52 Weeks of Gratitude Challenge – My Husband

I am REALLY excited to talk about him and express how thankful I am that he is the person I am sharing the rest of my life with… unless becoming a vampire turns into a thing and then we shall be IMMORTAL AND LIVE FOR ALL ETERNITY IN THE DARK SINCE WE’RE NIGHT OWLS ANYWAY. BTW this is supposed to be week 2.

My husband Ali is a Scottish guy from Glasgow. We met online almost 8 years ago and were friends for a few years. If there’s anything I’ve learned about him, it’s that he has the patience of a saint and is the best listener I’ve ever come across. He genuinely cares about others and will do anything he can to help those who need it.

I don’t speak about this much, but I grew up Catholic and HATED going to church. I always felt like I was forced to go because I was a stubborn little brat (now I’m just stubborn) and didn’t like the idea of having to wake up early, get dressed up, and leave the house… aaaand I’m still that way.  It wasn’t until I was about 17 years old where something clicked and I realized that it wasn’t just about me. I don’t know how to explain it but there was a point where I just felt like I had to join choir to understand everything. I joined, met my church family, sang every Sunday, attended a youth group meeting or two, and went to one of the big retreats as a leader. Then I turned 21, liked to ~party~ and basically just became a young adult without a care in the world and in some ways forgetting what I stand for.

During my cool kid party years, I got to know some protestant people who made Christianity look bad and started to resent Christianity because the people I met and saw on TV believed that God hated gays, hated minorities, and hated whatever is different from people like those in these certain groups. How could I ever associate myself with people who promote so much negativity and hate? This was so confusing for me as someone who was always taught to love and to forgive even though for me, forgiveness has always been hard for me.

I am not a perfect Christian. I couldn’t quote any verses from the bible by heart or memorize the names of the books and recite them in order, but what Ali did was teach me that it is about my relationship with God that matters. He has shown me that true Christianity is about showing love towards others, compassion, and not bringing people down because someone is different. I have already known this and have followed this both inside and outside of religious beliefs, but have struggled with my faith for this exact reason. I thought that most (if all) Christians believed that my loved ones were all the scum of the earth just because of who we are and that was the only impression I ever saw from people I’ve met (outside of my Catholic church) and certain groups in the media.

When I met Ali, I saw respect and unconditional care for others regardless of how he might have been treated. When I eventually visited him in 2012, I met the communii-5gnB6SS-XLty he grew up with in Glasgow who were all incredibly welcoming and not once were any beliefs or agendas shoved in my face.  It felt right and I understood why Ali is the way he is. He had a big support system who were always there for him spiritually. When he moved over to California with me in 2013, we went to premarital counselling at a non-denominational church that we found together and even took my mom to some of the Sunday services (which she enjoyed) and still went to my church that I grew up in from time to time. Now, here in Manchester, we have been looking for a church that feels right and it’s been a couple of years of going to different churches and I think we found one… that’s beside the point though.

I thank Ali for a lot of things. I thank him for being kind to me, for always supporting me, for loving me, for being by my side, for treating me with respect, for having a sense of humor, for putting up with my stubbornness but hardly ever thank him for bringing me back to my faith. So THANK YOU my love. Thank you for being patient with my growth in faith and for understanding that it’s hard for me to speak about these things. I love you so much and I am so grateful to have you in my life.