Changes April 22, 2014

Holy Week and Easter were very different this year than in years past, in large part because all of our children have passed the magical age of three and are now old enough to sit through longer (and later) Masses. In years past, my husband and I have split up for the Triduum – one of us would attend Holy Thursday Mass and the other would attend Good Friday. We learned our lesson after a couple of nightmarish experiences spent in the cry room with screaming toddlers – ours and about 25 others. Sometimes we would bring along the older children, but even then the Holy Week services seemed like a real sacrifice – beautiful and worthwhile, yes, but also long and tedious.

This year, although we still had our fair share of wriggling and complaining, for the most part the children did really well. The special parts of the Mass that used to seem impossible with younger children (did we really need to sing the entire Passion narrative and all of the Prayers of the Faithful?!) seemed marvelous this year. We took advantage of the opportunity to spend several hours together, stuffed into a crowded pew, by cuddling, whispering explanations, and singing to our hearts’ content. As a mother, I tell my children that the hours spent in church are my favorite time of the week – we are together as a family with no distractions and no competing obligations, celebrating the Mass with the entire communion of saints. What could be better?!

As wonderful as this year has been, however, I am really excited when I think about our Easter next year, when we will have a six-and-a-half month old baby in the family! Yes, I am pregnant, and all of us are very happy! In many ways we will be starting over since we have long been out of the baby stage, but we cannot wait. The baby is due in September, and so far, everything seems healthy. Praise God!

I pray that you and your family had a wonderful Easter Sunday, and that you are enjoying this Octave of Easter. Mary, Mother of Our Savior, pray for us!

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  • It’s public! Love this Easter Announcement!

  • Annie

    What wonderful news! Congratulations!

  • Kathy

    Congratulations on your pregnancy. Many prayers for a healthy baby and no anxiety for you. Looking forward to following your pregnancy. Feel well.
    I loved your commentary on Mass as a family – no outside distractions – just family and God time.
    As my daughters are getting older, we were able to do the full Holy Week schedule – Chrism Mass at the cathedral, Holy Thursday at Princeton University Chapel and adoration in the new Aquinas House, Stations and Good Friday services and Easter Vigil. Tiring, but worth it.

  • Mary Alice

    We did a mix, Holy Thursday and Good Friday at the Chapel, but then only the older kids and dad went to the Vigil, and I did an “at home vigil” with the little boys, then took them to an early mass the next morning, which meant that neither of us had to take the baby to a long Easter mass. It worked very well, I think. It was also my first visit to the new Aquinas, which is really a neat place.

    Hooray for your announcement!

  • Bethany

    Easter joy all around. I love it! We are so very excited for this new baby chapter in your family’s life. What an absolute blessing! Many, many prayers.

  • Queen B

    Hallelujah! 🙂 Great reflection and wonderful Easter news, Kat 🙂

  • Lisa

    Wow – what news! Thank you for sharing.

    If you don’t mind, could you let us know some of the ways you cope with anxiety you might be experiencing during this pregnancy? (or perhaps in the earlier days of your pregnancy) I ask because I had a recent pregnancy loss and have been cleared by my MD to try again, but I’m having significant trouble with anxiety over the thought of going through this again. If you have any insight to share, I’d be appreciative.

    Thank you again for announcing your wonderful news. Know that you and your family are in my prayers.

  • Katrina

    Lisa, thank you!
    I’m so sorry to hear of your recent loss, and will be praying for you.
    For my husband and I, it was very important that we communicated honestly with each other about how we were feeling about conceiving again. For quite a while, one or both of us felt a great deal of anxiety at the thought of another pregnancy, so we were very careful with NFP. When we decided to try to conceive again, we both felt the grace of God’s peace, because we had come to the point where we felt that our family was ready to either handle another loss or welcome a healthy baby. It was very important for us that we get to this point before trying to conceive, because after having two babies with fatal conditions, we knew that there was a higher than normal chance that our baby might not be healthy. After lots of prayer and consultation with doctors, we felt that both we AND our children would be okay if we were put in this situation again. It took us about 18 months to get to this point, and at times, I really thought that we might never get there.
    Please let me know if you have any other thoughts – I hope that I answered your question.

  • Donna

    What wonderful news! So happy for your beautiful family. Our risen Lord is the Author of Life! Jesus we trust in You!

  • Lisa

    Thank you so much, Katrina. I appreciate you sharing so openly. Prayers for you and your family.

  • KC

    So happy for you and your family, Kat, and praying for you and baby both!