“As Long As You’re Happy”

By Kim Lodder

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    All the boys and girls on our street went to Primary except me. Dad was a Latter-day Saint but not active. And Mother was very active in her own church.

    I was about five when I first began to feel left out of things. My friends asked me to go to Primary with them, and I kept asking Mom if I could go but she would always say no.

    One day after I had coaxed her for awhile, she finally said yes. And after that I went to Primary every week. When I would come home excited about what we had done and what we had learned, I noticed that Mom seemed to like to hear what I could tell her about Primary.

    One of my friends was named Laura, and her mother became a friend of my mother. Whenever our mothers got together, sooner or later they would talk about the Mormons. Mom was interested but she didn’t want to leave her own church. She knew it would hurt my grandmother if she did.

    After Mom had been with Laura’s mother one day, she said, “I’m not going to visit with her anymore. Every time we get together we end up talking about her church, and I’m getting tired of it.”

    But I noticed that in a few days she was restless and finally she went back to Laura’s house to visit. She said later that she just couldn’t stay away. This was the very day that she agreed to let the missionaries come to our home.

    After the discussion, Mother began to read the books they left and to pray about what she should do. It wasn’t long until she decided to be baptized. She was worried though about telling my grandmother.

    Finally, however, Mom got the courage to call Grandma on the phone and to tell her that she was going to be baptized into The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

    There was an empty, cold silence on the other end of the line. At last my grandmother said, “I’m heartsick and disappointed in you,” and then she hung up the receiver.

    It was a long time before Grandma would talk to any of us on the phone or answer our letters; so you can imagine how happy my mother was when Grandma called one day and said, “I’ve been thinking about your baptism and I’ve decided that it’s all right for you to be a Mormon, dear, as long as you’re happy.” And Mom really was happy.

    As soon as I was old enough, I was baptized and so were my brothers. But still, we were all sad because Dad stayed inactive in the Church. My younger brother Peter was the most unhappy, and one day he asked Dad, “Why don’t you and Mom get married in the temple?”

    Dad thought about it and he must have asked himself why, too, because in time that’s exactly what happened!