I was a chubby baby, wasn’t I? lol.
Today I’m grieving the loss of my ability to become a mother.
No, I did not lose a child. No, I did not get a diagnosis that says I’m unable to have children. But I am mourning the fact that I’m very unlikely to be a biological or adoptive mother due to my vocation.
Now, I want to make it clear that this doesn’t mean that consecrated virginity is a bad vocation or an invalid one. I would not be discerning it if 1) I didn’t feel like God was calling me to this vocation and 2) if it went against Church teachings. But it’s also not the easiest one to accept because it’s meant giving up a life-long dream of being a wife and mother. In fact, that’s why I stubbornly fought discerning this for so many years.
As early as 2009-2010, I could feel myself being called to being a CV (though, at the time I didn’t know CV was an actual vocation) but I fought it. Part of it was because I was being pressured to not stay single. I was made to feel like I was just being selfish and that I loved my independence too much. I felt like I was being too picky; that my standards when it came to relationships were too high. So, I pushed back on the idea of staying single. It helped that I truly wanted to be a wife and mother… but deep down I felt like it was forced. Fast-forward 8-9 years, there was someone in my life who wanted to marry me and had waited years for me to be ready… but I couldn’t get past the fact that it didn’t feel right for Christ not to have my heart completely; that a mortal man had to share it. That’s when I knew I had to bite the bullet and live with disappointing everyone who wanted to see me married.
This discernment has been difficult. I’ve had to give up on the idea of being a wife and mother… and the fact that I may never be a mother has hit me particularly hard lately. As I mentioned in my previous post, I’m still unpacking what I feel God has been asking me to meditate on — especially what’s in my heart — and that’s a lot of love I have to give.
I’ve been officially discerning consecrated virginity for 2 years now. It was 2 years ago this month that I knew I had to pull the plug on whatever was going on with the guy. The fact that being a CV would mean never being a mother (other than a spiritual mother) isn’t a new one that has caught me off guard. Still, it isn’t easy to reflect on.
It may be because I always assumed that I would be able to give that love that I feel overflows to a husband and children. It may be that I’m almost halfway to 37. Yes, I know it’s not ladylike to state my age and that some of you don’t believe I’m as old as I am because I apparently still don’t look like I’m over 25-28, but I’m saying it. It may just be my biological clock reminding me that if I ever want a chance to have kids, my window of opportunity is rapidly coming to a close. It could be that I’ve been spending too much time around friends with babies and little children and the fact that I’ve always love little kids. Or it could be that God is allowing me to mourn this loss of motherhood now as part of the discernment so I can be certain of the vocation going into the last stages of the discernment process. Who knows, it could be a combination of all the above. One thing that I’m certain of is that I’m definitely grieving it… and I’m grateful to God for it.
Was that a plot twist for some of you? Yes, you read that right. I’m glad I’m mourning the loss of motherhood. And, no, I don’t say that because I get a sick masochistic thrill out of the pain. I’m glad because I know God will bring good out of it, like when I lost my eyesight. I think it will help me embrace and enrich my spiritual motherhood even more. I don’t know how yet but I know God brings good out of seemingly bad situations… although this one isn’t bad.
As I said, I’m being forced (in a good way!) to dive deeper into what’s in my heart. Since I cannot be a biological or adoptive mother, how can I share the love in my heart as a spiritual mother? How can I use my maternal instincts to better serve the Church and my diocese as a consecrated virgin? This is definitely something I’ll be thinking about and discussing with my spiritual director because this will be something that will be an important part of my discernment and vocation.
Anyway, I wanted to share these thoughts because I feel like they don’t get talked about enough amongst those who are single and unsure of their vocations and /orfor those discerning consecrated virginity. It’s normal to grieve over the loss of the idea of marriage and motherhood. It’s part of our humanity and the gift of being a woman.
I think that’s enough soul-baring for now, don’t you? lol.
I hope you are all doing well!
As always, thank you for reading and God bless!