Holy moly, it has been a long time since I have shared on my blog! I can’t say that it has been a long time since I have written, since I write at least once a week. I just haven’t posted anything in quite some time. Hopefully, I will get to sharing some of those reflections this week.
My thoughts for my Lenten sacrifice were incredibly well received last year, so I thought once again I would love to share. Last year I explained here the importance of giving something up and taking something on and explained that for me, it was necessary that I focused on loving my husband. It was a hard and sad realization that I do not always recognize my love for Jonathan, especially since having Kendall. However, it was one that became so vital to the growth and maturation of our relationship, both as spouses and parents.
This year, while I hope to continue to fall more in love with my husband every day and recognize his presence as a true gift in my life, I also know I want to do more. Being pregnant this year limits my ability to give up certain treats (as wine has already been absent from my life for nearly eight months). And something I would like to take on (becoming more active and getting Kendall involved) is inhibited not only by my growing belly, but also by the bitter cold we have been experiencing the last few weeks. Therefore, my sacrifice is going to be one much more centered around my attitudes. This year for Lent I am giving up negativity.
It is embarrassing, really. The fact that I have so much negativity in my life. Yet sometimes, it just seems so easy. A long commute to work can be (and IS!) totally draining. A toddler crying because you told her that she couldn’t eat an entire jar of pickles is frustrating. Waking up four to five times a night to go to the bathroom disrupts my sleep and gets old fast. Getting angry or feeling sorry for myself often seems like the only response. However, when I think about it, what good is it really doing me? I can’t change my commute. I work far away. Really far away. Which means that I have to drive, a lot! My toddler crying isn’t intended to drive me insane, although that seems like the intended goal. And getting up to go to the bathroom is just how my body works these days. So what can I do to change these negative attitudes?
Simple: see the good. Along with giving up negativity, I am going to take on seeing the good in my life. My long commute allows me time to call my Baba and catch up with her, listen to the podcast Serial and become totally hooked, and decompress from a long day teaching 115 teenage boys. Kendall crying allows me to see that she still has trouble communicating her feelings and that it is my job to teach her how to express those feelings appropriately. It also allows me to work on my own patience and relish in the times when she DOES share her feelings in a way that doesn’t make me want to pull my hair out. Going to the bathroom every hour through the night reminds me of the miracle inside me, moving and squirming around.
I know this is going to be a great challenge, one that I will probably falter with more than just a few times. Even yesterday, I wanted to scream and feel so sorry for myself that my car was dead in my driveway. But I had to remind myself that I was fine, my family was healthy, and that it wasn’t as though I had to walk the 30 miles to work in the cold. Actually, it worked out nicely. My dad drove me in and I got to spend some long overdue time with him. He got to see his granddaughter after work, and I was able to get my car running again.
Through the next forty days of Lent I am going to want to be pretty negative, as I am in my last forty-two days of pregnancy, when things get really uncomfortable and I become even more awkward than I had been pre-pregnancy. Yet it will be an amazing opportunity to experience joy in the most unlikely of situations. And for that I am extremely grateful.
Wishing you all a blessed Lenten season!