Confessing Your Heart

The associate priest at my parish dispenses the sacrament of Reconciliation, or better known as confession every second Saturday. He’s been pastoring at my parish for almost three years, normally it’s two years for the new priests, but sometimes they stay longer like three or four years. I was taught that it’s good to have a regular confessor to regularly hear your sins so the priest might be able to see certain paths that cause you to commit a particular sin. So when I go to confession, I make sure it’s the week that Fr. Bryan is celebrating Mass, which means he will be in the confessional from 4 p.m. to 4:45 p.m., Saturday afternoon.

Becoming acquainted with the language of your heart should be easy…right? Is riding a bicycle easy the first few times, not usually. I am trying to learn the ways of the heart, accepting what is in front of me and go! But sometimes I am left still watching everyone in front of me. Still trying to copy what they do, still not getting that the journey I am on is different. I might be similar, or have something in common with others.

Sometimes I don’t want to know what my heart or what the Lord wants of me. Inside of me, something is not right. Fear has leaked in, mixing in with peace and love. The tips of my toes wobble back and forth as something is played out in my mind. Am I ready to run or am I steady with courage?

What stops me from running the race?

Not knowing the end result even though it’s the depth of the journey that matters the most. In many ways, the destination doesn’t exist outside of a place to rest in His plan. Sometimes, it’s the running that makes me aware that I can talk about, and that I need to talk about why I keep my heart in seclusion. The language of your heart wants to live out loud, not in darkness or in anger.

I kneel on the one side of the grille, and the priest is on the other side. Most won’t look at you, but once I have listed the sins I remember committing, I will pick a ‘sin’ to discuss. There is no life, no fresh air in what I talk about. I am held back by doubts, fears, unknowns, and other people’s judgments on themselves. Maybe it is a judgment on myself, but the other is more likely acting something out that was planted in their life, long before you enter into it. Yes, I need to take responsibility for what is my part, but I also must let go, of my anger to see my part, my place in what is called this present time.

There is no man on the other side of your heart but Jesus. In the secret places of our heart, we render to what is God’s. Nothing that I take is forever. I may stash away what I believe are parts of my heart, but nothing physically can claim the language that takes an area in the place that is only hinted at.

But what if you speak and no one hears you… I mean really hears your heart

Do it anyway. It’s like a dialect with different clicks, nuances, and tones. Keep speaking it until someone, a small group of intelligent individuals nods their heads in appreciation.



Love My Dad

Who you were, who you are and who you will be are three different people –  Author Unknown


Your identity is the most valuable part of you, but most of us, some of us have no idea what it is. Knowing who you are minus all the titles we play day in and day out can blur out the truth of your identity. Confusion is a big deterrent and a likely suspect in losing ourselves to the constant swirl of life.


As a little girl, I loved the feel of the cool green grass under my bare feet. I believe at the time that I had the biggest backyard than anyone I knew. I could hide in our tree house that existed out of weirdly shaped trees that bordered our property. In the summer, I would walk over the cracks in the cement in our backyard because I never knew for sure if stepping on them would break my Mothers back. Clothes hung on the clothesline overhead. I could go visit my (Hebrew for grandmother) Bubi anytime I wanted. I remember the sand stuck between my toes and ants crawling over the big peony buds right before they would bloom.

Fear that no one wanted me

Ever since I started this blog, I have used each post as a place for my healing. It has become a place where I have been able to share who I am without fear of rebuff of any kind. Finding my identity and claiming it has been a long process. From an early age, I have been shy, preferring to stay close to my Mom.  When I met Jesus, I became more aware of myself, and at times it was extremely painful. Slowly, I would surprise myself at how well I would speak to others. Over time, the shyness that I assumed was a part of me disappeared, as I would go to reach for it. It was my protection over what I felt I couldn’t control. From the world that I had a hard time processing through.

Shyness is a reaction to feeling rejection. This was at first confusing because as that little girl with the ash blonde hair I thought knew who I was. I believed that the shyness was a part of the package of my personality.

If we lived in a perfect world, I would be living my dream. I wanted to be loved. I didn’t know if I deserved it but it was this silent, persistent need that over time gave my credence of what I didn’t see as acceptance. You see I wanted my Dad to see me as a lovable little girl, but what I didn’t know at the time was he didn’t have the skills on how to fill my emotional needs.

It wasn’t until I was in my mid-twenties that I learned that daughters’ need their fathers love as much as we need oxygen to breathe. The extreme anxiety and depression that I struggled throughout my childhood through to my early 30’s. spoke volumes of how I tried to teach myself on how to handle my emotions.  I can’t breathe unless I know my father loves me unconditionally. It was the root. I really believed I was a terrible person.  Desperate, I was for my Dad to notice me. To take an active interest in who I was.

Before I go on, this is not a post to bash fathers because they are hurting too. Too many men are being pushed down, or believe it’s not good to be masculine and to be as they have been created.

As I have learned about all my parts, or at least the ones He has chosen to show me, I have had many aha moments. He has brought clarity into my being, and a peace that is everlasting. And get this! People really do like me.

Knowing who I am, the peace can flow into every part of my being

As a little girl, I desired for my Dad to notice me, to see me and pursue me. I wanted him to be interested in who I was, but as time went by, he did none of what of what was in my heart. So I did the only thing I knew and I began shutting down emotionally, mentally and physically. Instead, I sought out my Dad, I asked him about the rules of Canadian football, what and why he washed his car. Nothing I did got the attention I was desperate to have from him.

It took me a long time to realize I couldn’t change him, no matter how many times I initiated something with him. I had finally got it, that it had never been my job in first place. It was his job as my father to delight in me – as his daughter. To show me his love, protection, values, and everything that was important to him. I wanted to know who he was and is, but that part of his heart to me has never been opened to me.

My Dad is without the skills I need. I believe his own father didn’t give him what he needed as a boy growing up. His own feelings about his Dad (my grandfather) aren’t the memories that you hold close to your heart. Rather they are the kind that you push away, and you let everyone else teach you how to be a man. Yes, we need our parents, a mother and a father to show us how to be a man or woman –  learned from their parents. A family is about love, trust and passing it down because it is good to know that there is a place where all of us can truly belong and be accepted. There is no cost to join, we simply need to be the product of our parents love that is between them. I believe how we are brought up determines a lot of who we become. It guides our perception of the world, it certainly leads mine.

I speak with my Dad once a month, we chat for about 15 minutes on the usual things. I would love to go to visit him but that just doesn’t seem to be his thing.  Does my Dad love me? Yes. I have no doubt that he does, he kind of gives it away in the way his eyes shine and sparkle when he first sees me. This could be a whole other post because I know my heavenly father has and is filling me with what I lack.

I’m not the shy, scared, self-hating little girl with ash blond hair anymore. Nor am I am the girl who hid from her peers. I am not the awkward adult who didn’t feel that she was a full-grown adult and just a child in disguise. Don’t get me wrong there are still times, the child in me comes out and gives a sly smile at those around her, and allows some of them into her heart so that they can see for themselves that God still saves.


Discovering the Real Value in Christmas




Christmas always left me feeling sad and empty when I was a little girl.

After all, the presents had been opened, and the wrapping paper was in the garbage, the whole idea of Christmas always seemed to be a waste – at least – to me it was. It was a race against time to get all those presents, and then a few hours later it was done. I wondered what the point of all of the gifts was. I was focused on a tree strung with bright sparkling lights, a man in a red suit who travelled with reindeer flying all over the world to give out gifts.

Forget the actual day of Christmas, the magic of Christmas Eve struck a chord in my young heart because I knew whatever was happening was special. Everyone leaves work early to go home and be with their families and close friends. Part of the problem I think was, I didn’t even know that we were celebrating and remembering a baby being born.

It’s a few days after Christmas, and it is still about hope, and though the majority of us have already been out to pick up a bargain from the leftover sales from Christmas, we make-up excuses for more stuff. Just another day to spend time buying stuff. And the question is: do you even need it?

Everything and nothing leads us to pause about what has gone wrong, except we don’t know what it’s all about. It’s a season of where paradoxes’ emerge. It’s a time to be wowed by the hope given to us by a baby born in a barn – in a complete lack of luxury, the complete opposite of what most people think of when they speak of Christmas. This is a time when it’s easy to overeat, over-shop, just plain over the top consumption! Another chance to fill the emptiness inside of their souls, but sometimes you need to empty yourself to feel the poverty of the situation.

It refuses to be extinguished

A small flame of hope lingers hidden underneath anger, shame, depression, and anxiety, etc., with all the gems that are the sum of our desires. Christmas doesn’t seem to be enough but it is, with the simple gift of hope in a birth of a baby in a manger. The problem is most of us equal Christmas with more stuff, more doing than waiting as we are called to do so during the season of Advent. Taking time to enjoy the Christmas lights on front porches, for example, this can help remind us of the hope that is in the waiting. Instead of holding onto negative emotions, make an effort to seek out the good that Christmas does offer, and even the opportunities that are given to us the time in between Christmas and New Years. For myself, I have found I need fewer activities and more time reflecting to appreciate what is going on.

The time between Christmas and New Year’s Eve is usually a chaotic time for me. It’s hard to put into words how I feel in this time of undetermined celebrating. It’s mostly an emotional and spiritual battle, but this year, I decided I was going to do something more concrete. I started with Advent:

  • This year I made the plan not to go into a mall once December came, I didn’t want to see the busyness when it should be a time of waiting, not rushing around. I start my Christmas shopping in March/April so that around November I can tie up loose ends.
  • I bought a devotional from Magnificat specifically for the season of Advent. I don’t normally read devotionals, but I figured reading something about Advent might help.
  • During Advent, there were times that I felt little reminders of joy and hope. I let the Lord fill me with these emotions, and they led me to anticipate(joy) the coming of His arrival.
  • I make a point each year to work 2-3 days to help with confusion of days between Christmas and New Year’s Eve


I hope you all had a safe and happy Christmas and all the best for coming year of 2017!


Puttin’ on the Ritz


One of the things that I love to do during the summer is paint my toe nails. When I was younger I would paint my finger nails too, but it would never stay chip free. Usually I would choose a shade of red until my nails started to turn yellowish, which I found out meant that I wasn’t allowing my nails to breathe. So I gave nail polish up for a while, but eventually I went back to having coloured toe nails as I love wearing sandals with my coloured toes nails in the summer!

Blue and Borrowed

It’s not a cheap bottle of nail polish, but it has captured the exact shade of blue that I wanted to paint my toe nails this summer. It all started last year when I saw a woman with this beautiful shade of light baby blue on her toe nails. My search began in earnest. And I wanted to share it with someone who I thought might enjoy it as well, but I had no idea that the nail polish would spurred on its own battle.

The Other Side of the Coin

So I have been asking myself, is the battle that was spurred on by nail polish worth my time and effort? At one point, I didn’t see the choices that I had, and yes I could believe those lies I told myself, but instead of putting on airs, I kept pulling back the layers that I had collected over the years. I didn’t want to be that person who kept doing it over and over before I caught myself in the act, but…

Believing the lie that I wasn’t deserving of what I desired when it was God, who had given me these desires in the first place. So when I decided to step back, it afforded me the luxury of seeing what was really in front of me. Being single and being friends with someone who is married isn’t easy, but it has allowed me to see that my needs being met in a relationship is just as important as the other person who is married. Singleness seems like a plague, but it’s just a station of life that I’m in now. Being exactly as how God wants me to be and act is sometimes hard when you become aware of what the other person is asking of you. Do you bend to their expectations or let your hair stick out at odd angles?

Cultivating a Value System

So many times I have turned around and looked the other way, so I didn’t have to deal with the conflict, the fear and the rejection I’m expecting. When I take the time to reflect on what made me feel uncomfortable or angry, it’s only then that I start to see a clearer picture emerge. I am big on quality, and it’s what I am looking for in just about everything that I seek. But especially in people who are in my life. Often it’s lacking, but then it can turn up where you least expect it. I am learning that I love it when someone  unexpectantly shows me what they love or like about me. It’s not what I can do for them, but just for being who I am. There are no pretenses, no masks to be put on. These people are the ones that love me just as I am. No strings attached. I love that they can see who I am and be able to put it into something solid. Validation just flows out of their mouths and I take in like sunbathing on the beach.

Are you part of a community where you feel you can just be who you were made to be?

They take you whatever way you present yourself to them? I don’t know about you but it allows me to truly be who I am without fear that they don’t ‘getsomething about me. Whether we admit or not, we all want to be valued by those we love, but it doesn’t always happen in a nice and neat way. Sometimes were not understood as we would like to be. My high sensitivity has led me to experience these kind of situations. It’s frustrating to speak as clearly as you can, and still be misunderstood, like you’re speaking foreign language, but also not feel the support you were hoping from this particular circumstance.

Neither did these circumstances boost my low self-esteem, and my lack of value in myself, never mind receiving value from other people. I have learnt it is easy to see the value others show you, when you come to truly value yourself. Arriving at a place where whatever happens your confidence in yourself isn’t blown off into the the gutter.


Are We There Yet?



I’m only going to admit here: I’m bit of a romantic when it comes to waiting, but I’m under no illusions that waiting is a glamourous thing. Maybe if a documentary was done on the journey of my waiting then could I term my ‘waiting’ with a bit of romanticism? There would be sweeping and haunting music in the background, only the best shots of my waiting, and then of course the glorious end! But when is my waiting done?

We live in a culture that abhors to wait, the mere mention of the word, and we start becoming someone we aren’t. Nasty, belligerent and impatient. No, one gets away with this one because well, only the Lord is patient in waiting, which is why waiting is something to be learned and valued. But waiting is only the conduit from which we learn what we need for this life. It breeds character, virtue, fine manners for dinner etc. There are so many reasons for waiting, and most of us are still waiting for the Lord to explain it.

Pulling and Pushing

The Lord can and will use this time to turn our direction from outward to inward. To bring us to a place where we see what he sees in us. As I mentioned, I’m a bit of a romantic when it comes to waiting, but I seem to push out of my mind, all the pain that accompanies waiting.

We can push away the pain of unfulfilled dreams, and pretend that we are in control, pretend that the peace that only comes from the Lord doesn’t satisfy our empty wants and needs. We want to live our lives in harmony with Him or we take off on horses that imitate and mock his beauty. We don’t breathe in His spirit and we can squander what he has given us because we don’t consider why He is waiting.

A Fine Suffering

No, I’m not done. In fact, as long as we are alive, we wait for His return, his glorious return to claim what is His. But in the meantime what are we to do? What are we to say when it is asked of you why you wait, why you struggle with what you can’t seem to get from life. Well, life isn’t here to serve you, you are here to serve those around you. As the chisel in the Master’s hand continues to allow the absence of your desire. How does this absentia create havoc in the crevices of your soul? For long periods of time nothing will speak of what your heart longs for, or what you are seeking with your eyes. Sometimes you wonder if the hunger that lives inside of you will ever be tamed. The gnawing is like a flickering light that refuses to be blown out.

For a long time I’ve wanted to write about waiting because too many of us – just don’t get it. Learning to wait isn’t a punishment, it’s more of a time to be waited upon. We want to be where everyone else is, and that isn’t always the best place for us. Until our time is done, life is one big waiting period because we are simply being prepared to go home.

Most of my life, I have jerked myself around trying to be someone, something that I am simply not. It is in the periods of waiting that I have been taught who I am. We’ve been taught by everything that is around us, that it isn’t good to wait because you could have ‘it’ now! During this long season (and still continuing!) of waiting, that what I need and want are mistakenly not materialistic but of a eternal reward.


There are many things in life that will catch your eye, but only a few will catch your heart… pursue those.


An Offering of Love



He offered his heart to me.

It took me by surprise, though, it really shouldn’t. He’s the kind that wears all his emotions on his sleeve. You don’t have to guess how he feels about the situation. He was concerned about me, and wanted to offer the best part of him to me.

Standing in the chapel in the far corner, his hand forever placed on his heart. He’s not looking at me but I know his heart is with me.

Most days, I don’t understand how he uses His love for me. His love isn’t standardized the way humans use love. We don’t most days do things in love for others. We do it because we have to, or we need to or were just plain selfish, and then it’s isn’t about love. But everything in God is about love. He gets love in a way we will never will. It isn’t hard for him, while we all have someone in our life, (more than one usually) who is difficult for us to love.

He gives us pure love, and we give the kind of love that you have to haul the bucket down deep into the ground. Even when you pull up the bucket and water splashes over, it’s still just well water. It’s flat, and you can taste where it comes from.  Our love is selfish. I don’t know about you, but loving (some) others is hard.

My heart isn’t pure like God’s, and so if I can have any part of His heart in me, I’m going for it. But at the end of the day, can I tell the pieces of His love from my mine?

I remember shortly after I moved out on my own, that the cold hard reality of life plummeted me from all angles. I wasn’t expecting this harshness, but it’s something that we all eventually experience whether we want to or not. For long periods of time, He is silent in our struggles. It’s like treading water in our clothes, the heaviness contributes to the overwhelming emotions in us.

Maybe I’m the only one, but in my humanity I was still not convinced of taking his heart – even though I had accepted it. It’s like the gift you receive from a well-meaning relative, who doesn’t really know you that well. It sits in a in place where you can stare at it, and think about what you can use it for. You received the gift but you’re not sure of its exact purpose in your life. I know He loves me, but I like when his directions are more specific.

A Better Replacement

In this the year of Mercy, each diocese has their own Holy Door. The last Holy Door that I last walked through was when I was in Rome (St. Peter’s), over 16 years ago. Truth be known, I know I walked through them, but I’m not sure when I did exactly. No flashing lights indicate when the graces fall on you. This coming weekend, I going to my dioceses holy door before the year is up. It’s been at least over a week and a half since He offered, and I said I would take His heart.

At a certain point a reset button was pushed inside of me this week. It was as simple as talking it out, and having a listening ear and heart to hear me. No advice, or words of wisdom. Just the silence that is deafening to the outside world, but a river of peace that spreads inside of me.


Three Sparrows


This past summer, I began noticing that two or three sparrows would sit in between the rails of my balcony. This absolutely delighted me! I am careful to be slow in my movement and observe them quietly, or I risk scaring them away, and they’ll flutter away back to the safety of the bushes down below on the ground. They sit and fluff their feathers and otherwise look very cute. I would rather them come and visit then have the pigeons swoop down onto my balcony because next thing I know the male will be strutting his stuff to the quiet female, who is trying to go unnoticed by him.


Any reminders of the Christmas will pretty much be receded into the background by the time Monday arrives. It’s the routine and structure that I am needing because my thoughts have become so crazy, I am over analyzing obsessively, and I am gasping for peace to enter into me.

A couple of days after Christmas, we got our first winter storm, and at the end, we were left with 20 cm of snow. Tall snowbanks, slush and a pile of salt at the end of the sidewalks. It’s already January and mentally I am running to greet it despite its cold, damp and windy temperatures.

Most people don’t get the sensitive and quiet ones, and that’s okay. It is because I realized as long as I get it, I don’t mind telling you that yes I had a good Christmas because I did. I used to want others to understand what I went through Christmas but this New Year’s Eve I made a discovery, a discovery of how I experience Christmas is mine. Doesn’t mean I need to share it, and so I won’t. I’ll just make sure that I take care of myself in whatever way I can.

 Back to the Sparrows

I like quiet, cute and unhampering to my situation(s), whatever that may be at the time, but I don’t and can’t control everything that comes into my life. Life is hard, but if I have any choice in the choices then I will choose the sparrows of leisure, who just want to fluff their feathers while they use my balcony for rest.