Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Lent's End

Phillip getting a spring clean up - not much to do with this post, but cute, no?
It's the last week of Great Lent. I had a big, huge list of stuff to get done. I still do. Some I knocked out, some I pretended to not see staring at me on the list or in it's messy reality. Some I halved, true to my style. I began to scrub the grout in my kitchen tile, and after about 30 minutes on my hands and knees clutching an old toothbrush, and dragging along some rags, a bucket of warm, sudsy water and a magic eraser I gave up. I thought I'd go back to it, but nope. Last week was the "Get Ready for Baby Week." Not a single onesie was laundered. A craigslist dresser was not to be found. I contemplated sharing my own dresser with the baby. I could simplify and get rid of a bunch of clothes. It's easy to get rid of stuff when you're not wearing it. But perhaps my future un-pregnant self would be upset about that. Today when I scan my house, it is so messy. There are toys everywhere from the boys building boats and towns out of their blocks and random found items. I can't help but feel a little perturbed that after all my cleaning and organizational efforts, I still feel like a loser house-keeper. But, thank God, Lent is not about a clean house and pristine storage containers and closets. I hope my little efforts here and there are a small but meaningful offering to God and my family. I hope my dear ones feel loved when they open up the pantry and can easily find what they need. I hope they enjoyed the time we spent together, not staring mindlessly at a television screen, but truly listening to and loving each other, telling stories, praying, coloring, reading, crafting, and even cleaning up together. I hope I learned to do things more cheerfully, with less complaining. I hope. Part of Lent, is also rolling with the punches and the vexations of life. Oh the things that turn up! They seem so random but after they happen you realize they were all part of the Big Plan. Not my plan, of course. It's the surprise bill, jury duty, some one who needs help of whom you may not particularly want to help. It was James getting sick AGAIN. I could go on. But the Lord is good. Everything we worry so much about is always something He'll help us with. Many times I'll be needing to remember a verse from Scripture to help get me through something. And poof! It magically appears as it was hidden in my heart, either from the Holy Liturgy, or just a verse I've remembered or perhaps even have sung in a somewhat cheesy yet catchy tune back when I clapped my hands in church as a Protestant Evangelical. It was in that last manner yesterday as I nervously drove James to the doctor because of some more breathing troubles. I was dreading another pink bottle of antibiotics and feeling so helpless because I never know when he's going to get sick and when its time to go to the doc or time to be patient and give him some TLC. Overwhelming nervousness hit me. What if they want labs again? How am I going to get through that without crying more than him? You know the cycle of worry. And then the guilt sets in,because you know so many more people have it 1000 times worse than you and their kids are REALLY sick. And for crying out loud, it's not like we live in a third world country where there is no quick drive to the doctor for bubble gum pink bottles of drugs and co payments. So despite all that, in my first-world anxiety, I started singing, "I know I can do all things, I can do all things through Christ!" I sang it loud in that cheesy old tune from my hand-clapping days and I sang it loud as I drove down the freeway on that warm, breezy day with the windows down. And I knew it would all be OK. And I said a prayer for my friends and loved ones with real problems. We met with the good doctor who really listened to me and together we figured out James has Asthma. I was so relieved. I mean, it's a bummer to have Asthma but the breathing treatment worked beautifully and now we have an inhaler that I can give him right away to nip his breathing problems in the bud instead of waiting and worrying. When we got home we played him this little ditty because we all needed a laugh. (OK this is totally not very Lenten, but most of the time my need for humor shines more than my piety.) :) I've Got ASTHMA!!! God bless us all in the upcoming Holy Week as we walk with our Lord to his Holy Resurrection!