Now that the Christmas decorations have all been packed away and the house is in some sort of order {don’t laugh}, I find myself reflecting back on some of the highlights of the holiday season. One moment, in particular, really steps out in my mind. And it’s not necessarily a positive.

We were in the car with both boys coming home from one of our various outings. And then the question came.

“Mom, why do we have Benny’s manger out?”

“Because it’s for Christmas.”

“Mom, the manger has nothing to do with Christmas.”

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FAIL.

The fact is we don’t really talk to the boys, well Ethan really, about religion. We are holiday Catholics. You know, the people who only attend church for Christmas and Easter. We may go once over the summer when visiting family in Pittsburgh. And throw in the random weddings, baptisms, and funerals that may come up. Before attending Christmas mass recently, I honestly couldn’t even tell you when the last time I went to church was. Sad.

Growing up, I attended Catholic school for 12 years, first through 12th grade. In that time period, I went through the normal ebb and flow of a Catholic School kid. Really loving Jesus to only going to church when Mom made you to questioning everything, including your faith.

I don’t think I ever got out of that last phase which has led to my lack of faith and participation. Of course, we followed tradition and were married in a Catholic Church {which I kinda didn’t want but did to make people happy} and baptized the boys {another thing I did just to keep the peace}.

Don’t get me wrong. I want my boys to have faith. To look to a higher being.

I just don’t know where mine is. But I do have this twinge inside that is trying to find something.

It reminds me of a line from “Rosanne”.

We need to stop praying in dark corners and start praying like we fight, out loud and in public where everybody can see us.

Like many others, I will look to God and my faith in times for heartbreak {usually with rage and anger} or in times struggle {with pleading and praying}. I know in my heart that is not enough. It needs to be present all the time. I just don’t know how to do that. I don’t know how to show that to my children.

Confusion? I have it.

And to think, this whole internal dialogue came to be all because of a plastic Baby Jesus.

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I’m Pouring My Heart Out with Things I Can’t Say.

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