Hah. Whenever I make up a fake name for a book I always add “by I.P. Freely.” I think it’s hysterical because it comes from that old joke, “Yellow River by I.P. Freely” and people just don’t get it. So I laugh some more. It’s a personal inside joke. Is it weird to amuse only yourself?
I don’t drink often, maybe a glass of something two or three times a year, so naturally I’m a lightweight. I don’t really have a taste for wine and I feel like I should, so now and then I buy a nice bottle of wine and then drink a half a glass from it and waste the rest. That’s one downfall of not having a life partner or b.f.f. to share stuff with.
So tonight it was just one glass of Pinot Gris and I’m feeling no pain at all. I’m feeling I could get my ears pierced again, or my nose. Anything, really.
I told a friend I’d light a candle for her at church today, and I did. I said her name in my mind as I held the match to the candle. It’s such a soothing thing to do. I light a candle almost every Sunday. Sometimes I pray for one person, sometimes I mentally list all the people I know who could use a prayer. It’s become sort of a habit so that if I don’t stop after service to light a candle, I miss it later.
I’ve been attending my church (Episcopal) for about 14 months now and for the first time today I drank directly from the chalice instead of having them dip my communion wafer in it. You see, I’m a bit of a germaphobe, but also I just really don’t want to bring an illness home that might do my dad in. You don’t mess around with respiratory issues when a household member has COPD. Man, that red wine is good, sweet, and strong.
As an aside, I read somewhere that between the wine, which is higher than most wine in alcohol content, and the silver cup which is somehow antibiotic, people aren’t really known for getting sick from sharing the communion cup.
Today I also gave thanks for my dad being better. He’s really been improving and I am so, so grateful.
The assistant priest is offering a catechesis class for those of us who aren’t members of the Episcopal church yet, so I’m looking forward to that. This June I’ll be confirmed in the church by a bishop and while I already feel this church is my home, this will be special.
I’ve been pondering what to “give up” for Lent which starts this Wednesday and luckily it came to me as the Priest gave his sermon today.
Last year at this time I had a bad addiction to reading my now ex’s emails. One day on a whim I tried to log into one of his many email addresses and entered his old tried and true password and it worked, so for several months I tortured myself by looking at photos of him and his very young girlfriend as they got prettied up for the opera and saw that he was sending my stepchildren pictures of them together. And then I saw what he was buying for her online.
Morally it’s wrong to read anyone’s private correspondence (not as wrong as cheating and discarding your spouse, though), but what made me finally decide to quit doing it was that it was just hurting me so deeply. At first it did me good to realize how despicable he is, but then it began to feel like self inflicted torture.
So for Lent I gave up reading his emails and I won’t lie, it was hard, but I did it and I haven’t looked again. I wonder if 40+ days is a good amount of time to change a habit. I was proud of myself for doing it, and prouder still of not doing it again after Lent was over.
So this year, other than being overweight, I feel pretty happy and satisfied with life but I don’t want to make Lent be about dieting, per se, so I’ve come up with my plan which I feel pretty good about.
I eat a huge amount of food late at night. Sometimes I can barely quit stuffing my face almost all the way until bedtime. I’ve gone to bed recently with my stomach just bulging and then can barely sleep due to discomfort and heartburn. Ick, I know.
So for Lent, here’s my plan.
A. Switch to natural sugar in my coffee and consume no white sugar in anything.
B. No eating after 7 p.m.
But I’m going to call it “fasting” after 7 p.m. because I think it’ll help me to remember why it’s important. During that time, when I think about mindless eating, I can ask God to be with me and guide me.
I’d like to add, “C. go to water aerobics every night after work.” but I just don’t think I can keep that goal.
I never invite my parents to church. My mother thinks Catholicism is a cult and Episcopalian services are very Catholic in looks and behavior. She’s not used to all the sitting, standing, and kneeling, not to mention the crossing. I love all that.
My father is an Irish Catholic, and was an alter boy, but hasn’t stepped in a church since he was a kid. But he’s very Catholic in his generosity and caring — that part stuck with him.
On a whim I told my parents today that on Tuesday the men’s club serves a pancake breakfast for Shrove Tuesday, the day before Lent and said they were welcome to go with me. Dad said yes right away just because he’s open to new experiences and I could almost hear my mom thinking, OH MY GOD. NO. But eventually she said, “Okay, We’ll pick you up at work.”
I’m really a new Christian since I haven’t been to church since I was 12 or 13 and I have enjoyed learning about the seasons of the Episcopal church and it’s fun to see them come back around again (although I missed my 2nd Christmas there because I was so ill).
This Wednesday I’ll go to the 7:30 p.m. service which will be beautiful, but somber and I’ll get a cross of ashes on my forehead to remind me how short and precious life is.
I love this season.
P.S. while I’ve been tipsy blogging I’ve been rocking out to this: