Monday, April 20, 2009

Fun with covering my head

So I'm back from a moderately long blogging absence. Have I said before that we bought a 100 year old house and could probably spend the next five to ten years working on it? I've been trying to complete some projects around the house, and whenever I do that, I run out of time to blog. But, here goes...

I wrote in January about my decision to start wearing a chapel veil to Mass and I thought I'd give an update on my experience thus far. Here is the unfortunate fact: Like clockwork, I secretly hope I have forgotten the veil every time I land in the pews at Mass. But it's always there along with an arsenal of bobby pins that magically never get lost at the bottom of my purse, and I'm going to keep wearing it. It's a little like going to confession. Do I genuinely like that I have to do it? No. Is it necessary and good? Yes. The veil tends to slowly slip off during Mass and our 9 month old is, um, learning to keep his hands and mouth away from it. (There is one advantage to this- my husband will hold the baby to keep him away from the veil). But my biggest complaint on the veil is entirely due to my own sinful nature: I feel conspicuous. I wonder if other people notice the veil and disapprove because I remember my own shocked reaction when I saw a woman wearing a veil at the first parish we were members at--'Oh. My. Goodness. what does she have on her head?'

As a general rule, I do not like the spotlight. I do not mind things like public speaking when I know exactly what I'm going to say beforehand, but when it's just me, raw and unrehearsed, I feel completely jumbled. It's probably why I am not a very prolific blogger-- I'm too timid to let people see my 'writing out loud' as I once heard blogging described as. I prefer to edit and re-edit, which takes time, and I don't have much of that.

But back to the veil: In my mind, because I decided to veil as an act of submission to the Lord, wearing the veil is a little hurdle of faithfulness that I am challenged to sail over every week that I find helpful. If I can't suffer the tiniest bit of uncomfortableness for Jesus (poor, poor self-image), much zeal do I really have? For me, covering my head is an interior genuflection that lasts the entire Mass. It would be nice to get over my self-consciousness, and to believe that no one really cares what I have on my head, but if I don't, I guess I will continue to be privileged to suffer. I've noticed that Catholicism has a long-standing tradition of embracing suffering, and for good reason: Jesus did. Someday I'm going to write about it. Maybe later this week if I get the kitchen painted!

Quotable Monday

"It's a little-known fact that the real business of parenting is the upbringing of the parent."

-Polly Berrien Berends, author and childhood expert