Along my journey I’ve learned a lot that I never knew before. Being a cradle catholic and a product of the 70’s and 80’s catechesis does not lend itself to becoming a properly and well-formed Catholic adult. There is no syllabus available that I know of or a guide on how to get started on getting your spiritual groove back. I read a lot. I read a lot on line and visit the Catholic blogosphere. There is a lot of great information and great writers out there. But sometimes even those forays can be exhausting and frustrating. I never knew there was so much division in the Church. Can’t I just be Catholic? Do I have to be a traditional Catholic or an orthodox Catholic or a NO Catholic? Sometimes I feel as though no matter what I do at Mass, I’m doing it wrong according to somebody. Sure, I have my preferences for what I like when I go to Mass. I have those things that make it feel more authentic to me. Give me an old, Gothic church with real candles, tons of them. And I’ll take a reverent and holy priest that takes 15 minutes to do the dishes over someone who whips through like he just picked up a cheese tray at a cocktail party. But, you know what, I’m not in charge and I’m not there to police how it’s done. I’m there for what I hope is the right reason. But, of course, those kinds of statements make me sound just like the people I’m complaining about I suppose.
I try to remain focused on my spiritual growth and that of my family. Just because I’m coming to terms with my past and am healing, I don’t want to stop the spiritual journey that I’m on, I’m just not sure where to go next.
I try to keep my spiritual world a nice little “neighborhood” where I don’t have to worry too much about what’s going on the other side of town because if I do that I lose sight of what I need, what my soul needs, what my family needs. So, I try to learn as I go. Now that I have some free time on my hands, I’m looking for classes I can take or spiritual programs at nearby retreat houses and the like. Even though I’ve learned a lot, I still have times when I feel like I’m at my confirmation Mass and I’m trembling with fear over being asked a question by the Bishop and not knowing the answer. (I did get a question by the way, and I knew the answer!)
This post abortion journey has become what I hope to be a lifelong spiritual journey overall. Sadly, often, I just feel like I don’t know a single thing about God, or Jesus, or my religion or how to be a good Catholic. At those times I just have to give up and give in that sometimes I don’t know anything. I just have to be at peace to just be, because I can only be what I am...so far.