Because What Might Look Like An Epic Fail Actually Isn’t

This morning was, in pop-culture parlance, an epic fail. It’s hailing, sleeting and snowing here. Ice is everywhere. The boys have a snow-cancellation day.

My school district is nearly 50 miles from our home. When my husband checked the district website at 5:30 a.m., my school district had a two-hour delay. I grabbed an extra hour of sleep, then headed outside to chip the ice off the windshield and windows our minivan. I headed north, anxious about arriving on time because traffic was thick and the highways icy.

When I arrived at the school, the parking lot was empty except for a few folks plowing. It turns out the district had canceled school for the day. If I’d checked the website again before driving off, I would have known that.

I can imagine many people might be frustrated, angry at themselves even, at having driven more than two hours round trip through lousy weather for no apparent reason except the failure to double check a website. But after I discovered school was canceled, I wasn’t irritated with myself.

On the contrary, I felt a sense of peace. It might sound odd to some, but as I headed home, I imagined Christ sitting beside me. I started to talk with him – pray to him – in my head, asking how best to spend the extra time suddenly afforded to me.

I remembered what the psalmist tells us:

Teach us to count our days aright, that we may gain wisdom of heart.
Relent, O LORD! How long? Have pity on your servants!
Fill us at daybreak with your love, that all our days we may sing for joy.
Make us glad as many days as you humbled us, for as many years as we have seen trouble.
Show your deeds to your servants, your glory to their children.
May the favor of the Lord our God be ours. Prosper the work of our hands!
Prosper the work of our hands!

Time is God’s gift to us and I need to use mine wisely. Today is a beautiful day, yes? My sons and husband are healthy and happy. Our home is safe and heated. (And the boys shoveled the ice off the sidewalk!) And tomorrow, I can head back on the highway to my students so I can teach them a little literature and be blessed in unexpected ways by them.

  • Mary R

    Yes, today was lovely. As I shoveled the wet snow, I prayed the Rosary. Since it is Tuesday the Rosary meditation was on the Sorrowful Mysteries. I focused on charity and the gift of self. I looked up and realizing that a neighbor recently had back surgery, I went over to his house and shoveled the driveway and entry.Then I realized God has given me more. As a homework assignment, I ask my students to 1) do an act of charity and, 2) look for how God acted in your life for this week. This will be our topic of discussion as we wait for the other students to arrive for catechism. God has acted in my life today. He gave me an opportunity to give of myself and, at next class, a teaching example to inspire the students. Something they too can do – shovel snow for their parents and neighbors. This they can do this without being told. I give thank to God for this wonderful day. Alleluia!A sister in Christ,Mary R

  • Allison

    @Mary R: What a great story. Thank you for sharing. I have ended up running an errand for my husband, taking a friend to daily Mass who otherwise could not go because of a bad back, and lunching with my husband. And the day is not over yet. I look forward to hearing how your students respond!Blessings to you,Allison

  • Sandy C.

    Thank you for this post! We are possibly facing more snow days later this week and I will try to spend them as God directs.

  • Allison

    Sandy C: I hope your new job is going well. The snow days really upset the school rhythm, yes? Though i am finding my students very focused when we do have school. We had a delayed opening Friday and more snow is expected next week. Wow.

  • Dwija {House Unseen}

    Thank you for this post, Allison. I have been trying to focus on not being anxious and allowing the Lord to guide my decisions and my days. Yours is a great example of doing just that :)

  • Allison

    @-dweej: THanks for stopping by. I am hoping that as I become older, I am becoming wiser. I am praying for that. And your blog is a lot of fun!