Sunday, June 24, 2012


Last year, today's Gospel was read on July 3rd.  I even wrote about it. I felt so much like this message was timed perfectly for me.

I feel the same way this year.

It could read, "Therefore do not worry, saying, 'Will we get this house?'..."

I must accept that I am not in control. I can't make this happen the way I want. If it does happen, it will not be my doing. My energy is best spent on what I can control.

I can contribute to happiness and peace in our home.
I can thank God for all the good in our lives.
I can love my family and everyone around me.
I can ask for strength to weather this day and everything that will take place during it.

Friday, June 22, 2012

I can't imagine

Earlier today we signed a piece of paper that lifted the first of two contingencies on this house purchase.  From now on, if this fails, we will not see the money we've put in again. It is at risk now, as our agent says.

It had to happen sometime.

I spoke to my Godmother and while we were talking I remembered that the last time I felt this was was not long ago. Remember Holy Week? We had prepared for more than a year. I had sewn the white gowns by hand. Then we were sick, and sicker. I was coughing red blood. My seven year old daughter didn't eat or drink for eight days and we rushed her to the ER. She lost 10 pounds. At the end of Holy Week, on the morning of Great and Holy Friday, I was completely lost. I felt that this plan, God's plan, was bad. I couldn't imagine what God was thinking. How could we prepare for so long and be abandoned by Him at the last moment? What terrible lesson did God have in store for us to cause so much suffering? I was despondent and bitter. I spoke to the small few I trusted on the phone and spitefully suggested we wait another year or two.

Then, in the afternoon of Holy Friday, when the time came for us to say the Creed and renounce Satan, we arrived at the church. I carried my baby girl in my arms and a white quilt. She couldn't lift her head.

We said the Creed, we spit westwardly.

And then it was as if a spell was lifted. Kassi stood up and was hungry. She didn't stop eating from then on. All was well. In the most amazing way, it was almost as if nothing had happened.

Almost. On the morning of Holy Saturday I was a new person. All expectations and designs of my own were lifted. The trial we had endured erased them. I had nothing, wanted nothing. We brought ourselves to be Baptised without anything but the marvellous present. I felt empty, singular, clean.

I could not imagine the things God had planned for us. I saw only darkness through my fragmented, darkened lenses. Great and Holy Saturday and Pascha were the most beautiful and Heavenly experiences of my life. I had no idea.

I am trying to hold onto that memory as we approach the close of this house deal, for better or worse. My mind wants to pin down God's plan. I think, what if we lose this house and money with it, how can that be God's plan for us? We have done everything right! We deserve better.

I am trying to remember that I can't imagine what good God has for us. It is beyond my understanding, and if losing this house is part of it, that is what will happen. If having this house is God's will, we will have it.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Still House-Buying

I wish I had more to say here, but all I do is print and sign and make phone calls these days. And pray.

The house we are desperately pursuing is great:

  • It is just a few blocks from Karl's work. Not only is that great for him but it means I will have use of the car to take the kids places. 
  • It is 2 blocks from BART, useful now and later when the kids are older. 
  • It is huge. 4 bedrooms, formal dining, laundry, huge kitchen with room for dining, giant backyard of dreams. 
  • It is affordable. This is important!
  • It is 3 blocks from an OCA parish. We have never been to this parish because I always think how shy I'll feel. We have good friends who want to take us and introduce us soon, seeing as how we'll be 3 blocks away and may frequent that church especially during Lent or other busy times.
I can hardly imagine being so close to a church, walking to Vigil.

We don't know God's will for us in this. We can think of all the reasons this house is perfect and yet, if it doesn't happen we'll have to accept it and know it was for the best. It's a very hard thing for our family. The kids want a house so badly. As we fall asleep Anatoly says, "Mama, when we have a house, I want the grass to grow really tall! Into corn!"

In thee, O wandering stranger, Christ the Lord hath given us an ardent intercessor for our kind. For having received in thy life sufferings and grief and served God and men with love, thou didst acquire great boldness. Wherefore, we fervently hasten to thee in temptations and grief, crying out from the depths of our hearts: Put not our hope to shame, O Blessed Xenia.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Buying a House

What a complex and unpleasant experience. We're trying to buy a house. Father mentioned in his homily yesterday that when we align our will with God's will, everything we will happens.

Monday, June 4, 2012


A year since we became catechumens, the Church is reborn, and so am I. Everything about the Liturgy triggered memories for me. I felt an overwhelming sadness that I am not better than I am.

"the place of the skull has become Paradise"
I miss Lent. It is so far away. I feel unequal to the challenge of reliving the year again and again. I will always fail. This is a joyous Feast, but I am full of sadness.

Saturday, June 2, 2012


We are in waiting for news on a house. We pray that God's will is done and we are brave enough to co-operate with it, whatever the outcome.

I am sharing the song below because it makes me think of the kind of uncertain waiting we are doing.

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