welcome to my world

Chatted with both my sisters yesterday. My oldest sister Marie lives in Alabama, but closer to Georgia. They weren't affected by the hurricane, although they now have lots of new neighbors in their little Southern town taking shelter in local churches.

I also talked to my older sister Monica. She'd spent the weekend visiting our cousin in Colorado and some of her friends from college and peace corps. Apparently, I was the main topic of conversation.

Cousin/friend: How's your family doing?

Older sister: Really well. Joe's family is growing up. Michael's really busy with his internet company. Susan's becoming a nun. Marie's...

Cousin/friend: What did you say? Susan's becoming a what?

Older sister: Susan's becoming a nun. She's found this really great order that's committed to social justice and …

Cousin/friend: Wait a minute, did you say she's becoming a nun. I didn't realize she was religious.

Older sister: Well, she's been rediscovering her faith for the past 6 years or so. She found a really great parish and got involved in peace and justice work and realized this is what she's meant to do.

Cousin/friend: Wow. I can't believe she's becoming a nun. Will she wear a habit?

Older sister: No, it's a modern active order of sisters. Like I said, they're committed to social justice and peace. They run a health system and do a lot of work with the poor and women.

Cousin/friend: Wow. Little Susie's gonna be a nun! How do you feel about that?

Older sister: She seems really happy….

Cousin/friend (turning to another relative/friend): Did you hear that her sister's going to become a nun?

This is of course a paraphrase of how my sister described the many conversations she had about me over the weekend. I guess conversation kept coming back to it. Her husband asked her on the drive back to Chicago if they'd have to have this conversation forever.

I told her I think the novelty will wear off. But I also said, "Welcome to my world!" … This happens to me a lot.

My cousin at first apparently said that it was cool, because the family would have somebody with some pull (to get them all into heaven? not sure what he meant by that). But then he said something like, "Does that mean she's going to know all the bad things I do too." I guess it's an extension of the nuns who taught us who could someone see what was going on behind them. My sister told him no, she didn't think so, but our Mom (his Aunt) is already in heaven and you can bet she's keeping an eye on him so he better shape up.


Steph said...

Sounds familiar .... during my novice year, I went home for a very close family friend's funeral. The whole time we were at the church for the wake, my mom kept introducing me to everyone (who all already knew me anyway!) as "This is Sister Stephanie. The order sent her home for this."

For one thing, I chose to come home for it. For another thing, the way she put it made it sound like I was kicked out or something. And, if nothing else, it made me stop being "Steph" and become "Oooooo, a nun!" Course, my mom's really the only who acted like that ....

Omis said...

I just told most of my friends about my vocation hopes. Most of them, it seems, were stunned into silence. One of them told me he was surprised, though not in a bad way, and didn't know what to day.

My big fear was that they would fell like they need to treat me differently now, is it coming true?

The two who did talk to me more about did say, however, that they were happy for me.

I'm having a bunch over this weekend for drinks...I guess I'll find out more then!

Susan Rose, CSJP said...


Good luck with the friend thing. I told my close friends eons ago and they're all pretty cool with it. Everyonce in a while though I swear I catch them looking at me!

But as time has gone by they've seen that I'm still me and will still be me, only better!

Good plan having them over for drinks. That will help them see you're still you.

Steph ... I hear ya. I'm not sure what I'm going to do when people start calling me "sister susan".

Lorna said...


this was GREAT :)