#reverb14: Regret Not Required

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What unfinished projects from 2014 are you willing to release now?

(regret not required)

Year in and year out, I have found myself falling in and out of religion.  Not in and out of my belief that my God is a mysterious God, not in and out of the belief that belonging to a faith community may help me to feel less alone.  More so just finding myself attending church, loving it, then hating it, then becoming indifferent and unmotivated to go.  And then missing it once I had left.

It has been suggested to me by many well-meaning people over the years that finding a “good church” to be part of my “support system” was crucial to my mental health and sense of well-being.  I’m just not sure I believe that anymore.  I understand that I can’t only go from my home to work to a handful of friends and families homes and back to my home again, expecting that this will keep me from completely being housebound.  I am sure something in my brain needs more than that, but I don’t think the answer to it is church or services or whatever you may call the practice of getting together in an organized way to celebrate your deity.

So in 2015, I won’t be pushing myself to find a “new church” or a “new religion” or to “join” something.  I’m not going to feel bad about it, although I suppose at times I may long for it.  I’m not saying “never,” either.  I am saying, “No, not now.  Rosa has bigger fish to fry.”

Building Rome: Serenity Now

Well, it’s week two for me of Building Rome. Building Rome is a challenge created by Green Embers and each week, we set small goals and then report back on the past week’s goals.  I also add in my every-day-gotta-do-it goals at the end, but to each their own.

This week’s theme is “Serenity Now.”  The quote that Green Embers selected for this post if particularly apt to my situation:

“This art of resting the mind and the power of dismissing from it all care and worry is probably one of the secrets of energy in our great men.”
– Captain J. A. Hadfield

Indeed.  Following last week’s goals, we find:

1)  Fail #1:  Send a handwritten card to my sister and step-sister letting them know how much they mean to me.

I didn’t do this, namely because I didn’t make the time or the effort.  It just slipped off my radar.  Maybe for another day!

2) Win #1:  Perf0rm one random act of kindness for a stranger each day.  A smile, holding the door open, helping someone carry something, advising where something is located in the grocery store.  Small things, important things.

I have been in the position to do a lot of this lately, and have happily done so.  My favorite was spotting someone a quarter so they could complete their purchase at Dollar General.  It’s just a quarter, people!  Out of the long line, I was the only one to offer assistance.

3) Win #3:  Talk with Goddess of Mindfulness about this constant cycling and what we can do about it, other than following the “crisis” medication regime.  Also talk with her about the mental  health center’s lack of follow-through with my needed medication requests.  Ask for her help in communicating with them.

Done and done and done.  I am back on my “crisis” medication regimine.  She explained to me the extreme understaffing at the center and suggested I make an appointment straight-away, as it is difficult to get in now.

Those were the main goals I set for last week.  The following goals will be for this week, and will embrace “serenity now.”

1) Take Kizzie for a walk at least three times for at least 15 minutes this week.

This will help my mental health, my physical health, and Kizzer’s health.  I often used to find that walks were good ways to clear my brain, and with quitting smoking, I need all of that I can get.

2) Set aside time each morning to read in the devotional book that my mom’s best friend, Glo gave me.

We have not made it to church now in weeks, thanks to our dueling schedules, and my lapsing faith is irritating me like a burr right under my skin.  Who knew that having faith was such hard work?

3) Continue to not smoke.

Smoking creates anxiety, really.  When you feel like you’ve not had one in a certain amount of time, it certainly increases those feelings.  I have plenty of anxiety on my own to deal with.  I really don’t need the help!

Now, for my four must-do-every-day-n0-matter what:

1) Take medications exactly as presribed.  I actually did a pretty good job this week, other than taking my morning meds late on two days.  I still took them, though, so there’s progress!

2) Take care of Kizzie’s needs.  I did pretty well on this, too.  She never ran completely out of water and I’ve already made arrangements to get some dog food picked up.  We’ve been playing a lot, and it is clear she would rather sit on my lap in the  living room than sit under my feet at my computer desk.  She can be a bit on the needy side, sometimes.

3)  Take care of personal hygiene daily.  I did a bang-up job of this, I believe, this week.  Smelling all fresh and clean AND, I put away all my clean clothes, so I know what I have to wear.  That is a big bonus, and it doesn’t really matter that I did it at 9:00 last night — just that it’s done!

4) Eat healthfully and mindfully.  Epic fail.  Too much fast food this week, and too many sugary drinks.  There has also been a lot of snacking going on since I quit smoking and I KNOW that this is just nervous energy — I just want it to stop!

So, if you’d like to hold yourself accountable and feel like making some new goals, check out Green Embers’ site for details and link-up.  I know I feel a little bit better if I have some direction in life!

Sorry there were no fun  pictures, but today is a git’ ‘er done kind of day, and I didn’t have time.  Maybe next week!

Ask, Listen, and Ask Again

As anyone who reads this blog well knows, DSB and I have been having some problems lately relating to how I have been put into a caretaker role, and my feeling that he could do some of that caretaking on his own.  So I asked him about it.  I asked him why he didn’t want to drive, why he didn’t want to fetch his own drinks and help with dinner, why (it seemed) he only wanted to sit in his chair and rot.

There were no clear answers that night, but ever since, I have not been waiting on him hand and foot (nor has he asked me to), he has stepped up and gone to the grocery store, all sorts of doctors appointments, and driven himself numerous places.  Occasionally I will still get his drink, but it’s not about that.  It’s the getting up and doing for oneself when one is, in fact, able.

I don’t know that he realized he was at that point, where he was able to tend to his own business.  I am thankful he has reached it however, and I will support him in whatever way that I can.  I feel like things are “going back to normal” for us, and that is so badly needed, by both of us.  He is contributing, financially, emotionally, physically.  I am doing the same.  We both need that.

In not-really-related news, I have been on a search for the spiritual, on and off, for the past several years.  I wanted to find MY God, a God that understood me, that I could have faith in.  I tried going to different churches and wound up with a bad taste in my mouth with most of them, other than the Catholic church.

My Dad was in the seminary for a brief period and his “smorgasbord Catholicism” (as he would call it) led him to take my sister and I to Mass a few times when we were young.  I have very fond memories of it and of Dad in that setting and in the specific church we went to.  I was not surprised when Catholicism seemed like such a perfect fit.

It was no big surprise to me when I became very interested in the Catholic church a few years ago.  I went to Mass several times with my mom’s best friend, and really enjoyed it.  Then there was a breakup and I moved and then I got really crazy.  It fell by the wayside and it was not until a short while ago that I started thinking about it.

I had read Marilyn Armstrong’s “The 12 Foot TeePee” and lay pondering it for many nights, as I worked my way through it.  It had been awhile since I had thought about spirituality or church or religion or God.  Wondering out loud one night, I knew I had to get back to Mass.  I knew that was where I belonged and I was pretty sure that God had told me that Himself.  That may sound cuckoo, but that’s how it was for me.  It was very, very clear.

Since then, I’ve been to Mass just yesterday, and just in time for all of the Lenten celebrations.  It couldn’t be a better time to be going back, and if all keeps going well, which I hope it will (and secretly, *know* it will), I am going to start RCIA classes in the Fall and formally enter the world of Catholicism next year.