The Sixth Street Bridge

The Sixth Street Bridge
At the tender age of 17, I walked across this bridge, alone, into Downtown Pittsburgh, with $300 in my pocket that my mother had given me to get an abortion. I went into the Fulton Building (in the picture) and did what I was told to do. I didn't have a choice - if I did, I wouldn't have chosen abortion.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Faith in the Heart

O Christ Jesus,
when all is darkness
and we feel our weakness and helplessness,
give us the sense of Your presence,
Your love, and Your strength.
Help us to have perfect trust
in Your protecting love
and strengthening power,
so that nothing may frighten or worry us,
for, living close to You,
we shall see Your hand,
Your purpose, Your will through all things.

By Saint Ignatius of Loyola
Mother's Day has now seemed to have morphed into Mother's Day "Weekend."  I guess it's mostly the retail industry trying to drag holidays out as long as possible toward the bottom line.  I've taken to drag it out prior to the actual day it seems but for my own selfish reasons.  Last year I did the same so I guess I can categorize Mother's Day as an absolute trigger for me. 
As I visit the two posts, here & here, that I had written last Mother's Day - not much has changed.  I'm still feeling stuck and without direction.  I'm fighting the urge to create a graph on which I can plot out certain keywords and themes and blabber.  It's a good thing I don't have too much free time with which to prove my failures.
A big difference between last year and this year's Mother's Day - pharmaceuticals.  In fact, it was shortly after Mother's  Day last year that I had increased my antidepressant to a  higher dose.  This year, it's all me.  I don't even have any wine in the house.  Last Mother's Day was a good day, I seemed to be okay for the most part without a backslide into despair.  This Mother's Day, or at least this weekend, at its beginning, is not looking as okay.
I'm tired physically and emotionally. I physically ache with headaches and a backache that recently started out of nowhere.  All of this could be chalked up to the yet more weight that I've put on.  I'm heavier now than I have ever, ever been in my entire life, and that includes two pregnancies.  I'm a petite person so all of this weight is taking its toll.  Without any antidepressants or antianxiety drugs, the only pill I do have to take is a cholesterol lowering medication and I haven't been taking it.  I'm afraid of what I'm waiting for to happen if that makes sense.  Slowly  committing suicide with elevated cholesterol and sweets?  I think it's more a case of just not caring at all.   It's also a way to isolate myself even further if that's possible.  More weight means less activity, less wanting to do anything at all, less sex as I try to convince my husband that there is no way he's remotely attracted to me in this state, less engaging in anything at home for lack of energy.  I'm wondering if this is rock bottom with no further down to go?
Which brings me to my little graphic at the top of this post - a tiny flicker of faith.  There's got to be one inside of me somewhere because I'm still here and it's not just about being too much of a coward to slit my wrists, it's something more.  As the tears roll down my cheeks as I type, with the pain now physical, I'm still here.  I'm still blogging for Christ's sake.  With the little pixie in the other room, happy and content with her crayons and a juice box and with 80 pounds of fur at my feet, is this all there is?  If I was suddenly not here - how would this picture change? 
Please Lord, give me something.  Show me something.  Please let me feel something good.  Send me a list of what you think I'm doing right.  Please show me in some way that my pathetic little life is important and significant in some ridiculous way.  Please Lord, let me feel you near me.  Allow me to see that something I do is worthwhile.  Please show me that taking all of this on has a purpose or meaning.  Please let the darkness lift or give me the strength to leave it so I can see what's smack in front of my face.  Please take away my stubborn pride and self absorption and give me something else instead. Please, I beg you, help me keep getting out of bed to do something. 
And Grace, if you're listening, help me figure this out and if I can't figure it out, help me to find some peace in the mess.


  1. I hope you get the message soon.

    I heard a good thing yesterday - if we were all in a supermarket, God didn't just sweep everyone into his trolley off the shelves - he picked us on purpose.

    My friend had some issue with that and said it was more like God asked everyone if they wanted to play football, and the people who responded, He chose to be on His team (might be a slightly better analogy really). I guess what I'm trying to say is that God has a definite purpose for you - a plan to carry out that you are a part of, in order to bring His kingdom.

    Might be something small, might be something massive, but remember Jeremiah 29:11 - "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

    We may not always know (or like) the plans, but they are there, and they are perfect, and they are Kingdom.

  2. I am not sure it's what you're looking for, but I am so glad you are here and for posting that quote. My eyes are seeing and feeling the darkness (different from yours, I know, but it is still my darkness) and that quote resonated so much with me.

    I am so glad you posted this.

    I will be praying for you extra this weekend. I was "Anna Jarvis" in 4th grade when we dressed up as Famous West Virginians and told all about how Anna Jarvis founded Mother's Day to honor her mother. And from that, and until today, I know that all of this hoopla and hallmark-y-ness that Mother's Day has become is not what she intended. And in fact, spoke out about. It was to be a quiet day to honor mothers.

    I can only imagine the double-edged sword that comes with mother's day each year for you considering the role your own mother played in sweet Grace's death, and yet, while she cannot replace Grace and nothing you've ever written suggests that nor do I intend to, you have a sweet girl who has a mommy she probably wants to honor this weekend. Hallmark-y-ness and all. Let her remind you, let her be the light your heart sees.

    My prayers are with you, every day, but this weekend especially.

  3. As someone who's been getting "early" mother's day presents and even went out to eat today, I am bewildered by it myself. Part of me thinks I don't deserve it. My daughter has called me "awesome" and "beautiful" today also and I don't feel it. I wanted to tell you that even though you might not feel it, God loves you - no matter WHAT! (I say the same for myself.) Look at Romans 8:28 - He's with you EVERYWHERE and won't leave you, even in the darkness and deepest pit. I've been trying to rest in that verse. I don't know what my purpose is on this earth anymore is either, and I have so many people (including my baby) waiting for me on "the other side" and I'd give anything to see them. I feel like I've ruined my kids' lives already so what's the point of me being here. But God has a purpose for them too, obviously. Lately I've been trying to be more mindful and really immerse myself in how things look, taste, smell, sound, like if I HAVE to be here I might as well be grateful for these wonderful things, and it does help me a little during the dark times. (Chocolate milk, flowers, listening to my favorite songs, playing with my dog, etc.) I know I'm all over the place in this message, sorry! Have you ever read anything by Brennan Manning (especially Abba's Child)? He wasn't a stellar citizen either, even in his Christian walk, but he had such immense faith that God loved him. His writing is very compelling. God is with you everywhere and he understands how you feel. I'm praying for you.

  4. So many have chosen to 'walk with you' -- and will never be the same because of those steps. That you would see this! It is not enough to say that you have made a difference; your pages have sustained life. Altho only in words do we know you, our loved ones HAVE us -- ONLY because of your sharing a raw but open heart that knows our same darknesses and temptations. That is the Crucifixion: a Heart opened, yielding life for others. The debt to you is beyond an infinite number of maxed out credit cards. You are His chosen instrument for this message, the clay in the Potter's precious Hands. The admiration is so great for you...I can't imagine how many of us would love to take a walk with you, have a cup of tea with you, go to Adoration with you, but in this present darkness we can't...all we can do is hold you with our beads and ask Her to spellcheck our offer, cleaning it, perfecting it, and then present it to Her Son.
    Hoping these paltry syllables somehow show the love that is felt for you.

  5. From our priest's homily this past weekend: "God has created me to do him some definite service; he has committed some work to me which he has not committed to another. I have my mission - I may never know it in this life, but I shall be told it in the next. I have a part in a great work; I am a link in a chain, a bond of connection between persons."

    - Blessed John Henry Newman

    Praying for you. Angela

  6. All of us here in the world are for some specific purposes. As many have stated above, we have to see our insights and think of the tasks which we have to perform here. God just put our self in places to perform but what tasks?, we have to decide it on our own.

  7. I wanted to say thank you for all of you who commented on this post. It took me a while to respond because in the state I was in, I would read, and re-read, and then argue and fight with myself on whether to believe the words put here or not. But, I thank all of you for putting them here anyway because I did read them, and re-read them, and they kept me going. To know there are people out there that I don't even know who have offered prayers for me is overwhelming and humbling. Thank you all so, so much.

    1. oh, we are out so many ways (: /) in so many places. as each day passed and your site seemingly went silent, prayers for you increased.
      that you would believe this in every dark moment -- of unbelief! when even the readings of Mass don't penetrate,or the words of a faithful confessor, He has given us consolation through your raw words. that the sacred heart would help you see that this is so.