Tag Archives: Catholic

“But I don’t want to be died!”

Oh, out of the mouths of three year old girls during Good Friday mass. My daughter was sitting on my lap on the pew, the smell of fresh air and sunshine wafted up from her little body because we had remembered mass while on a family walk outside and had to cut it short, and she asked me an innocent question about Jesus. Little did I know that this moment would lead to one of the hardest lies I have ever had to tell my little girl.

See, we had briefed the kids on the way over, and we told them that Good Friday mass was more like a funeral. There would be no singing of joy and adoration, not a lot of singing at all really, and people would be sad because this is the day we mourn the crucifixion of Christ on the Cross. So, when we walked into church and sat down, the solemnity a warm, snug fog over the congregation, I didn’t think anything of the conversation from the van. I prayed my usual, “please let my kids be good through this gathering and thank you for leading us here to be with you safely, etc” and sat back in the pew. Ellery climbed up on my lap, her blue eyes squinted in thought, and she asked me, “why did Jesus have to die?” My heart sank; I had been dreading this conversation since we decided to raise our children Catholic. I do not like Good Friday. I don’t like to think of the cruelty that Jesus had to go through, the pain and torture. It isn’t my favorite thing to think about, though I am supposed to honor and behold that image as a Catholic. I explained to her, choking on my whispers, that the other people in His town thought Jesus was a bad man and a liar because some people called him the King of the Jewish People, and there was only allowed to be one king, the monarch, King Herod. Pontius Pilate, a man with a lot of power, didn’t act on Jesus’s behalf; therefore, Jesus was set to die. He was crucified on the cross, and I showed her in my palms where the nails went. I told her he went into Heaven on Easter Sunday, and He threw open the gates for us to be able to be with him when it is our turn to die. He was waiting for us, and we would all be with Him again one day. She looked up at the crucifix in the front of the church, seeming to understand this, and said, “oh. Ok.” She didn’t seem phased, and I breathed a sigh of relief that my answer was acceptable without further question. Or so I had assumed. After about thirty seconds or so, she walked down to see my husband, and she stopped dead in her tracks. The “something just broke my heart” look came over her face, and sobs trembled her chin. “I don’t want to be died!” she wailed, collapsing into my husband’s arms. He looked at me, dumbstruck, and I realized what I had done. “Come to Mama, baby. It’s okay; let’s just sit here and talk,”  I cooed as she came back into my arms. I sat with her again and braced myself for the next part. Boy, had I stepped in it this time.

Her clear, liquid blue eyes pierced my heart as I wiped her tears. She looked at me, desperate for an answer as to why she had to die. And I started talking to her, assuring her that she would not die soon. I told her that none of us were going to die anytime soon, and we had a long time and life ahead of us to be together. She asked me if only adults die, and I was honest with her and told her that no, babies and kids can die also. But I would do everything in my power, as would my husband and our families, to keep her safe and healthy, alive and whole, for as long as we could. I calmed her fears, settling her heart over and over, telling her that we would all be okay and a family for a very, very long time. None of us would see Jesus soon. I promised. She smiled, gave me her signature squeeze around the neck and an, “I love you, Mommy.” My heart was so heavy, I almost couldn’t breathe. I lied to her…and it hurt me so.

See, here was what broke my heart. I don’t know when we will die. I can’t guarantee her that we will all be together for a long time. I can’t promise her that I will not die tomorrow, that she will live until she’s 90, or that none of us will see Jesus soon. I can’t know that, but I told her this. And it hurt me. I thought about the people we have lost too soon. July 20, 2013, reminded me that tomorrow is promised to no one, and death can happen at any single moment, with no warning. And Death doesn’t care if you have young children, a family, are alone, or have people counting on you. It doesn’t care, and it isn’t fair. At that moment, remembering my cousin and others who have passed well before we here on Earth are okay with it, fresh tears found their way to my cheeks. Onlookers may have seen my emotions as a direct reaction to the mass and message, but it wasn’t that. I was sad thinking of those who have passed, and the fact that I can be separated from my kids at any time, not guaranteed to see them become parents, see my grandchildren, dance with my husband on a monumental anniversary. And I was sad because, in the moment, even though I didn’t tell her the total truth, I did the right thing. I promised my child something that I have no control over, and something that is so fragile and unknown: that we would live for a long time, together, as a family. I did what I had to do, lied to my child in CHURCH no less, but it was an answer she accepted wholly, without question. And as I looked at her beach blond hair and cherub cheeks, her eyes calm with knowing she would not die anytime soon, I realized that I promised her something that I want to be true, so badly, and it is a promise I am okay with making.

There are conversations that you imagine yourself having, but you don’t really know how you will handle. From the sex talk to the death talk, there are topics that need to be broached with clarity and conciseness, honesty and simplicity. I didn’t imagine having the intro to death chat with my three year old at this tender age, but I am glad that she and I had that moment. It did my heart good to soothe hers, and I did what any mother would do: I made a promise to my child that, in my heart, I so desperately want to see through. And though we don’t know what our tomorrows will bring, as long as my child believes in me and the power of my love for her, I know no matter what, she will know I will never truly leave her, regardless of how many breaths we have left.

mother

And it never, ever dies…

mother2

And that, right there, is a fact!!

Sunday Night Snacks

A handful of M&M flavored tidbits to wind up the week….

1. I forgot how much I love DMB. I did not like them in college when it was the Thing To Do. I liked them after and now as an adult. I wasn’t like, “Oh, DMB, speaks to my soul…” I heard that enough. There were no Dave posters on my wall. lol. Lame-O. Nope. I waited until I got older and their sound grew on me. I love ’em.

2. Since Shitty Cake Day things have been better. I’ve remembered that things happen for a reason, and even if we don’t know the reason we have to trust that God has bigger in store. God can dream bigger and do so much more for us than we can do for ourselves, and I have to remember that. I trust in Him and the Universe, and know that the plans for my life that have already been set outweigh my own plans for my life.

3. I am loving my commitment to take weekends off and just enjoy the girls. I looked at some papers today for about fifteen minutes, recorded points, and moved on to fun with the girls. I have to say that since letting go of fluff that was disguised as commitment, I am a lot happier, less stressed, and at ease with myself and my family. Love it. Good feeling.

4. We have decided to rejoin the living world and get UVerse TV back. I love love LOVE my Roku box, but I really miss being able to see things as they happen. And HGTV. And football. And the news. And my shows on daytime TV. With the Roku box, we definitely are more intentional in our TV watching, as you have to select things to watch and watch with purpose. There is no background noise or flipping through. It’s point, select, watch. But I can also do that with regular TV. I know that. So we’ll see how it goes. I don’t necessarily want a higher bill, but it won’t be unmanageable. I am excited and predict I will spend about three and a half hours straight with HGTV on once it is installed Wednesday morning. 🙂

5. I have been thinking a lot about religion. And I know that I am Catholic. I feel it in my soul. I don’t feel it as strongly as I’d like currently. I know we all go through periods of humdrum and then passion, so I am not concerned. I find myself utilizing a lot more of the Buddhist teachings I studied before. I do believe, and this was always a joke, that I am a Buddhist Catholic. In many ways they are so much alike. No one really thinks of it like that. I can see many similarities (and many BLAZING differences!) between the two. I like to combine them both in my everyday life. I’m decidedly more spiritual than religious. And that is FINE with me. 🙂

6. I just killed a spider that I attempted to kill like four nights ago when he got away. He was in plain sight and BAM! Got him. Karma, baby!

7. A friend of mine just called me and we talked for an hour and a half. And it was nice. The kids are in bed, I had no distractions, and really got to talk to her. I forget how quiet it is without the kids sometimes. They definitely provide the soundtrack to my everyday life.

8. I have rediscovered How I Met Your Mother on Netflix and I am obsessed with it. And not just because NPH was my first love.. 😉 It’s such a great show. So smart while being funny, campy while being cute. I dig it.

9. I am going to start working again on that novella I started months ago. With the whole reorganizing of priorities, I have yet to throw in “write novella”. But it’s coming. Soon.

10. I have been thinking a lot of my dreams for my family’s future… And I did some digging for some quotes for a friend and came up with some good ones. I have inspiration for a tattoo (like I don’t have enough inspiration. I would have eleven tattoos if I ever followed through on the inspiration…) from one of them. I will share it below.

When I read this, it literally took my breath away.

I believe this is my life verse.

Time management? Nah. I have no time TO manage…

You know when it feels like you really, honestly have far too much going on, and you do not do anything that you have not put into your schedule? You know the feeling where sometimes even the most minute details of your everyday life have to be written down somewhere (like, for example in my life, “write in blog”) or else they go the way of the Island of Misfit Tasks…?

No? Just me? I think you’re lying. But whatever.

Story of My Life

I am in that state of mind right now, and frankly I do not know what to do about it. You’re probably thinking, “well, dummy, don’t try to do so much” and you’d be exactly right. However, I challenge anyone to come to my house and go through my calendar and tell me what exactly I could cut out. Because, I’m telling you, you’d be hard-pressed to find anything…

Teaching is going SO extremely well. I love having the control of the classroom and being able to truly help my students. I have 50 students and each of them seriously mean the world to me. I always thought my teacher friends were full of shit (frankly) when they would say that about their students, but now that I am there I get it. I understand the feeling of disappointment when a student doesn’t come to class regularly and I know they need the help. I am doing everything in my power to help them learn to write and grow as writers in confidence. I don’t do it [their work] for them, but I come close. These students need someone like me. I am that bleeding heart who believes that the students deserve the best of me and that I need to give 110% every day in my class. And I can honestly tell you, that on a weekly basis, I am giving 100+% to my students. Which is leaving me exhausted, but it is worth it. It’s the good exhaustion.

Premier is busy. I am not going to lie, it has taken a major backseat, but it has to right now. I need to focus on my classroom and figure out how to fit the business into my new career. I am handling it well, but it is a balancing act, that is for sure. The new Holiday Gift Collection came out a few days ago and I am going to be ordering that soon (BOOK YOUR SHOWS NOW FOR HOLIDAY SHOPPING!! THERE IS A REASON JEWELRY IS THE NUMBER ONE GIFT EVERY SINGLE YEAR!). I truly love my business and the ability that I have to do with it what I can, when I can. Love, love, love.

We need a treadmill, so that’s next. I am getting sore from sitting around while working at home, and I need a way to get the blood  pumping. We have a few ideas of what kind we are going to get, etc, but I am always taking feedback from my friends on their suggestions.

The girls got big girl beds today (like really, really big girl beds) and they are loving them. Caelan had been in a twin up until tonight, and she liked it. Now, she’s in a full bed and she thinks she’s the hotness (and she is, let’s be honest). Ellery’s is enclosed in bars, so she’s safe and she thinks it’s hilarious that we can now get in her bed with her and snuggle. She’s a giggly, silly little lady. Seriously, the total night-and-day-ness of the girls is unbelievable. Caelan was very sick, so she was higher-strung and not as happy all the time. Ellery is just chubby, giggly, smiley and full of personality. Caelan has always been full of motion and go-go-go and Ellery is way more subdued and laid back.

Preschool isn’t going as well as I had hoped, but it’s another transition and we will be getting through it together with family and the school’s support. I have confidence that all will work out.

Tomorrow is national Go Back to Church day, and I intend on doing just that. I am going to be checking out another Catholic church in the area. After 2 years of denying it, there is a reason I converted to Catholicism (other than the cop out I give people about getting married in the big, fancy church) and I need to revisit that reason again. After thinking about other options, Catholicism is the one idea that still makes sense. Shawn and I had agreed a while ago to commit to raising the girls in a Catholic home, and we need to go back to that and hold up that deal. So, I am going back, but am taking baby steps: small, tiny, baby steps until I am completely comfortable and can bust out my rosary with the rest of them. I actually have missed the prayers, the rosary…I should have kept it up, but it was easier not to. It was easier to deny it and pretend I knew better, I knew more. And I am not afraid to say it aloud now, that I don’t. I rededicated my life in July to Him, and In eed to make Him a priority. He’s never left me (and Lord knows, I gave Him plenty of reasons) and I am glad.
“And he arose and came to his father. But when he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him.” Luke 15:20

So: church, blogging, exercising…and I’d like to start knitting and writing again. These things need penciled in. I say screw another economic stimulus, I need a stimulus that adds a day to my week. A whole day. If Obama can pull that off, I think everyone would vote for him. THAT is true hope and change!!