Posts Tagged 'faith'

It’s Begun

Lent, that it.  I still have many other posts I should finish and post but part of my Lenten observerance this year involves updates and posts here.

This year for Lent I am:
Going meatless (I do this every year)
No pizza (something I’ve done the last few years)
Apply or at least look for a job every day during Lent (well I need a job and I wasn’t putting in the effort or work I needed to to find one)
Weekly posts to this blog, on Wednesdays, on a Catholic topic
Go to Confession (okay, that’s been on my to do list for a while and just needs to be done)

So all in all not doing a lot but I shouldn’t do a lot.  I have problems, which I may or may not have explained before, where I think, even believe, that I need to do more and do it perfectly.  Actually, I believe I just need to be punished and everything will finally be all right.

I’ve always believed, had it in my head, whatever, that Lent is not a fun season.  Not only that, it was a time where you had to absolutely miserable and suffering.  I needed to not only give up sweets and meat and not eat all day on Fridays but give up more and add heaping penances on myself.  If I gave up sweets, I couldn’t have even jelly or jam on toast.  I could not have anything that was remotely sweet in anyway or I would be sinning.  I had to go above and beyond and yet that still wasn’t enough.  I had to suffer.  I had to be punished.

Being punished was all I was and am good for.  If I was punished, things would go back to normal.  Would be the way they were supposed to be, not what reality was.  I had it my mind that if I punished myself then my mother would finally love me.

It doesn’t work that way.  Just replace mother with God and you’ll understand how messed up my thinking is.  I didn’t figure out that I wanted to punish myself to make things right until about two years ago.  But I still think it and believe it, to an extent. 

I understand that I can’t make my mother love me.  She never has and never will.  She’s not really capable of loving someone beside herself.  She’s just too self-centered for that.  And I can’t make God love me but then I don’t believe he loves me either.

You can tell me until you’re blue in the face that God and Jesus loves me and that the Bible even says it but I don’t believe it.  I don’t get it either.  If you grow up not being loved or at least not loved very much or loved very conditionally, being told you are loved and by a person you can’t really see or hear,or touch is unbelievable. 

To me, I’m not loveable and cannot be loved.  I need this to be true which would then explain how my parents treated me and how others saw and see.  How can I be loved if I’m not loveable?  I’m not loveable, therefore I am not loved. 

Love is conditional.  I can  only be loved if I meet certain conditions.  I don’t meet those conditions therefore I am not loved.  I have never been able to meet those conditions so I have never been loved.  I am exceptionally good at doing things wrong and terrible at doing things good.

Just look at where I am now: unemployed, broke, in major debt.  Nobody liked or loves people who are those things.  They are people to be pitied, looked down up, cast aside, and ignored.  You must be successful to be loved.  Nobody loves a loser.  Losers are pathetic and deserve condescension, not help.

Not everybody deserves love, hence conditions.  Everybody has conditions to be met before they will love someone, even parents for their children, even when they deny it parents still only love their children conditionally.  Love is too precious to just give out unconditionally.  There has to be conditions and they have to be properly met before love can be given out and even then it must be in small doses.  Can’t go overboard otherwise they might get the stupid idea they deserve to be loved and they can expect that love whenever they want.  And without conditions.  That cannot be allowed, not at all.

I don’t know the conditions or at least the ones I’ve know I haven’t met therefore I can’t be loved.  I was never able to make my mother happy or do what she wanted.  And she was always changing the rules, which didn’t help, but then she was allowed to change the rules since she made them up in the first place.  And as she repeatedly told me, I was going to Hell.  And since Hell was full of people God didn’t therefore God didn’t love me.

I have no problem with God loving other people.  That makes sense.  Other people have always has it easier, had fewer conditions, if any, to meet.  Me, like I said, am not lovable.  I’m used to that, in a way, though probably not as much as I should be.   I don’t believe it fully but I do believe it.  And in my head I believe I need to fully and completely accept that 100% for everything to be alright.  For everything to be as it should be. 

I’m under a different set of rules and conditions and I know that.  I’ve always been under a different set of rules, a different set of standards. 

I’ve always had to go to extremes.  Normal, average wasn’t good enough.  I wasn’t good enough.  I had and still don’t have anything  that sets me apart, makes me unique.  I could die tomorrow and nobody would notice.  Or care.  That’s how worthless I am.  And unloveable.  Too many says I deserve going to Hell.  Too many days I’ve thought my mother was right and deserves to go to Hell.  Too many days I’ve thought of suicide.  Too many days I’ve thought if I just accepted fully and completely that I am not loved, that I am useless and worthless then things would finally work out.  Too many days  I’ve thought punishing myself would make things better.  Too many days I’ve thought killing myself would finally make everyone happy.  Just too many days.

I just don’t believe God loves me.  And I’ve told Him to punish me and He isn’t doing that either.  Therefore, I’m probably not even on God’s radar, which is probably a good thing or a bad thing.  I don’t know. 

I’m not sure what to believe anymore. There are many says when I want to walk away from the Church.  I don’t know why I haven’t.  There’s no real reason for me to stay though I suppose there’s no reason for me to go.

Numb

That’s largely what I feel right now, numb.  I believe that’s a,little bit from being back on my medication again.  It will pass but the numbness existed before I went back on my meds.  I’m back on them, at least the small supply I have, to get through the next couple months.  Plus, I was having too many serious crying jags and suicidal thinking.

While the meds only help a little, they help in the most important ways.  It’s only been a week and I’m much calmer, which is what I remember from the first time I was on them.  My emotions aren’t all over the place.

However, I have less energy than I did before but I think it’s just an adjustment my body is making.  That means I don’t get out of bed before 5 p.m. and haven’t been out of my apartment since Wednesday. 

I didn’t make it to Mass this morning and then decided not to go to Spanish Mass this evening.  That has been something that I have been struggling with/questioning/having doubts/etc. about: my faith.  I think a lot of this right now comes from being unemployed so not working, so not busy.  I believe and I understand what I believe but there isn’t much of an emotional connection, I would say.  I definitely have religious habits (oh boy, what a pun) but they don’t make faith.  I question if I even have faith.  Like I said, I believe but belief and faith are two different things.

Now, honestly, I could never be anything but Catholic. I was raised Catholic and have therefore been Catholic all my life.  Nothing else makes sense.  And yet, I still feel like I’m missing something, that I don’t understand, that I don’t fit. 

Granted, I honestly don’t fit in in just about all Catholic circles because I’m a 31 year old single woman with no family (in the area), no intention of getting married, and largely lower middle class (I’ll never be rich, hell, I may never be able to retire).  I’m a nobody with no prospects so therefore I’m unimportant and very much ignored. 

I don’t know.  I just want something more.  I know I want to be more than some minimum wage schlub.  I know I want to be important.  I know I want to be wanted and needed.  I know I want to feel something when I get a hug.  And I know those are all selfish things. 

That I should be happy and extremely gratefully to have a dead end, minimum wage job.  That I should be thankful that nobody wants me or needs me because being unimportant is more “Christ-like” than being important or wanted or needed.  That I should be grateful that I have so little that if I were to, lose it all then it would be easy to replace, that I’m easy to replace. That faith is not based on feeling so not feeling something is a God thing.

And yet, that’s all bunk, too.  I just don’t know.  Add anxiety and depression and the abuse by my mother and being told all I need to do is pray and I’ll be cured immediately doesn’t help either. 

This isn’t making much sense.  I think I’ll stop now.  Maybe write it longhand.

Oh, To Be So …

I’m not sure what.  I had been meaning to write a whole post on compliance and obedience but here it is Good Friday and all I want is Lent to be over.  It’s not about being able to eat meat again or being done with fasting.  I just don’t want to deal with Christ dying and the emotions that go along with it.  I just want to flee, to run away.  To not have to deal with the fact that even though I believe I don’t seem to have any faith, that I don’t feel anything.

I read the post that Elizabeth Esther wrote today and it brought up that all I feel is that I’m being pushed away, that I’m holding on and Jesus is pulling my fingers off one by one so that I’ll fall away, that I’m not wanted, that I’m not loved.

Even though Good Friday service is optional, I feel bad if I don’t go, like last year and feel like I have to go because if I don’t it means I’m not really believing, that I don’t love Jesus enough to go, that I’m not doing enough, that I’m not loving enough, that wanting to feel something about my faith is evil and sinful, that I don’t exist to Jesus unless I do everything right. 

I feel like if I go I’ll be reminded how lost and unlovable I really am and everyone will know about it, that I’ll be kicked out of church and told to never come back.

For writing so much about how I feel I really don’t feel anything about my Catholic faith.  I hear all the time that you shouldn’t feel anything about your faith and if you do feel anything that you might as well be the devil.  You have to be stoic and somber and serious and have no feelings to be a good Catholic and never enjoy anything and don’t have a personality at all.  Maybe I’m not meant to be Catholic if this is what being a Catholic involves. 

Certainly this is what traditionalists think.  They just want automatons that spout off their rhetoric about Latin Masses, modernism, feminism, and how the Church went to hell in a handbasket because of Vatican II. 

Depression doesn’t help but it isn’t the cause of this either.  It’s just a symptom in this case. 

Jesus died for me and I don’t want to deal with.  That hurts because I’m not lovable like that.  None should love me like that.  I’m not worthy like that.  I don’t do anything even close enough to be worthy of that.  I have to do things to be worthy of love.  That’s what I’ve always be told and taught.  And I’ve never been worthy of love.  I’ve never done enough to be worhy of anybody’s love, not my parents, not anybody.  I’ve always been a loser and a failure and a disgrace and I’ve never amounted to anything.  I shouldn’t be loved at all.  I’ve never felt loved only hated.  So why would would someone go and do something like that even before I was born?

I don’t get it and I don’t really want to deal with it.

Depression and God

Dealing with depression is not easy.  Add faith and it gets much harder especially when some of my triggers come from supposed Catholics and my own rearing in the faith.  Right now I find it hard to get out of bed to go to Mass on Sunday mornings.  I didn’t go today though I did manage to go to Confession. 

It seems like now that I’m treating my depression things are worse not better especially with regards to faith.  I can handle work which is weird but Mass is hard though it’s less to do or deal with than work. 

Then I feel guilty though not going seems to be better for me right now, at least in dealing with unknown crowds.  When I wasn’t dealing with my depression, I made it to Mass every week.  Now I can only seem to manage every other week. 

Add in Catholics who have never had to deal with depression and it gets worse.  They don’t understand that you don’t choose to feel or act this way.  They think that depression is a sin or unconfessed sin.  They think praying one specific prayer once will automatically cure you immediately.  They don’t understand and all they do is cause more hurt, more guilt, more pain, and drive us further from God because when you feel like us you want the quick cure and when it doesn’t happen you think there must be something really wrong with you or that you are being punished or that God hates you.  You are the failure and you are going to stay that way because you are so repulsive that you are ignored by God.

So right now I’m surviving and making it to Mass when I can.  I’m a bad Catholic and I know it.  God have mercy on us all.

I’m Going to Be a Bad Catholic

Yes, I am.  I’m not going to listen to those angry, narcissistic, abusive, self-centered traditionalists.  I am not going to listen to their demands that everyone attend the EF or the belittling of the priesthood.  I am not going to accept their putdowns and comments that women should shut up and never been seen or heard and that they are the cause of all the troubles in the world.   I am not going to pray in Latin.  I am not going to listen to Michael Voris or read or watch anything by him and I never have and never will.  I am not going to look at modesty threads or at thread about the Mass on CAF.  I am not going to worry about praying the Rosary all the time.  I am not going to look at an article of clothing and worry if it is modest or not.  I am not going to worry or think that there is more to do or need to do to be better.  I will not think of my depression as a sin but as an illness that needs treatment.  I will not listen to garbage about how I’m not a true Catholic woman because I am not married, have kids, and not a stay at home mom who homeschool.  I am not going to worry about being Catholic enough and to meet some traditionalist’s personal opinion.

I am going to be a Bad Catholic in that I am going to be honest and do the best I can.  I will trust the Church.  I will listen to Her and Her Groom, Jesus.

I am going to follow what the Church teaches.  I am going to be me which is what God wants.  He created me to be me not some automaton that goes through the motions.  He wants me to be me and live the faith the best I can with His grace.  I will pick the spirituality that best fits me rather than have one imposed on me.  I will attend the OF and not worry about attending the EF.  I will be grateful that I can have preferences in how I worship and pray and that the Church is far wiser in these matters than I am.  When I go to Confession, I will confess my sins and not worry about doing it perfectly precise but honestly and with contrition however imperfect it may be.  I will take my medication to help with my depression because I need it to help combat the bad thoughts and the pain.

This video has been helpful.

Depression Sucks

As the title says, depression sucks.  I’m stuck in a spiral, out of control, everything is getting worse world where no one even notices that I’m hurting or refuses to acknowledge it or want me to hide everything I feel because making them feel bad is the unforgivable sin.

I’m too fat.  Jeans I only bought two months ago have become too small.  I seem to gain weight even though I don’t eat bad food full of sugar.

I’m so bad that I deserve to go to Hell just like my mother and the traditionalists always say.  I starting to really believe it.  I must not be lovable or likable and I certainly don’t have any talents or gifts.  I’m just a useless, worthless, waste of space that deserves to die.  People would be much happier if I was gone.   I’m not even a person.  I don;t matter.  No one notices or cares if I’m here or not.  People say God does but it He cares about everyone so I’m not even a blip on the radar.  People say they at I’m doing this for attention, that I stay this way because I like being a victim.  No I fucking to do not want to be this way.

I want to be loved,  I want to be good at something.  I want to be a person.  I want to be cared for.  I want to be noticed and remember.  I want to go to Heaven not be damned to Hell.  I want to be special.  I want to be the go to person.  I want to be perfect.  I want to be more than a stupid mental illness. I want not to cry anymore.  I want to have actual dreams that actually come true rather than having to squash them in order to make everyone else happy or because I always make bad decisions.  I want to make good decisions.  I want to be thin.  I want to be pretty instead of the real ugly idiot that I am.  I want to be more.  I don’t want to have to settle for scraps.  I want to be free.  I don’t want to be like my mother.  I want to be me whoever that is.  I want to be a real woman not the fake woman everyone else wants me to be.  I don’t want to be the boy my parents wanted and so when they were disappointed that I wasn’t they abused and neglected me.  I don’t want to be abused or hurt.  I want to be accepted for who I am.  I want traditionalists to shut up and get lost.  I want to be something.  I want to be a federal agent.  I want people to take me seriously.  I want people to stop ignoring me.  I want people to acknowledge that a single woman is not a heresy or bad person or a failure or not a person because she isn’t married or has kids or what not.  I don’t want to keep eating emotionally.  I don’t want to be fat.  I want to be real.

 

 

 

Let’s Just Beat People with a Stick, Why Don’t We?

Again, CAF seems to be full of people who would rather smack people down than help lift them up.  There’s a thread on how a “priest was harsh in confession” (harsh? define harsh) plus threads on cafeteria catholicism, soft catholicism, etc. and there are people who are going on about how priests today are weak and that nobody talks about hell and damnation anymore.  There are people advocating holding people from receiving the Eucharist (wow, even Christ isn’t that mean) for months to even years at a time, to arguing that people should have to recite multiple Rosaries, to saying that no priest preaches hell and damnation and that since most people are damned anyways (where does it say God on their drivers license) that people should know what to expect after they die.

I will admit there are people who have no concept of sin let alone their own sin.  But to advocate withholding Sacraments and fire and brimstone teaching deviates way past any truth about the Sacrament of Reconciliation.  Reconciliation is not about the priest hitting the penitent over the head for not being sorry enough or not confessing every sin as if it were mortal sin or for scaring the penitent into fearful obedience.  Reconciliation is about admitting our sins to Jesus and being forgiven, being absolved of our sins, and receiving the grace that comes from that sacrament that grants us the gift of being in a state of grace to receive the Eucharist.  Reconciliation reconciles us with Jesus and strengthens our relationship with him.  It’s not meant as a means of forcing the penitent into doing what the Church expects of him/her.  It’s about repairing a relationship not reinforcing an abusive dictator.

Scaring somebody straight doesn’t work.  They tried that with juvenile delinquents.  Didn’t work and there are studies to prove it.  Yet people want people to be afraid of GOD.  Why?  A fear of God doesn’t mean you obey him out of love. It means you obey him out of fear of punishment.  That’s not a healthy relationship.  As somebody who was raised in a fear filled environment, fear only made me tense and hypervigilant to my mother’s moods and words.  It made me unable to trust people and I definitely don’t understand how to love. I was always afraid that I was doing something wrong or did something or even just breathed funny and my mother would start screaming at me for being a bad girl that’s going to Hell.  Many times it didn’t even need to be something I did.  It could be one of my sisters or something on TV or some imagined slight my mother came up with.  I was going to be screamed at no matter what and there was nothing I could do about it.  To this day I cringe when anybody says my name or I hear a loud noise or people speak in a certain way because I’m expecting to get screamed at for something I did.  Or blamed.  And I know I have to take it because there’s no arguing.  They are right and I am wrong.  Remember, this is conditioned into me from nearly 20 years of abuse.

So I have a hard time accepting that yelling and screaming and making people afraid will get them to cooperate and do good.  Oh, it might work in the short term but eventually, in the long run, it will backfire.  The Bible doesn’t just speak about God’s wrath, which usually happened after several chances to repent and change their ways but also God’s mercy.  Why do people want God’s wrath for everyone else but God’s mercy only for themselves, if that?  There is more justice in God’s mercy and mercy in God’s justice than anything we can conceive.

Why do we have to smack people down and hurt them all in the name of religion?  Jesus didn’t do that.  He criticized the Pharisees but he didn’t hurt them or say they weren’t loved by God.  He did call for them to repent and that the people should listen to them, just not act like them.  Yet people want to condemn people to Hell all for not agreeing with them or not being sorry enough in their eyes or for the priests not smacking the pulpit while preaching hellfire and brimstone and hell and damnation.  Each priest deals with a unique congregation and unique needs specific to that congregation.  Don’t put down priests just because they don’t preach what you want.  They aren’t there to please you.  They are they to be in persona Christi and to offer the Mass, not to satisfy your need to put down others and hold yourself as a superior model of Catholic living, because you aren’t with that attitude.   What the priest may not deal with in public, he may deal with in private.  It is not your place to determine which priests are acting like priests and which aren’t.  They are priests and that is all you need to know.  You are not God.  You have no place to judge for you judge Jesus himself when you judge a priest.

You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.  Just a though.


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