What is wrong with us?

As a nation, we’re falling apart. The divorce rate is up, in correlation with the use of contraceptives, and the more we fill our bodies with hormones we wouldn’t allow in our food, the more absymal our situation becomes.  The Catholic Herald has an opinion piece today about Nancy Pelosi, the country’s worst “Catholic” (remember her comment on the Catholic Church’s stance on when life begins?), and it has some very good points:

So many of us have been hurt through divorce and depression. Not only has the rise in the divorce rate paralleled the rise in the popularity of contraceptive use in our nation, but the increase in the diagnoses of sexually transmitted diseases, the use of antidepressants and the increase in middle school children engaging in sex have followed this trend also. We are not a healthier people, nor are we happier families, since we have adopted a contraceptive mentality.

Very true.  We’re not happy at all, and if you look at the more traditional families with good, core values (especially in God), and who use NFP (natural family planning), THEY are happy.  The rate of divorce of couples who wait to have sex until they’re married, wait to live together until after marriage, attend church regularly, and pray together, is less than 1% (fact taken from my Fragua retreat – I wouldn’t know where to find that statistic).  I want to have that 99% happiness when I get married, and I want that for the rest of the world as well.  We were much happier as a nation before the 1960s and the idea of abortion and eugenics.

When will the time come when people realize that children are miracles and gifts, and not “mistakes” to fix with abortion?  Why are bald eagle eggs protected when it’s just a bunch of cells?  See my point?  The world needs to start protecting the human race as much as we protect the animal kingdom.

The article in the Catholic Herald can be found here.

Mysterious Ways

Have you ever prayed for something, hard, and then when the outcome happened, it wasn’t what you were expecting (or hoping for)?  It’s no secret that I have lots of time on my hands, and when I (honestly) have nothing to do, I’ll say a rosary or two or six.  I think it started out as idle praying out of concern for a friend and a really messed up situation (it was messed up in my mind at least, but what do I know?).  It became rather fervent and desperate as of last night.  I felt… panicked.  You know, the choked-up panicked feeling you get when something is completely out of your hands, and you’re overly paranoid?   Right.  So, long story cut very, very short: we came to a conclusion tonight that I didn’t see coming at all.  Well no, I did in the long run, but not this soon.  Needless to say I was blindsided.

Here’s my little note to God, if you will.  And seriously, don’t lecture me on my notes to God – it’s not your business.

God, um, why right now?  I know you disapproved, but seriously, couldn’t you just ween it off or something?  I know, my fault, asking for something that I didn’t see coming.  I shouldn’t have said, “Please help him make the right decision,” because, ultimately, he did.  Now I feel like a jerk, and I’m not blaming you, but why right now when I’m so unsure of everything, and then you drop this in my lap?  Argh, not fair.

Glad that’s off my chest, even though I’m not.  I’ve not felt this guilty or this sad in such a long time.  This just came on a day where I found out that I have mono (again – they think at least), and I still have my painful hip problem that just leaves me emotionally drained.  I can’t do this on my own, goddammit.  I don’t feel comfortable calling anyone at the moment, even Sean.  It’s one of those things where you want to lock yourself in your closet and not let anyone in; where the dark envelops you in a suffocating blanket of warmth and protectiveness.  It’s bad timing – it’s always bad timing.  Worst timing.

If my closet wasn’t full of shoes and my guitar, I’d go sit in it right now.  But, since I don’t have that option, my bed is as good as any.

Schedules

My chemo schedule’s changed.  They want to do every-other week, for three days.  This is good and bad, I think.  Good, because it’s less treatment all at once (five days in a row was WAY too much, thanks), and every-other week is easy to remember.  Maybe this’ll be better.  The few days after treatment, thursday and today, have just left me exhausted and ill.  I’m so freaking lucky though.  I don’t have to stay in the hospital, and my prognosis is like, 95% recovery (that 5% is reserved in case I do something retarded).  Go me!

I’ve received messages that people are praying for me, and I’m not sure how to receive that.  I mean, it means a lot to me, but it also makes me feel a bit weird, like they’re wasting their time on me.  Is that how it’s supposed to be?  It’s not like this is a private thing for me – freaking everybody knows.  But, I don’t want to be a bother.  I just want to go through this as nonchalantly as possible, bothering as few people as I can.  Maybe people will forget that I have it (despite the awesome no-hair haircut), and they’ll treat me like normal.  *sigh*  How are you supposed to feel when you have cancer?

All things come to an end

Your true nature comes out in times of desperation.  In this respect, like I said in an earlier post, I unconsciously turned back to what I was when I grew up, which was Catholic.  I really didn’t think twice about it until a friend pointed it out to me.  There were good things and bad things about Islam that I enjoyed.  Good things include hijab (I looooove hijab), as well as praying 5 times a day, and Ramadan.  I didn’t like the separation at the mosque – the women had a different door and we were upstairs.  I never met any of the guys there.  I mean, we’re not supposed to, but I never did.  I also didn’t like feeling like an outsider, which is what I was.  They’d call me sister and smile politely, but I was never one of them.  If they didn’t want me to know what they were talking about, they’d speak in Arabic.  That totally hurt my feelings, but I never let on to it.  I understood some of it (I mean, I have taken a few quarters of Arabic).  Not enough to really catch on to the topic of conversation – just words here and there.  I also hated how other people would stare at me in hijab.  I got dirty looks, pitying looks, etc.  I hate being pitied.  If anything, that’s the worst feeling in the world.  People just look at you with that sad, sorry face, and it just wrenches my heart.

So, I guess I’m done.  I have a friend who’s willing to talk to me about the church (again), and is very…determined… to get me to go back.  I mean, I still play piano and sing, so it’s not that hard.  I already go to mass.  Oh well, we’ll see what happens.  Religion is a touchy subject, and I hate offending people.

Not really sure what else to say.  No one but Ashley was really supportive about Islam in the first place, so my family will be friggin thrilled.  My parents had a “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy in place about religion.  If I wanted to be something else, we didn’t talk about it, and they could go on pretending that I was still Catholic.  My ex-fiancé is thrilled as well.  Meh, it’s not like we’re getting married, even though the subject has come up a few times.  I don’t think I could put myself through that again (and that’s a story for another day).

On a completely other subject, I got to play Cranium tonight with my Phi Rho sisters.  Omfg I love that game.  When a bunch of us get together for game nights (which I love), all hell breaks loose.  Ash and I brought snacks, which I made her take home with her (hehehehe).  I didn’t really want chippies and such, or pop (that was a LOT of pop), so she has it.  😀  Ashy I love you!  Ooh, and there was a veggie tray, which looked tasty.  And I got these wasabi chippies from Safeway, and they’re delish.  Usually I don’t like them, but they’re friggin tasty right now… with pickles.  Mmmm.

Ok, I’m rambling, and my fingers are cold.  I’m going to go 🙂

You know, it’s funny when…

…When I went to my biopsy on tuesday, the last thing I grabbed out of my room before I left (unconsciously), was my rosary.  Wednesday, I found it in my jacket pocket, and I never let go.  It’s still there.

So, my point is, once you’re Catholic, however much you fight it and want to be something else, your childhood comes back to you in times of need.  I didn’t pray to Allah this week – I prayed to God, Jesus, Mary, the Holy Spirit…I think I’ve done five or six rosaries.  They always made me feel better.  Sean pointed out that you’re always Catholic, and you just have to find it again.

God dammit, I think he’s probably right.

Time off!

It’s been quite a long time since I’ve written anything (or even thought of writing, to be honest). So, I decided to try out the Muslim thing. I say it so blase, but it shouldn’t be taken lightly. It’s a pretty hardcore religion, if you want to know the truth. Ramadan is NOT a time to join. Fasting is one of the hardest things I’ve ever tried to do. No food from morning prayers (about 90 mins before sunrise), to sunset. Not even water. I read some very religious questions online about fasting, like taking cold medicine, or having an IV. It was pretty crazy, tbh. I was surprised at the level of dedication. Regular Catholics (not dedicated ones, but normal ones) have no want or need to follow 85% of the rules. The children have sex before they’re married, they eat meat on Fridays, they don’t go to mass, they don’t pray the rosary, etc. Muslims not only fast for an entire month when you can only eat and drink when its dark, but they cover themselves (which isn’t easy either), pray five times a day (which is hard when you work or go to school), and they don’t date.

I have several muslim friends, both in the US and UK. Some wear hijab (most do, actually) but not all. ALL of them date. They date muslims, non muslims, etc. They sit in cars with men that aren’t their immediate family, and they go out with just guys. Now, they aren’t supposed to, but they do. As a western considering ‘reverting’, the arranged marriages rule doesn’t work, nor is it practical for the 21st century. I am an independent woman, I live on my own, and I take pride in being able to choose for myself. My parents do nothing to control my life anymore except to make sure I have enough money to shop at Safeway.

Still considering things on this end. I’ve tried to fast (it’s difficult when you’re sick), and worn long sleeves and looser clothes, as well as prayed. It is a very different lifestyle. I’ll post an update later on the first time I wore my hijab in public.

A full week of thinking

It’s been a whole week since I thought about religion, and surprisingly enough, I’ve prayed. I know how weird that sounds. I’ve quit choir altogether. My work schedule conveniently changed, which doesn’t allow me to sing anyways, but I made the decision before it changed. I’m really interested in Islam, but at the same time, not so interested in the flack I’ll get from everybody. My parents probably won’t speak to me, or they’ll think I’m being irrational. Jason would probably break up with me. I’d most likely lose all of my friends, especially if I chose to wear hijab. I’ve gone in public in hijab multiple times. I don’t really get stared at very much – people just ignore me for the most part. If they point, it’s because there’s a white girl in hijab.

I’m tempted to try to fast for Ramadan. I have an appointment set up for Wednesday night to talk to someone at the mosque. I don’t want to be forced into it. I think what I want the most is information on the religion and what I have to do to join (if that’s what I want, eventually). I wish some of my friends who read this would let me know what they think. Surprisingly enough, I do take their opinions to heart.

I’m going to go read for awhile. I picked up a copy of the Qu’ran, so I’ll see what Muhammad has to say.