Usually one of my favorite seasons of the Church year, but I'm just not feeling it this time around. This year we are preparing for two infants at our house. The Christ Child who we honor and celebrate this time of year and always. Who gives us hope for a better tomorrow.
We are also, however, preparing for Siena. Come Christmas day we could still be awaiting her birth, she could be born and in the NICU, or she could have already been born and passed on to greater things. All three are equal possibilities at this point.
Knowing the latter makes preparing for the former in the way that we normally do a bit of a challenge. In any case, I'm guessing our Christmas spirit is going to feel a little bit muted come the Christmas season. Make the best of it for the kids? Forget about anything more than the basics this year? What are the basics?
Interestingly, tomorrow is also the start of the St. Andrew Novena.
A friend jokingly told me a few weeks ago (months now?) that all saints should start vying for the naming rights of our future children. The thing about this particular saint is that Andrew would have been in this baby's name for sure had she been a he. In honor of my grandpa, who passed away last year, we even considered breaking the whole five letter-alphabetical order thing and using it as a first name.
I don't really believe in that sort of thing.
There is also a great Marian feast a few weeks before Christmas (actually more than one!).
When I was freaking out when I was pregnant with Lucie, it was on a Marian feast day that I finally broke through my own brain/hormones/emotions to push through to the end of pregnancy. We even changed her intended name as a result of my experience that day.
There's also Santa Lucia Day.
I don't know that we will DO a lot or that my house will have the same look of preparing that it normally would this time of year, but I feel like one step at a time right now may end up meaning one liturgical calendar event at a time to another.
With some doctor's appointments in between.
And by the end of the Christmas season, as the calendar turns back to Ordinary Time, we *should* finally have some answers.
Whatever those may be.
And I know that whatever those answers are, our lives will never be ordinary again.