I biffed it at Mass today. You?

I biffed it at Mass today. You?

Just a quick note to let you know that I blew it at Mass today.

It was my first opportunity to participate in the joys of the shiny new translation of the Mass, and I whiffed it right out of the gate.

I blame the squirming baby who gleefully pulled my hair as well as her dejected and crying older brother who wasn’t old enough to participate in Liturgy of the Word with his big sisters. They completely and totally threw me off my “A” game.

Sure, I prepared for the new translation of the Mass. Yes, I read articles. Indeed, I studied with other Catholic women. I believed I was as ready as I could be. I should have said, “And with your spirit.” I wanted to say, “And with your spirit.” But I was completely caught off guard and didn’t say it.

A special word of gratitude to my dear husband who, after I responded, “And also with you,” glared at me, shook his head in disbelief, and said, “You, of all people.”

But guess what?

God still loves me.

It was still a valid Mass. It was still beautiful, if a bit rocky in parts.

The Eucharist is still an amazing miracle that I am totally unworthy to receive (under my roof!).

I’ll do better (or not) next time, depending on what’s going around me.

All told, my misstep was a good reminder that, even with the best intentions, my plans can go to heck in a basket if I allow myself to be distracted. So, I’ll try harder next time.

And maybe, just maybe, the little ones will distract Daddy next Sunday. That would be truly right and just.

Serenity Now!!

Serenity Now!!

I don’t have any formalized medical training, but I’m pretty sure my head is thisclose to exploding.

My husband and I are a mere 2 hours away from leaving for our once-a-year couple’s retreat. I should be rejoicing. Except … I am so sidetracked right now, it might take an act of God to get me to be able to concentrate during our weekend “away.”

Thanks be to God, my parents are on their way to watch our kids … but they’re running late. Very late. And we need to drop off a meal to a family that miscarried at 5 months before we can settle in at the retreat house. Thank you, God, for my parents. Thank you, God, that my children are healthy. Thank you for our friends, for the hope I heard in the Mom’s voice despite deep suffering, for providing peace that goes beyond all understanding.

As far as the retreat goes, we have to be a “commuter” couple this year, traveling the 25 minutes back and forth from our house to the center at night and in the morning, because our 20-month-old doesn’t sleep through the night consistently enough for my Mom’s taste yet. Oh, well – at least we get to go. Thank you, God, that the retreat house is not too far away. Thank you, God, for healing my Mom of cancer three years ago and giving her the energy to help us out this weekend.

The phone won’t stop ringing. The guest bathroom has yet to be cleaned. I haven’t showered yet. The “how to” instructions for our kids’ care is done, but the printer doesn’t want to work. Oh, and on my way out of the garage this morning, I took a big chunk out of our left-hand side-view mirror. I am hoping I got all the pieces off the front lawn and that super glue will cover a multitude of sins. Thank you, God, for the phone, for running water, for a computer, printer, garage, home, and car. Oh, and a big thanks for the inventor of super glue.

There are a few other big things on my mind, too: I just heard that a couple who’s going to be at the retreat this weekend just lost their adult daughter suddenly. Thank you, God, for the gift of life. Thank you for the gift of friendship. Thank you for your healing and saving power.

I have a big meeting with a client Monday morning after the retreat. Probably going to have to prep for that Sunday night after the retreat. I have a panel interview for a short-term full-time job the Monday afternoon after the retreat. Probably going to have to prep for that Sunday night after the retreat, too. So much for basking in the “mountaintop” experience of our retreat! Thank you, God, for the opportunity to earn money to support my family, however far from ideal our economic circumstances might be.

We got a letter from the IRS Wednesday telling us we own $35,000 in back taxes from 2008, which is hilarious, because I don’t think we even made $35,000 in 2008. Seems my former employer put a “comma” where there should have been a “decimal point,” and I made upwards of $80,000 instead of $8,000. Getting out of this mess will take a stack of paperwork and a lot of time that we don’t have right now. Thank you, God, for the gift of humor, perseverance, and patience. Help us, Lord, to get this cleared up soon so we can get our Federal tax return in the bank.

The financial aid paperwork deadline for school this Fall is looming overhead, and … and … and …

In Matthew 11:28-30, Jesus beckons:

“Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for your selves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light.”

Thank you, Heavenly Father, for the gift of your Word. I am starting to slow down … I am starting to listen …