Wednesday, April 7, 2010

8 Weeks from Today!

Can it really be? I'm teary when I think of that day. Eight weeks from today I should be holding my sweet little baby boy in my arms. My cup is overflowing.

Honestly, I also have butterflies in my tummy (not just from tiny feet kicking), although they are welcome butterflies. It has been five years since I have held my own newborn. I have been longing for this time, this big belly in the way, the aching back, the sore feet. Now, I embrace it all with joy that surprises even me, stopping to put my feet up without worrying about what is not getting done, gazing into the faces of my two oldest children as they tell me some vitally important non-sensical thing and wondering what will it be like?

He will be here in this room with me. How will I not become obsessed with his every breath? I see the crib still needing sheets and blankets. When will I finally get all those little things I still need for him? My last birth was a surprise c-section. Can I be strong for this surgery and not quiver with fear? His siblings are so excited. Will their joy continue through the disruption of their routines after his birth?

The answers do not really matter, because throughout it all I am and I will be praising Him.

I will praise Him. No. Matter. What. --- That has been my call for the past year, through angst and heartache, through doubt and fear, and now through joy and delight. --- I will praise Him. No. Matter. What.

Because He has done great things for me by giving me life through His death, by teaching me life through my own death to self in many, many ways these past ten years of living my vocation as a married woman. And, He is still teaching me, thank goodness! I want to be taught! His lessons are more precious than silver and gold or an infant's cry. He has all of the answers. He is the only answer.

Easter is about Resurrection. It is about dying to rise again. It is about celebrating new life and being awestruck by its beauty. It is about embracing the sorrows and hoping in Heaven. It is about having the courage to share encouragement in this often dark world. It is about rejoicing for the presence of those who walk this journey with us. Easter puts things in perspective.

So, today as I reflect on the ways these mothers (and so many more) valiantly give their all in pursuit of a life of holiness for themselves, their families, and others, I am inspired. For my sanctity depends on the daily commitment I make to lean on Christ for all things, today, eight weeks from today, and every day in between.

His empty tomb is an invitation to all of us to leave behind our old selves and put on the self He has created us to be! May we look forward to every new day as an opportunity to go beyond our imaginings and be invigorated by our own new life in Christ!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Delight in My Heart

Happy Easter! I pray your family enjoyed a blessed and joyous day! Easter is absolutely my favorite holiday (and not only because of the jellybeans and chocolate bunnies! but they do make me giddy!).

What wisdom the Church has in giving us the silent, suffering preparation of Lent to prepare us for the delightful, glorious celebration of Easter! In fact, Lent is 40 days. The Easter Season is 50 days. To me, there is such poetry in the 50 days of Easter. In our home, we are enjoying the Garden of the Good Shepherd like last year with Jessica and Charlotte and some local friends, as well (more details in a later post). I long to savor every single day as a gift of joy!

The rhythm of our days has taken quite an upbeat turn. It is as if Jesus's Resurrection has infused my soul with a pleasant nature, a positive outlook, and a glow that seems more than just pregnancy hormones! I have come out of Lent seeing that God took my tiny efforts and blessed them. His mercy took my plans that fell apart gradually week by week and mended them, made them more meaningful, more delightful.

In fact, I feel as if I have come out of a cloud or a tunnel and can see things more clearly, with more grateful, sunny eyes. Don't get me wrong. The children's incessant inhalation of candy has certainly affected their behavior and challenged my resolve, but even with that, in the light of Christ's empty tomb, I can see such hope in our lives.

My daughter will soon receive the Sacraments of Penance and Holy Communion for the first time. God-willing, we will all gaze into the eyes of our little baby boy two months from now. My husband is pursuing potential opportunities to get us back home to Texas. And, the mercy the Lord has shown me has reminded me of the peace I can find in daily prayer (even when I don't feel like it).

I pray that you, too, have come out of the heavy cloud of Lent into a season of great joy! Please join my excitement in sharing this joy with our children for the next 47 days and intently focus our energy on communicating to them (partly without words) the abundant love of the Good Shepherd of us all!

Kind Conversation

Simply wonderful! Elizabeth Foss has invited us all to "a quiet place to share a vision of rhythm and beauty, holiness and joy" at Kind Conversations!

This new forum looks so beautiful and full of such potential to be an encouraging, uplifting, engaging place for positive discussions about our lives as Catholic (homeschooling) wives and mothers. I have yet to learn how to fully use the site, but I am thrilled with the conversations that have already begun.

Join Kind Conversations today (you must join to view)!