Tuesday, February 26, 2008

More Difficult Than I Thought It Would Be

Last week I was very excited to begin this blog. I felt inspired by the other bloggers out there, and I was determined to make my mark on the blogging community.

Then I got busy.

The good news is that as I ponder the things in my life to write about, I am beginning to find my life a bit more interesting. Or maybe I've just had a lot of interesting things happen to me this week. At any rate, I'm back on here today, determined to scratch out a niche for myself with my little computer keyboard. I also happen to have a few spare moments at work.

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One of my particular challenges as a grad student's wife is the unpredictable schedule. My schedule is fairly standard: I work from 8am to 5pm Monday through Friday - and then I am finished. Sort of. I like having my evenings and weekends "free" from work. Most of my "free" time, however, is spent doing all of the housewifely duties that I can't take care of while working. You may laugh, but I dream of the freedom to stay home with my kids and do housewifely chores during the 8am to 5pm time slot. My reason tells me that I will actually have less time when children arrive, but I can't shake the feeling that staying at home will feel luxurious compared to spending the majority of my day at my job.

Ryan's schedule is so transient I have stopped trying to quantify it. He generally goes into his lab each morning when I go to work. After that, his routine is a mystery to me. He's still on college time, where he's only bound to an hour here and there throughout the week. After his scheduled obligations he has several broad deadlines to contend with. His work doesn't end conveniently at 5pm with the end of my day.

Our different schedules challenge me spiritually and emotionally. When Ryan's grad work diminishes our time together in the evenings, I tend to become less motivated around the house (ok, usually downright lazy) and a bit lonely for company (see the void that children would fill!). I often fail to see these challenges as a spiritual gift - the cultivation of virtues in my life.

Having a husband in grad school requires a lot of sacrifices in our marriage. The lonely evenings and crazy schedules could allow me to grow in patience and to practice selfless giving (spending 8 hours a day working for other people, then coming home to cook, wash dishes, and clean up the house so my husband doesn't have to). What usually ends up happening is me sitting on the couch, deciding I would rather grab a snack food for dinner than get out the pots and pans for a nice meal, and then rationalizing that I am just too tired to go work-out or do the laundry so I had better just catch up on my tv shows online instead.

My hope is that by putting these reflections into words I will become more accountable to God's desire for me to grow in virtue. It's hard to deny truth when it's spelled out in front of me.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008


I have a confession make: I am a Catholic mom wannabe.

So what does this confession have to do with a blog? Well, I was inspired last week. I am not exactly the most technologically savvy person - please forgive me for my ignorance - and I literally just realized that there is an entire genre of blogging that includes Catholic mothers who stay at home and care for their families. Wow. Suddenly my world expanded. There are women online who actually do what I crave to do - stay at home and be a mom. Not just any kind of mom, but a Catholic mom.

Where am I at right now? I am halfway to motherhood. As my blog title indicates, I am married to a graduate student. My husband Ryan is plowing through his second year of five in a Ph.D. track at the University of Notre Dame. We want to start a family soon, but have yet to be blessed with children. I spend most of my time at a job on campus and waiting to be delivered from the workforce.

I have another confession to make: My life is lacking satisfaction. I've begun to realize that I need more substance in my life than logging 40 hours a week for a paycheck and coming home to snuggle up with Netflix in the evenings. This brings me back to my inspiration - Catholic mother blogs. A friend recently sent me a link to "Et tu?" and I can't stop reading this blog. Here is a woman living the life I want to start and inspiring me to delve deeper into my Catholic faith. I am totally hooked and I would like to join in on the discussion. I have a feeling it will be more edifying to hang out on blogspot.com than people.com (a pastime that has frequently quenched my boredom at work).

So, here I am. If anyone chooses to read my blog, I will be thrilled. If I am writing into the abyss, that's ok too.