Monday, 17 January 2011

Day 5. 6 things you wish you'd never done.

1. Held back from saying 'I'm in love with you.' I did it because I didn't want to lose the friendship; didn't want to make things difficult. But over time, I've come to believe that as long as it isn't impossible - i.e., they're taken or they bat the other way from you, in which case, it's just putting them in an impossible position and making you deeply unhappy - it's worth the risk, and even if the answer is 'no', it's worth knowing.

2. Let my parents control me for so long. I wish I'd really fought back early: fought for extracurricular activities, fought for MY course choices, refused to be dragged onto endless summer computer/accelerated maths courses, fought to apply to a LOT of colleges AWAY from home. I might have gotten some or none, but if the former, what a different life this would have been.

3. Spent so much time with people who didn't share my values, outlook, sense of humour. Too much time trying to make friendships/social occasions like these work meant I missed out on ones that belonged to me.

4. Shut friends/teachers out growing up or tried to push them away in anger. I lost my two best friends after high school because of that, and though we've found each other on facebook, we'll never get back that closeness or those years in between, which would have meant we would have TRULY shared our lives.

5. Gone against my intuition. Always, always, ALWAYS THE WRONG ANSWER - even if what people were saying sounded rational and what my intuition was saying sounded crazy - it was always right and they were always wrong.

6. Converted to Catholicism - without really exploring the Anglican/Episcopal Church. I honestly don't know which way I would have gone. I can hear my clerical friends all saying 'Catholic, of course,' but I think they're wrong. Given the chance to be a minister to G-d's people, to have a real voice in what happens, to be able to argue without being labelled 'heretic', I might well have fallen on the other side of the fence and been happy. But once I'd chosen Catholicism, I wasn't going to leave unless I left Christianity or organised religion altogether, no matter how hard the attraction to Anglicanism tugged. Whether that was because of a sense of failure, of needing to stick with it, I don't know yet; maybe I never will.
I would never have had to deal with the misogyny; the sense of betrayal by the Church; the 'epithets' of 'heretic', 'angry feminist'; insufferable boys who felt privileged because they could be what I couldn't: an altar server, a priest, even if they weren't called to either; the sense of constant struggle with doctrine.

But then, I wouldn't have met so many people I know and love now - members of my inner circle amongst them.

And perhaps that is the lesson: in the end, maybe it is those things that we wish we'd never done that bring us that which is most precious: maybe in this case, those wrong turns have made the most amazing right.

1 comment:

CEAD said...


You know, in a lot of ways your list and mine are similar.

I really hear you on 6. Picturing you in priestly vestments is almost laughably easy; you would have been brilliant. I'm glad you wrote this, actually, because I've sometimes wondered, and now I understand.