This post contains affiliate links.  I certainly don’t want to be down when writing this blog, but I also don’t want to be fake.  So sometimes, I need to show you a bit of our personal world, warts and all, especially if the message encourages someone else.

What a Downer Week

Photo by Mohamed Nohassi on Unsplash

As I mentioned last week, the past seven days have been HARD.  We had to put our sick cat, Henry, down.  While I knew doing so would be emotionally painful, I dramatically underestimated how hard both Cuddle Bug and I would take it.  I’m still crying as is she, and it’s been over a week.

Then, my husband got disappointing news at work that affects his career.

Shortly thereafter, the FDA announced that kids under 12 can’t get vaccinated until mid-winter.  Our entire family except Cuddle Bug is vaccinated, and to hear that she has to wait so long, especially when the variants are starting to spread, was demoralizing.  We have been extremely cautious throughout this entire pandemic, and to learn that we have to continue that way for the next six to 12 months was just depressing.

And on Sunday, I learned that our fiesty, spirited, elderly neighbor who embodied the French sentiment of joie de vivre passed away from lung cancer, which she had been battling for a year and a half.

Not Handling Sadness Well

Last week happened to be a week that we were off school for vacation, and we mostly wasted the week thanks to our malaise.  Cuddle Bug watched way more television than I ever allow, and I spent way too much time scrolling the internet.  I went to bed on Saturday night thinking I needed to reestablish computer boundaries for myself and tv boundaries for the girls.

Then I Sat Down to Watch Mass

Shortly after I learned about our neighbor, I sat down to watch Mass.  I was distracted.  My thoughts kept wandering to my neighbor, and then to myself and the fact that my life is more than half over.  My time is finite, as is everyone elses’.

Sometimes, when I go to Mass, especially when I am feeling depressed or dispirited, I feel like God is reaching out to me through the priest, to give me a messsage.  That happened this past Sunday.

Father Mike Schmitz started his sermon by saying, “Every person has two lives.  The second life begins when he realizes he only has one.”

And there it was.  The moment when I felt God was talking to me.  That mesage was so powerful, especially when I had learned less than an hour before of our neighbor’s passing.

Father Mike Schmitz then went on to address my second concern–my excessive internet use.  He talked about all of us having a circle of interest.  Our circle of interest is huge today thanks to the Internet.  We also have a circle of influence.  In old times, our circle of interest and our circle of influence were often the same, but now they’re not.  This sermon said a lot about the Internet and its ability to inflame us.  I left Mass resolved to limit my internet usage to improve my life.

If you need the message as I did, I encourage you to watch, at least this sermon.

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