Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Discerning Vocations

This year is a year of discernment for me. Hang on Catholics, I'm not considering the nunnery. "Discerning vocations" is what I'm calling my journey of figuring out whether or not I'm meant to stay single, which I am reflecting on with prayer (hence the religious terminology). Now, I think every Catholic woman, particularly every perpetually single Catholic woman, considers becoming a nun. So yes, I've toyed with the idea, but I don't think I'm being truly called to it.

However, I do admire the lives of the nuns I met. Volunteering, running youth programs, running cities, teaching the poor, running summer schools in Ethiopia, working for social justice, how amazing! They are proof that you don't need to get married and have kids to have a full, meaningful life. They truly inspire me.

So, because I am wondering if I am willed for a vocation of singlehood, I subscribed to some nun blogs and a "spinster" blog, basically people who are living a perpetually single life. I want to see what a single, husbandless life has to offer and if I really prefer that over the status quo for women: marriage (and kids). I would like a life that's a happy medium between marriage with kids and the convent life. Perhaps marriage without kids? I know a marriage sans children is not a "Catholic marriage" according to Canon Law, but there are married Catholics with kids who aren't devout, practicing Catholics...

As I've said, I never really tried dating, so this is my year to try. If this year yields no boyfriend, then I'll "stop trying." My single life is pretty good and satisfying. I just want to see if there's an amazing guy to share my amazing life with.

I tell you, though, that if the year was 1010 and not 2010, I definitely would jump into the nunnery. The nuns 1000 years ago were a lot more "free" and educated than the married women back then. Look at St. Hildegard of Bingen.

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