Maybe I was. Maybe I was confused. Maybe I was just young and stupid. I do know that I never truly believed in the religion at all, and trying to force myself to do so wasn’t working. At least if I was at home I could fake it. At home I didn’t have to live it, breathe it, and share it all day every day. At home I could pretend to be a good believing member of the church. But out on the streets with a suit and a nametag… I hated it.
The majority of my Mormon mission, of which I completed 43% before finding a way to get out of it, can be summed up very quickly.
Blisters. Masturbation. Parasites. Diarrhea. Dead hobos. Inbred housemates. Hypersexualized 13-year-old girls. Slutty missionary companions having sexual encounters with those hypersexualized 13-year-old-girls. Slutty younger women. Slutty older women. More diarrhea. Doodles of naked women. Doodles of naked men. Masturbation. Rabies. Rabies shots. Rumors of gay missionaries. Heavy weight loss. Heavy weight gain. Sneaking onto golf courses. Murderous drunks. Sleep walking. Shitting in holes in the ground. Drug dealers threatening to end my fat white man life if I ever bring my little white man dick up in here again. Children sucker punching me in the junk. White trash women purposefully giving me glimpses of their entire bare breasts just to tease me while their shit-faced boyfriends laughed about it. And, oh yeah. Taking a baseball bat to my own spine to finally get away from it all. I guess I can’t leave that one off the list.
Eventually I was at the point on my mission where I needed an out. I needed to go home. I needed to find a way to be granted an honorable discharge; a get out of jail free card, if you will. I needed people to think that I wasn’t a quitter. I needed people to think that I wasn’t a loser. I had had enough rejection. Classmates. Girls. Missionaries. God Himself. Not to mention all the people behind all the many doors that were slammed in my face every day.
I can promise you that you never feel like a bigger schmuck than when you’re knocking on doors in 120-degree heat, and an old lady in a floral shower cap tells you to go stick your dicks into each other and leave her the hell alone.
Unfortunately for me, it seemed that the only early releases that people back home thought honorable were for medical reasons or a death in the immediate family. Nobody in my family had a foot in the grave, and with my hip no longer giving me troubles, I was drawing blanks.
It was at breakfast one morning that I took special notice of the metal baseball bat leaning against the doorframe of my bedroom entryway. The mental cogs immediately started turning as I sat with a mouthful of Frosted Flakes. That’s it. That’s my ticket out of this place.
It was a ludicrous idea. It was not lost on me that I was officially crazy. But I was going to do it anyway. I couldn’t stand to look one more stranger in the face as a missionary.
My companion finished his own breakfast. He’d go shower now. He always got ready for the day after he finished his corn flakes. And… right on cue. “I’m going to go shower,” he said. I told him to take his time.
As soon as I heard the water running and the shower curtain close, I walked over and picked up the baseball bat. I slid it back and forth through my open palm. Don’t do it. I was going to do it. Don’t do it. I needed to do it. It was the only way.
I carried the bat into my bedroom and shut the door behind me. I positioned myself face-down on the carpet and lifted the bat as high as I could above me. It was definitely awkward in this position. Just enough to hurt yourself. With a heavy swing I made impact on my lower spine. Crap, that hurt. It wasn’t enough. I did it again. Still not enough. Do you realize how crazy this is? I hit myself again, much harder this time. I don’t care. I need to get out of here.
It took more than fifty hits with the bat to cripple myself, and just in time, too. The water in the bathroom stopped running, and I hurried and shoved the bat across the floor and under my bed. Within minutes the bedroom door opened and my companion stood in the doorway looking down at me. “What are you doing?”
“Something’s seriously wrong with my back. I can’t move. I can’t walk. We’re going to have to cancel our appointments today,” I moaned…