trees

Small Success Thursday: Reentry

It’s time for Small Success Thursday over at CatholicMom.com.

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  1. This was a powerful experience for me but a weird one, so if you’re weird enough to read my blog, you might get something out of reading the following.  My brother-in-law lost his life to lung cancer last Tuesday, the Feast of St. Jude.  This is one of those cases where, since my husband is a Tiber-crosser, his family isn’t Catholic, so the comfort of the sacraments wasn’t something on their minds.  It was on mine, though.  Family is tricky, especially in-laws, especially when they live far away and we’re not all that close to begin with.  As my BIL was suffering his own lung problems, coincidentally I was in the depth of my annual viral-triggered asthma cold.  For those of you unfamiliar, this means sleepless, wheeze-filled nights and wheeze-filled, cough-filled days.  So, given the constraints of earthly relationships and distance, I told God I’d take the wheezing and coughing and offer it up to help my BIL in his suffering. I didn’t do a formal novena, but I asked St.Jude to plead God’s mercy for my BIL as well, and I asked that if BIL passed on St. Jude’s feast, it would be a sign of that mercy.  So that happened.  That’s not all.  The service for BIL was on the evening of All Saints.  That night, I was fighting the wheezing and coughing so I could get to sleep.  In that twilight between too tired to be fully awake and too wheezy to actually be asleep, I had a sort of waking dream (not a vision or hallucination, mind-you).  In it, BIL sat on the side of the bed and palpably touched me on my left bicep.  Within moments my wheezing stopped and I fell asleep.  Now, I’m no theologian, nor can I say with any certainty what God judges for either of us.  Still, the possibility that my offerings for my BIL meant something to  him and he knows that I cared enough to offer him my suffering… as Small Successes go, it’s not like it’s a success I can claim, but it is a success for our relationships with each other in Christ.  We may be bound by the sacraments, but I’m grateful that God is not.  
  2. The laundry is being done and there were a few days in the past two weeks where we didn’t spend a red cent on takeout of any kind.
  3. Driving up and down the state from the height of fall color into its decline inspired a poem.  I don’t do poems often, but I do like them.

Imagine the Cry

Imagine the cry you would hear

If I took to the trunk of a maple

An axe or a saw

As its leaves

Changed

Shades.

“Look how it suffers!

It soon will be naked,

Undignified,

Worthless,

And we’ll have a mess on the ground.”

Imagine the cry,

“No! It still has seasons

beyond this death!”

“But I cannot see them.”

So I wield the axe.

This is my tree.

This is my right.

The tree suffers no more.