G Week

The Search for Grace

by Patty Lawrence

I am having a “G” week. Truthfully? It may be stretching into a couple of weeks, but at least I’ve left “F” weekend mostly behind.

The “F” weekend was hard enough. First there was too much Fun one Friday night. At the 11th hour, okay, maybe it was really a little after 8, my lovely neighbors decided to have an overnight for my girls and theirs. Halleluiah! It was suddenly date night. Bar, band, and drinks.

Fun Friday night was followed by a Funeral Mass on Saturday for a forty-something friend with three little kids. Funeral Masses reaffirm why I have not found religion. It was too impersonal and too much about better in the hereafter, and too little about the heartbreak of one small girl and two smaller boys growing up without their mother.

When I came home, it was all about Floors, or the former one in my kitchen. My husband was beavering away and my once half-way ugly floor was giving way to truly ugly subflooring. The problem with the kitchen floor is not the floor, it’s the island that must be removed to make way for the floor and somehow that turns into countertops that will match the new island. I don’t want new countertops. I am not on “C”. I just want new Floors.

“F” weekend also is about Forgiveness and while there is no need to dwell on the particulars about that event, Forgiveness requires more effort than replacing Floors. I am struck by how someone else’s transgression causes so much effort on my part. This event and the Funeral Mass are as far apart as saints and sinners, but I’m Grateful that the pastor mentioned Forgiveness. Maybe God does work in mysterious ways. Maybe I am too literal for that, but this “F” lingers. I’m working on it.

So the F’s merged with the “G’s”. “G’s” seem to be more of a struggle than “F”. Except Forgiveness, which, of course, I’m still Grappling with. That aside, Fun Friday night led directly to Saturday morning Gratitude.

Clean toilet bowls are on my Gratitude list. Malbec has been temporary removed. It really was not a lot of wine. In fact, it was considerably less wine that I’ve had on plenty of other occasions, but Good Grief Saturday morning was telling no lies about Too Much Fun Friday night.

Other things on my Gratitude list. That a certain parent I know is not my relation. No wonder the kid turned out goofy. Gratitude that it does rain, even if is been every day this April save two. That things bloom. That it is spring. That eventually the world turns Green.

So Gratitude is the good “G.” The problematic “G” is that I am out of Grace.

I’m snappy and certain else everyone is stupid. Well, maybe not everyone, but people who are generally stupid are exceedingly stupid now. Ordinarily I‘d able shrug them off with a “Well, that’s so-and-so behaving like himself.” Ordinarily I love it when people act like themselves. And the more they misbehave, the more enjoyable I find them—in a detached sort of way.

But now, I am out of Grace and unable to detach and their stupidly is just plain infuriating. They should let the rest of us take control. Part of the problem or part of the solution? Get out of the way. Lack of Grace provides me with very little patience for problems.

In ordinary trying times I remember the quote, “Be pretty if you can, witty if you must, and gracious if it kills you.” In really tough spots, my lips move, “Gracious if it kills you.” I add that most people don’t read lips to my Gratitude List. “Gracious if it kills you.”

Now it’s maddening. There is nothing in the reserve tank on which to draw. Smile and take the high road is ranking right up there with Forgiveness in terms of effort. What I’d really like to do is eviscerate a few deserving characters. The thought of them in shreds produces a Grim smile. This is not me. This is totally out of Grace. She has simply vanished.

The problem with Grace’s extended vacation is that she ran away with Humor. I am certain they are in bed together somewhere. If I could find Humor, Grace would be required to return. So that is my plan. Finish off G with Go and flee the "G's." Forget about Gratitude, Grappling, and Grace. Onto H. If I can find Humor, hopefully Grace and Forgiveness will be forced to follow.

A downed tree and an absent husband...

Leave G Week Return to Home Page