Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Sabbath Grace



I had decided before I went to bed on Saturday, after the party and big weekend, that we weren't going to church. There were a lot of factors but the biggest one was Annie- she cried exhausted tears most of yesterday morning, rallied for the party and family time, and then dissolved again last night. And she told me she didn't want to go. Not that I'm going to let her make that call on a regular basis, but the last thing I want is for it to be a place she hates. 

But, I felt so horrible about it. 

So (and this is so terrible) I was really glad when Graves threw up in the middle of the night (I really didn't think he was sick; I think his parents should have used more wisdom and said "no" to the third piece of cake). Like I said, though, I felt so guilty. Guilty enough I was relieved my son was sick. 

In Brooklyn, my thoughts changed a lot on Sabbath. If it snowed or even if I felt slightly bad and didn't want to tackle transit with the kids, I was gentle and gracious with myself. It was really difficult to get there, but it became less of a chore or an obligation and more of a joyful commitment that I was mostly faithful to. And I became a little less of a "white washed tomb", put together on the outside, with ugly seething inside. But old habits- and thought patterns- die hard. 

Also, we're getting really close to our church decision and it aggravated me so much to "lose" a Sunday and not be one step closer to deciding.

 Finally, and this may be the worst, I wanted to prove I could do it. On the heels of an exhausting weekend and the cusp of a busy week, I wanted to drive to Clinton early in the morning, solo parent through a service and the day, and drive back after dusk. I wanted to do it to say I could do it. Sometimes, this trait is an asset (like surviving New York and not giving up on driving standard) and sometimes it's a flaw (like when I'm tempted to sacrifice my small people's well being to prove something). 

Those things seemed to bother me less when I had a "legitimate" reason for not going. 

It really all boils down to control and in MBird/ Calvary-St. George's parlance, little-l law (or really big-L in the first case, I guess)-- I want to be good in my own strength, I want desperately to be productive and accomplish things, and I want to prove my worth.
Thirty is teaching me. 

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