By myself

Some people (i.e. coworkers) are saying that I’ll like this month: having the apartment to myself so much that I’ll choose to live by myself in the future. However, I don’t see it that way, as living with others preps me for community living. Additionally, I’m selling furniture, books, dollhouses, etc; there’s less space in the new place (think of the savings from not having any crafts!). If I were betting on the virtue I’m learning: poverty.

What’s God teaching you?

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Family

Can be attricious.

The situation: My roomate made plans beginning of May to move out and did so this past Sunday. I’m swinging rent in excess of $1500 by myself for August. I’ve found a place to share with coworker for total $1265. That’s a savings of $150/month for me.

My dad offered financial assistance last week. I held off & he retracted it Sunday morning. Then he had buyers remorse, and called me today. He wants me to stay at current place, which I csnnot afford with my student debt & car loans. I can’t afford to eat at this point.

His thought is that I submitted paperwork to Sallie Mae to adjust my loans & is counting my chickens before they hatch. Yet SM hasn’t responded yet.

If you withdraw support, don’t you think the horse will stop pulling the cart, and kick you? Especially when you tease the horse?

A Pair of Rants

I am contemplating a permanent move from my Xanga blog to here on Blogger. Xanga has begun in recent years to foster “-ish” sites like ManCouch which is often derogatory towards women and is the ole boys club; Datingish which frequently discusses what base to be on at which date or cohabitation; Revelife which is Christian, but antagonistic towards Catholics, etc. Then this week Mathematicalbagpiper, a fellow Xangan, faked a suicide note.
Not the best of reasons for why Xanga is the right community to stay in, although I have been there since 2004. I like the people I subscribe to and read on a daily basis, but between the ish sites, the boys crying ‘wolf’, and the general other kinds of trash on Xanga, there’s little to really keep me there. Why would I want to align myself with something like that?
I do not have a problem getting a job, any job, in order to earn some money. What my parents are unaware of is that I was a kettle worker/bell ringer for the Salvation Army in December for 7.5 hours per day every day for $8/hour; rain or shine. So my mother tells my dad this morning “Tell Meg to go to H&M for a job application; and tell her not to be embarrassed.” Excuse me? Embarrassed? I’m beyond embarrassment, humiliation, or anything else! In fact, I’m almost proud enough to say, “Hey, my health care social work job market is so bad, that I worked as a bell ringer for the Salvation Army to earn a little cash! Take that!”
With that being my attitude, I’m further injured by the fact I have to ask my dad for gas money. I got $20 on Monday, and again I requested gas money today. Let’s do a little math.
At $3.079/gallon, $20 gives me 6.45 gallons of gasoline.
Essentially I get 25 miles/gallon: 161.25
Each day this week I have driven up to Culver City where I take classes at West LA City College. The commute from my house to there is 23.2 miles.
I drove straight to campus and back on Monday and Wednesday:
Round Trip: 23.2 x 2 = 46.4 miles
2 Round Trips: 92.8 miles
On Tuesday I drove to campus: 23.2 miles, then the next 12.9 miles to an apartment near USC for dinner, then back down to home to sleep, another 25.6 miles.
In total, I drove 92.8 miles on Monday and Wednesday, and an additional 61.7 miles on Tuesday.
In total I drove 154.5 miles in three days; according to the ideal gas consumption I should have another 6.75 miles in my tank available to me, which I used this morning to drive to the gas station, 2.2 miles from my house.
So, why the presumption by my father that I’m wasting gas money?
Let’s not even begin to ponder the fact that I only get money for gasoline and nothing for food. That’s right, the days I leave the house without food in tow, I don’t eat. How’s this, I pulled the last $20 from my account (before the bank charges me overage), three weeks ago. I used $10 on dinner out with friends (think I’m able to afford a $5 tip?!? Hah!) and the remainder of it went towards buying beer – for beer bread that is quickly becoming popular for me to bring to potlucks. I used the last of those $20 on soup last week for dinner on Thursday evening (my parents were out of town), and $1.68 for medium fries on Monday for dinner. I had fries for dinner, until I could get home and eat something more substantial at 9:30pm.
Want to add insult to injury? My dad wants me to pay him back for every $20 I ‘borrowed’ from him to pay my cell phone, gas & food money (back when I got $ for food) in undergrad, grad school, and my current time of unemployment. I’ll save you the trouble – its more than $14,400.
And I’m supposed to pay off $50,000+ in student loans for getting a Master degree.
Don’t complain to me about money, unless you’re more broke than me.

So Many Things…

Unlike a lot of bloggers, I am not fasting my blogs for Lent; it’s booze. That’s difficult for any post-grad person who hangs out on campus, goes to bars, clubs, etc. Yes, for any jaw-droppers out there, I party like that. There’s some fun under all this straightlacing!

Sister Joseph Andrew asked me this week for an update on my discernment and about where I am with taking care of my student debt. I do not have a definitive answer for me, for you, or for her; and we all should have a response to the inquiry! I would love to know what God wants to happen.

That being said, I’ve got a lot of peace around the idea that I am not likely to enter the Dominican Sisters of Mary. I was heartbroken last year when I was accepted and unable to enter, but not this year. This is not resignation, this is an accepting, “Okay, God, if not the DSMME, where? Who?”

No order, as I stand right now, will seriously consider me with debt. So thus far I know that I cannot seriously apply and enter a convent for about 2 years, perhaps 3, considering I ardently desire for my sanity to move out of my parents’ house.

So I’ve got the “when” addressed. As for the where, there are several realizations coming to me, prayerfully of course.

First, I love the DSMME, but I think I was initially drawn to their vitality, youth, and faithfulness to Rome. These are all very lovely things to desire, but a vocational calling they do not make. I liked the idea of teaching, but having used this year to teach Confirmation, I can say I like teaching, but I do not love it. I cannot do it all the time. However teaching Confirmation and being involved with 2 parishes in the area have allowed me to experience retreats. I love helping out with retreats – teaching, coordinating, being in the background, and interceding for the retreatants.

What else do I like and look for in an expression of my faith? Spiritual warfare and intercession finds me; I don’t go looking for it. Now, provided some of that is directly related to the fact I live at home and family members invite idolatry and occultic practices in; yet I’m around it even outside of the family house.

Third, I’m not attached to any of the Dominican saints; they are great people and saints, but they are not the ones I call upon. I call upon St Michael, St Joan of Arc, and St Benedict. And this got me to praying and thinking about what I mentioned above in terms of spirituality and warfare, and intercession. It’s always been there, it’s not going away.

Lastly, at the beginning, and this continues still, my prayer has been to be with Jesus Christ alone. To just be with Him all the days of my life, and nothing else. It’s the “nothing else” and “alone” that jumps out at me now. In the previous 3 years of discernment I think I was afraid of monastic and contemplative vocations. I had no idea about them, and I wasn’t about to consider them out of fear. Fear? Fear is of the Devil, and it always grips us right when we are about to do something that is perfectly legitimate in the eyes of God (i.e., Confession, speaking out about the Truth). So, maybe it’s time to face this old fear head on and look at monastic life, and such.

That’s where I’m at.

A Quick Update

As I have mentioned in the past several posts, the DSMME put a deadline on my student loans. I have spoken with many KoC and other Catholic societies in the region and have been told not much can be started before March. March does not leave me a lot of time, so instead of buckling down and plastering this world with monetary pleas, I’ve been praying more.

Which leads me to say that I think God is calling me elsewhere. I’m not 100% certain, nor am I pouring the concrete until the Sisters’ deadline has arrived.

In the meantime, if you could squeeze me into your prayers – for clarity – I’d really appreciate it!