Oh, today was a day spent kicking at the beasts of Hades who kept chasing me and nipping at my heels. A child that wouldn't listen to anything with lots of shrill screaming and tears of protestation, another one who simply refused to stay asleep (and at this hour is still refusing to go to sleep), weird stomach pains that returned, cats that decided to go ape just as the non-sleeping child started to sleep (because when else would you need to meow at a billion decibels?), ridiculous drivers oscillating between snail's pace Sunday driving in the left lanes and Speedy Gonzales on crack snaking in and out of traffic, a "quick" dinner at Bob Evans before picking mom at the airport gone terribly wrong (45 minutes in a mostly empty restaurant with two kids and still no food - really?), people in general not paying even a little bit of attention to their surroundings (you're welcome lady that I didn't hit you with my double stroller as you walked right out in front of me as I was moving not at a snail's pace), extra time in the car due to construction traffic made for crabby kidoodles, yadda yadda yadda, complain complain complain. As the Hubs pointed out, we were being tested. I'm not sure I passed - I may be signing up for summer school. Mark Hart (aka the Bible Geek) mentioned this morning that perhaps it would be nice to have a CTRL-Z button on life - I quite agree. Let me know when there's an app for that!
As I was striving to be a paragon of grace (*cough*) and was still steaming about all the people who had done me wrong by being in my way today (so holy am I, right?) I saw Dwija's post. Suddenly, my stomach hit my throat and I realized how minuscule these little annoyances were. (That's the real power of Hades, after all...turning an annoying gnat into a dangerous swarm of killer bees to chase us off course.) The Borobias (who I have mentioned before struggling with a very complicated/high risk pregnancy and a nightmare of a laundry room) said goodbye and sent their sweet boy Nicholas back to Jesus today. I must tell you, I don't actually know Dwija and her family really. Yet, my heart aches for them.
I am forever amazed at the power of connection through the Internet and social media. When I worked in young adult ministry, it baffled many others that young people felt so connected through this medium. We had (and still have) work to do to convince people that the connections made are just as real and possess just as much possibility for deep, genuine and meaningful connection. It's simply a few leaps beyond the letter and telephone. The Holy Spirit is not held back by the word "virtual." We harness whatever means we have to connect with the mystical body of Christ - that is what it is after all, isn't it? When one part of the body aches, we ache with her. We hold each other up, we celebrate with each other, grieve with each other, laugh with each other and grumble with each other. While I still have my own insecurities about being part of this community of faithful women online, it is a powerful and prayerful community that helps me through what can be an isolating world. Tonight, I am thankful for all the women who I have "met," who share the nitty gritty of their lives in humility to help each other along the journey and make me feel like I am not alone in my struggles, ponderings and feelings.
Tonight, dear sweet Dwija, even though you do not know me, please know that my heart aches for you, though I cannot fully comprehend your pain. May the Lord ease your sorrow, may you find comfort under the mantle of Our Lady, and may you one day see your sweet boy again and see the purpose in what seems so senseless today. God bless you all.