Writing a letter to your confirmation candidate

It seems that one of the biggest events in confirmation preparation in this country is the letters of support to be given to the confirmation candidates during their mandatory retreats.

I have three such letters saved on this blog:

Confirmation letter to my daughterConfirmation letter to my fourth sonConfirmation letter to to my third son
I've asked my children what they remember about the letter they got from me and their dad, and also what they remembered about the letters they received. 
The answer was not much, or at least nothing specific. In general they were happy to have gotten a bag full of letters and there was a sense of feeling loved and supported. I guess that's the main thing - for them to have a sense that this is an important step in their spiritual growth, and that people they know, love and respect have taken the time out of their lives to let them know that! So here are some tips on procuring and writing letters for young confirmation candidates. Start thinkin…

In the deep midwinter

Apologies for the slow blogging - homeschooling is in full swing and I find my self busy from the time my foot touches the floor in the morning until I fall into bed at night. Annoyingly I am finding that my predominant menopausal symptom seems to be insomnia - not every night, but when it happens unexpectedly, I am up until 1:30 or 2:00 a.m. which pretty much ruins the first half of the next school day. I am trying some things to help though - cutting out caffeine after 6 p.m. or so, wearing socks to bed, and now apparently avoiding certain foods in the evening. I also find praying the Divine Office night prayer to be very soothing.

 Two things happened last week as well which have sort of rocked my center. I cannot blog about them openly due to privacy issues but they concern my oldest children. Sam has made some life choices that totally blind sighted me - didn't see them coming and was shocked to discover them. Of course we have talked them through and even though I disagreed I was secretly pleased that he at least did some research -  I guess we need to talk some more about biased vs. neutral sources for information.

He also has it in his head that he might want to drop out of College Plus! and go to regular college.  That is his prerogative of course but since it is mainly because he thinks he would be more organized and time efficient I wonder if he couldn't just find a way to make better use of his time right now.  My anecdotal experience with my younger Facebook friends is that time management is always an issue, even if you are enrolled in school.  So I'm not sure this is exactly the cure Sam is looking for.

The second one involves my oldest son - who has moved out of the house, changed his mailing address and for all intents and purposes now lives with his girlfriend and her family in their home. Our problem stemmed from some communication problems in a triangulated way between him, me and his girlfriend. I have searched my conscience on this and in reviewing what happened just think I was in the wrong place at the wrong time.  When it was resolved (translating into Calvin and his girl made up and were on good terms again) Calvin gave me a warning  - well, it was more than a warning - it's hard to put into words, but basically when he spoke to me I didn't feel like his loved, respected and cherished mother.  I felt as if I had been cast in the role of an undesirable antagonist; someone that he was going to fiercely protect his new life against. He did not regard me as a mother or even a woman but as an adversary and enemy. His words and expression were cold and rather frightening and I feel that our relationship has been fractured severely.

Since then I keep thinking about brave St. Monica - and while I admire her fierce bravery and intense prayer - I do not think the answer for me is to follow my son like St. Monica did.  I feel very strongly that time and distance are more the prescription we need.  But I will continue to pray  -more ardently and intensely for my son, but I have no wish to see him again any time soon.

19-years ago this week, I held my newborn baby son Sam, safely delivered during a very moderate and calm January day, and sat beside my sleepy 3-year-old son who was so pleased to be a big brother. I remember how much I wanted my boys to feel safe and loved. And in this unusually mild January, I have never felt such a great distance between us.  What a contrast.

  Calvin and Mom 1991?

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