What will I be when I grow up? It’s a familiar question. As a happy and energetic farm girl in Iowa, I frequently imagined what my life would look like as an adult.
While I helped my mother with chores or ran around exploring the woods and the farm buildings, I dreamed about how I might run a household if I ever were a mother some day. I looked forward to when I would be able to do adult things and make my own choices. I saw myself acting a lot like my own mother and grandmother: gardening, cooking and baking in a big farmhouse and offering care to a lot of happy and playful children.
I also dreamed about being a teacher, a writer or maybe a missionary in another country. I did have a vague idea that I might like to be a Catholic sister, based largely on my love of films like “The Sound of Music” and “Sister Act,” but my childhood dreaming never included the picture of me actually being a nun.
What remained a constant in my childhood thoughts about being an adult, however, was an experience of relating to a large, loving family. This makes sense. I never knew any Catholic sisters as a child, but…