So wow, you guys! LONG TIME TO TALK!! Been really busy lately, and if you haven't heard/seen/found out, I have started a YouTube vlog under the same name (Find it HERE) and have been updating that more than this, obviously... But I have some stuff to share with you that I actually felt compelled to write, instead of record... So here we go!
So yeah, if you don't want to hear about my discernment, you might as well just close the window, because that's what you're about to hear! :D
Good and bad (ish) news. So as you (probably) know, I have been chatting it up with two Sisters that live around here, and we have visited their mother house and the other night they invited me over for evening prayer and some supper. The visit was wonderful and their company was so great to have! After dinner, Sr. Mary Electa offered to get me in touch with a priest that offers spiritual direction at a local parish. I had been looking for someone to help me and to be a spiritual director for quite a while, so this came as a blessing! So I called Fr.'s office a few days later and scheduled an appointment for Friday (today) a little after noon. Thankfully, he was available that day because it was the only day I was off from work.
But I needed an alibi before I could just go. You see, if you haven't watched my Background Info video, you may not recall that my parents aren't extremely supportive of my passion for Christ, and sometimes I have to sneak out, etc. This was no exception. If I have to sneak out for Mass, imagine what I'd have to do to meet with a spiritual director! Yeah, like, break my arms. So anyway, I got my alibi - going school supply shopping and then going to the library - and I loaded my brother into the car. He's 12, and it was necessary for him to come along, so that my alibi could work, and because I am charged with his care. So we did our school supply shopping (in record time, I must add) and then headed to the local library. We waited for about an hour until it was time to go and then we got back into the car and drove to the church about 15 minutes away. I anxiously waited outside the Rectory as my brother asked over and over why I was meeting with the priest... I still haven't announced it to any of the family, so even he is mostly in the dark... I made it clear to him that Mom and Dad are NOT to find out about this, and we were at the library the whole time. *wink wink*
So we finally went inside and Sr. Mary Electa (who does pastoral care there) welcomed us inside and we chatted until Fr. was ready. I introduced Sr to my brother, and my brother to Fr., and they hit it off. My brother ended up loving Sr. Mary (and Fr.'s dog!) and I finally went into the dining room with Fr. to chat about the scary thing that is discernment...
It really was very informal and a bit awkward, I must say, to start talking to a (pretty much) complete stranger about something so personal, scary, and intimidating as a possible call to leave everything behind and become a Bride of Christ. But after a bit of chatting, we started to get into the matter, and he spoke the words that I knew he would say, but didn't want to hear - "You have to tell your parents that you're discerning." *GULP* This will be NO small task, at all. He gave me some tips and told me that if this really is an act of God moving within me, then nothing - not even my own family - will be able to stop it. He recommended that I check out some stories of saints that have been through similar trials, and that I pray about it and then tell them in a calm, collected, and serious fashion. HA! Easy for you to say.
However, Father instructed me to live my life now and not dwell on the possibility of this vocation. He did say to keep pursuing it, but not to let it totally run my life. He told me to enjoy my schooling, to go to college, and to succeed in these endeavors. He gave me some words of wisdom, which struck me and made me wish that I had brought a notebook. He said, "Great endings make great beginnings."
So all in all, my visit with Fr. went well. I told him that I was looking at the Sisters of Life in NYC, and he said that he knows one and would like to put me in contact (YESS!!). Also he gave me a prayer to add to my usual daily prayers.
So now the next part of my struggle. Finding a way to tell my parents that I am just THINKING about religious life, not that I'm going to run off and become a nun as soon as I graduate high school. Does anyone have any suggestions as to how to start the conversation? I truly am nervous about this and I just need some help. I would like something better than "Mom, Dad, we need to talk." That will set them over the edge before I even utter the words "religious life..."
Thank you for reading, please keep me in my prayers and I will keep you all in my prayers in return. If you haven't seen it yet, check out my new YouTube channel and comment below! Thanks again, and GOD BLESS!!