Shifting Gears

Around the time of Thanksgiving, I felt a shift surrounding my husband and I. Like the age we are set in, my husband is 52 and I just turned 47, has reached something but I don’t know what. And also like the root of our marriage was set deeper.

I’m trying my best to explain how it felt. And this feeling, the effect it had, is no longer with me. It’s something I just understood happened for me to know enough that it did.

Since that moment on, I’ve had this peace in knowing my husband knows how much I love him and where we are in marriage is clear. Is sort of what this feels like.

I feel like we just truly know each other now. Grateful all these years, God have us good training on communication. We are both open and honest whether relating to each other or to those around us.

At this point in our 22 years, we know each other well. I’m not glossing over it all. I mean we do have our spats about this and that, but it’s less work to get to the core issue and resolve.

Another thing I noticed is all the fuss I would carry towards our families, is no more. Always being overly concerned they know where I stand with them. After all these years, I think they should know. And if they don’t, I can’t carry the weight or burden. That might’ve been something I could’ve accepted sooner but I am where I am.

I guess it’s stability. Not a stability as in we forget where we are in our faith in that all of this is temporary and we still need to grow. But that it’s a gift to recognize and appreciate where we are in life.

I look and love my husband more deeply, if that makes any sense.

It’s also like whatever I do, I do with all my energy and with purpose.

For whatever that was I felt, I’m grateful I experienced it.

I wonder more what this all means and trust in God, He will show me.

Bonds in Your Care

My sorrow, my sorrow

Oh my God, why

It seems more often

These veils of illusion

Come to wreck our ties

And why Dear Lord

As much effort that I give

Trickery, deceit, confusion play to strive

For the one who should’ve known better

Allowed the doubt to thrive

So now I ask you Lord, punctured and bruised

and this time with shout

May Your Mighty Power and Truth burn upon this matter and throughout

Is it too late for Advent?

November to December 2017. I couldn’t be more grateful.

I thought that once I started to write about the holidays, I would begin by saying a few complaints, resentments, wish I shoulda’s, and so on.  Reason is that I think this time it was the fastest paced holiday season my husband and I experienced. Yet, we were able to keep pace minus a cold that had me down for a little over a week.

We celebrated Thanksgiving in Tucson.  Hometown for most of our families.  Out of courtesy, we didn’t host Thanksgiving, which over the years I’ve grown to love to do.  Instead, we shuffled ourselves to the Old Pueblo, to have it at my sister’s so that the family could easily enjoy it and head into work early next day ‘Black Friday’.

It had been years since we were all together. It was wonderful to hear our laughter all under one roof.  Our time was short as we quickly came back home the next day to set up our home in Christmas decor before we ventured ourselves to New York!  My crazy ideas.  Yes, let us press our limits and do all we can to decorate so that when we return a week later, we can relish in it.  My husband is so patient no matter my nutty antics.

Our trip to New York was a treat! We’ve never been in New York City for the Christmas season.  As soon as we landed, we felt the excitement in the air.  I’ve never been anywhere else for the Christmas season besides Arizona and Las Vegas.  So, I really didn’t know what to expect other than what you see on TV for holiday specials at Rockefeller or Christmas shows.  However, Christmas was definitely everywhere.  I mean everywhere.  It’s like the Mayor must’ve told all to exude it or be fired.  From the cabs, to the shops, to carolers on the street corners, to the decor, Christmas trees everywhere.  Places to grab a hot cocoa or warm pastry. Adults were like children. And yes, the shopper frenzy was full force. I know my husband and I were taken by it all. The store windows blew us away with their Christmas spirit.  Truly, it was magical. Better than Disneyland. Over and over.  Well, I’m not really a fan of Disney, but you get what I’m saying.

We also couldn’t have planned it better to visit St. Patrick’s Cathedral during the first Sunday of Advent.  It was the highlight for sure. Capped off why we were there in NYC to everything else. And to boot, Cardinal Dolan celebrated the Mass. It was perfect!

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So coming back from this trip, set us on the right foot. So I thought.

Came back with a bad cold. My ears hurt so much, but thanks to God, no infection.  Just the pressure of the flights back caused pain like I didn’t know could happen.  Had I known, I would’ve tried to prepare myself better.  It took over a week to get fully well.  Because of this, I missed out on some opportunities to things I wanted to be a part of for the Advent season, but what could I do.  Once I got full steam again, I tried to accommodate the time I missed leading up to Christmas. That only caused my reflection and time with Jesus to get squeezed out.

We spent Christmas in Tucson.  It was already planned in November that we journey down there.  But my husband and I shared our sentiments, in that, we just wanted to stay home and take in these next blessed days.  Well, no chance, and so we put on the game face and headed south back to Tucson. Over Christmas eve and day, we traveled here and there to visit all we could and came back home exhausted.  I think something should be said.  That all family members participate in this exercise so that everyone knows what it is like to have to do this.  When we were younger, it was not a big deal. It’s exhausting now.  Ok, I know, move on.

Once we returned home, is when I feel Advent kicked in for me. The week in between Christmas and New Year’s Day. All the readings, encounters with relatives, unity, love, came to me like a rush. I had an energy and peace that I couldn’t get myself to pay attention to. And even though throughout Advent, I did try to stay connected in various ways, what I had planned to do (extra reading, extra Mass attendance, lessons, charity), I couldn’t get to. I would insert short prayers throughout this hectic time. Our Lord knew what I was seeking. He knew my intention of spending more time. He knew I was pushing myself to help make a Christmas for others. He knew there was restlessness in my heart over a matter I needed desperately to be resolved. And so it happened. Our Lord gave me a Christmas with the most clarity I have ever had. Not because I didn’t need to do any of that obedient nurturing, but to show me, I do need that obedient nurturing and to live it out now. I have to fine tune the engine again. Always a good reminder and lesson.

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Thank you Holy Spirit! Thank you Magnificat! Thank you Advent handbook! Thank you strangers who I would have lengthy conversations with out of the blue! Thank you Lord God for the countless blessings you helped us witness during this time. +++