Catholic guilt

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Non-Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

my journey in being a divorced catholic

When you come from a family of 7 siblings, how can you feel so alone? Sometimes Sheila  wondered how exactly she got to this place.  She wondered about lots of things- was there a God, did other people move their butts to the beat whenever they heard music, what did it mean to be a truly good person ( what if you knew you had done some not nice things?? Were you still a good person?), and were other people as afraid of getting hurt as much as she was. Sometimes she envied her married  brothers and sisters, even her brother who was a priest. They all had a family to rely on. Sheila did have her son, who she loved more than anything, but she wasn’t sure he knew that. Besides , he was 21 and had his own life to live. Sheila would love him regardless if he made mistakes or not. Maybe that is why she felt so isolated. She didn’t grow up with that feeling of unconditional love. Love was unconditional as long as you believed in the same thing as your parents and followed the rules. She was not a rule follower.

All her life, Sheila felt different from the rest of her family. It’s not like she didn’t want to be a rule follower. Maybe then she would have a family of her own. But is that what she wanted?? It seemed so mundane and safe. She would rather have moments of breathtaking excitement than a lifetime of “OK”. Not just exist in this world but truly live in it. That’s what she told her ex-husband 15 years ago before they got divorced. Her son was so upset about the divorce and Sheila felt so guilty and ashamed for breaking up her family.

 People  blamed her for the breakup- she could tell. He even told their friends he couldn’t believe she was doing this to him. Then she found out her ex-husband was gay and suddenly it all made sense and nothing made sense. Her ability to trust had been shattered, she had lived a lie for 7 years. But she didn’t have time to grieve the loss of her marriage ( or the loss of her in-law family which was much harder). Sheila had a six year old to raise and she put her heart and soul into that.  Six months prior to finding out her husband was gay her father died. And Sheila felt like a rug had been pulled out from under her. 2 weeks prior to his sudden death her father had told her “ you don’t have anyone to lean on anymore so lean on me”. Then he was gone. And Sheila had no one.  Her brothers and sisters seemed to treat her differently, maybe because of the divorce, maybe because they knew how close she was to her parents- she was never sure. What she was sure of, although it was never spoken out loud, was that she could be on the “in” crowd with her brothers and sisters if she could find a nice Catholic boy and settle down. But something just didn’t seem right to Sheila. Her siblings seem to find appearances so important . Sheila found the truth important. And the truth was her reality did not include the need to “ settle down” with a catholic.


Submitted: May 22, 2014

© Copyright 2021 Judy Spencer. All rights reserved.

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May Bee

Questions and pain may herald the beginning of personal growth. That is where I believe this story leads.

Tue, June 17th, 2014 4:37pm

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Reply

thank you May Bee- I think you r right and will continue the story!!

Tue, June 17th, 2014 11:33am

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