I've felt pretty unsettled all day. I have a few reasons. It's been a really busy week, yesterday was a long day with all the Halloween excitement, Luke slept lousy last night so I'm really tired, I'm behind on laundry and dishes, Jay started painting our laundry room so everything that lives in the laundry room covers the dining room table....and the wall spackle sanding he did Tuesday night has left a layer of dust everywhere that a broom just can't handle and I haven't had time to deep clean.
Even though this outer world messiness makes me a little crazy, I know that there's a deeper meaning to it all. One that I try to contain but bubbles up threatening to spill over.
And spill over it did!
Today is All Saints Day. It's the day Catholics celebrate the Saints who have gone before us leaving us such incredible examples of holiness and sacrifice. At Luke and Kate's Catholic elementary school, the kids all dressed up as saints and walked to church. It's always a super cute sight...all these kids dressed as sisters, priests, brothers, and all types of saints that fill our Church's history. Luke was St. John Bosco and Kate chose St. Bernadette.
There's also a very heavy memory that's attached today for our school family. Today is the two year anniversary of the death of my friend's little girl, Victoria, who was also a part time student in our school's Small Wonders preschool program.
My heart has an incredible soft spot for grieving moms. Because I have gone through the experience of losing a child, my heart just bleeds for people that have to suffer through that loss. Grief is a long and difficult road. It's so hard knowing how much other people are going to suffer going through a similar experience.
Before I went to mass tonight, I went to visit my grandfather to give him his night time pills. He always has the tv on. Usually I go to see him during Wheel of Fortune or Jeopardy, but since I had to go earlier to get to 7pm Mass the news was on. I have not watched the news for YEARS because it's always filled with such horrible, tragic stories. After 15 minutes with my grandfather I can tell you it hasn't changed a bit! In fact, in that short time the only thing they talked about were recent tragic accidents that happened to children. No word of a lie! I heard about all the fatal accidents regarding school buses that have happened in the last few weeks. Then about a SC woman being charged for involuntary manslaughter for the drowning death of her 14 month old because she went onto a road that had been closed off due to extreme flooding after the hurricane.
By the time I left my grandfather, I was holding it all in. Barely!
Fr. Williams words at the beginning of Mass really touched me. He was talking about All Saints Day and how it's a day we celebrate all the saints in Heaven, "both known and unknown." While All Saints Day certainly brings to mind all the amazing saints the kids were dressed as earlier in the day, I can't help but think about all the saints who are unknown to the world but are held in their families' hearts: all the little ones who were called home to God before we were ready to let them go. Whether we held them for a few short years, months, days, or only in our wombs, these innocent children went straight home to God and rejoice in His presence forever.
At Mass, my eyes started "leaking" when Fr. Williams read the Gospel line, "Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted." Thinking of all the grieving moms just broke my heart. Seeing Tori's family in the communion line made the tears came in earnest.
These little ones are not forgotten. They are powerful intercessors for all of us. So, while I rejoice today in the great saints like St. Augustine, St. Faustina, St. JPII, and all the others, I also remember and celebrate the smallest saints...the children held in their mama's hearts.
Tori, Seth, Gerard, Gabriel, Emma, Lauren, Elizabeth, Rebecca, Maria, Bartholomew, Doyle,Therese and all of our little saints, pray for us.