I am in RCIA with the intention to convert to Catholicism. Before I can receive the Sacraments I have to wait on a Decree of Nullity. I am looking at about a year. Meantime, I am trying to prepare as best as I can.
I was baptized as an infant and am 38 years old. I was a bit wild in my teens and 20’s. I have more sins to confess than I could ever possibly remember. Looking at the Commandments I know I have broken all but Thou Shalt Not Kill. A few Commandments I have broken many times with full knowledge that I was doing a serious wrong.
As I move forward and prepare to confess how do I handle a lifetime of sins? Especially since I have the memory of a gnat with a short attention span.
I have read a few things in a forum search about being general. As in “I have committed X sin many times”. The problem is that there is a laundry list of X sins.
Once I have made it through my first time I plan on confessing my sins fairly regularly. I have read that some people have a piece of paper or a notepad they write key words or phrases in to aid their memory. I plan on doing just that as I really am terrible at recall. So, how do I know daily and weekly what is really a sin and needs to be recalled for confessing?
I am coming from a Protestant and then Pagan and then an Atheist point of view, so I am working on recognizing thoughts and words and deeds that are small and seemingly ok, but that in reality aren’t ok at all. An easy example is taking the Lords name in vain, impure thoughts, being angry and snarky. These things aren’t nice, but they aren’t generally seen as sin by non-Catholics. Especially if they remain just thoughts. Now that I know they are sinful I could use any advice to help me recognize them for what they are, to break the habit, and to remember them for Confession.