For the girls, and of course for us, this type of activities open up our heart to other´s people pain and suffering. To the reality that even though we live in our own little perfect place, reality is different. There is real suffering in the world and it is sometimes very near us. Yet is easier to look away, but who would we become if we live our life evading the ugly, or the lonely?
The teachers at school told the girls that we were going to pray the Via Crucis with the elder, and that then they would have to entertain them with their own talent. Us moms who volunteered to go just had to provide them with breakfast.
Their stories... I don´t know them, by looking into their eyes you can see some pain, some resignation, but there is also some light, and hope and love....
Lent, which begins on Ash Wednesday, 40 days before Easter, for us Catholics, a season of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. People might believe that when we talk about fasting it means not eating... but no, fasting can mean giving up anything that we love for Love, or doing good for others even if it hurts.
Catholic or not, I think we can all agree that the world is suffering from a great indifference towards others. We are living in times were the satisfaction of our own desires is what drives society, and unfortunately is making us less and less human.
Pope Francis in his annual Lenten message, described this phenomenon as the globalization of indifference... “whenever our interior life becomes caught up in its own interests and concerns, there is no longer room for others, no place for the poor. God’s voice is no longer heard, the quiet joy of his love is no longer felt, and the desire to do good fades.” He continues that, “We end up being incapable of feeling compassion at the outcry of the poor, weeping for other people’s pain, and feeling a need to help them, as though all this were someone else’s responsibility and not our own.”
“How greatly I desire that all those places where the Church is present may become islands of mercy in the midst of the sea of indifference!” said the Pope.
On that note, The girls´ school planned for our six graders to visit a local Church that takes on old people from nearby poor neighborhoods, and give them a day a week of warmth and hospitality. They count on people that contribute with food, medicines, or just plain and simple time to care for them, and give them some love. And so every Thursday a group of courageous ladies from the Church, gather to care for this group of elders, without and prejudice and eager to give them a smile, arms to hold them, feet to help them walk, and maybe a shoulder to lean on.
I can´t even begin to tell you how much effort I had to put into containing my heart and tears from exploding at seeing the girls give so much love to the ´abuelitos¨... some grabbed the microphone and sang theri heart out solo, all of them put together a song repertoire which they sang like angels, others did gymnastics, they played the cuatro and the flute, did some stand up comedy, and ended up the morning with this massive happy dance! What amazed me the most... or maybe what really got to me the most was seeing how humble they were, how unselfishly they went out there and pour themselves out to them.
It keeps coming back to me how similar old people are from the young, how easily entertained, how full of life they can be, how easy it is to smile at love! It is in us, the not so old and maybe not so young in age, to pray to God to keep our hearts young, to give ourselves to others just for the sake of giving, to be merciful, and graceful, and to teach our children to be better than us... to ¨be¨ a part of this world, to find their smile in the smile of other.
I ended up their morning running inside the Church before driving the girls back to school, to thank God for this amazing chance of again finding happiness in the smile of others, and to help me and my family be an island of mercy in a sea of indifference...
am joining my friend Tamar at
Have a great week!
¨People often consider walking on water or thin air a miracle. But I think the real miracle is not to walk either on water or in thin air, but to walk the earth. Everyday we are engaged in a miracle which we don´t even acknowledge a blue sky, white clouds, green leaves, the black and curious eyes of a child... our own two eyes. All is a miracle.¨ Thich Nhat Hanh
Oh I wish I could walk around always looking through the eyes of a child!
Today, this is the miracle I choose to live, my baby girl walking around our block, a beautiful flower that matches Ari, a flower that wakes up and goes to sleep everyday... a walk guided by my baby´s footsteps! So simple yet so hard to see!
Yes!!!!... lets dance!!! turn it uuuup!!!! and then with our latest favorite song ¨Sugar¨, of lets say Emi´s crush... Adam Levine... we danced.. and twirled and laughed! and just like that we celebrated a simple, ordinary yet so extraordinary day!
I am a dreamer, I believe in fairy tales, I believe in love and I believe in friendship, and I think life is beautiful... and yet am human and also get caught up in Monday to Friday routines, tight schedules... and wanting to do nothing weekends. Sometimes I am with my girls, but then again am not really... sometimes as I´ve said before am just rushing by. Then this last week (fortunately this little story am about to write has a happy ending and it was just a moment of fear) I felt a little bump in my breast that scared the sh... out of me, and just like that time stopped, it froze, everything shut down, everything turned quite for a day....
As positive as I am, in situations like this I always fear the worse. I don´t even want to say all the things that crossed my mind that day, but let´s say I just panicked at the thought of not being here for my girls in the little ordinary moments of our everyday life, which a lot of times we take for granted... like braiding hair in the morning, driving to school, or praying with the girls at night, or being asked about a million times which outfit works best for whatever occasion, bathing Ari, rocking her to sleep, talking about their days, and friends and homework... sitting there to watch Emi dance, while Ari is playing around and Ale is on her hands. I thought about all the times we sing to the top of our lungs, and dance like crazy people in the car, I thought about Emi´s headaches, how she kisses me a million times a day, and Ale´s teenager mood swings, and how no matter what she´ll always crack a smile for me.... I didn´t think about special days, or special occasions, or vacations... I just thought about what makes our life real and ours... Fortunately the bump was nothing, and I have thanked God on my knees for that. I thanked Him with all my might for being able to be here raising my girls, for being healthy, and also for having been able to stop for a day and again put things into perspective, in their rightful order.
And with that in mind... we gathered our girls on Sunday and drove to the beach. The Caribbean is only a mere 3 tunnel and 30 minute drive, yet.... we often forget is there, not this time!
have a great week! and don´t forget to stop and breath... breath it all in, or breath it all out!
Life is a special occasion.... cherish every moment, every kiss, every tear, every laugh... cherish the little and the big..... and you know what?!?! dance, let go and celebrate, jump, run, kiss somebody.... you are alive!
Ale has been my little artist since she first grabbed a pencil when she was around one. I have always taken her to art lessons, but they were more about interpreting art than about real technique, the good thing about this classes was that they were one block away from our home, so they were painless for me! My uncle had tried impatiently for maybe over a year for me to change her to a more advanced class but I always told him that she had all her days tied up with gymnastics and that I was not going to take her to another class on Saturdays which meant another day of hurrying people up. So he took it upon himself to take her every Saturday morning to this amazing class where again she says is one of her happiest places in the whole world and her favorite time of her week, and where she is definitely showing off her true talent! So thank you Tio Alberto for never giving up, and thank you God for this very precious gift you have given to my Ale!
This is her latest work in progress...
Friday night movie with pizza, popcorn and our girls!... more than fun I would say is a blessing!
After a whole week of taxiing the girls around Caracas, we got home early on Friday, and as I was sitting there watching the girls do their thing on the trampoline I was rewarded with this beautiful sunset.... which felt to me like God´s way of saying... ¨Keep it up mom!¨... it was really picture perfect!
Hope you all have a great week!
Today am joining Tamar at:
Lately I have been kind of like in an uncreative state.... I feel my writing muse is on a break. There is something that I have not been able to put words to that is screaming inside me to get out. And it screams louder everytime I am with my oldest daughter Alessia. Up to now, I have been living my life in a world of endless childhood, I have been the best mom, the coolest, the cure it all, know it all mom, the one that they run to with whatever question, or joy, or problem they want to share. I have been needed for anything and everything for the last 12 years. But now, it seems as Ari is the only one that doesn´t shy away from the camera and the only one always super excited to be with me, well and Emi is still there too... always sweet and wanting.
During all this years, days have been long, but years so short. I have become immerse in a world of games, and joyfulness, and 24 hour shifts. I have become the most patient person on this planet and the most impatient at times too, and creativity has taken over me for explaining life´s challenges to my girls. I think that I have been a mom since the day I was born, still... it has changed me and shaped me into the woman I am today. My happiness is pretty much intertwined to being a mother... I have many things I could be, and maybe I am many other things, but what I feel I am, what describes me as a human being, the one thing that gives me the most joy and feelings of realization, is being a mom, not an architect, not an MBA, or a blogger, just a mom....
Motherhood is hard, is not always picture perfect, or blogabble. I have sometimes thought of it as a prayer to God, as something spiritual where I have given my life and body to a my children... I have given my hands for them to hold, my shoulders for them to cry on, or sleep on, my laps for sitting, and my body just for snuggling them. So when Ale is starting to somehow break away from me.. and start being her own self, when I am not needed to sing for her to fall asleep, when I see her dreaming of her future, when I see the beautiful woman she is becoming words stop coming easily to me. I Know I am happy, and it feels like so far we have done a good job, but it is also overwhelming to see how life is again shifting, and how fast it goes, and how nothing ever stays the same. I try to keep the part of her childhood of holding her close intact and we often hug and kiss and kiss again as we always have... but I know that she now needs more form me, not just a loving mom to teach her the basics in life, but a mother to teach her how to be a strong, sweet, intelligent and loving woman. It scares me a little, and has made me rethink the way I mother her. Hopefully, my example says more than my words, because with her I am a little short on words lately!
Well, anyways, I might not be making much sense today... but maybe tomorrow I will... and maybe just maybe am doing just fine with my first baby girl!
I told her I just wanted to compare our eyes....
The mountain is a national park, so the only thing you will find there is peace and quite, nature and breathtaking sights, and a few restaurants! If you have a SUV you can go up yourself or you can ride a jeep that takes you up. You get to see Caracas when you first start going up and the views are really amazing.
We often get so caught up in living that we forget to live! I live in a very chaotic city, and I when I say chaotic I don´t mean ¨NYC chaotic, I mean really bad chaos in its truest definition... We are going through the most difficult political, economical and social situation in the history of Venezuela. Our president is as incompetent as they get, and his politics are turning him quickly into a dictator. We have what you could call a war economy where even though most products can be found, it may take multiple trips to various stores and the frustration of standing in long lines to get them. Rumors tend to dominate street and family conversations. And the worst part is that as of now Venezuela is ranked one of the most dangerous cities in the world, forcing us to stay a lot inside. This in a very very small summary.
But.... life goes on, and still Venezuela is a stunningly beautiful country, and we tend to be positive people, and life will not wait for things to get better. We have families to tend to, and happy childhoods to give to our children, and marriages to follow through. We cannot stand still and just sob over things we cannot control. Challenges make us stronger, make us grow... make us tough. We cannot control everything, but we can decide how we live.
Friday was one of our friends birthday and we were invited to go to El Avila for lunch. El Avila is the mountain that surrounds Caracas and which you have often seen in my posts.
Once you get to the top of the mountain, this is the view you have! It is absolutely perfect, breathtaking... you leave Caracas on one side and when you start going down you can see the sea, our beautiful and so rewarding Caribbean sea! And right there, at that perfect spot, is this little perfect restaurant that makes you feel as if you were having lunch on a cloud!
We rarely break away without the girls in tow, but once in a while is so necessary! We are usually able to reconnect and grow our marriage and family at the same time... but when you take a break once in a while, you do remember that time for yourself and with your husband is also needed to be a great family and a good mom... And being able to see this sunset with your love is so worth the time!
And see... just posting this pictures and seeing this sunset again made me forget the chaos that I started talking about... and finished feeling blessed, and happy, and hopeful and in love!
Have a great week you guys!!
Hi! my name is Carolina Perisse de Rico, I am a stay at home architect with the biggest project ever... my girls! The oldest is 13, then I have an 11 year old, and now I am starting again with our three year old happiest toddler ever. Glad you are here, hope you stay a while!
Am now a member of Communal Global!!!