that has played such a large role in your life is easily felt. How you feel it is much more personal. Some are angry. Some are sad. Some feel completely liberated.
How do I feel?
Some days I think I know. Some days I don't.
In the present and for the future, I think I am going through the process of redefining my faith. I know that I believe in God. I know that I believe in Jesus Christ. I know that my faith is something that I hold very dear. While faith and the importance of faith has been instilled in me from the time I was very young, the importance I place in my faith is something that I have determined on my own.
You often hear that people who leave the Church can't leave the Church alone. The pieces of the Church that still stretch through my life make it difficult for me to leave the Church alone. The Church's involvement in political matters that directly impact my life also make it difficult for me to leave the Church alone. And I know that I still hold a lot of anger and resentment towards the Church and its leaders specifically. That is something I need to work through, because at the end of the day, I don't want the Church to have that kind of hold on me anymore.
I know my faith matters to me but I don't know where I stand with my faith much further than that. This is a process. This is a journey. This is where I'm at right now.