I am bouncing up and down, full of excitement, because I received two (well, three if you want to get technical) things that have made me extremely happy. I get excited and happy pretty easily but these things have definitely brightened up my gloomy day.
First, I was checking my grades online and saw that I'd received a B for my English/British Literature course this semester! Yaaay! :D Considering how many lectures I missed, and how I started a week late because I switched schools, I am very happy with this grade. So, I now have a B in this class and an A in my Oceanography course. I still have to wait for my Philosophy of Logic and History of World Religions grades but, if my calculations are correct, I'm fairly certain I received a B in Philosophy (my hardest course) and either an A or a B in History. The History grade depends on that 10 page research paper I had to do last month (she's not done grading them yet). Either way, I did well this semester (despite my absences and illnesses) and I couldn't be prouder of myself. :D
What's the second good news? I received my Christmas presents to myself. I ordered the pair of Bl. Pier Giorgio Frassati books written by his sister... and they arrived yesterday in the mail. I didn't get them until today because it rained almost all day yesterday and no one wanted to go outside. Too cold. Anyway, I am super excited to have gotten them! I will be take a semi-vacation from the 'net (mostly from emailing and facebook) until probably the New Year and these books will definitely help me pass the time. :D
Oh yes, and my friend Kathryn got married today, which makes today even lovelier! Unfortunately, I couldn't make it to the wedding since it was thousands of miles away and I have pressing business at home (in the form of an English gentleman) and I'll only have a limited time to enjoy it so I couldn't have gone. Also, no money for flights.
And speaking of English gentlemen (like the transition? lol), I wanted to share with you something that my friend Mark, founder of Soul Food Cinema, sent me in regards to anxiety. He promised me this list a while back but I just recently received it and the permission to share it with y'all. I am calling him a (sort of) guest blogger since he did write this list. :D
"Things that help
• Doing things I genuinely enjoy doing – things that bring genuine lasting joy, as opposed to just fleeting happiness and a temporary high.
• Taking spiritual breaks and holidays, especially away from television and computer screens and other electronics. Spending time in front of the Blessed Sacrament more instead. Not watching television and films in the evening is a good one too – try reading instead.
• Reading scripture and really taking it in and trying to understand its context and meaning. The psalms are good at night time or in the morning too; they express all of our emotions for us!
• Proper preparation before whatever it is I’m doing. So praying beforehand, doing research, practising beforehand (e.g. if giving a talk/speech) etc.
• Belief in my heart for whatever I’m doing – I have to genuinely care about it and not just do it because I think I should, because I have to or because someone else wants me to do it.
• Writing down my thoughts and spending some time meditating over them, particularly writing down things to change in my life and then spending time in silence discerning which things I’ve written down have come from God and which things have come from me.
• Prayer and rosary throughout the day. Especially praying to St Dymphna (thanks for that one!). *ed. note: You're welcome, Mark. :D*
• Self respect and trust in God; especially for the talents I know He has given me.
• Other people praying for me.
• Relaxation and fun. Doing things for enjoyment’s sake. Seeing friends etc. playing something (a game, a sport, an instrument…).
• Making progress with those things I’m working on in life – moving forwards as opposed to standing still or moving backwards.
And things that don’t help
• Spending too much time alone.
• Trying to do things by myself without help and certainly without prayer.
• Keeping things to myself.
• Abandoning my faith (selling out) and my true beliefs in a vain and proud attempt to please other people rather than to please God.
• Not giving daily thanks to Jesus (in abundance!).
• Self-betrayal of God’s forgiveness, charity etc, by denying the gifts, opportunities and freedoms he presents me with.
• Disrespecting those who deserve respect, especially the poor and those people brave enough to openly declare their love for Jesus.
• Not serving others that need it; especially not using my particular gifts.
• Not being patient.
• Not praying first, instead of doing first.
• When people ask for help, giving them my solutions and bringing myself to them, instead of bringing them God’s solutions and bringing God to them.
• Pursuing people (friends/girlfriends) based only upon shallow things e.g. looks, popularity, worldly success."
There you go. I think Mark wrote a fantastic list. A big reason why I wanted to share this because I've noticed that quite a number of people find this blog by searching "anxiety and Catholicism" or "anxiety and Catholic". They usually land on a post in which I cover a few things such as the patron saint of those who suffer from anxiety. There is something he mentioned, about taking spiritual breaks from the t.v. and 'net, that I hope to go more into depth next blog.
Okay, that is it for now. I am going to try to find a way to keep warm. I think I will drink as much tea as I can. Brr! And, okay, it's only like 54 degree Fahrenheit but that's very cold for us Southern Californians. lol. I'm just rambling on now. :D As always, thanks for reading and God Bless! :D