In which I tell my own self how fast it goes
Out of Office Message

The Annual Lenten Whine

Long time blog readers are well aware that this is my absolute favorite time of year, a solemn and profound forty days of reflection, sacrifice, and personal growth. I am so looking forward to sharing my many insights and revelations with you during this season of penance and fastHA HA HA NOPE. 

Oh Lent. You're here again. 

One thing that is a teeny bit different about THIS Lent as opposed to all my other Lents is that I actually DID think about it BEFORE it arrived. I wondered what to do with the kids, what I should give up, what I should add to my life, and wondered all of it BEFORE this morning. Progress!

Which isn't to say I came up with any ideas or made any decisions. Of course. I am still not sure about the kids, for example. I have read a bunch of suggestions from helpful People Who Observe Lent Properly and I hope I can put a few of those into action. As for myself, I deleted the Twitter and Facebook apps from my phone, as a way to be more present in my real life and with my kids. And I decided to give up chocolate. Real chocolate. Actual chocolate. Chunks and bars and bites and bags of bittersweet Ghirardelli chocolate chips, aka Maggie's Lifeline When The World Is Going Kaput. 

I spent a long time trying to figure out what I would give up. Giving up food always seems so EXPECTED. Heaven forbid I give up something boring, right? Giving up social media seemed like a good idea until I thought about all the people with whom I communicate purely through social media, and how those are IMPORTANT people, not people I can ignore for 40 days. So deleting the apps from my phone makes it possible to keep in touch with those folks while curbing the actual issue, which is the incessant scrolling through Twitter whenever I have a free five seconds. But it wasn't like I felt EXCITED about my sacrifices, right? There was nothing I thought of that burned brighter in my brain, all, "YES! I am the thing you should sacrifice! Giving ME up will be the MOST meaningful!"

But when I thought about this a little more I realized that there was probably NOTHING in my life that was going to stand out as The Thing I should sacrifice because (dum de dum dum ) I DON'T WANT TO SACRIFICE ANYTHING. Duh. This is why it's called a sacrifice. I am not going to be EXCITED to give up ANYTHING. And so I decided to go with something that, while embarrassingly un-original, would definitely be the most day-to-day sacrificial, and that would be my handfuls of medicinal chocolate. It's going to be horrible. Prepare yourself for plenty of whining. 

What are you doing? I bet you're DOING something. (Let me copy?)





I was listening to NPR today and they were interviewing a priest and he said that, when he was younger, his Jewish roommates asked him about Lent and they decided that him picking his own sacrifice was too easy. So now they pick for him, three things every year. He said it's been surprisingly hard.

I'm giving up nothing. Because I am a lazy Protestant. :)


I couldn't bring myself to delete the apps from my phone, but I did move them into a folder named "Bye for Lent" and put it on the 6th page of apps so they're very hard to reach. ;) So Sacrificial! I think I'll also be giving up swearing. Ha. Might also try to attend a weekday Mass once a week. Might. Still thinking about whether I can swing that but I think it would be beneficial.


One of my good friends decided not to give up anything but rather focus on doing good/kind things for people that she wouldn't normally do.


You are so bold! Deleting apps! I should follow your lead on that.
I am trying to focus on reordering my priorities. Before getting out of bed each morning I will say a simple prayer (Thank you for the gift of this day. Set my heart on fire with your unconditional, merciful love. Let me lead with my heart in all my thoughts and words and actions this day.)
Also trying to be more attentive and present to my kids and husband.
I want to pray one decade of the rosary every day.
I am giving up eatting between meals. That is going to be crazy hard for me because I constantly graze and sample all day long. At the very least I need to be seated and eatting from a plate.
I just heard a friend say every time she is tempted to break her lenten promise she will offer up a prayer intention for someone who needs special prayers. I think I will try that too. I am seeing loads of Hail Marys in my future.


I am not giving anything up, but I am focusing on smiling more, laughing more, letting go of bad feelings, snarking less and thinking the best of people. It's an ongoing struggle.


I am doing the Dr. Oz Total 10 for the first 2 weeks. The seconds two weeks I am going to do an act of gratitude each day. The rest...I haven't come up with it yet.


The kids and I are giving up screen time after school, and adding a meatless meal on Wednesdays. The plan is to put the meat money into a CRS Rice Bowl.


I am not a morning person. Like at all. Normally I am bubbly and extroverted and delighted to discuss things with you. But in the morning I don't want to talk or smile. I'd like silence for an hour, but that is not practical. I've asked my family for silence for 15 minutes and it hasn't happened and I get annoyed EVERYDAY. So for Lent I am giving up MY morning agenda. I am working to be chipper and congenial and not selfishly demand my way. It is hard.

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