I’m still trying to figure who “me” is. I was sure by now (age 61) I would have a better handle on it than I do. But no, everyday brings in something new to adjust and grow with.
Who I was yesterday:
1956 Born in Victoria, Texas with lots of brothers and sisters. Grand total: 7 brothers and 3 sisters
1974 Graduated from a small high school in Newport, Washington and went promptly into the Navy. I was there for four years. Three as a Cryptologic Technician and one year as a storekeeper. The change came about because I got into trouble (I always do) and ended up being kicked out of the security group for some little drug stuff. It was mostly just a little hash and a little speed. Wasn’t a dealer or anything drama oriented like that. Just a small time user who got caught. After a short bout in a Naval drug rehab I finished my term and left with an honorable discharge in 1978.
1981 Joined a monastery and became a nun. Was there for 28 years. It was a great life for a long time. I had a fairly large internet ministry, Franciscan E-Cards, published six books, started and ran a 5000 watt AM station and did a few other things. Basically I sort of pushed myself into the fast lane in the monastery. It fit who I was but not so much what the monastery was about. Something had to go and that turned out to be me.
2009 I made the decision to go into drug rehab for religious sisters. I was not doing drugs but I found (after 8 months in rehab) that I was living an addicted life style. I was addicted to all sorts of things, work, religion, whatever that dropped in front of me. I was not breathing in and breathing out contemplation in the monastery, I was screaming inside to get out. To leave was definitely the hardest decision of my life but one I have not for a moment regretted. The sisters were not the problem it was the monastic life. It just no longer was a good fit for the person I grew to be.
2011 I received dispensation from Rome to return to regular life. I lived for a bit with my sister in Albany, Oregon and then on my own in a small town house. Gradually, gradually I learned how to adjust to life outside of the cloister. It was a bit like returning to Earth from an extended stay on the planet Pluto. You have no idea how different life in the monastery is from life outside the monastery. Just no idea. Not bad, just very different.
2015 I moved to Vancouver, Washington to live with my boyfriend, Jon. I have always been pretty happy where ever I happened to be but this is the best. I think I have landed. This is where I am supposed to be and who I am supposed to be with. It’s a wonderful life. I am working as a CNA doing home care, starting my own business creating and marketing word search puzzle books and basically just living, breathing and loving each day as it comes.