Welcome to First Mondays with Lisa! We're sharing our thoughts on the meditations from The Catholic Mom's Desk Calendar by Lisa Hendey. "First Mondays with Lisa" by Amanda Villagomez (CatholicMom.com) Courtesy of Word Among Us Publications. All rights reserved. Used with permission.[/caption] Recently I woke up noticing pain, a day away from the 30-week mark in my 5th pregnancy. I tried to keep sleeping but had a level of awareness to take note of how it was unfolding -- the cramping, the coming and going, the reminders of contractions. They were not too strong, but it was earlier than I had ever experienced them before. I waited for about a couple of hours before calling to see whether I should wait longer to see if it went away on its own or if I should go check on it. Based on a recommendation to err on the side of caution, as I was driving to the hospital, I thought through how early labors in our rural community typically means being flown to a hospital that is better equipped to support babies at that stage. Aside from thinking about the baby's safety, I thought about how it was finals week and the unfinished grading that had to be completed one way or another before the deadline in a little over 72 hours. I thought about how one of my daughters was going away on a weekend trip and how I was supposed to pick her up mid-day from school to drop her off at the departure point. I thought about Holy Week and Confirmation the day after Easter. I thought about how I am prepared for maternity leave in about 7 or 8 weeks -- but not right now. I thought about the potential of weeks in the hospital, away from my other girls. With all these thoughts swirling in my mind, I was still able to maintain an overall sense of peace, knowing everything would work out one way or another. I remembered to resist the temptation to get too far ahead of myself -- it was just a check-in and could end up being nothing. As my thoughts shifted, the deadline for writing this post came to mind as something else on my to-do list. I pondered how we never know when unexpected events will shift our plans in big ways, but ongoing encouragement can help us to be in a proper mindset to decrease our worries by leaning into trust. This year my ongoing encouragement has included Lisa Hendey's The Catholic Mom's Desk Calendar: One Minute Prayers for Each Day. My journey towards trying to more fully align my state of mind to St. Francis De Sales' quote, "Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever, even if your whole world seems upset," has been dependent on investing in my relationship with God and nurturing my faith formation. Aside from the core foundation of the sacraments, Scriptures and prayer, spiritual reading has been highly beneficial. Last year I read The Catholic Mom's Prayer Companion: A Book of Daily Reflections co-edited by Lisa M. Hendey, so when I heard about her new desk calendar, I was excited to have another daily source of inspiration from her. I love that there is a mixture of Scripture, words from Saints, and other Church documents woven throughout the days -- a quick excerpt of someone else's words accompanied by one of Hendey's prayers. Blue is also my favorite color, so I love the overall visual color scheme and simplicity of the pages with a calming feel. It took some experimenting to determine where to place my desk calendar in order to more consistently use it, finding a routine with this new resource and seeing how it would best fit into my days. In the end, my trip to the hospital was, fortunately, uneventful. By the time I got there, I let the nurse know I was no longer feeling what I had at home. They monitored me anyway as a precaution, but then I was able to leave and carry on with the day as planned. I stepped into the church for a quick prayer as I dropped my oldest off at school and then went to my office. Before transitioning into grading, I paused to read the daily entry from Hendey's calendar, the way I try to start my day in the office. Life is fragile. Amid the day to day to-do lists, we need to keep our hearts centered on Christ and all that he invites us to. Little reminders strategically placed in the rhythms and routines of our days, help to point us back to what really matters. I am grateful for The Catholic Mom's Desk Calendar as one layer in my life to accomplish that this year. "First Mondays with Lisa" by Amanda Villagómez (CatholicMom.com) Background art courtesy of The Word Among Us Press. All rights reserved. Used with permission.[/caption] How can you get one? Purchase this calendar through Word Among Us Press and receive 20% off the cover price! You'll see the promo code listed on the product page. The Catholic Mom's Desk Calendar by Lisa Hendey   See our other First Mondays with Lisa articles.
Copyright 2018 Amanda Villagómez