On a less serious note, I do like the Eastern style of iconography better. Especially the Coptic style
Hey, neat. I like our icons better, too.
I was RC before I converted to Orthodoxy. I know it's hard, I know it's scary, I know that you are worried about stuff that I also worried about...so I can't and won't tell you what you should do, but I can tell you what I did, and phrase it like I am giving advice (because I realized after writing this that it sounds like that anyway...oops; these are really just things I realized over time after being where you've been, too)...
- Take a break from attending RC services/Mass (edit: Not to be cut off from religious life period -- I actually spent much more time than usual during this period talking with my father of confession and doing things like going to monasteries and following his advice to read Eastern saints -- but I found that for me the RC concept of "days of obligation" made me feel much worse
about the doubts that were already there, to the point that I had to voluntarily remove myself from communion anyway just to quiet the demons that would tell me that I was dooming myself by constantly failing in this "obligation"; your mileage may vary, of course.)
- Take a break from any internet forums, discussion groups, or other religious websites
- Don't read apologetic literature from either "side" you're looking at; everything looks good/bad (often both at the same time), depending on where you are, but your feelings aren't a good guide (the heart is deceitful, remember?)
- Do pray. A lot.
Extemporaneous, written/memorized, etc. Pray, pray, and pray some more.
- When you are sufficiently emptied of your own anxiety over the fact that you might have actually been wrong about something (!), begin to study from primary sources. Read the Fathers, read the Scriptures, read the Horologion/Agpeya, etc. Let all of these inform all the praying you're doing. Pray with the saints. They're there for you, and they've obviously gotten to where you hope to go.
- (Perhaps very important from an RC background) Give yourself the freedom to be a baby. I'm 100% serious. Nothing on an intellectual level feels quite as calming as throwing up your hands and saying "I'm a tiny amoeba trying to comprehend an endless mystery that all the geniuses of Church history and apologia could not approach; I'm not going to 'get it' in a way that will ever satisfy my ego or intellect, and that's okay -- I am
going to get what I need from God, because He knows just what that is even though I am completely confused."
- Read the liturgical texts and hymnody of the church you are interested in; at least in the Coptic tradition which I am most familiar with, these are deeply instructive. I inquired into the Church for over two years before I could actually go to a liturgy (there simply aren't OO churches in my home area, so I had to move to another state), and for that period that inquiry involved bothering Coptic friends over the internet (hi, Mabsoota!), buying an Agpeya and praying with it, and listening to hymns 500,000,000,000,000 times. OK, so it helped that I could already read and pronounce Coptic, but still...you'd be surprised what you can learn about the theology, soteriology, Mariology, etc. of a given church by just listening to and reading the texts of their hymns. (Incidentally, this really helped in covering up how ignorant and confused I really was when I started attending the liturgy...
More than once people asked me "How do you know these things about Orthodoxy/our church already?" "How do you know Coptic?", and even "Who are you marrying?" Hahaha...Lord knows that's the only way that a non-Egyptian can know about the COC.
I just kept repeating "Well, I have memorized the intercessory hymns/congregation responses/etc. by listening to them about a million times..." People still don't believe me, ~2.5 years later)
Or, even better: forget about all the above blather and listen to/read the words of HH Pope Shenouda III about how to pray and come to God: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q8Vx1uZxXd0
(I'm not even kidding; I saw an earlier version of this sermon video on the internet when I was studying Arabic in Oregon, and it pretty much did it for me; it was like "Ahhhh...this
is the faith I want but don't have!" Oddly enough, even though now I'm Coptic Orthodox I still say that...prayer is a lifetime of striving after this...)
God be with you. Don't be afraid.