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Showing posts from November, 2016

Missing Mom

It's been almost a year since my mom died (Dec. 2 is the actual anniversary.) I didn't think it would hit me this hard, but all I really want to do right now is retreat into a cocoon of blankets, tea and a rosary.

Dear Husband and I were with our spiritual director last night, and I spoke of this. She said, "You know, my parents have both been gone for over 20 years, and I still have moments where I think, 'I wish you were here." And she went on to speak of the "body experience" (which is a very Franciscan thing) of missing loved ones: the longing for the touch, the voice.

I don't want Mom "back." I pray her soul is at peace with God. But her voice, her hug. Whenever I visited, she would stand at her door as I was leaving and wave. "Call me when you get home, so I know you're safe."  I'm 50 years old, and she still worried about sending her baby out into the world, where so many bad things can happen. How can I not miss …

Huh. Didn't see that comin'

If I were to write an autobiography, I believe it's title would be, Huh. Didn't See That Coming. A few examples:

A proper Catholic girl who fell in love with and married an agnostic. (He converted later.)InfertilityAdopting 5 kidsStaying sane raising 5 kidsSpeech therapy, psychological therapy, occupational therapy...A parade of social workers who always knew better than I didThe incredible implosion that puberty had on my kids' brains. I could go on. And I shall.
About 18 years ago, we bought a "dream house." A great place to raise kids. Lots of other kids in the neighborhood, on a quiet cul-de-sac. Perfect.
Until things went so completely, utterly and horribly sideways.
Eldest Son was far more troubled that we knew initially, and eventually was removed from our home. Our "perfect home" became haunted for me - I felt guilty for not seeing what was right under my nose. 
As our kids grew older, the chemicals that their birth mother had implanted in their…

My Constant Prayer Right Now

Holy wound in the side of my Jesus, I adore Thee; I compassionate Thee, O Jesus, for the cruel insult Thou didst suffer. I thank Thee, my Jesus, for the love which suffered Thy side and Heart to be pierced, so that the last drops of blood and water might issue forth, making my redemption to overflow. I offer to the Eternal Father this outrage, and the love of Thy most holy humanity, that my soul may enter once for all into that most loving Heart, eager and ready to receive the greatest sinners, and never more depart. 

Eight Years

Multiply that by eight years.

Eight years ago - 2008. The US elected a man I did not vote for nor like. His administration rammed a health care package down the throats of the American people that forced many of us to pay for birth control and abortion, which we find morally repugnant. He spoke of "freedom of worship" which is far different than "freedom of religion" - a fundamental right of Americans. His presidency will be remembered by some of us for going after the Little Sisters of the Poor, a group of Catholic nuns founded in 1839. They provide end of life care for the destitute. The president for the past 8 years believed these women should provide birth control and abortion for their employees, which is a direct violation of their religious freedom.

I could go on.

Eight years.

For the past eight years, I have fought like hell for a daughter with special needs. I have been told by "her" social worker, a state employee was charged with my daughter&…

Post-election Blues

Actually, I'm not really all that upset about the election. I didn't care for either of the major party candidates and judging by FB today, we are just as divided a nation today as we were yesterday. No, my heart is heavy for a lot of different reasons, none of them political.

For those of us who struggle with depression, we know it is a constant battle with the beast. Some days, just getting out of bed is a monumental effort. Got dressed? Bonus! Went to work? Double-bonus! Did not put  your head on your desk and weep? You win a trip to Aruba!! (If only...)

We have instituted a "family dinner" once a month, but it's never the whole family. Got too many wounds, too much turbulence, too much mental illness. I cherish these days, but they hurt too.

I'm worried about a medical procedure I'm supposed to have done. It's kinda radical, but also hopeful. But will it work? I dunno. But it will require some down time, and this year, I've missed so much wor…

Holding on to a kid for dear life

Maybe you know this. Maybe you've done it. But if you haven't...

As parents, we know that someday, we must let go of our kids. They have to grow up. You relish those moments of cuddling them after a bath, of snuggling on the couch on a rainy day, of watching them learn a new skill.

But that moment when  you have to let go? We'd rather not.

Maybe it happens when  you drop them off at college that first time. Or that first time you hand them the keys to the car. Or when they get their first real job.

Maybe it's when they tell you (in utter sincerity) that they've learned a lesson you've put before them all their life, but NOW, it finally makes sense.

Sometimes, the letting go is not a happy one. It is not because they have reached a new height, or have grown up, matured. No, this letting go is ugly and sad and harder than anything you've ever done.

This letting go is because your child has made horrible choices. It's drugs or alcohol or the addictive beh…

Happy Feast of All Souls', the Day of the Dead And Why You Should Celebrate

One great thing about being Catholic is that we are always celebrating something. Halloween? Yes, please! Feast of All Saints'? You betcha! Feast of All Souls? We are in!

One thing that nearly all world religions have in common is some sort of attention to ancestors. It's common for Buddhist to have an altar or shrine in the home,  with a scroll in place listing the family ancestors. Both the Chinese and Japanese have a time of year when ancestral graves are cleaned, decorated and there is food prepared - both for the living and dead.

As Catholics, we celebrate All Saints' and All Souls'. I kinda wish we had more attention paid to what we can do in our homes to celebrate - our celebrations are pretty much limited to church attendance, unless you're more of a zealot. (And I consider myself one, so I do not mean that in a pejorative sense.)

Now, if you want to see these celebrations done right, head to Catholic Mexico and the Day of the Dead. This is a marvelous exam…