The Beginning of the End of the Beginning

Recently I realized that I am now officially at the beginning of the end of the beginning of all of my (not to mention my husband’s) life altering plans for the future. It’s exciting and wonderful and stressful and scary all at the same time.

Here’s what’s going on –

I have completed 4 out of the 6 months of my required pre-seminary internship at Church by the Creek. I have been given permission to add an extra few weeks onto the end of the internship so I can spend Holy Week with them. When I ponder the schedule for that week I kind of wonder what I was thinking, but I know it will be worth it in the long run. I never imagined it was possible to fall in love with an entire parish, and it will be hard to leave them. I will be forever grateful for their kindness and everything they’ve taught me.

I have my final interviews for postulancy in just over two weeks. 5 hours of interviews incorporated into an overnight retreat. This INFP is wondering if they will be supplying rocks to hide under during breaks, or if I can bring my own… Seriously, all indications are that the committee is pleased with my progress so far, but thinking about these interviews makes me really really really stressed.

The weekend after I have those interviews I am going to visit An Episcopal Seminary. More INFP panic – all those people to meet and names to remember all at once!

To add to the chaos, Computer Guy is in the process of applying to law school. This has been on the horizon for a while, but things became much more solidified after he got his ridiculously good LSAT scores back. He is now working with a pre-law advisor at his alma mater and has secured letters of recommendation, etc. Pre-law advisor to Computer Guy “CG, I don’t think you realize how strong an applicant you are for law school.” Wow. Cool! I have been helping him get all his info together and have been astonished at the man I married. Now don’t get me wrong; I have known him for a decade and a half. I know how intelligent and academically accomplished he is. Still, I had forgotten that he went to undergrad tuition free, and that he had an impossibly good GPA in high school and undergrad, or that he had received all kinds of academic awards. Yikes. I did okay in undergrad but I operated on the premise that class was something to do when I wasn’t doing anything more interesting – like horseback riding, volunteering, teaching HIV/AIDS prevention, giving campus tours, or staying up late discussing religion with roommates. Seriously, I didn’t even party all that much. I just tried everything interesting there was to do (other than going to class) and somehow that resulted in a significantly lower GPA than the one Computer Guy earned. πŸ™‚

We have been working hard on getting our house in shape to put on the market. New carpet, new paint, getting rid of extra things, trying to make things more “neutral” and buyer friendly. I know it’s early to be doing all this, but with me basically working 7 days a week and Computer Guy working a zillion hours and doing youth ministry in his free time, we’re not home a lot. We’ve been trying to figure out how much stuff will fit in a student apartment in the Big City. I figure that 2/3 to 3/4 of what we have needs to go into storage or be given away. Yikes. I’m working on learning to live with less and it’s a bit embarrassing to admit that it makes me kind of nervous.

We will also have taxes to do so we can fill out financial aid forms so we can figure out how we will eat while in grad school. There will be a car to sell and health care plans to buy and movers to hire and congregations to say good bye to and address changes and jobs to resign from and a zillion other details I can’t even remember at the moment.

I never imagined we’d do something like this. This is the most exciting and nerve wracking thing I’ve ever done. It would seem absolutely nuts except that I know with all my heart that it is what I am called to do. All the planning, all the chaos, all the paperwork, selling the house and leaving everything comfortable (except for my amazing husband) behind to pursue ordination is absolutely what I should be doing. The farther I get in The Process the more I understand why it has to be so hard, why so much is asked of aspirants. If someone had tried to explain it to me in the beginning I would not have understood. So much of this is about the journey. Back when I thought The Process was just a bunch of hurdles to get past, I could never have imagined the growth, and yes, joy that walking this road would bring me. There are no shortcuts or easy ways out and that’s the way it should be.

So here I stand, at the beginning of the end of the beginning. 2 years ago this week I walked into my rector’s office, shaking, and said “I think I want to be a priest.” I know most of the work, the sacrifices, the confusion, the late nights, and the ramen noodles and mac n cheese dinners are ahead of me, and it’s all a bit scary, but I know that it is time to do this, and I am ready.

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~ by Sophia on January 27, 2006.

5 Responses to “The Beginning of the End of the Beginning”

  1. I love reading your blog. I hope you continue it through seminary. btw, My Love and I are hoping for some good news ourselves in the next week. I’ll keep you posted . . . — Your friend, S

  2. Yes, I’m there, too. I understand. We will survive and thrive. It’s just getting through the four thousand eight hundred fifty three more things that we have to do that’s a challenge.Blessings!

  3. Oh no Mibi- are there really that many tasks? Did you count? Yikes!!!πŸ˜‰

  4. Ramen can be purchased in absurdly large quantities at BJ’s and other wholesale outlets. I commend them to you. It’s all worth it, because when the call is upon you, there is no getting away from it. Thanks be to God!

  5. INFP’s make it through the process, too. (I’m an ENFP myself, but I promise you I’ve seen it happen.)Blessings to both of you as you seek to live into your respective vocations, and to do it together. It can be done. Yeah, there’s hard work and patience required; but don’t let anyone tell you it can’t be done.Remember, too, at least in your process, that people want you to succeed in your vocation. You may encounter some who don’t see your vocation quite as you see it, but that doesn’t mean they want you to fail. They want you to succeed, believing profoundly that God is indeed doing something in you. I know it doesn’t and won’t always feel that way; but I’ve been a priest a long time, and I believe firmly that it’s what I’ve seen.

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