I haven't been to Church in a hot minute, but today is Ash Wednesday, and there is Church across the street from work, so I had no excuse. So on my lunch break, I headed over to St Anne Catholic Church and sat amongst other attendees doing their catholic duty by receiving ashes on the beginning of the holiest time for Catholicism. As I listened to the priest's lecture on allowing God more time into our lives, whether it be through prayer or mass and to put the phones down and pay attention to what is around us, I thought about what that meant for me. I realized I spend way to much time on my phone, scrolling through, watching other people's lives play out wishing I looked half as good in half the clothes/makeup/hairstyle they wore. Aside from the materialistic views of life that I was harping on, I reflected on my mom. She is a spiritual person and always had her rosary right at her bedside. She once told me that she hadn't made a confession in 20 years and would refuse to take communion, one time she did, and I teased her that God obviously didn't care because he didn't strike her down. She didn't find it funny. It was hilarious. She was always wanting to go to church on all the holidays and Sundays I think the reason I go to Church now is to feel closer to her knowing she would have loved being there with me.
You know the saying, always cherish every moment because you don't know its the last time you have it? (or something along those lines) Since my mom has been diagnosed with Dementia it has made me think of all those times I wished I never said no to her. To have said yes let's go to church on the busiest holiday, let's drive three hours away to visit a lighthouse or go eat at the little cafe somewhere. When I was a kid we use to have a day where we would do whatever I wanted, and it was the best days I could ask for. I want those days back. Sometimes we don't realize how much we put off until tomorrow until there isn't a tomorrow. Don't wait, say yes today. During Lent, sacrifice is a focus, and as a participant, you have to give up something you love for 40 days and reflect. My sacrifice is to stay off social media and create my own bubble of happiness. I want to say yes more, even though my anxiety is pulling me back saying girl you crazy with all that spontaneous talk. I want to do all the things my mom would push me to do and do it with me if she could. Always an adventure she would say. It's not easy living a thousand miles away, not knowing how the next visit will go. Will she know who I am, will I be too late?
Currently, my sister takes care of my mom and its not an easy job. Caretaking is emotionally taxing and incredibly stressful. Not everyone can handle the anxiety of not knowing if something will happen in the middle of the night if the constant worry gets too much. My sister is pretty strong, but I pray to give her the strength to carry this on.
The goal of this post is to not impose my beliefs, it's more to be appreciative of your surroundings, whatever your belief system is, seek it. Create the memories that you can look back and know you had the time of your life. Put down the phone and social media and say yes.