::pack:: of fixations

life after tragedy. living while grieving. love and triplets.



Strike 2 happened when I lived in Denver.  I was a waitress at a Mexican restaurant & in Colorado it was legal for minors to serve alcohol.  A common question asked by customers was what beers we had on tap.  I’d name off “Bud, Bud Light, Coors,... Flat Tire”.  In case you don’t know, it’s Fat Tire, not Flat.  It was a dead giveaway I was Mormon.  My friend & I had no idea what happy hour even was.

A gray haired British man dining in my section called me out on calling it Flat tire one day.  He asked me where I was from & if indeed I was Mormon.  After a few exchanges he laughed & said, “I don’t care what Brigham Young says, I think that you are a nice girl”.  I thanked him although I had no idea what he was even talking about at the time.  (I didn’t really know until 10 years later, but I never did forget it).

I also worked on the beauty side at Victoria Secret.  The manager asked me if I’d be interested in a job while we shared a bench one day.  That same manager later found out that I was Mormon & asked why Mormons used to not baptize African Americans.  I didn’t recall knowing anything about that, because that isn’t what I was taught by my church leaders.

Strike 3 happened after I had moved back to Utah.  Ryan & I were dating pretty seriously and we were sitting on a porch in the summer with a few friends.  Becky was a girl I knew of from school that was a few grades older than me.  “I’m not going to be Mormon because I think that polygamy in heaven is bullshit!”, she said.  I made her repeat what she said just soI knew for sure that I was hearing her correctly.  I had no idea that my precious religion’s doctorine still had anything to do with plural wives.  I was in complete & utter shock.  I felt betrayed & even lied to.

My “friend” that used to do my eyelashes drove up to the hospital & did my extensions on my hospital bed before Colum’s viewing.  I remember my Mom & MIL were in the room when she coldly asked me in a judgmental sort of tone, “So... what do you believe?”.  I awkwardly replied, “uh, I don’t know...more scientific stuff I guess”.  She didn’t even look at me when she said, “well you better figure it out pretty quick”.  I knew what I believed.  But I also knew how Mormons think & I didn’t want to scare them.   Or maybe I just didn’t want to feel religiously shamed at that moment.  My heart was broken as well as my entire body.  I’m wondering if my “friend” knew that my dad “blessed” our kids without asking us.  Maybe she thought it was a great idea just in case I came back to Mormonism & made myself worthy enough to raise Colum in heaven.  That way I could maybe get sealed to him.

That’s what Mormons believe.  If you lose a child you must keep yourself worthy by attending church meetings, carry a temple recommend, pay 10% of your gross earnings in tithing, so that you can get to the Celestial kingdom & be able to raise him after you die.  All of those things sound awful to me.  I also get really confused about what’s happening in the meantime.  Is Colum waiting for me in some sort of orphanage looking down hoping I pay the money?  I just don’t believe any of that.  I think it just instills more fear & devalues grief.

A few days later I called & talked to my eyelash friend.  I called her out on what she did & how she already knew what I believed.  She denied everything & sobbed as I explained to her just how hard it was to leave the church.  I compared it to coming out of the closet.  I told her that it took me over 10 years to stop feeling guilty about it. It’s annoying to me that since we were in Utah not being Mormon, I was always out numbered.  Women (that leave) specifically are labeled as either possessed by Satan or crazy.  I’ll take crazy I guess😜.  Mostly because not being Mormon makes me crazy happy😜!

A few years ago I read a book called “Under The Banner of Heaven”.  This book is about a couple brother’s killing spree that happened in my hometown (coincidentally) in the early 80’s.  What inspired these killings was a pamphlet written by a man named Udney Hay Jacob in 1842 called “The Peace Maker”.  Unfortunately Udney was a sexist asshole & in this document he writes that women are their husbands property & also introduces justifications polygamy (for the very first time).  He writes that men should treat their wives like dogs & husbands should beat their wives like they do their dogs.  This document listed Joseph Smith as the printer.  You can actually google it.  When I read the book I was shocked because Jacob is my maiden name, & Udney is my relative.  In reading about abuse I’ve learned that it’s a cycle passed down from one generation to another.  Udney was clearly abusive.  When I think about the abuse that this man possibly started in my own family it knocks my breath out of my chest.  But when I think about stopping the cycle myself I can breathe freely again.

I used to be to scared to write what my true beliefs were.  I have no idea if most of my readers are Mormon or not but I assume a lot of you are.  I think that it’s important that if you are Mormon & you’re reading what happened to me, that you really take in my perspective.  I’m not possessed.  I’m not evil or crazy.  I was scared to write my truth, because I have felt so much shame for leaving.  Maybe you can be more mindful to others like myself.  Maybe you can break the cycle.

Update: I’ve been meaning to raise our price for my parents to see us to $10,000 per hour FYI


  1. organized religion is a 'for profit' business. whether & what you choose to believe should be completely up to you. common sense & science should always take precedence over nice stories in a book. but if believing in a certain way of life or a certain "god" makes you happy then that is what you should be free to do. its when those beliefs are forced upon others & you feel bullied because you dont agree, i take issue. live your life, believe what you want to believe, but respect my right to not agree w/ you & ill do the same. it takes a lot of different people & beliefs to make up this world. theres room for everyone.

  2. Kelly, You don’t know me and I can’t even remember how I was I introduced to your blog. First let me say how sorry I am for all you’ve been through. I cannot imagine losing a child and then going through the healing you’ve done. Tough lady! Second, I’ve learned a beautiful hope for the future from the Bible of being re-united with our dead loved ones right here on the earth. Not under conditions we have today, but paradise surroundings, in perfect health. John 5:28,29 & Psalm 37:29. You might find this interesting https://www.jw.org/en/bible-teachings/questions/about-life-and-death/#?insight%5Bsearch_id%5D=e6d52d60-3489-4656-b453-f5b94b89b59d&insight%5Bsearch_result_index%5D=0
    There is a wonderful future in store! And you don’t need to pay any money for it.

    Tske care, Bethany

  3. I'm mormon and I have never thought that anyone who left the church was any lower than myself. (Or thought they were lower than a murderer) It doesn't matter what religion you believe in, as long as you are happy.

  4. I don’t think all Mormons think this way or are bad people. The worse than a murderer I thought was from the Book of Mormon, but maybe I am dead wrong. I love many Mormons! Thank you for sharing this!

  5. I was introduced to your blog after after a woman in my mom's group who lives near all of you posted about the accident and shared the link. I can relate to so much of what you say and as I struggle with religion myself I can't believe the things that the Mormon church hides from it's members. I too read Under the Banner of Heaven and was shocked by the things I learned in it and have learned since about the Mormon church. Thank God for people like you who are stopping the cycle of abuse in your family

  6. I'm LDS. I grew up with you. I don't believe any of that about when a child dies. Colum will be there when you die. With open arms. You will get to be with him again, always. I promise you that. There is so much information out there about the Mormon church, whether it be true or false. So many things on the internet that people claim to be true or false. Anyone can write an article or publish a book and say that is true. Who is to say that it isn't?!? For me, I follow my heart. I pray, I serve, I believe in Christ. Is there some weird things about the LDS church, you bet. Do they make sense? Not at all. You have to make the choices for yourself. I think its absolutely wonderful that you have chosen your path. You are an amazing person, mother, wife, and human. That is what matters. In this life, that is all that matters. I hate when people judge others for what they believe or don't believe. If they choose to stay or leave, what does it matter? It is your own path. If you are happy, that is all that matters. It makes me so sad and mad when people treat you (or others who leave) with such disrespect. It is not their choice. When Christ was on the earth, he loved everyone. He didn't love those who didn't follow Him any less. I think of the woman that was "sinning" and they brought her to Him and He said, "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone, go and sin no more." He didn't say, "I don't love you, how dare you." He still loved her. I wish there were more open minded people in the world. And honestly, most of the open minded LDS people are not in Utah. Utah is a hard hard place to be a Mormon. I moved away from Utah 7 years ago, and it amazes me how much better the world is outside of that part of Utah. I miss my Utah mountains, but not the LDS people there. Kelly, I think so highly of you. I love your truth. I love you owning your truth. I think you are strong and courageous and a stellar example of how humans should be. XOXO

    1. Beautiful and well said. It was written with so much love. I too have loved the openness and truth that Kelly has shared with the world. I for one look forward to her updates and have followed her story. I agree 100% that she will see Colum again. I don't believe the Lord will cast her out of his life just because she left the church. The Lord I know, isn't like this. I wish more members had the courage to be as open as Kelly and share their true feelings. I agree with you that there is just things that don't make sense, and there are some pretty messed up members, but what I believe it all boils down too, is your faith in Jesus Christ, your love for mankind, and your willing to serve those in need, whether LDS or not. I believe the church in some ways can be very damaging, and in others, a great moral compass. But as I have witnessed in my 48 years of life, I find our members the most judgmental of all, seriously not Christ like attributes.