Sunday, 5 February 2017

260-1/365 Say a little prayer

07/02/2017 Update: Celeste has been found

Does anyone out there still pray? Do you offer up your thoughts to your higher power? Do you implore 'something' out there to help you when you are in crisis whether you call it God/god or not?

As a 'recovering' Catholic I still use the word God when I feel beyond desperation and I implore God to please help me. I also thank God or the universe or some higher version of myself when things go right or when I feel grateful for something in my life. Being raised Catholic, not just Catholic but Irish Catholic and not just Irish Catholic but small village, backwater, staunch, hell fire and brimstone  Irish Catholic, RUINED religion and God for me and has left me angry, confused, conflicted and bewildered sometimes in life. However, like so many others I have cobbled together something that works for me using elements of religion, spirituality, mindfulness and some kind of natural wonder to help me when life doesn't make sense and when I feel alone and in need of some ethereal assistance. In short at times I need to plead PLEASE HELP ME GOD I CANNOT GO ON LIKE THIS.

I often wonder how people with no belief system cope. When things go wrong and life seems to be hell bent on destroying you how do they invoke assistance or do they not ask for help outside of themselves. I genuinely have no idea as to me having been indoctrinated from birth I cannot imagine any other way. AA advocates calling on a higher power to help you get sober and certainly I have asked my version of a higher power (whatever that combination is) to please help me stop drinking. I also use it at other times when I am in distress, feel out of control and when I have no strength left. Just last week when I was in the depths of despair for both myself and my daughter, feeling personally devastated at her words yet equally upset that she was in so much pain that she was lashing out I sent out an utterance about please help me.

This is a rather convoluted post as so many of mine are which differs from the writers out there who plan posts logically. I am trying to connect all the dots in my head which make such sense to me but don't translate so well in an orderly comprehensible form.

Today and in fact the last two days I have been thanking this god creation of mine as well as imploring it for assistance. Last week my daughter hurt my feelings so badly and I thought horrible things about her like I wanted her to move out, I hoped she'd have 4 girls, each giving her as hard a time as she gave me and I hoped in truth that one day she would feel the pain she had caused me so she could feel bad about it. Yep, I am a bitter mother and shocked and ashamed that I thought those things in the moment. In very quick succession I asked the god thing to please ignore those ridiculous pleas and don't let any of them happen, please, please I had spoken in haste and was speaking from hurt feelings. I do not want my daughter to suffer. Days later as my daughter is in my bed leaning on me crying still sad and confused I felt nothing but love for her and shame that I had ever even let such shocking and abhorrent thoughts come into my mind. This was especially poignant when she came another night, sad and upset that she was worried and deeply concerned over Melania Trump and that she feared Melania was being unkindly treated in her marriage and now social media was attacking her. At that point I glimpsed the compassion in her that we all hope to instill in our children. Thank you whoever, whatever for giving me this girl and for making her nicer than me. Thank you for keeping her safe and for keeping her loving me and coming to me when she needs my help but most of all for her faith in me after I have let her down so many times.

Mothers of teenage daughters are part of a club, only we can understand the myriad of emotions our girl teens take us through. We bitch about them, laugh about them, feel hurt by them and like so many of you helped me with, console each other about them and offer the assurances that they will be ok in the end. I have several friends and colleagues I can do this with and I myself have been the voice of reason for them when their daughter is tearing a hole in the universe.

My colleague's daughter is missing. She has been missing since Tuesday. No-one has heard from her including her friends and family. My colleague came to work two days thinking this was a teen angry at everyone or life or her mum. On the third day she couldn't continue working, the enormity of her daughter still being missing was too much. Then an appeal was launched.Then the police labelled it a HIGH RISK case, then.......they found out from one of her friends that she had just learned she was pregnant from the boyfriend she split up from. Then the story went national. I know what my colleague has told me over the years, the good, the bad, the arguments, the pain, the love, the understanding and the normal everyday bits and bobs. I find myself hoping and praying more than ever that this girl is ok and somehow unaware of the panic and media storm. I am terrified that this will not be the case. This girl is my daughter's age, her mother is my colleague, never has a story been so close to home for me and so consuming. For once this is not a family I feel sorry for but cannot relate to, this is in my bubble and could easily be my family story.

I so want to believe in the power of prayer, the power in numbers, the collective, collaborative focusing on a problem but realise this is one drop in the ocean of sadness in the world. For today I want Celeste to be safe and go home to her family, I want a small miracle for this family that would be the biggest gift they could ever have, tomorrow I can try to send out prayers for the rest of the world but for today I can only focus on one.

I didn't know where I was going with this post and I haven't ended up anywhere concrete. I guess I just need to share. If you do pray, please do. If you don't, please just think a positive thought for this family.


  1. I am catholic as well. I have had my children in CCD so they have faith if they want it or need it in their lives. The moral teachings have value whether I believe in the god preached at church or not. I do pray and I have said a prayer for your colleague's Celeste. I hope she is found safe and sound.

    Getting young people through the teens is challenging. I have a teen son with a ton going for him but there is a lot of pressure on him to perform from school, coaches, his Dad, his social circle. I notice he picks his lip and his hands. It makes me nervous to see him do it. As mothers, we worry. The teen years are hard on teens and on parents. All we can do is be sober, reasonable, there for them and pull them through as best we can.

  2. I will God..for your colleagues daughters safe return. I must say that I truly HATE teenagers! My sons, while really great kids, drove me bonkers! They were so difficult to parent! I do not think you are a bitter mom GG! So many times I told my kids that I hope they get kids that treat them like they treated me (said when angry with them!)...their response: Oh, I'm not having kids! Oye vey!!!!!

  3. Hi Ginger,
    I am really sorry about your friend's daughter.
    I have more of a spiritual concept of God. My yoga teachers have helped me, because for awhile I didn't to have anything to do with growing my spiritual side.
    I will pray for her safe return.
    Please don't be hard on yourself.
    Dealing with teenagers are so hard, especially in the age of social media.
    Much Love,

  4. I have asked my daughter, in a fit of anger, to leave the house and go live with her dad on MANY occasions. That is so behind us now that we laugh about it. She's apologized to me and I've apologized for her, and we realize now that we were both pretty crazy in those years. Have faith -- it will give you peace of mind knowing it will all turn out well. ; )

    I most definitely pray (though I didn't think much of it for years). I know now, and I mean KNOW that it helps and heals and that prayers are answered. My heart breaks for young girls and young men everywhere who are desperate and hurting and missing. I've gone through it with my son. I will pray for Celeste and put her name on every random prayer list I can find.

    What I can see in your post, Ginger, is that you are the one reaching out to your daughter and coworker with love and hope and forgiveness. These are not the actions of a woman who drinks. I'm sure your strength gives them both the permission to lean on you in difficult times.

    What a blessing you are.


  5. I hope this girl is ok, how stressful for all concerned. x

  6. What a terrifying time. My thoughts are with Celeste and her family. x

  7. Saying a prayer for her.
    I grew up catholic and then turned pretty violently against god who wouldn't help me quit drinking...which sounds pretty stupid and selfish now.
    Over the past 3 years I have developed a deep spiritual belief that comes from yogic philosophy, Buddhism, Catholicism. Generally an idea that under it all we all are connected and we all need love and that love is always the answer.

    Don't feel bad for wishing mean things. They come from a place of honesty. And are a reminder that things are always changing.

    My daughter is 11. I can see I have some "exciting" times ahead. She is already wiser than me!

    Take care

  8. Am definitely praying . Things don't come much harder than this.

  9. Personally, I loved this post. Only the most courageously honest mommas verbalize their negative thoughts about their teen daughters. In response they receive a chorus of, "Me too's!" Me too GG.....I have blown up, thought awful things,behaved poorly....but yeah, we are all just people. Our girls included, and their mommas. I am so glad that Celeste is home safe and sound. May she be the recipient of unconditional love and acceptance when she needs it the most.