Sunday, January 16, 2011


As we headed off to church tonight, I was all ready to post on Facebook the following status updates:

I'm pretty sure that tonight at church, Emmah's prayer will go: Dear God, four new teeth in one week is too much. Love, Emmah. And mine will be: Dear God, when I buy lettuce and avocados at the store, I'm intending to make a salad with them, so could you help me out with not letting the lettuce spoil before the avocados ripen? Love, Kathryn"

Boy, am I glad that I did not.

Church went just fine, songs were sung. The baby did well. I did not throw up at the parts of the Catholic service that rub me the wrong way. People laughed and cooed at Emmah.

It was great.

But as we were leaving, there was a family outside holding signs that read: Please Help, we have three children and we cannot pay our rent.

As about a hundred people streamed out of the service to go to their warm cars, here was this family, with all three children huddled together behind this sign, looking ashamed. The oldest kid was probably 11 and looked dead inside. The youngest was just a baby in the father's arms.

Right there, my stupid jokes about prayers dissolved, dissolved right into tears. People were giving them money, which was good because the two collections had taken all my cash. And I don't really have any extra to give. But it reminded me that gratitude is so important. I have food. I have a lovely home. I have options. I have so much wonderful support from my family and my friends, it humbles me.

And my heart breaks for that family. Forgive me for taking a break from my commitment to be secular on this blog: May God Bless them with even a fraction of the blessings that I have. May they know security very soon. May those children forget this moment in their lives and go on to be joyous and productive.

And my I find a way to give back to those that I love, that love me, and some to those that need more than I do. Because there are so many, that need so much more than I do.