First of all, and probably most importantly, I am not feeling so depressed today, due to a few happy things that happened and also, probably, pure luck. Also, God must have decided not to actually let the depression get the better of me, although He tends to let me wallow in it. Sometimes I think God is a little sadistic, but that doesn’t ring true with what I know and am taught about God, so I try to believe what I know and not how I feel all the time.
I am thankful for the time spent with a friend today. This is a good friend from college whom I am still close with, and we see each other every few weeks or so.
I am thankful for what we decided to do this morning: take a walk in a big park. I hadn’t done that in quite a while, and the weather was perfect for it today.
The weather was cool enough to enjoy being outside, yet I did not need a jacket, and the sky was a bit gray but not too overcast. Now it is a nice blue. 😀
I am grateful for a new flavor of soda that I got to try today. Also, this soda is only 5 calories for the whole bottle. I’m not supposed to be concerning myself with calories and that stuff, but it does make me feel better to know that this soda is not bad for me.
I am grateful for all the cute little doggies and the fearless squirrel that we saw in the park.
7. I am grateful for Youtube. There is good Catholic teaching on there, as well as rosaries and other prayers, and even a community in the form of live-streamed prayer groups.
8. I am grateful for my job. I like having money 🙂 and although I don’t always want to go in to work, I usually feel better once my workday starts, and by the time it is finished, I feel productive and like my life matters a little more. In general, I enjoy my job, even though I am technically overqualified.
9. This is where the gratitude list is getting tough, but I really want to reach 10 things…. I am grateful for my plushie kangaroo because it makes me smile every day.
Here is my kangaroo, pictured with my rosary and a one-decade rosary ring, which it is “holding,” because apparently my kangaroo is Catholic too.
10. I am grateful for my brain, because even though it makes me feel depressed a LOT, it is pretty smart, and it likes to write. I like that I like to write, especially poetry! 😀
11. Oooh, I have an eleventh thing! I am grateful that the coffee stain came out of my white robe!
As I mentioned in my previous post, today is the feast of the Exaltation of the Cross. This got me thinking not only about Jesus and his suffering on the cross but his life. We hear so often, “Jesus died for you” that it can get boring and trite, even for believers. What I think is much more radical is: Jesus lived for you.
People have pointed out to me, someone who suffers from severe, chronic depression, “The Bible says Jesus was ‘exceedingly sorrowful, even unto death.'” True, but that was one night. Try about 50% of the nights in the past 2 decades. Also, yes, he suffered a TON physically on the Cross and on the way to it — but that was only a few days of his 33 years. I’m not trying to complain, but the truth is that sometimes I think I’ve got it worse.
What amazes me more than the dying and rising again, quite frankly, is that he did live for 33 years. And he chose to be born! If I had the choice, I wouldn’t choose to be born. Plus, he chose to be born into a poor family, rather than a rich merchant or a noble family. He easily could have had a life of extreme comfort (at least, relative to that time period), but he didn’t. He didn’t even have coffee! Or bacon, for that matter. Coffee is one of my daily consolations; I literally wake up to drink coffee, rather than drinking coffee to wake up. Also, Jesus never got married. If I live long enough and find someone willing to marry me, I hope to get married. He went without that.
33 years, in a time without all the technology and modern amenities that we have today. No running water, no air conditioning, and Jesus was poor even in relation to the society of that day. That’s what impresses me most.
Thoughts? I am interested to hear your take on this, even if you found it really offensive. 🙂
Today being the feast of the Exaltation of the Cross, I was going to repost a poem that I wrote a year ago, but — hooray! — I was able to write a new one this morning! This is a Pinch Poem, like the one I shared 2 days ago.
O glorious cross, on which the world’s Savior died, And streams of immortality from His side flowed; O blood and water washing sins away, Through Him we are saved and set free. Through Him we are saved and set free, Awaiting the perfection of that Day When we can share in life’s great triumph which He showed, Which even now we taste, trusting His time, abide.
This pinch poem took me 3 days. As the days go by, it gets more and more applicable / honest.
A story which these days I have so often heard:
In Galilee Jesus was with his disciples,
Stuck in a storm on a turbulent sea —
He stilled the storm to a whisper.
He stilled the storm to a whisper.
There’s a powerful storm surrounding me,
I may be in the eye, but hurricane-wind pulls,
Even heartfelt poems lack the necessary Word.
This week’s theme for Ronovan Writes’s sijo prompt is Adversity. I heard the story of Daniel being protected by God when he was thrown into the den of lions again today, and then I took the poem from there.
Daniel was thrown into the lions’ den, and came out unharmed,
His friends were cast into fire, and Another was there with them —
If I am not delivered, at least I will never be alone.
I’ve written seven poems today (so far 🙂 ), but the one I am sharing is a cinquain, inspired by the fact that today is when the Catholic Church celebrates the Assumption of Mary, when Jesus takes her body and soul into Heaven at the end of her earthly life.
Sword of sorrow
Tell me, Mother Mary,
Death will be swallowed in vict’ry
P.S. Today is a much better, more peaceful day. It’s so terrible how depression and other mental illness takes away your personality and replaces it with… something terrible. Then it makes you think that that terrible thing is you.
I feel alone, connection’s far tonight,
I see no smiling star tonight.
Even the moon has forgotten its light.
Shrouded, it makes the sky dark as tar tonight.
My mind sees a battlefield near:
What emotions will I need to spar tonight?
Depression, restlessness, fear, anxiety?
What demons come to wound and scar tonight?
Yet hope alone, even now, can fight
The darkness; complete despair I’ll bar tonight.
In the midst of these anxieties God sees:
I sob in God’s arms. Call me Hagar tonight.