There is something quite comical about little girls dressed in girly pink and purple, wearing skirts and being lined up for teams to be chosen. Then to hear those sweet innocent high pitched, squealey girly voices yell out "CHARGE! AHH!!! ARRRR!!!"
Funny how during these past 3 days, they went really really slow... and I was wondering how I was able to make it through the next 30 minutes type of slow. You know what I mean, right?
My parents are coming in from out of state later today and that makes me so very happy ;) I am dying to have a few extra hands around here. It's been a bit tough lately. And it is comforting to know it is not just me. Not that I want others to feel in a puddle of tears like me....but it is comfort.
Last Sunday was Guadete Sunday and pink and rose third candle ...and joy. JOY! Guadete means REJOICE in Latin.
Joy has been missing a bit from my motherly loving lately. (so not proud of this)
How could that be since it is Advent? We are preparing for the birth of a baby, a very important baby and our priests have said at Masses lately, how does one prepare? Surely not in darkness and black and sadness. But quite the opposite with lots of baby showers and well wishes and joy and pink or blue or yellow dazzled around the house and nursery.
Finding the joy in anticipation of The Baby's birth (once again in our hearts...how will it be different this year for me, for you?)
This year I decided that I would not wait to put up my Christmas tree and decorations till Christmas Eve. We had our bit of penitential season not too long ago and I was ready to instill joy once again.
Yet it is not happening as quick as I'd like it. All in God's timing...His timing is always right. Right?
So, joy it is. The Bible states lots of joyful verses. Here are a few that came to mind:
Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.
"Be joyful always"1 Thessalonians 5:16
"The prospect of the righteous is joy, but the hopes of the wicked come to nothing." Proverbs 10:28
"A cheerful look brings joy to the heart, and good news gives health to the bones." Proverbs 15:30
"Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds " James 1:2
"Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer." Romans 12:12
"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." Romans 15:13
Seriously, it is not always like that but it happens much more than I wish for.
This Advent God is really trying to reach me by helping me to realize how important patience is.
Patient in waiting for Christmas day.
Patient in not hurrying my children out the door.
Patient in teaching my children to read.
Patient in letting my children 'clean' up their messes.
Patient in trying to laugh more and cry less.
Patient in listening to my children and all their questions that take a long time to get out.
Patient in letting my children destroy...uh, I mean mess up (ha ha) our house with all their many hideouts and tents b/c what else is there to do when it is so cold outside that they only last a mere 10-15 mins?
Patient in packing my husbands' lunch to take for work.
Patient in not blurting out all the things I really really want to say at that moment.
Patient in going to my baby's whims in the middle of the night...when not so long ago she was actually sleeping through the night!!! (argh!)
Patient in guiding my children in what they want to say and how they need to explain more to get their point across. (No, I do not read minds! ha haaa)
Patient in teaching my children for the 100th time that food is not allowed downstairs and then spend the following hour cleaning and vacuuming.
Patient in walking a certain 3 yr old back to his room as a punishment (more times than I want!!! argh)
Patient in listening to God speaking to me, even amongst the noise level.
Patient in knowing and wanting to believe in even a deeper level than it is more important to give than to receive. To give to my family unconditionally. To give and knowing that there is a great gift waiting for me in Eternal Life. To give until it hurts, as Mother Teresa says. To give and to get get totally depleted b/c I know where to get filled back up again~Jesus~prayers, adoration, Mass, Confession. To give and knowing that my wonderful husband has my back. To give b/c there is nothing else more important than to give of myself to others, and who more important than my family? To give and let Jesus give back to me. To give and allow Jesus to love me. To give and depend on Jesus. Give and be patient.
Finally got a chance to talk on an important phone call for a few minutes....kids playing play dough in the kitchen so quietly and nicely...
kids asked if they could have peanut butter and marshmallows...I said yes.
I finish up phone call and walk into kitchen smothered in peanut butter and marshmallows bag 1/2 eaten...2 kinds of jellies with jelly chunks spread around the counter...I am stepping on gooey jelly and pb on the floor and mixed up with old homemade play dough pieces all over...table covered in play dough toys so kids eat elsewhere their sandwiches....i knock into the refrig and a toy soldier on top of it falls off into the area that is our water jug area where kids have their cups filled up to the highest part of their cup (why?! i have no idea since the jug of water is RIGHT THERE!>?!? argh....) and 2 tall plastic cups of water fall over from the falling knight...water everywhere on counter into our pile of napkins...all over counter and all over floor...baby crying and screaming....kids fighting over who knows what....kids out on the deck in the pouring rain screaming...or is it dancing and singing? not so sure!....I pull out the hand towels (there goes my supply) and soak up all water...child #5 asking me the 150th question of the morning/day from the deck (window open b/c I am sweating at this point) and baby still whining....I pull another hand towel off another part of the counter only to topple over my tall glass of milk (why milk? I have not had milk and a PB&J in SO long!) and goes all over my counter and under my coffee maker (no! not my coffee!!!) and child #5 STILL asking me questions..even more loudly at this point....children coloring with crayon on the screens and shades, or maybe I just hope it is just a a chunky chalk...oh, pllllleeeeeeelease let it be just chalk...baby still whining....kids having running race throughout house.....water boiling for the noodles for tuna casserole dinner tonight.
Today was a day full of a mix of feelings and emotions.
It was (is) my husband's birthday. Happy Birthday to you! I am so happy to be a part of your life and so thankful that God blessed me with you and the fruit of our love....our 8 beautiful children. You truly are my helper, my true companion on this journey of life heading for our final destination. Your life blesses me and I thank God for that. Happy Birthday!
It is also my oldest sons' Baptism day...11 yrs ago! Happy Baptism day!!!
Lastly, this morning, we added yet another memorable experience....
It was harder than I thought it would be. You see, I had hoped with all my heart that I could go through this miscarriage naturally, not needing a D&C, unless I absolutely needed one. God granted me this prayer request and I did naturally. It was much more than just a 'bad period' as some say. Way more. In fact, these past 3 weeks have been very tough on me emotionally, physically and spiritually.
I was a wreck thinking of how and where I would put my baby's remains and what to do with them. It really concerned me and upset me. I thought about going to a Michael's store and buy a sweet little box that we could decorate somehow, to make it very personal to our family. I had visions of my children all helping out and making it a family affair. But, I thought time was not on my side. I hate to say that. How could I NOT make time for this important ordeal? I realized afterwards that time was not really the issue, it was more about investing even more of me and more of my kids, more of my heart into this child that was mine for 10 weeks. I was so sore, physically but my heart was what ached and is aching even more. I ache to hold my child more. I asked God "why?" and sure, I was a bit upset at God. But thankfully, that did not last long. I have some days when life just unravels and then I think of Therese or see something that would remind me of her and the tears would drop a little here and a little there, sometimes even turning into a flowing river! This grief is not over, it is better, but not over yet.
About 2 days before I had the actual miscarriage-the major part of it- in one day and has continued to linger on, it occurred to me that I have had this most beautiful box that was engraved with gold flowers and vines on the top.
It reminds me of Psalm 128:3:
"Your wife should be like a fruitful vine within your house,
your children like olive plants around your table."
It could be considered a sweet keepsake box. It is red velvet inside and made of the best solid wood. That would be it! I was so relieved to know that I already had this tiny little coffin already in my own room, in my drawers, for the past 3 or 4 years. Could it be that God has this all planned? That is my belief. He knew way before I did that that teeny tiny box would be something special. In fact, it was given to me and I did not know what to use it for so I put in these really tiny saint statues in it so that they would be secure and not break. Little did I know that our sweet teeny tiny Therese would be our real live Saint in there now.
The wonderful priest said some beautiful prayers as I held out the box near my husband and our children huddled around us. I did not show or tell the children that this box carried their baby sister's remains until afterward. I thought it to be too much of a distraction with so many questions and maybe that was not the right thing to do but I thought so at the time. I was so caught up in holding my child for the last time, that at the time that I had to hand over this tiny wooden coffin to Father, that it was one of the hardest things I ever had to do...to really let go of my baby. My eyes filled up with tears. My husband noticed my pain, my sorrow...some of my children did as well.
It was closure. It was over. It is finished.
Our little Saint Therese Avila, pray for your family here on earth to be holy and get to Heaven to finally meet you, God, Mary and all our patron Saints and Guardian Angels. We love you!
My Lil' Lady has found the pots and pans and what joy it brings her!
I am sure she would have found them earlier than 10 and 1/2 months old but she has been busy with all her siblings that aren't always that excited about those big metal pots and pans as she would be.
The funny thing is that even though it is quite annoying to have to tippy toe through the mess of pots and pans, I love it. It does not get old at the least. This is the 7th time it has happened. Each of my kids have entered this stage around the same age and this is the 7th time for us. The surprise and joy of a baby's face enjoying it brings such joy and smiles to my own face. That, my friend, I would not trade for anything.
Indeed, I will 'find God in the pots and pans' as St. Theresa of Avila says.
I did take a picture of Lil' Lady and her pots and pans but will have to post it over the weekend b/c I have not downloaded them yet! :)