I have been thinking about Ash Wednesday lately. My current thought is that I will skip it. My health leads me to believe that I will be having my own real life (or should that be real death?) ashes to ashes, dust to dust moment sooner rather than later. I am not dead yet but my lung tissue function is way down. Physical movement sends my blood/oxygen levels down into the high 70s, low 80s. Mostly I sit on the couch during the day and Jim totes me around in a wheel chair if I have to go anywhere.
The brain seems to be getting enough oxygen to keep active – mentoring EfM, “reading” audio books, doing NYTimes Crossword puzzle with few hints except on Saturday, doing online communications for our Indivisible group and a keeping a couple of websites.
Mostly I am content with my life though I go through periods of sadness about leaving it. I really like this life and can’t imagine anything else. I am not depressed – just sad.
I will probably skip Lent too — enjoy what I have and skip the discipline! If I am not doing whatever I think I should be doing by now- I doubt I will pick it up in the next 40 days.
But I do recommend Ash Wednesday and Lent as an antidote for the relentless pursuit of cheer and happy feelings by US culture. I think Lent can help those of us who are not filled with happiness every moment feel a little more normal and not wrong for other feelings and suffering. We don’t have to take the blame for our feelings or things that happen– they are not shameful. They are just life.
Blessings of Lent to all.