Sunday, June 21, 2009

Prayer: An Act of Abandonment

An Act of Abandonment

O my God, I thank you and I praise
you for accomplishing your holy
and all-lovable will without any regard for mine.
With my whole heart,
in spite of my heart,
do I receive this cross I feared so much!

It is the cross of Your choice,
the cross of Your love.
I venerate it;
nor for anything in the world
would I wish that it had not come,
since You willed it.

I keep it with gratitude and with joy,
as I do everything that comes from Your hand;
and I shall strive to carry it without letting it drag,
with all the respect
and all the affection which Your works deserve.


By Saint Francis De Sales

via Catholic Online

Monday, June 15, 2009

Breaking through passive aggressiveness

I resolved the situation with the ex by challenging my horrible communication skills, namely my use of sarcasm used as a defense mechanism. There's a fantastic book that helped me out of addiction and unimaginably low self-esteem in my teen years by Dr. David D. Burns called The Feeling Good Handbook. I highly recommend it. It breaks down why we have communication barriers and what we can do to overcome all sorts of obstacles that can hinder the growth of many types of relationships. It also deals with issues of anxiety, depression, etc. Very concise and non-judgmental.

But I digress. Anyway, I resolved my anxiety about this by sending a brief email to him, apologizing for not asking how he was doing in my first message, saying how surprised I was to hear from him, that he seemed to be doing well and so was I, and if he could drop me a line.


I feel a million times better now. It's out of my court, it's not weighing on me, I feel like I took it towards a path that I normally wouldn't have. I need to break my old habits if anything is ever going to change in my relationships. So this is a start, regardless of what happens with this particular fellow.


Sunday, June 14, 2009

Confused over a man

One week ago, an ex added me on Facebook. The background is that this is an ex who I haven't spoken to in two years. Though we only dated for a few months, it was extremely intense and the breakup was painful. We had an instant connection to each other. We parted ways with no hope of a future together because (even though neither of us would say it because we knew that it would really end everything) he is Jewish and I am Catholic. He is not religious but I know his Jewish identity is very important to him, as my Catholic identity is to me. Apart from our own personal views, our families have a huge part in that too.

We did stay in touch by email for a few months after, but ceased all contact when it became evident that it would be too easy to hold onto our feelings for each other. At least, this is how it was from my end and how I imagine it to have been on his end, but I can't know for sure.

So when I see his name come up last week, I was in shock and not at all pleased with the reaction in my stomach. That is, lots of emotion, memories, and feelings came flooding back.

I waited a few days to add him and when I did, I sent him a one-liner, making a joke about his profile pic. That was 5 days ago and I haven't heard anything from him. From what I can tell of his profile, he is not in a relationship.

So why has he added me and then not said anything to me? What is up with this? Seeing his pictures again gave me a lot of anxiety this week as it caused a temporary resurgence of feelings for him that I have never had for anyone else. So I was a little scared and even annoyed that he chose to find me now.

I ask myself, should I even be bothering to open up this old wound?

Saturday, June 13, 2009

An inspiring tale: Tommy Finds an Angel

I could swear that I have heard this story before, but re-reading it today gave me the inspiration I needed. It's on Beliefnet and it's about an atheist who found God after getting cancer, which forced him to reconcile with his family.

It drives home the point to me that, although the professor had tried to get a message through to Tommy, seemingly in vain, it was not until he let go that God was really able to work. Then, it was Tommy's concerted effort and subsequent surrender that led him to where God ultimately wanted him: to reach out with love and humility to those closest to him.

With man it is impossible, but anything is possible with God.

I hope that I can be an instrument for people who are seeking even though, ironically, I often feel like I am continuously in search of Him too. Somehow, when I see people that need it, I am able to speak of faith and its value and truth. Maybe because in my own human and egoist view, it all sounds silly. But when I see someone in a weakened state, it forces me to humble myself to the Truth of our condition that goes far beyond my own understanding.

Trust in the LORD with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make your paths straight.
-Proverbs 3:5-6

-Story via Susan Gregg on Beliefnet

Friday, June 12, 2009

Tiredness and Spirituality

This is my third or fourth night in a row where I've had less than four hours of sleep. I've continued to have energy during the day and I am fully functional, but in all honesty, I think this is a result of the ex re-entering the picture. I've been stressed, anxious, angry, hopeful, smitten, nostalgic, eager, excited, contemplative, weak, and strong. My mind has raced me through all these nights, refusing to let me sleep properly. All of this is catching up with me.

Yesterday, I began my Novena with a heart full of love and at least some hope in God's love for me and that He had a plan for my life. This coincided with my feelings towards the ex that arose out of a discussion with some friends about what a great guy he was/is. They said: play it cool. They could see I was in my smitten phase and said that at least he was obviously thinking of me too. So I began my novena with the request that there be reconciliation between us and for Jesus to protect our hearts and guide us towards our true loves, which is what we both want.

Now today, I feel nothing. No sense of faith nor any feelings towards ex. Just indifference. I suppose this isn't a big deal but it does make me question how much of my religious faith is really just a plea for help when threatened with an emotional upheaval over which I have little control.

Nevertheless, I said my prayers and pleaded for God to help me feel his love in my heart. This has been my problem in general lately. I just don't feel "God" the way I used to. I am even begging for some trials so that I can trust in Him again. The types of trials that bring me to God are often those over which I have little control, such as my romantic life. It is much easier to convince yourself that you retain at least a modicum of control over areas of your life such as work or school, but not with love. So maybe this is what will bring me back? I do beg for some trials in my love life. Anything at all would be a bonus.

Or maybe I'll just feel fine after a good night's sleep. :)

Thursday, June 11, 2009


Jesus looked upon them and said, "With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God."- Mark 10:27

Sometimes I just need a reminder.


Novena to the Sacred Heart, Day 1

I went on a long walk today to try and clear my head and I stumbled upon a church in which I have never been. It was a long church, only one person praying quietly in there at the time, and I went around to visit the different statues of the saints.

I came upon the statue of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and found, coincidentally, that today is the first day of the Novena. The theme is,"Christ is close to me and gives me hope", a leaflet by Brian Grogan, SJ. This is from the Sacred Heart Messenger Magazine.

The leaflet gives a brief description of the Ignatian practice of imagining yourself seated next to Christ while you pray. I have never tried these exercises before but this may be the perfect time to start. Also, each day requires a bit of scripture reading as well, which is something that I have been meaning to start again. I've been neglecting my Bible and right now I have a million thoughts going through my head (it all has to do with the ex who just added me to FB - but that's a whole other post).

Anyway, sometimes it is nice when we stumble across exactly what we need most, when we need it most.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

When an ex contacts you

Everything that has been troubling me lately - work, visas, etc - came to a head last week. Everything has worked out very well in my favour. I am no longer stressed and I am confident that I am in a good place, right where I need to be. My career looks like it will pick up in the next few months and I was beginning to look forward to a bright and peachy summer.

Then today, out of the blue, I get a message on Facebook. An ex added me as a friend.

Not just any ex, but an ex with whom I had intense chemistry and cared about very much. We were only together for about three months, and it was over two years ago. Now, that's the longest relationship that I have ever had a. And he was. We clicked immediately and we had a very strong bond. He was very dear to my heart.

So what happened? We were both working overseas, my contract was up, and our relationship ended. But it would have ended anyway. Why? Before we parted, he said he could never see himself in a relationship with me or marrying me. Though he never said why and I never asked, the most obvious reason for it, to me, was that we came from very different religious backgrounds.

After this, we had some contact over email for a few months, and then it stopped. I think we both saw that we needed to move on. And now, two years later, I get a message from him. I haven't added him yet because I am still in shock. I was so happy not to be thinking about him (I am not currently seeing anyone). I am happy where I am at so maybe I shouldn't worry.

I have always thought, or hoped, or wondered if I would ever see or hear from him again. I knew it would have to be on his initiative and I sincerely would love to hear how he's been doing. I just don't want to be hurt again.

Please God, protect my heart.