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The golden, autumn sunlight glistened upon the dewy morning grass as I walked upon the less trodden path. Before my eyes the heart-shaped leaves of the Sweet Birch fell gently at my feet as I took one step after another just as I had done so many times each morning before this one. Today though was not the same as those other days since it would be the last time that I would ever walk the convent grounds, and gaze up towards the bell tower of the little chapel with walls built of stone.
While waiting for my parents to come and take me home, I wanted one last time to go for a walk wearing my navy blue habit; the habit that I could not wait to receive the day I became a novice. With tears streaming down my face, I was in complete and total perplexity as to how the sisters who were supposed to be my family could play such mind games with me; one moment leading me to believe I would be moving on to the next stage of religious life, and the next minute having me leave forever. I had no warning from the Mother Superior, and yet here I was having to leave the convent without any say in the matter.
With my white veil swaying in the breeze, and Rosary beads swinging at my side I tightly grasped the crucifix within the palm of my hand as I struggled to pray a "Hail Mary," with each labored breath. The isolation and abandonment that I felt was surreal; I could not believe that the same women who first welcomed me with beaming smiles and open arms could treat me with such wickedness and coldness; that my religious life journey was coming to an end. My whole world collapsed before my very eyes, and the vocation that meant everything to me was abruptly taken away from me in an instant.