Unfortunately today was the latter type of day. And the reminders kept coming and coming.
First, as soon as I got to work I logged into Facebook to check out the group #Cathsorority (also a popular twitter hashtag) into which Michelle tagged me. I, of course, had to check out all the features, add my blog to the list, and check things out. And there it is. A beautiful list of all of the members of the group who are pregnant, what # they are expecting, and their due date. Something that should bring joy - a celebration of new life coming into the world. And yet today, it took everything in me not to write a nasty comment about being considerate about people who can't have children and maybe we should have a list about what month TTC it is and how many different treatments there are. And then, of course, it occurred to me this was not the most charitable way to make new friends and I decided instead to pray a prayer of gratitude for all of those on the list and ask God to protect the mothers and their unborn children.
I went about my morning, and then headed over to Mass. Feeling I needed it so badly and kind of glad my boss was still tied up in a meeting so if the tears that were sitting just under the surface came I wouldn't feel like a complete idiot OR try to bottle them up. And then we get to the gospel and this:
Jesus said to his disciples: "Amen, amen I say to you, you will weep and mourn, while the world rejoices; you will grieve, but your grief will become joy. When a woman is in labor, she is in anguish because her hour has arrived, but when she has given birth to a child, she no longer remembers the pain because of her joy that a child has been born into the world. So you also now are in anguish. But I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away from you. On that day you will not question me about anything. Amen, amen, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in my name He will give you." ~John 16:20 - 23Let's just say that this didn't help. Nor did the homily that continued the analogy and then went on to say that we won't ever know or understand God's timing, but it is His timing. Ugh. Not the rosy, uplifting Mass I was hoping for. At. All.
I'm pretty sure I left Mass feeling worse than when I walked in - and beating myself for not just being grateful to get to go to Mass and be in the presence of and receive Our Lord. I almost completely lost it in line between the Host and the Precious Blood, desperately begging Jesus to consume me.
I spent the rest of my lunch hiding in my cube.
Then, one of my coworkers (the new Grandpa) made his daily FaceTime call to see his Granddaughter and we all got to look at the new baby and her beautiful mama. And talk about how cute she was. And you'll just have to trust me that there wasn't a way out of this.
At this point, I knew I'd had all I could take. It was 4:00 and if I could just make it 30 more minutes, I'd be in my car alone with my tears for an hour and a half. As soon as I was in the car, I turned on two of my "go to" songs, turned up the volume and let the tears come. (Go to songs: All I Can Say by David Crowder and Blessings by Laura Story. And God, via the shuffle setting, went ahead and picked a few more of my "let it all out" favorites in Word of God Speak by Mercy Me and Refiners Fire by Hillsong.)
Finally, feeling a little better and armed with an awesome, gonna earn best wife ever points, plan for dinner I was able to gain a bit of perspective and drag myself out of my own head. I got home, asked The Man to put the groceries away, slid into my running shoes and headed out the door. This time the music was as far from the above songs as it could get, but the heavy beats combined with my feat hitting the pavement and the sweat dripping was the final step I needed to pull it together.
The icing on the cake was The Man just saying "I'm pretty sure this meal was Divinely inspired." (The Man loooooooooves to eat and loooooooooves food. This is high praise, I promise. Recipe from here - a new blog I found today. The only modification I made was for my sandwich I used gluten-free bread.)
And lastly, as I typed the words above, the real understanding I was searching for in my music and miles came and I finally saw them with new eyes/heard them with new ears. The promise is right there in the words: So you also are now in anguish. But I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away from you. While Monsignor was right, we cannot know God's timing, we are given His promise. I must remember to fix my eyes upon Him. To find my joy in Him. To not let all that I have not take away all that I have; the promise I have in Him.
(PS Michelle: I'm very grateful to you for tagging me and bringing me into the group. I never know when stuff like this is gonna happen. If I'd checked out the site an hour earlier or later it might have been a totally different reaction. I'm telling you this because we are enough alike that I suspect you felt guilty and I don't want you to, not at all!!!!! :) The Man is also very grateful, obviously :)).