“To be effective the proclamation of faith must begin with a heart that believes, hopes, loves; and a heart that loves Christ also believes in the transformative power of the Holy Spirit!” Pope Benedict XVI
Cradle Catholic, an EX-wife (as of oct 2016), mother, sister, daughter, friend, EX-daughter-in-law, business-owner, amateur writer-blogger, old-house fixer upper, Labrador-lover, local marketer, down-sizer, alcoholic. I love Saint Catherine of Siena, Saint Therese Lisieux, Saint Teresa of Avila, Saint Philip Neri and Saint Mary Magdalen.
I pretty much write about the same five things:
First, I am a Catholic. It’s not what I do on Sundays–it’s who I am every day. I love everything about my faith and the Roman Catholic Church: Jesus, his mother Mary, the Eucharist, long-standing tradition of helping the poor and the immigrants, Catholic Charities, confession, the 7 sacraments, the rituals, the incense, the reverence, the quietness, the Bible, the beliefs, the Pope, the priests, the nuns, the Mass, the kneeling and standing, the Trinity, the cathedrals, the saints, the real presence, transubstantiation, the holy spirit, the art, Rome, the Vatican, Catholic schools, pro-life courage, novenas, adoration, converts, Lectio Divina, the Rosary, the bells, the rich history.
I’ve had a connection to God from as far back as I can remember. I connect with God best when I’m by myself. I worship Him in community with other people, too, though, because He likes that.
Second, being an alcoholic has influenced so much of my past it’s a big part of who I am, the good parts and the flawed parts, of which I have many flawed parts. All of my relationships have been influenced by beer. Sober now–and hopefully for always–my life and relationships have been truly enhanced by the people I’ve met and continue to meet in my recovery walk.
I love AA. I realize many get sober without the aid of 12 Step Programs; and I respect that. Part of my story is sobriety without AA meetings for a couple of years, too. Today, I choose to be a part of AA especially because I connect with other women who remind me of my tendency to escape from uncomfortability by drinking a lot of beer; and 12 Step Recovery programs provide a great forum for helping others–If you are walking this Catholic alcoholic path, too, be sure to follow me over at Living Sober through the Psalms.
Third, my life experiences are very much animated by my birth order, ninth of eleven children in a big Irish Catholic family growing up in the 70s in the South. My parents will celebrate 61 years of marriage this year. They have created a close-knit, unconditionally loving family and I want to carry this on… This big, amazing family provided the foundation for my life and absolutely helped me recognize God in my life – My parents modeled an unconditional love for their children that could only be divinely inspired.
Along these same lines, I am one of six daughters—which means I have five sisters. If you don’t have sisters or you have only one or two sisters, the idea of having FIVE might seem daunting. But, it’s one of the best things about me! My Mom and her six daughters call ourselves the “goddesses” and I write about being one of the goddesses (tongue in cheek, not meant to be sacrilegious lol) all the time.
Fourth, my marriage…is over. This used to be a long, happy paragraph part of my “about me” page. And “happy” was not completely accurate. Now that I’m divorced, I am still trying to figure out who I am with regards to being a “divorced women.” I didn’t believe in divorce, so it will probably take a long time for me to fully come to accept. ugh. One thing I do know, I couldn’t stay sober married to my drinking buddy.
Fifth, my loves…my two sons. Oh, how having children has enriched my life! I have a very close relationship with my boys that thankfully was not ruined by my drinking—I read their minds, intuit their next moves and feel their pains and their joys. I pray they always stay close to their faith and that they do not have the addiction gene.
So there you have it.
I have been attracted to blogging for several years, but never embraced the medium. I was afraid. So I kept my various blogs private. I didn’t want anybody to follow me or read what I wrote. I feared blogging publicly was:
- Vain and I would corrupt myself, end up seeking approval from strangers and “followers” instead of God; or,
- That it was too diary-ish–TMI—not a proper thing to do to “talk about my problems” with strangers all the time. I didn’t want to be like that.
- Finally, I worried what people would think about me–what if people hated what I wrote?
Then I started following blogs I liked, mostly Catholic convert blogs. There is a whole world of brave bloggers out there who love their Catholic faith like I do. They are neither vain nor self-indulgent…they love to write or, like me, have to write.
And the sober bloggers…such courage and selflessness. Their blogs are true 12 Step work. Such honesty and hope. They explore and live their worlds, connecting with others through writing about it. Some write for themselves, some for a higher purpose and some out of a need for self-expression, I suppose. Some use blogging to get through things, figure things out, grow. Like me, it seems the writing is necessary.
Several times during the day I’ll experience something and think, “Oh, I need to write about this.”
That’s all for now. I’ll probably change this About page a lot—I’m always editing, revising, re-writing. This is already the third version, but I promise you it’s the most authentic.
This is my favorite description of the definition of an alcoholic.
And when I struggle with caring too much what other people think, I can read this from My Daily Bread.
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