I have to admit, I missed Ash Wednesday services. But I know it's Lent and every year I give something up for Lent. This year, I've been hard pressed to think of what I could give up. In past years, I've given up swearing (with mistakes benefiting charity at 25 cents a pop, which doesn't sound like much but I was working in my old law firm with all men who all swore like sailors and well, that thing sort of rubs off), alcohol, and sweets. This year, I rarely swear, don't drink but maybe once a week (if that), and don't really eat sweets (although I did have 3 Thin Mints yesterday - I allowed myself the treat). And my thought is that if it's not difficult to do, it's not really worth of a Lenten promise.
So I've been wondering, what can I do for Lent? This morning, as I drove home from daycare it hit me (not literally, thank goodness). But I am going to give up getting worked up about every little thing. The phrase that came to me while driving is "Live in the Light of God and be that Light in the World." To be honest with you, I have no clue where that phrase came from but it repeated itself in my mind when I started to write this blog. I've been reading a book written by the noetic folks (I got interested in what that was all about after reading Dan Brown's most recent novel) about living in a more connected way. It's pretty interesting, but basically the message seems to be that you need to be open to the inherent knowledge of humanity that is floating around out there. It's pretty out there, don't get me wrong. But at the same time, things seem to happen to me at the times I really need them in my life - and the way it happens is always random, whether it's someone who calls out of the blue, a stranger that I happen to sit next to on a plane, a friend who calls as you're picking up the phone to call them, words out of either a child's mouth or someone's overheard conversation, or a though that comes from nowhere. So while I get that this is really far out there, a small part of me seems to resonate with it as well.
Now not to worry, this blog will not turn into a hold hands, sing in a circle, chant, and do a little dance cultish kind of thing. But I figured I'd need to explain myself as to what this Lenten Promise thing is for me this year. It's giving up the resistance to what is going on in my life. This is not to say I will become passive. Not at all. Instead, I'm just not going to fight so hard against the tide. A friend sent an email yesterday that was a forward that said "When God takes something from your grasp, he is merely opening your hands to receive something better. If God brings you to something, he will give you the strength and the tools to see your way through it." And that is what I will focus on during Lent. Anger about crazy doctors or children who stall to get dressed and put on their shoes before the day starts is wasted energy. Focusing on what to do about it, and handling it with grace, is much better use of energy and it allows me to act as a more Godly person. So that is my Lenten Promise. I'm sure I will fail at times, but when I do I will donate money to charity and put my faith back into play. It's probably the best Lenten Promise I have ever made, and perhaps the most difficult one too.
Talking about those things that make me feel lighter - I thought I'd share some things that made me smile yesterday and today:
1. Receiving an email entitled, "Your Full Guide to Poultry" (as opposed to the partial guide, I'm sure)
2. Seeing a comment on FB to a friend's comment from "Leslie Whodat Martin."
3. Angelfish telling me that a little boy named Ty and she are getting married and I'm invited to the wedding.
4. Ladybug telling me she has a special suprise just for me, but she can only give it to me on a day that we're going to be all together the entire day.
5. An LA Times article entitled "Fear the Blobfish" and an ensuing discussion of said article that pointed out the fish looks like both Churchill and Ziggy.
6. A discussion about the tasty properties of Thin Mints and how the only thing I want more than eating Thin Mints is to be thinner.
7. The realization that my plans for riding my Tuesday bike on Friday morning just wasn't going to happen because Mr. Darcy has a meeting in South Florida (3 hours away) this morning and he was going to have to drive to it. Why would this make me smile? It's the 1st test of my Lenten Promise. I never mind helping Mr. Darcy out, but I get stressed about missing workouts and this week with the doctors appointments workouts have been missed. But I focused on getting to spend extra time with my little ladies and told myself that it's early in the season and I still will be at Saturday's workout and do my 11 mile run on Sunday, which is still 4 days of workouts.
8. This conversation in the car on the way to daycare between Angelfish (who has a plastic alligator looking monster finger puppet on her finger and is using a low voice) and Ladybug (who is using a higher pitched voice than usual):
Angelfish: Hello there, Ladybug. I am Alligator man and I've come for breakfast.
Ladybug: Oh, you don't want to eat me. You might break your sharp teeth.
Angelfish: I'm a nice Alligator I don't eat people. I eat bugs and worms and sometimes birds and bunny rabbits.
Ladybug: You can eat birds, but just not ladybugs because they're my favorite.
Angelfish: But your favorite bugs, ladybugs, are TASTY!
I actually laughed outloud at that one.
9. The flowers that are spread throughout the house.
10. Knowing that it is the weekend as of 4:30 pm today.
So as you saw above, I did not get to bike this morning. If my work day allows for it and if the weather holds out (it's a bit cloudy at the moment), I'm going to attempt to ride during a lunch break. If it doesn't happen, it doesn't happen. Sometimes life happens while your making other plans. : )
I dreamt about riding my bike though. It was a great dream. I was in aero and riding smoothly with the wind in my hair (even though I had a helmet on), there were no cars around, and it was a blue sky day with no wind (other than what I was making from the ride) and it was warm. I felt great and at ease and I as having fun. My brain got a bike ride in, even if my body didn't.
Saturday I'll be with TNT for our nutrition clinic and the brick in reverse - run and then bike. The Sunday, I hit the road for an 11 mile run - my last long run before the Princess Half Marathon. I have to say, that's pretty much snuck up on me. I can't believe it's going to be 2 weeks from Sunday. I know I have the ability to finish it. The question will be how fast? As long as I don't get swept by the bus, I'll be fine and sporting a nice shiny finisher's medal. I have no plans of being swept by the bus, let me tell you.
I had a lovely evening with the family last night, and in the mail, I received the copies of all of my blood work from the endocrinologists office. So today I'll be making my appointment for the 2nd opinion. I'm a woman on a mission. And you know me, I'll keep you posted.
I hope you all are well and that you have a wonderful weekend!