As the title suggests, today I attended my first mass with my head covered. Perhaps some people will read this and weep because they think that covering your head in mass is a sign that a woman is oppressed. I would have been inclined to agree with them a few years ago, but, as with a lot of things in the past year, I have changed my opinion through watching, listening and reading. Ultimately, it was this article which changed my mind. I decided I did not want to wear a mantilla though, because I think that they are too pretty and they catch my eye, so they will probably catch the eye of other people too. I got a large black pashmina and went with that. I felt pretty nervous about doing it and felt that I look a total fool wearing it. However, in the end I told myself that nobody would be looking at me, so it didn’t matter how I looked, only that my head was covered.
I actually got lost on the way to mass today, as I was coming from a different direction, so I missed most of mass (I went there primarily for confession anyway, so it wasn’t a total disaster). I got there for the last 10 minutes though and that was quite enough for my first veiled outing! I felt sick, I was so nervous. To top it all off, I knew at least two people there and they have never seen me wear a veil of any sort in mass before. My biggest fear is that people will think I’m doing this because I want to be ‘holier than thou’. That could not be further from the truth. Today, I almost wanted to scream “Please don’t look at me!!”. I covered my face with my hands as I was kneeling and just tried to concentrate on why I was there and why I had made this decision, which seems so huge when you first take that step. Afterwards, I went into the sacristy to find a priest who could hear confession, and I felt a bit more comfortable kneeling there with the veil on.
Tomorrow I have to go to mass in the morning, and I know there will be a lot of people there. It may seem like I’m making a big fuss over nothing, but these are serious traditionalists and they know that I have not been covering my head until now. Maybe they won’t notice, but in my head, I will think that everyone is looking at me 😦 I think I just need to get over this first hurdle and then it will get better!