Stress, Neurotics, and a Plea for Help

(Please note: Any self-derision in this article is largely tongue-in-cheek. While I am critical of myself in an mostly almost entirely healthy way, I’m also well aware of God’s infinite love for me and the fact that he wants me to love me too. And I do! I’m only human, but also trying to do better.)

The Story I’m Hoping isn’t Prophetic

Ray’s neuropsychologist shared a true story today of a young caregiver husband who literally passed out from malnutrition, exhaustion, and stress, hitting his head and causing a concussion. I think I’m taking better care of myself than that, but sometimes I do wonder.

The Stressor

So, here’s one major cause of my current stress: keeping my house in “livable” status. Right now, as I write, I’ve finally achieved it. Unfortunately, it’s not likely to last beyond 7:05 tomorrow morning, at which point in time the breakfast-making and lunch-packing mess, plus a toddler pulling out every toy we own, will throw it back into make-me-want-to-puke-or-scream-or-cry-or-maybe-all-three status.

So, we’re in livable status for the moment, but here’s the problem. I’ve been going non-stop since I woke up early this morning, and I just finally got to sit down and “relax” (if writing a blog post counts for relaxation) at 10:30. Livable status was achieved at 10:29.

Further exacerbating said stress is the knowledge that we’re having company Friday night, and Friday day promises to be a crazy mess of two doctor’s appointments for Ray, early pickup for four kids, preschool pickup for the toddler, running two kids allover the city for outings, and – oh, yeah – parent teacher conferences.

The reality is that, by the time our company arrives around 6:30, I’ll be lucky to have that breakfast/lunch/toddler mess cleaned up, let alone have dinner ready to be served.

Yes, I know. I never should have scheduled all of this for the same day. But I like to think I’m SuperWoman… until it becomes so incredibly obvious that I’m not. In my defense, I invited our friends before I knew any of this other stuff was going to happen. I scheduled the doctor’s appointments because we’ve been trying to get in since March and this date opened up. And the kids’ activities were planned by the PTO only a few weeks ago, but since their whole class is going… how can I say no?

My Neurotic Move

So, anyways, I actually pulled the slightly totally neurotic move of cancelling the plans with our friends, largely due to the knowledge that I would be freaking out trying to get the house cleaned. There were other reasons, but when I stopped and was totally honest with myself, I realized that the desire for a “company ready” house was playing a rather large role in my decision.

I know. It’s terrible! I’m an idiot and a social moron. What was I thinking?

I’ve re-extended the invitation, but they may now think that I didn’t really want them to come, or that I’m completely psycho, or both. The former is definitely not the case. As for the latter, well… the jury’s out.

Help, Please!

Okay. So, here’s why I’m writing this post. There are some very wise women who read this blog, and, even if you don’t identify yourself as such, I’m sure you have words of wisdom to help me solve my dilemma. (The dilemma being how to stay on top of my house without working until 10:30 every night, not the dilemma of over-scheduling myself. We can deal with my SuperWoman complex another time.)

The kids are already helping, although I’m sure they could help more. They each have time allotted each night for helping around the house. One vacuums, another mops, one helps with laundry, and a fourth in the kitchen. However, they’re notoriously awful about picking up after themselves or the toddler… so I could use some help there. Seriously, this toddler stage nearly kills me every time.

Given all that, what magical tips do you have that will help an overworked momma stay on top of the never-ending household mess? I’m sure I’m not the only mom struggling with this, so you never know who will benefit from your wisdom. Organizational tips, time management strategies, positive self-talk, you name it.

Please, please, please share your thoughts in the comments below!

(I’d rather not pass out and suffer a concussion – or worse!)

Update with some good news – I think I have carpool arranged for the kids, so there’s one thing off my plate!

Awaken to the Best Talk Postponed

Hi, friends! I just wanted to dash off a quick post that today’s Awaken to the Best talk has been postponed due to a  large funeral at the church. I’ll be speaking on Dec. 14th, instead.

Please pray for the soul of the young man whose Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated today, as well as for his family and community. Thank you!

The Ted Bundy Rosary Miracle

Today, October 7, marks the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary. In its honor, I’d like to share a miracle of the Rosary which I recently read in the book, Champions of the Rosary, by Fr. Donald Calloway. I call it the “Ted Bundy Rosary Miracle.”


Yep. There’s a Rosary miracle associated with Ted Bundy, the notorious serial rapist and murderer of the 1970’s.

rosary-1244875-1598x1062One night in January, 1978, Ted Bundy broke into a sorority house at Florida State University. After brutally raping and killing two sorority sisters, and seriously injuring two others, Bundy opened the door to another room. The young woman saw him open the door, and was sure he was going to kill her. Oddly, though, Bundy stopped, dropped his weapon, and fled.

When police arrived on the scene, they found this young woman in a near catatonic state. She refused to speak to anyone but a priest, so local priest Monsignor William Kerr was called to the scene. Upon his arrival, she recounted what had happened, and informed Monsignor Kerr that, when she went away to college, she had promised her mother that she would pray the Rosary every night before bed for protection. That night, she had fallen asleep while praying, and still held her rosary in her hand when Bundy opened the door to her room.

Years later, Bundy asked for spiritual guidance from the same priest who had met with that young woman, Monsignor Kerr. When asked about that incident in that Florida State sorority house, Bundy said that, when he’d opened the door to that young woman’s room, he had every intention of killing her. However, when he tried to step through the doorway, a mysterious force prevented him from doing so.  He dropped his weapon and ran away!

Through the intercession of Our Lady, the Rosary saved this young woman’s life. Imagine what it can do for our families, our country, and our world!

If you aren’t praying the Rosary regularly, what’s holding you back?

Are you afraid you’re not doing it right? Here’s a website to teach you how.

Is it hard to find the time? Here is a blog post I wrote, sharing how Iscreen-shot-2016-10-07-at-2-15-02-pm
find time.

Do you find it boring? Give it an honest chance. This is one devotion that I believe gets better the more you do it!

The Rosary is “the gospel on a string,” “the weapon that wins all battles” (St. Pio of Pietrelcina), and a prayer that “can bring families through all dangers and evils” (Servant of God Patrick Peyton).

May we as lovers of Christ and His Mother, Mary, pray this prayer
faithfully, with reverence and devotion, and may it bring peace to our families, our country, and our world.




Upcoming Speaking Engagements and Recent Media Appearances

Wow. Life’s been so busy, I’ve fallen behind on just about everything, it would seem – including updating my blog. But, there are some upcoming and past appearances that I wanted to make sure readers knew about.

October Speaking Engagement (for women)

I am thrilled to announce that I will be speaking next Wednesday, October 12, at the Awaken to the Best women’s spirituality group at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton in Carmel, IN. The meeting begins at 1:00 and is open to the public, though there is a registration page on their website. I will be sharing a new talk that I’m very excited about. I haven’t settled on a title yet, but it’s something along the lines of: “How trusting in God brought the peace that surpasses all understanding during the worst time of my life, and WOW, God wants everyone to have complete trust in him and here are the keys – in my humble opinion – to building that kind of trust.”

But that’s a little long, right? So, I’m working on pairing it down. 🙂

How I’m going to fit all of that into a 45 minute presentation is still up for grabs, too, but I’m confident it will be AWESOME, regardless, so come join us!

November Speaking Engagement (for couples)

I will also be speaking at Marriage on Tap on November 12th. This isscreen-shot-2016-10-05-at-10-06-12-pm a great date night with a little spirituality thrown into the mix! The event goes from 7:00 to 9:30 at the Willows near Broadripple in Indy. I’ve struggled with this topic A LOT, because I am so far from the perfect wife. BUT I’ve identified one thing that I do do well, and that is – once again – trusting God. This talk will be much different, though, since it’s geared toward married couples, and will revolve around trusting God with every aspect of your marriage, including finances, the very life and well-being of your spouse and children, and (eek!) your fertility.

Registration is required, just follow this link (and contact the parish office if you have trouble because I’m no help.)

Recent Media Appearances

Girlfriends Podcast

I got to speak with Danielle Bean (love her!) on her “Girlfriends” screen-shot-2016-10-05-at-10-39-44-pmpodcast this week. Her topic for the week is “Are you too busy?”. I was able to listen to the first fifteen minutes or so but I’ve been too BUSY to listen to the rest, including my own interview. What I did hear included great advice on that whole “busy-ness” thing, which clearly I need to take. Here’s the link if you’d like to listen.

EWTN On Location

ewtn bookmarkWhen I was in Chicago for the Catholic Marketing Network tradeshow and Writers Guild Conference, I was blessed to speak with Doug Keck of EWTN. The show aired a few weeks ago, and it turns out that mine wasn’t the only fantastic interview (LOL). Actually, the show is filled with interviews with many fascinating authors, and a great opportunity to learn about many amazing Catholic books that you might otherwise never even know existed. I’m somewhere around the half hour mark, but – seriously – you already know about A Single Bead, and hopefully you’ve already read it (if not, what are you waiting for?). So be sure to watch the whole show!

Prayers that you will be blessed abundantly today!