february blues and a catch up

I feel it is fairly appropriate to have a screen capture of Over the Garden Wall at the beginning of this post, since I have been feeling just as lost as Wirt and Greg are throughout the show. I identify with Wirt; I want to be more like Greg.

Many things have happened since I last wrote a post. I got a job as a pharmacy technician. I’m learning more about medications than I really ever wanted to know, and I honestly don’t find it terribly fulfilling work. However, I am helping people, so that is good.

I haven’t read very much (as evidenced by a lack of book reviews posted here). I keep intending to read, but for some reason I have some kind of mental block that keeps me from cracking open those beloved spines and allowing myself to be inspired. Earlier, in the fall, I lacked the mental and spiritual energy for it. Now I simply put it off, perhaps because I am afraid of opening myself to spiritual connections (even to fictional characters) or because I am afraid of thinking.

I did pick up a copy of Mary Oliver’s Devotions in the airport on the way to my best friend’s wedding in January, and the poem “For Tom Shaw S.S.J.E.” made me break down in tears on the flight. It was on page 8. I have re-read it many times since that first time, and every time I am struck by Mary Oliver’s ability to touch the heart of the matter with a few simple words. Her writing is helping me see the beauty in the world again.

This might should have come earlier given its importance, but I finished my degree and graduated. As one might expect, it was terribly anticlimactic. It was also heart rending in a way I think many others did not experience, since this was the second graduation ceremony I did not have (homeschooling and graduating early and moving to a monastery do not typically allow for such things). I think the loss of another major marker traditionally associated with growing up, as well as the lack of finality to all the work I put in, has really impacted me, although I do try not to dwell on it. I have to trust that this is God’s intention for me and for the world, and to be honest, not getting graduations is (in the modern parlance) a “first world problem.”

It takes a great deal of courage to see the world in all its tainted glory and still to love it.

Oscar Wilde

I wrote this quote from Oscar Wilde at the beginning of the journal I started in October. I have been trying to live by it, trying first to see the glory in the taint and second to love both. Making things, like the Dalai Llama and two and a half pairs of socks, has been helping. Remembering that I have people who love me has been helping. Trying to add to the beauty of the world, even though I fail so miserably most of the time, has been helping.

The only other things going on in my life right now are trying to figure out which foods I am allergic/sensitive to, which means a lot of non-egg and non-dairy foods, lots of music, and stealing momentary snuggles with my (11 year old) kitten.

I hope you all are doing well, and that God will give us all the grace and strength to make it through the pandemic. (And through February. God knows Februaries are already hard enough here in this northern hemisphere. I will make it through with tea and cupcakes, and I will gladly share should anyone need them.)

-Odds & Ends-
My favorite chanting
An album I can’t stop listening to
Vegan cupcakes cookbook (which will be perfect for Lent, just sayin’)
Yarn I can’t get enough of (that I think is perfect for socks)

4 thoughts on “february blues and a catch up

  1. Catherine, It warms my heart to hear how you are doing. Truly. That music reminds me of Slaid Cleaves, an old favorite of mine. Prayers for peace, love, courage and God’s light to guide us now and always.

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    1. It’s so good to hear from you! I’m off to go listen to Slaid Cleaves now. I think about you often, and I hope you are doing well! Sending you love and prayers from afar ❤

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  2. Thanks for the tips! I ordered the cupcake book for my daughter just now, who is not vegan or Orthodox, but she has a child allergic to eggs and dairy. And I put a copy on hold at the library for myself 🙂

    I would love to come over for tea and cupcakes! Can I get a rain check for that?

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    1. Yes!!! I just made some mint chocolate cupcakes, so they’ll be here whenever you want to come 😉 The cookbook is so good and the cupcakes are truly easy to make (at least the basic ones are), and I’m so happy your daughter will be able to make them for her child!

      Liked by 1 person

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