Happy Easter to all you beautiful people!! For it is still Easter, after all! Since the name of this blog has everything to do with Easter (St. Augustine’s quote – “We are an Easter people and Alleluia is our song!”), and because my constant desire is to find “Easter” in my everyday life of motherhood moments – I thought it was time to address our current season in this liturgical year.
I’ve kind of been a bad blogger lately and have let my writing fall by the wayside for a little as I’ve been trying to tread water here. I feel like I have so many thoughts I want to post about, and I’ve even shot pictures for a couple of new recipes, but this season has made it a little difficult. Allow me to explain.
During Easter and immediately after (currently 1st Communions, Confirmations, funerals, and weddings!), is the busiest season for Matt and I, who both work at Catholic churches. We love our jobs and can’t imagine working outside of ministry. That being said, I imagine that for all church-workers (clergy included!), the balance between offering up the stressful times and not losing it, is a bit of a battle. ;) My job as music director is a deeply spiritual and emotional one. Picking music, practicing it out with the choir, and singing/playing/directing is so fulfilling to me and I truly love it. Music was a huge part of my world before having children and being able to use my gifts for God is an insane privilege that I experience every weekend. Matt works in admin at a different parish and he is my saving grace during these times because while I’m feeding and wrangling babies throughout the week and between Masses, he is finding my music, making beautiful choir packets, and making sure the kids and I are fed so we can survive. :) This, mind you, is also during the busiest of times for him at the parish where he works, so everyone is a little crazy as a result. ;) On normal Sundays Matt attends one Mass with the kids and hangs out with them during all the other Masses. Then during the biggest and most intricate Masses, he is my strong bass singer while my wonderful, holy parents sit in the pews with the kids, keeping them occupied and happy.
The life of being so entrenched in ministry is something we have often talked about in light of our family. It supports us, yes, but it isn’t just a job. Sometimes it can be hard because our calendar is different from many other families (Saturdays and Sundays are busy at church, and holidays are the absolute busiest). Still, the blessings are not lost on us. We are literally raising our kids at church. No, it isn’t a recipe for sainthood in itself (gotta still teach about what’s going on during Mass, and live out our prayer life!), but it is a constant reminder, if we can stop once in awhile during the liturgical chaos of jumbled music and sound-checks, that we are all of us working towards sanctity.
I’ll be the first to admit that sometimes it hurts to give so much at Masses and then come out immediately to clingly little arms that just NEED you. It hurts to spend your voice to the point of hoarseness and then know that your equally-spent little one needs to be rocked and lulled to sleep with lullaby’s. Or know that you have 3 1/2 hours to sleep before the early morning Mass and suddenly you are rushing about because your toddler was sick to his stomach in the bed you all share. Not to mention the exhaustion on all accounts that makes for a perfect recipe of baby tantrums and tears all around once the last Mass has been completed and you STILL need to drive home.
Still, we’re together and that means some of our most wonderful memories happen during those same difficult holy-days and holidays. We find creative ways of celebrating and as a family we all give of our time and Matt and I get to experience the joy of explaining the liturgical seasons to our children, knowing that they are looking forward to it all. After all, NOTHING beats your little toddlers eagerly approaching the foot of the life-size cross on Good Friday, ready to kiss it solemnly. <3 <3
This intense season doesn’t mean that all manner of craziness doesn’t come at us from other sources as well, because there is almost ALWAYS something that threatens to make us lose our peace from without, but who doesn’t experience these various crosses? Easter means new life, new hope – and we have to believe and trust that God is greater than our sufferings and trials. I wish our life was simpler. Sometimes I wish the toughest thing I had to do was sing music that I love and come home to pour myself out further to my family who needs me constantly, but it just isn’t. Life is messy and complicated and we aren’t saints – yet. This is all meant to refine us and we can lean on Him Who loves us more than the most loving mother or father loves their innocent beautiful babe. This assurance is what keeps us going. He will not abandon us, and He is still God.
This is what I leave you with this Easter season. Please pray for us, and I will keep all of you, dear readers, in my prayers. Have a truly blessed rest of your Easter.
He is Risen! Alleluia!