Wednesday, February 12, 2014

January 26, 2014- Training Through Lent

            I found out some time after the hotel was booked, the airline tickets bought for me and my husband Jim that the Boston Marathon falls on the day after Easter.  We will be leaving on Good Friday and coming back the following Tuesday (the race is on Monday the 21st of April).  I was quite upset when I found this out, namely because we still have a young daughter at home. 
            Our oldest is our son Simon, twenty-three, who graduated college last May, got a job in his field of advertising (Thank the Lord above for that huge one!!) and moved out right before Christmas.  

 Our daughter, Emmaclare is twenty and moved out a year ago Christmas.  She also has her own apartment as well, and works as a waitress at Knapp’s Dairy Bar in downtown Rochester (she makes a great malt). It is only Jim, Gracie, and me knocking around the house now.  We are the Three Musketeers and have a lot of fun together. 
                   (The Three Musketeers at the Scare Away Hunger 5K- October 2013)
           To think of my baby girl without us for the holiday is most distressing.  I have wonderful sister-in-laws though and have already set up for her to stay with Uncle KC and Auntie Jenny during that time.
            So, I am thinking now how incredible this lent season is going to be for me.  Those forty days are going to be jam-packed with HEAVY miles and pain!  Wow.  There really is no separating training for a marathon from the spiritual experience that goes along with the sacrifice involved; I am interested to see how it all works out that’s for sure. 
            Sunday mass today was so happy because we were able to sit with my number two brother, Craig (he is two years younger than me) and his wife Holly, and sweet little baby girl Charlotte. Their son Gabriel is four and was in the preschool group.  They are parishioners here too.  Every time I see my brother with his family, happy and complete, I am so grateful. 
            The first few years of their marriage were very tough, my mother and I did so much praying for what seemed like the absolute impossible- for them to make it work and stay together.  They had a young son after all and I had always seen in my mind’s eye, a daughter for them, with her mother’s beautiful dimples, that would not ever come to be if they gave up.
            But they fought through, and to look over and see my brother smiling down at his wonderful little baby girl with dimples like her mother, I am overwhelmed with gratitude.  I shed a great many tears before the Blessed Sacrament over that one.  Let’s put it this way: I was absolutely “in Jesus’s face”!  You should have seen me in the empty church, having very animated “discussions” with Him.  He heard me alright, and my dear mother who carried that great cross for her son and his family.  Whenever I am feeling low I just have to think on that true miracle of human endurance, and sacrifice, and triumph over realistically insurmountable obstacles.  They are such a great example and inspiration to me. 
My darlings on Thanksgiving.  Julee (Simon's fiance') Simon, Michael (Eclare's boyfriend) Emmaclare, and Gracie.

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