Saturday, January 08, 2005
Household of God
I didn’t know I had so much need in me right now. I’m talking about the need to write, to express some of this inexpressible stuff inside me. I know it’s the season for it – and the season for being overwhelmed with school is coming up in a couple of weeks, and that will be followed by another month of this semi-peace/solitude/retreat time while I am out of school and the kids still going. Then that will be followed by the Summer season of concentrated Mommy/kid time while everyone is out of school. I have learned my lesson. I will not be in school myself this summer. I need school, but I also have need for that Mommy/kid time – and that season for solitude and peace. There are constants that run through all three seasons – family, housework and Church. But worship/work/family cycle is such a part of my life that it’s like breathing or eating. It is inconceivable to think of living my week without worship/work/family. There are other constants much more mundane – and I am sure my husband is wondering if it will ever be laundry/dishes/vacuuming season.
But these three seasons also fill three distinct needs in me. Today the ideas are flying out as fast as I can type. I know that this creative energy, if not used, can be destructive – as it did last April (a story for another time.) And I know that this energy will wane when I get into school and I will have to start on another round of papers (12 point type, Times Roman, 1 inch margins, double spaced.) So very regimented. And they insist on things like proper English and a noun and verb in every sentence – and proper spelling. Bleh. I know I write differently during the season of school. I write more in the passive voice. Journaling becomes laborious. The “seminary speak” spills over into this type of writing and those stupid papers begin to rule my life – in the passive voice. I won’t remember really how to write for enjoyment. And yet… The papers must be written, just as these ramblings must be written. I will relearn how to write when I am finished with my schooling.
I know that the school season is necessary – I almost died when I was “nothing” but an at-home mommy. Well, not really, but in a sense my essential self died. Ego died. Self-image died. Self-esteem died. Nothing to satisfy my intellectual side, the side longing for new thoughts and knowledge. But this season is so hard. (whine whine, pity, pity) I’m old enough I feel I cannot compete with the younger set. I don’t have a sense of community, being a commuter student who lives so very far away. Hard.
And I know that the mommy season is so very important. I never stop being a mommy – who can? The mommyhood is more important that the priesthood – to be a good priest, I have to be a good mommy. It’s not necessary for the mommy to be a good priest – unless she is called to it. But my summer celebrates mommyhood. Just as at every meal we break bread and remember Jesus and it is in a sense communion, when we have the Lord’s supper it becomes transformed, more than mundane -- it becomes a celebration with no distractions and no sense of self. My season of mommy is my season of Eucharist, of thanksgiving. And I treasure it.
My season of solitude fulfills my need for reflection and prayer. My season of school becomes my season of proclamation – hard and laborious and regimented and yet worthy and rich and it spills over into my everyday life, shaping and forming me. My season of mommyhood is my Joy, my Eucharist – it is where I relate to both the vertical relationship between myself and God and the horizontal relationship of myself and my family, where we can become the very Household of God. The vertical and the horizontal become bound together with love, strong cords and beautiful. In these three season, my life begins to parallel the worship service. Life itself becoming worship.