|Our Mobile Home, Toolshed and Print Shop In Fallon, Nevada|
Dreams Sacrificed (Part 5 of 6)
Isolated and Dreamless
It was a harder life for us in Fallon. Judy is a natural homemaker, and when we left our new home out in beautiful Jack's valley, near Carson City, her dreams were restricted even more than mine. She was like an artist without a canvas. I like the desert and with a Jeep we were able to have a lot of fun times exploring the desolate areas of Nevada with our sons. We were on final approach for Fallon Naval Air Station, so the boys and I enjoyed seeing the airplanes and roughing it like guys like to do. But Christianity is a male dominated religion, whether modernists agree or not, and my wife was taught to honor her husband. Being as persuasive as I am, Judy supported me in this move. It was a sacrifice for me, but it was a bigger sacrifice for her. And we do have a scrapbook full of wonderful memories from those three years, but we were isolated and we had sacrificed dreams to follow our beliefs.
But this series of Posts is not about whether we enjoyed life or not. It's about Judy and my dreams and how they were sacrificed to our religious beliefs. We moved to Fallon because of what our church taught and we believed. Many of our friends and family questioned the validity of this move. But looking back, I still think that our actions were justified considering we were trying to follow the foundational concepts of Seventh-day Adventism. In this photo you can see our back yard. The building on the far right was our Print House. It was equipped with an offset printing press and all the other equipment needed to produce books and pamphlets that we sent to a growing mailing list of people in the country and abroad who were interested in advocating a return to the original teachings of the Seventh-day Adventist movement. The point is that our blossoming dreams in Carson City were abandoned, and we put our hearts and families into doing this work of reformation in an effort to hasten, clear the way, and prepare ourselves for the return of Jesus to this Earth.
We remodeled an old home in Fallon for our dental office. It was not designed well for a dental office, but we made it work. Our business was slow, but we were able to survive on what business we could get, because we were able, with the sellout in Carson City, to own what we had in Fallon without encumbrances. We home schooled our oldest son through second grade. The emphasis in our lives was definitely on following the foundational teachings of our faith, not pursuing the dreams we had started with seven years ago. During this time we sponsored several camp meetings in a beautiful isolated lake in the Sierra Mountain range called Silver Lake. After two years we felt the need to put our oldest son in the Fallon Seventh-day Adventist Church School. But by 1984, as my brother's daughter was finishing 8th grade in the same school, we suddenly realized that we had not foreseen where our children could go to school after 8th grade. We were not willing to put them into public school. Home schooling was not as easy in those days. We had to fight the public school system all the way, the internet did not exist, home schooling resources were nothing like what is available nowadays, and we suddenly realized that we had a problem. Seventh-day Adventist Schools for grades 8-12 were not within reasonable driving distance. Although my oldest son was only in 3rd grade in Fallon, we knew that we would face the same dilemma as my brother's family in just a few years. Our dental practice was barely making it, and our reasons to stay in Fallon were melting.
Had God led us to Fallon? We certainly had believed that we were following our faith's foundational beliefs. Our early dreams for a successful dental practice and eventual financial security had been gambled on this move to Fallon, but we were willing to sacrifice it if necessary in order to do what we thought was right. Our nest egg had indeed dwindled since Carson City. And now we could see that we needed to pull up our stakes and move once more. Our destination choices were limited to places in states where I had a license to practice dentistry that had Seventh-day Adventist school systems extending through the 12th grade. And we wanted to stay within a reasonable driving distance of our families. We chose to move to Caldwell, Idaho. This choice was not in the best interest of Judy and my initial dreams, but was based mainly on our continuing conviction to live in a rural setting yet have the ability to keep our children in Seventh-day Adventist schools.
I feel the need to give you, at this point, a short Summary before the next and final Post: Dreams Sacrificed (Part 6 of 6): Waking Up in Life's ICU. Christianity, following the narrative of the Bible, has spawned many sects and denominations which claim to have the truth. Seventh-day Adventism, by following the direction of its founders during the Great Religious Awakening in the mid-1800's who had developed a unique interpretation of the Bible and its prophecies, was one of them. Our ancestors were leaders and converts to that religious philosophy. After we both attended college and I finished dental school, our hopes and dreams of a successful life and secure future were high. Though neither Judy or I were raised to be strict Seventh-day Adventists, our entrance into parenthood caused us not only to return to our religious heritage but to endeavor to practice it even more diligently than our parents had. This brought our dreams of success and future financial security into conflict with our renewed religious faith. Thinking of our children, we chose to follow our faith, in many cases making decisions which did not promote or secure our earlier dreams.