Think It Over ~ Reflection, Mary Latela, 8/20/2016
For many years, every decision I made was based on either fear or impulse. In fear, I took flight, went away, and lost valuable time/space which I never redeemed. Once I lost 10 days and from the responses of several professionals, it seemed that they saw me as usual – quiet, sad, looking for rescue.
I went into the convent because I truly did believe that there was some kind of call, or nudging, or desire to do so. Unfortunately, from a combination of sources, I opted to go within six months of the death of my cousin Andy.
I could have waited to finish college, and from what happened later, I could have erased some grief by doing so. But the sisters did not want to lose a girl to hesitation. They wanted me – right away. The idea of ANYONE eager to invite me in was so astounding to me that I could not resist. Why should I resist? After all, if God was on the line, wouldn’t God take care of the details – including the chronic illness which made going home the only option. No, God did not rescue me. My good, dear brother tried, but I had been coached by the Superior in what to say to assure him that I did not want to leave.
Depression increased, doctor faded away, and I decided that since God had left me alone,
the God must nor really care that much about my health or sanity. The long detour – going home, then finishing college (cum laude) then being told by my father that the savings for graduate school had been spent when I was away – multiplied when I DID make my own decision – to stay in Boston and obtain a teaching job, which turned out to be incredibly stressful because I never ever had any training in running a classroom, and I did not know how to keep the kids quiet and civil.
Instead of recounting any more ups and downs, I’ll move to the turning point. I was deep in depression, cut off from the kids by their father, knew that the marriage was more destructive that even God could handle (I say this metaphorically, because the realization was that God does not rescue us from harm. We/I have to work out of the mud and sewage – not all alone, but with the proper support.
I remember the exact date of the change in my very core – my heart, my inner being. I had had another sad day and I was exhausted. And I told my nurse that I thought I had alienated my last friend. She said, “No, Mary!” I jumped. She went on, “Mary, this is not the end. I think this is a turning point. You have come this far and I know it’s hard, but you’re coming to the top of the hill and after that, you will ride through the hills – not without some stress – but knowing that you are strong.”
We talked about the strong decisions I’d been faced with, how I had mustered enough courage to keep going. We talked about that soul-deep picture of my children, still loving me. We talked about tomorrow …. not a whole lot of tomorrows, but the very next day – when I could use some of my power to make a good, healthy decision about living and working and loving again.
I had married on impulse – as in if I say no I will never have anyone. I have been post-divorce for a long time, and there were wonderful fruits of marriage – three beautiful kids who no longer speak to me, but they are out there doing good and I trust, being good..
T.I.O. – think it over. I heard this from Buddhist teacher Sylvia Boorstein. Especially if we live with many demands and with people who want a YES or NO this very minute, I will say I don’t know. I need time to think it over. Does this resonate with you? Love to hear your story. @LatelaMary