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Monday, June 08, 2009

Almost

A friend asked me tonight if my family reads my blog.

No, they don't.

He asked if they know about it? Well...my brother knows I have one, but he doesn't know what it is. Nor do my co-workers.

My family doesn't even know I'm discerning religious life.

I almost told my Mom last night, but pulled the comment at the last moment and said something inane instead. Nothing is certain. I don't have a plane ticket in hand to take me out east. It's still possible this won't happen. And besides...it's only for a week. It's a visit. It might mean nothing.

The other day, I almost wrote to my uncle in Hawaii, because he is active in the Serra Club in his diocese. I considered sending an email to my Godfather.

I called my cousin, my Confirmation Sponsor, to wish her happy birthday, and am glad I didn't reach her, for in that moment of weakness I might have told her this news, for it is her words that continue to echo in my memory.

What scares me most is that I almost told Mom, but thought better of it, preferring to keep this to myself for now.

My family doen't need to know...and I'm not sure they'd take me seriously, anyway.

And then my Mom made a comment that took me by surprise. She'd been to my cousin's graduation, and apparently was sharing news about my brother and I, as parents tend to do. She said that some of our relatives are "proud" of me!

I nearly fell out of my chair. WHY?! I'm about to declare bankruptcy and maybe even lose my house for want of a livable wage!

They're amazed I put myself through college (still haven't paid my undergrad loans), and that I'm putting myself through grad school. They never thought it could happen.

But I still can't tell them. All I can think about is my aunt's words from a few years ago: "We don't tell people what you're doing because we never know how long it will last."

I know that when (assuming it happens) I fly out to Conneticut in July, I'll have to 'fess up to my Mom and tell her why I'm going. I toyed with the idea of saying I'm just going on retreat, but she knows my financial situation and would have questions as to 1. how I got a plane ticket, and 2. why I find it necessary to go that far away for "a retreat".

So I'll have to tell her. And the second I do...everyone else will know about it. You see, my family is like a small town. Who needs the internet when there is a large unweildy family full of siblings that stop fighting only long enough to bond over odd news about the black sheep that descended from them?

I only hope that when I blab the news, I manage to keep my blog out of the mix. I really do need to reserve this part of my "hidden life". Only God knows what they would say about it. I've written of things on here that would kill my Mom if she knew.

If my family learned about this, I'd stop writing. I wouldn't be able to speak freely.

Yet there's a part of me that wants to spout off about this stuff. I've never been one who can lie. I can't hide important details. Eventually, everything comes out.

Yesterday, it almost did. It was a close call.

But I'm not ready for them to know. Especially because even I don't know and all I really want is the freedom to find out. In peace.

13 comments:

CUAguy said...

I hope that you can find a way to tell your mother that works for the both of you. I was able to manage a weekend at the seminary, and my mom meeting the Vocations Director, without her knowing it was him.

By the way, I find it very lucky that your family doesn't know about your blog. My father knows about mine, and has threatened to use it against me.

But enough about me, I will pray for you and your continued discernment

Adoro said...

How could your Dad threaten to use your blog against you? You post on Catholic news, objective things like teachings, etc!

Thank you for your prayers, you are also in mine!

Ancilla Indigna said...

+
Get a spiritual director ... fast!

Do not tell ANYONE other than your Confessor and Spiritual Director (hopefully one and the same). Only tell anyone, your parents first, after you are certain of where you will be doing your postulancy (after they've accepted you). (This is a recommendation made by many saints, by the way.)

Contact Carmelites in Valparaiso about new cloister in Pennsylvania. This is the most traditional order, most authentic to its charism, in the United States.

Adoro said...

Ancilla ~ You must be a new visitor to my blog. You are YEARS too late with your advice, unfortunately. I'm not 15, I'm 34.

I have an SD, and I'm NOT Carmelite in any way, shape, or form, although I have nothing against them.

Thanks anyway for your advice. In all charity you MAY want to get a bit more context before you give vocational advice, though. ;-) (speaking from experience here! lol)

You don't want the danger of steering maybe a good Dominican away from his or her Vocation, now, do you?

Joe of St. Thérèse said...

In God's time all will work out :)...I haven't even told my folks about mine.

Fr. Leo McDowell said...

Need a plane ticket? Perhaps we can help -- http://www.frleo.org/adoro/ This was set up by some friends at Plurk

Char said...

I remember telling my family about my discernment, and they played me off with aloof-kindness and passive-aggressive-ness. In the end, my family knows that for the time being I don't need to be pestered by potential boyfriends (my family's Asian and I don't mean to stereotype) and that I will do whatever it takes to go to Mass/Holy hour every day. It worked out for the best.

I'm praying for you :] Peace.

PS: Cloistered convents rock!

Adoro said...

Fr. Leo ~ Thanks, I just updated a "bleg". You guys have NO IDEA how much you rock!

Char ~ It's brutal, isn't it? I'm amazed at how all of our experiences (ie those discerning priesthood/ religious life) are so similiar in so many ways. Thanks for your prayers, and agree...cloisterd convents DO rock! (Whether it's my calling or not!) :-)

Maureen said...

I don't blame you for keeping this lowkey. If people are just going to fuss, and you're not sure what will happen, you may as well wait until you're sure they have something to fuss about. :)

Brother Charles said...

When I entered religious life, I was surprised to find that a lot of us had a hard time with parents and family when it came to our vocation. I had a real hard time with my father--he didn't speak to me for some years--but I thought it was because I was a convert.

I thought that regular Catholic folk would be happy about a vocation. Not so in every case.

Be strong. The Spirit will let you know when the secrets that are between the Lord's Heart and yours need to be revealed.

Melody K said...

One reason families sometimes have a lot of trouble with a son or daughter's religious vocation is that they are afraid they will lose them. In a very real sense, they will. Especially with a cloistered order. Some families are willing to make this sacrifice cheerfully and willingly. With others it takes time and a lot of prayers to come to acceptance. It helps for them to remember that the family relationship would also change with marriage, or with moving far away because of a career. But love is something that will never go away.

you know who said...

The thing to remember about parents and married siblings is that they want you to be happy, and since they found happiness in the married state, they assume you would to. Most don't "get" religious life... and many misunderstand it. MANY parents fight at first, but when they see you happy, it usually gets much better.

Prayers, as always.

Mrs Doyle said...

As I grow older I'm reminded of the phrase in the Scriptures where Our Lady is said to have kept these things and pondered them in her heart (not quoted word for word!).
Being a very open sort of person most of time, there are times when it's not appropriate, or even the right moment to say something. It must be the gift of wisdom that helps us decide and the Holy Spirit must help us there.