Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Monday, September 29, 2014

It's 2am...I must be lonely...



But I am not alone.  I returned this evening from a lovely, lovely time in Florida.  I went down for the Catholic Medical Association's conference in Orlando.  I was also able to spend some time with friends before and during the conference.  I was SO BLESSED!  The conference was beautiful, inspiring, uplifting and informative.  I love our faith and am so blessed to work in medicine.  I met SO MANY faithful Catholic physicians from all over the country.  The talks were interesting and beautiful.  We all came together in prayer, participating in the daily rosary, Mass, Divine Mercy Chaplet and perpetual adoration for the duration of the conference.  I met so many devout, Catholic medical professionals...what can I say??  It was uplifting.

I need to be a better Catholic.  That is my take-home point.  We listened for hours about the fight going on in the pro-life movement, the medical and moral effects of abortion and euthanasia, and saw how those who are fighting the good fight practice medicine in this backwards culture of ours.  How important is it to stand and fight?  We only have today.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Weirdness at weddings



Yesterday I attended a wedding that was probably the first wedding I have ever attended where I didn't feel all sentimental inside.  The bride was a friend from work and she was marrying a boyfriend that she lived with.  It was a church wedding but the person doing the reading had no idea when or how to read.  The people responding during mass numbered maybe 10 of the 150+ people there.  At communion there was a mad rush for the front and I could see the woman next to me instructing a younger woman how to hold her hands together so she too could receive communion.

My co-worker looked beautiful but after the wedding she bee-lined it for the sprinter limo to spend "a few moments alone" with her new husband.  There was no receiving line and the reception wasn't scheduled to start for 3 hours.  My work friends pooled together and we walked down to a local pub on the ocean where we chatted and drank.  Then we split up, those of us feeling guilty or rude turning down the invitation of one of the party driving over to one of the couple's beach house for another drink while the rest went to check in early at the hotel for the night.  By the time we arrived a little late at the reception we found ourselves in a hall with an open bar and nowhere to really sit until the reception hall opened half an hour later.

At this point we found our seats and although a few weeks ago I had been disturbed to be told I would be sitting with higher-ups and not my friends...this turned out to be a good thing.  My work friends happened to be the loudest and rowdiest table at the wedding, drinking shots in their hotel room despite there being another open bar right next to our table.  Sitting one table away from them was close enough...and sitting with professionals who are used to being friendly to people they don't know well and making small talk made for a comfortable table. 

So at the end I felt like I had just been to an expensive, fancy party.  The marriage was not the focus.  The bride and groom weren't even the focus.  I wasn't even that excited for the couple.  Strange and thankfully not my usual experience at a wedding.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Mount Chocorua


Hiked Mount Chocorua with a friend today in preparation for Nepal...definitely beautiful but not difficult.  Guess I should take on Monadnock or Washington if I really want to prepare.




My shoes pinched my toes...bummer when they are brand new and supposed to be broken in for Nepal (sense the running theme?  I'm getting ready for Nepal).  Guess I need to figure out how to return them?  Ugh this trip is beginning to add up...for being an inexpensive one!



Entrusting my heart to God again.  Another running theme.  Where am I really going?  He knows.

Monday, September 15, 2014

"There will be silence while you wait."



I called LL Bean today to place an order for some hiking gear.  They have a sale going that expires...well...now... and when I attempted to order online the technical difficulties made calling imperative.

After multiple rings, which seemed strange since I was calling a ginormous catalog company...a pre-recorded voice told me that all the people taking calls were busy and that I would have to wait for the next available representative.  And then he said, in a deep voice, "There will be silence while you wait."

And then there was silence.  

And the silence struck me...because when does a hold on the phone bring silence any more? I'm used to hold music, advertisements or the same robotic voice saying over and over "Your call is important to us...please wait for the next available representative."

I'm not used to silence.  Not in my car, not on my phone, not in my job and not in my home.

It's something that I often forget to do... take time to be silent, value silence, be grateful for silence, seek silence.  As I climb into bed at the end of the day, an entire 24 hours will often go by with no more than a milli-second of the stuff occurring.

Why?  Many times I have pulled away from silence.  Because sometimes silence is lonely.  Sometimes its boring.  And sometimes its painful...to be alone with God...but only encounter my own fears, inconsistencies, faults and failings.

There is a quote in my living room a friend gave me years ago that reads: "Let us be silent that we may hear the whisper of God."  

Time to embrace silence and hopefully open my heart more fully for God to enter.  Now how to go about this?



Oh, when a soul is hid in Thee
For what adventure can it yearn
Save love and still more love to learn,
And thus to love increasingly,
So deep does love within it burn?
My God, I pray Thee for a love
That yearns until I see Thy face.
And builds itself a nest above
Within its true abiding place.

~ by St. Teresa of Avila

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Family



Well I worked night shift and then came home and slept.  Lovely experience of telling yet another patient they have cancer.  I must trust that this is what God wills for me...but truly...emotionally its hard.

I have family coming this weekend!  My parents' 35th anniversary party is on Saturday.  I am making coconut cream cupcakes and maybe mocha brownies...if I get to them.  Also providing the tang slushies (made with vodka) and baked beans for our cook out.  LOVE my parents.  So glad to celebrate.  So glad that the estrangement of my brother isn't keeping us from getting together.  And so glad that the God, who sees and knows all, is trustworthy to get us through to heaven...when this life seems a bit confused...and short-sighted.  

Reading a lot of fiction right now...lots of books that have been on my shelves for years are getting re-read.  I haven't really read fiction for almost 2 years (something I couldn't enjoy when I was going through my stupid heartbreak) but now I am back to it.  Moderation in everything.  :o)

Just ordered a used copy of Into Thin Air about climbing Mount Everest.  Going to bring it with me to Nepal.  A friend recommended it.  Also planning to bring a blank notebook and my prayerbook.  Ready for some alone time with God.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Worst part of my job...




I HATE telling people they have cancer.  ALWAYS a bad day. :o(

Prayers please for everyone who found out today they have cancer.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Well, Lord...you said it...




Two are better than one,
because they have a good return for their labor:

If either of them falls down,
one can help the other up.
But pity anyone who falls
and has no one to help them up.


Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Worrying works...



Well not really!  But I remember reading a quote somewhere that 99% of the things we worry about never happen.  Which just proves that worrying works!  Just kidding!  Our triathlon did go much better than last time however!  We finished almost 15 minutes earlier and I felt SO much better afterwards, compared to the first one.  

I am so glad I pushed past my fears and apprehensions and made the effort.  I remember at the 30 second warning (before we entered the ocean for the first leg of our race) thinking: in just 30 seconds you are going to begin.  Slow down, take deep breaths and calm yourself.  Time to concentrate.  My next thoughts revolved around buoys and the homestretch before I ran ashore looking for my bike.  As I started the biking stretch...mentally berating my slow as molasses mountain bike...I looked around me and smiled.  The scenery was beautiful, the sky was overcast allowing for cooler weather, and the other competitors smiling, cheering and obviously having fun.  As I transitioned to the run, right along the shore (picture above I took after from the run course), I felt the excitement and joy of nearing the finish line...once again doing something that I never thought I could do.  God is good!

Afterwards we rewarded ourselves with a super-yummy cupcake from a bakery close to the triathlon...I had coconut cream! Yumsters!!  Now gearing up for the next half marathon...love this time in my life: my health, seeing the fruit of my labors, fun adventures and beautiful friendships.  Time to focus on being grateful for this moment!  Blessings all!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear...


Yeah, I really (REALLY!) thought that I would be in MUCH better shape for this (rapidly approaching!!) triathlon than I probably am.  I say probably because hiking in the Andes threw me off and I'm not sure how much I can do!  Oh well...here goes nothing!  My plan: Go for it and try to enjoy myself along the way.  Also, not complain so much that my partner in crime vows to never race again with me.

I'm reviewing my last triathlon and hoping not to make the same mistakes.  How I wish I had invested in a road bike prior to this!  But obviously...not meant to be...so here I go again on my mountain bike...ready to finish dead last instead of second to last!

Does this really bother me?  No...I mean I had hoped to do better, improve myself...but I am glad just to be able to do this (albeit, I really wish I was doing it better than last time!).  But that's life.  Sometimes we disappoint ourselves.  But I would be even more disappointed if I dropped out and didn't even try.

There are other disappointments that will come (like the surprising hold placed on Bishop Sheen's Canonization) but that's okay.  Because the God who allows problems also has plans...and beyond defeat is victory: beyond Calvary is Easter.  

So I'm not exactly looking forward to this race but it is a stepping stone and I am definitely looking forward to the one that comes after it!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Persevering in God's Will



I went to confession last weekend and at the end of my time in the confessional I told Father how sometimes I feel so dry...so far from God...and so disinterested in my own spiritual life.  After quite a long time of spiritual lusciousness...well I hate it!  I hate that my rosary has become work and that some days it is only partially said or not even begun.  I miss the little promptings that used to come on my way to the store or home from work to stop for a moment of adoration.  I really miss being suddenly aware that I could make Mass if I stopped by any number of churches at many different hours of the day.  Where did that desire go?

Sometimes the best days are the hardest to stay faithful...life is so peaceful and beautiful that I sit back and lazily look for the pleasures that delight me...and forget that this is not the world I was created for or where I hope to spend eternity.

Trusting that God in his goodness will bring me through this, keeping me aligned with His Will.  I have been told that staying close to the sacraments is a good barometer of faith.  Going to continue to persevere in my stilted, sticky prayer life and hope that God will bring me to him on His terms.  Sounds like a good plan...for now.