Today marks 9 years since I came into the Catholic Church! It hasn't been easy. I have no regrets at all. But I will say that being Catholic is REALLY difficult. Sometimes I'd love to go back to the ignorant bliss I felt as a Protestant under "once saved, always saved" and "faith alone". It was so much easier!
I have learned that being Catholic isn't about conforming God or my church or friends to my way of thinking or living. It's trying to conform to that which God has established. It's conforming my mind and heart to what God has already deemed best for us: his laws, his commands, his authority. And, I've also learned that I'm downright lousy at it!
I've heard it said that converts frequently lose the fervor they once had and sometimes backslide... not that they completely disregard the truth of the Catholic faith that they've come to know but perhaps they acquire a sense of apathy or laziness toward their faith.
I've cycled in and out of this a few times. It's tough to keep my heart in it sometimes. My mind says one thing - I listen to Catholic radio and Christian music, still desire to read Catholic books (but never finish any) and still enjoy listening to a healthy debate. But my heart just rarely goes beyond that lately. Instead it's just this scary lukewarm spot we're never supposed to be in but I'm too apathetic to get out for any decent length of time.
I miss going to church with my mom and dad. I really long for my mom, especially, to know what I know and to be excited about it with me. But I'm too scared to boldly put it out there. It's been nine years and in all that time, outside of my first announcement that I was becoming Catholic, there has not been one genuine conversation with anyone in my family about why I made this choice. They taken a few digs here and there, usually not to my face and usually insinuating I didn't make this choice on my own, but there has been no attempt to understand how I came to this understanding.
Instead, I'm sure they are all still praying for the day that I "wake up" from this "false religion" and stop bringing my kids up in it as well. But, that's never gonna happen!