Saturday, November 5, 2016

Not a Complete Lost Cause?

Note to self (and everyone else): don't ever think I'll have time to blog during the semester because "free time" does not exist. How many weeks until winter break? 5? How months until graduation? 6? Cue "Little Emmy that Could" motivational slogans...

Oh, hi, everyone! Sorry for the lack of posts but, well, "free time" is the unicorn in my life right now. I had a rare two hours of free time a couple of days ago so I wrote a chapter and a half for NaNoWriMo but that's about it. Whatever free time I have in between observation hours, writing the reports for those hours, watching lecture videos, doing homework assignments, and preparing for tests (but not studying for them... never enough time) has been spent in prayer or making sure I'm eating and sleeping well. I'm not making the mistake of not eating and sleeping in order to get everything done like I did two years ago. I don't want to repeat that, especially since I'm still paying for it with my health. (quick side note to that: I've managed to maintain a healthy weight and have even regained two of the pounds I'd lost during the early part of the semester when I was going through all my health scares. I've also been eating and sleeping well.)

Anyway, I've had a couple of people ask me if I've been able to get to Mass since my last blog post and I'm happy to say that I was able to go for All Saints' Day (finally, a day of obligation for L.A.!)... but only for a couple of minutes. Long story short, my mother wasn't feeling well (chest pressure and palpitations) and I wasn't about to leave her home alone while I went to Mass, make her make the 15-mile trip to the local Latin Mass, nor have her miss Mass if she felt better later so I had to cancel our transportation and settled on going to Mass at the local parish. There were a few hiccups along the way and we ended up arriving little late to Mass. Not only that, the priest at this parish loves to use incense and, while I love the smell of it, it makes me much more lightheaded than I usually have been lately. I had to stand in the back for the majority of the time we were there and then I started feeling worse so we had to leave. I did try and we made it to the Mass but just not the entire Mass. Baby steps, right? Hopefully, tomorrow will be more successful.

What I have been getting better about is my prayer life. On All Saints' Day, we (many of you lovely blog readers, friends, and even my mama) started the 54-day Rosary novena which has been a huge blessing to far. Yes, we're only 5 days into it and I've had my fair share of not so great experiences in those 5 days but I've been able to focus on the Rosary meditations much better than I have in months. Also, is it just me or has this novena been going by way too fast? I feel like it's flying by. I don't know if it's because I have so much to do during the day (which leaves my novena prayer time for right before I go to bed), if it's because I'm used to the praying the Rosary daily, because I do novenas frequently, or a combination of all three. Maybe this novena was just what I needed to get back in the proper mind frame.

Even a year ago, while I was at JPCatholic, I was still in that "I need to get coursework done first!" mentality. I put essential things such as sleep, eating, and even prayer time before it. Now it's the opposite. I put more of an emphasis on self-care and prayer. I'm not stressing out as much on getting all the maximum points on my assignments and exams. My motto this semester has been: "if I pass, awesome... if not, oh well. I tried." That's not to say that I don't study (when I have the time and mental capacity for it) but I don't stress myself out like I used to. I keep reminding myself that I have other options in case I end up not being able to finish this degree for whatever reason. I already have one degree and other career options. I'm trusting God to pull off miracles if I come up short in my efforts (especially if they're beyond my control) but He wants me to take that particular path in life. So maybe I'm not a complete lost cause?
Even though I've come out meetings and the confessional feeling like I don't have what it takes to be a faithful Catholic (just one priest has made me feel that way, btw), even though I can't always make it to Mass, even though I'm still trying to remember that the state of my soul needs more attention than temporary things here on this earth -- coursework, I'm looking at you, and even though I can't always concentrate on some of my prayers (folate deficiency and anemia are mental fog beasts), maybe there's still hope for me. I've certainly felt that way since All Saints' Day. Again, not sure if it's the novena or everyone's prayers because I know I have a lot of people praying for me. Cue "Everything is Awesome" from the LEGO movie. lol.

Alright, that's it for now. I'm hoping to make it to confession in an hour so I should go eat and get ready. Please, oh, please... let me go to confession today! It's been 6 long weeks, the longest I've gone without going to confession in years. I'm usually a "week to 2 weeks" type of gal when it comes to this sacrament so I'm itching to go back. 

I won't have time to blog again until at least after Tuesday because I have an exam on Monday morning to study for and observation hours to do... and homework assignments due... and reports to write for the observation hours... and a research paper to write with a group... Yeah, can December 16 get here already? Thanks. ;)

I hope y'all are having a great weekend and have a lovely rest of weekend into next week. :D

As always, thanks for reading and God bless! :D


AnneMarie said...

You know, I think it would be cool if there would be someway to have an "incense free" zone in parishes-I don't know exactly how this could happen, but it'd be cool, since I personally know a handful of other people who can't be at a Mass that has incense.

Emmy Cecilia said...

Maybe an area where there's more than enough ventilation that will get the scent out quicker?

Plonit Almoni said...

One of the churches in my area has hypoallergenic incense Masses for people who get overwhelmed; it smells different. You should look into it.

Plonit Almoni said...

One of the churches near me has hypoallergenic incense masses for old people and other who become overwhelmed; it smells different. You should look into it.
Plonit Almoni