My family is hurting so much. I see it each day. Sometimes there are tears, some fallings out and silence. What is sad is that we don't understand each other. The thing is, I am so joyful that I'm going to Carmel to be nearer to the Lord and this makes it hard to feel their pain. Perhaps the Lord is protecting me from this, as feeling their pain would weaken my resolve because I might start feeling guilty and give in altogether. The Holy Spirit helps me to persevere.
As a result of not being able to feel their pain, I try to be compassionate. It's not always easy though and I've become cross a few times. There are questions I have to answer and as Carmel is fairly austere, it is hard for others to understand enclosure, wearing sandals, having no possessions, not being able to receive gifts as before, praying several times a day etc. How can I make someone of little faith understand this? I can't.
It's sometimes frustrating that my parents cannot understand my happiness, but I remind myself of why; they think they are losing a daughter. They won't be able to pop over and visit me. I won't be able to visit them. Family outings, holidays and dinners will be a thing of the past. I will belong to Jesus. All I think of is sometime in the future when they will be happy for me. And I really believe this will happen, because they love me. All a parent wants is to see their child happy. And I have faith that Jesus will one day reward them for their suffering.
Heartless as I feel right now, I believe my pain will come nearer to leaving, or indeed when I have left. My tears will be between me and Jesus.
- Carmelite Aspirant
- I've just turned 27 and am entering Carmel on 24th January 2009. My first full day will be on 25th January, the Conversion of Saint Paul, of whose year this is and whose school I went to and sisters I loved. So I am depending on him to help convert me into a good Carmelite! I've wanted to become a nun on and off since the age of 11. Although I can't remember the moment I felt drawn to Carmel, I think it was partly because of reading about St Therese when I was 11 or 12. I feel I may have a natural inclination towards this way of life, altough getting up at 5.30 will not feel natural, I'm sure! I spent 2 weeks as an Aspirant in October 2008 and I loved it and came back feeling that I should go back and see if becoming a Carmelite is the Will of God and my route to holiness.