January 21, 2009

A very auspicious day

Have you ever had one of those days where everything just seems to unfold perfectly? I think I will always remember the events of Janurary 20, 2009: After I got the kids off to school, I joined them at the 9am Inauguration Mass to drop off juice boxes for the 2nd grade's "Ball in the Hall." Little J read in church and was as hammy as ever. On my way home from Mass, I got The Phone Call. The One I've been waiting for for just over a year. The company I had interviewed with the day before was calling to offer me a position! I was absolutely giddy. I originally applied and interviewed with them last Spring, but when three new positions opened up, I jumped to the top of their list. So after a very long struggle, my daunting journey through unemployment is finally over. I hope that this is a chapter in my life I will never have to live again. The best parts? This job is in my field, doing exactly what I want to be doing, has growth potential, is only a ten minute commute from my house, and pays a good deal more than my last job. LIFE IS GOOD. But wait, the day had just begun! It seemed like forever (5 phone calls and a text message) before I was able to share this long-awaited news with The Nurse, but we finally connected and I was delighted that she could share the joy with me and feel the lifting of this heavy burden. I made it home to watch the Inauguration ceremony -- and found myself more moved by the music of Yo Yo Ma, Itzhak Perleman, Anthony McGill & Gabriela Montero and Elizabeth Alexander's Praise Song for the Day, than I was by Obama's speech. Nevertheless, during the speech, the weight of the day — my own and the unique moment in time that our country was experiencing — finally caught up with me and I wept. I sobbed.
Next, I was off to the spa, which was offering use of the facilities for free in honor of the day. I met up with three great girl friends and we celebrated and soaked away the last eight toxic years. By the time I left, it was time to pick the girls up from school and share my good news. I was met by cheers and visible relief — the seriousness of our financial predicament had not been lost on them. After homework was completed and The Nurse was home from work, we were off to celebrate at our favorite little Italian restaurant. After delicious food and a nice bottle of wine, I was off to my church's GLOS group meeting for some reflecting. I was surprised when I was greeted with a bouquet of flowers to celebrate my new job. Today I feel very grateful for the support of my friends and family who have kept me in their thoughts these long months. Let's celebrate!

January 19, 2009

At long last!

Can you believe that the Bush presidency has finally come to an end? Just one more day. Tears were shed when he became our president eight years ago, but I never could have imagined in my wildest dreams (nightmares?) how bad it could get. Illegal war. Mission Accomplished. Abu-Ghraib. Katrina. Two right-wing supreme court justices. Economic collapse. These are just a few of the Bush Administration failures. This man has taken America from being the envy of the world to the shame of the world. I feel totally shell-shocked after the last eight years and can't wait for the brighter days ahead. Let's hope that the worst if finally behind us, or at least keeps itself to Texas from now on.

January 13, 2009

10 things on my mind

Ten things on my mind today:
1. "healthy selfishness"
2. National Body Challenge
3. Bishop Gene Robinson asked to give prayer at Inaugural event
4. The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success -- particulary the Law of Detachment
5. my tween's slumber party this weekend
6. daily exercise
7. setting reachable goals
8. personal boundaries
9. what I want on my tombstone
10. gratitude

swish swish

I found at least one thing to be very grateful for this morning. It's heading into sub-zero territory this week here in Chicago, and one of the less-than-a-month-old fancy-schmancy winter wiper blades I bought, snapped right off this morning. Perplexed at the thought of coming up with the money for a replacement, I decided to drive over to the oil-change place where I bought it — and they were able to fix it within seconds for free. Trust me, this is a grace-filled moment where we're talking about making it through a Chicago winter.

January 12, 2009

It's a Wonderful Life....

I tend to avoid writing anything here when there's either too much happening in my life or when I'm feeling depressed. Which is too bad, because writing has always been helpful for me when I'm working through stuff. So I turn to my journal instead. Lately every day has been a battle. I manage to get quite a bit done — catching up on laundry, cleaning the house, paying the bills, making sure that other people's needs are at least minimally met. I've tried to do a few things for myself too — talking to close friends about where I'm at and getting needed support, joining an exercise challenge, making a doctor's appointment.
The dark thoughts haven't abated though. Some days I'm convinced that I'm going to die soon. My brain searches for a bit of rationality to stave off the fatalism and on most days, I find just enough. I don't want to be consumed by this darkness, but more than that, I am terrified that I am taking others down with me. I've kept so much of it inside but it leaches out in various poisonous ways into my relationships. The only thing that is clear to me most of the time is that I am a terrible burden. Cue the sad songs....

January 03, 2009


The Nurse is already looking forward to New Year's Eve 2009 — and it's no wonder she's in a hurry to get through this year what with all the struggles of 2008 and quite a few more on the horizon. This has been one helluva year, for sure. I know we're not alone on that front. And for The Nurse personally, 2009 will see her fulfill an important goal — she'll graduate nursing school in July and really be The Nurse.
I'm taking comfort in my Favorite Song of The Moment — You and Me and the Bourgeoisie by The Submarines. Listen here. It's a good reminder that whatever we are going through, we're still blessed to be living in the "First World," aka America, and our struggles are inconsequential to most of those in the rest of the world. The other message of the song that I'm clinging to is that when we fill ourselves up with the things that really matter — love and light — we can get by with a lot less "stuff."
So there you have it: My Resolution for 2009. Choose love. Choose light.