Category Archives: Spiritual

Happy Hangover

Happy Hangover

So, yesterday was a Feast Day.  Feb 2nd is Candlemas, and the Feast of the Presentation of Jesus at the Temple.  As a gal who loves her some candles, and loves the Nunc Dimittis*, it’s a good Feast Day for Erika.

Andrew, through a quirk of work, got home early.  I’d planned a candlelit dinner of blueberry and chocolate-chip pancakes already (because this holiday?  It was original a pagan holiday to Brigid in Ireland, the patroness of grain…and when Brigid became SAINT Brigid, good Christians of the Celtic persuasion winked at each other and continued to enjoy grain-y goodness for Brigid, I mean for Candlemas.  And the tradition of bringing a candle to the church to be blessed, and then lighting it in your home to ward off evil?  Yeah…pagans again.  I love these Feast days so much.)…woah, where am I?  Right, I’d planned the fun-pancakes-by-candlelight already, but I didn’t think it would be a full family dinner, so yay!

The out of the ordinary fun dinner with the family all together got Andrew and I in a festive mood, and we made Mudslides.  2 shots of vodka, 1 of Kahlua, 1 of milk.  Yum.

Then we had another round.  If you’re counting, we each had 6 shots of alcohol.  This is a bit more than our usual imbibing, and certainly unusual for a school night.  It was a fun night.

And this morning, to no one’s surprise including our own, was rough.  Hangover Hagans, that’s us.

And yet…the memory of last night still makes me smile.  The out of time family connection, the fun of the flickering candles and the over-sweet pancakes, the yummy drinks, and the silliness with Andrew that followed.  We Feasted, not just on food, but on how much we love each other.

So, I don’t adore the headache and such.  I really don’t adore wanting to eat nothing but fried eggs and hashbrowns on top of a pizza, and it being a Friday Fast day instead.  I’m eating these carrots, and my body’s like “NEED FAT TO SURVIVE HANGOVER WHAT IS THIS ROUGHAGE NONSENSE”.

But I’d do it all again.  I’m feeling really happy today.


*Nunc Dimittis is the Song of Simeon, which he sang when, after waiting for eons in the Temple to see the Messiah as Gold told him to do…Jesus was brought in by his parents to be presented.

“Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace according to thy word.For mine eyes have seen thy salvation,Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people;To be a light to lighten the Gentiles and to be the glory of thy people Israel.”

This is one of the canticles for Evensong, and so I’ve sung these words to many different settings many times – and I love them.  Composers tend to really step up on “to be a LIGHT to lighten the Gentiles” – big swelling of emotions right there.

the winter of our discontent

the winter of our discontent

For the first time in my life, I’m eagerly anticipating spring.  Yes, even with the March of Sadness, even with the Lent, even with the rain (which may bring flowers but first brings chilly ennui), even with the Evil Time Change of Newly Dark Mornings, even with all the things I know to be true…


…I just can’t anymore with this winter.  I am always dark and cold and holding myself together by hugging my ribs.  I went to a yoga class last night, and we did fish pose, which I usually kind of feel “meh” about, but last night I realized it was the first time in weeks, in months, maybe since Nov 5th, that I’d opened up my rib cage, my heart, my energy, my spirit, and it felt wonderful.


It hasn’t snowed much, which doesn’t help.  I love the snow.  The magic.  The hush.  A snowstorm uplifts me.  The grey-brown stagnant ground of a mild winter does not.

Our new country of Trumplandia is obviously not helping.

I’ve always been a morning person.  Well, always meaning “when not a grungy teenager”.  I’ve been getting up between 5:30am and 6:30am for the last 5 years, no problem.  With vim.  Loving that quiet time before the rest of the house wakes up.  Even in the dark, cold, winters.

This winter I just…can’t.  I’m pushing it later, and later, and later.  This morning I got up at 7:05, which considering I have to be dressed and taking Isaac to the schoolbus at 7:15, is pretty terrible.  Andrew is getting up before me.  ANDREW, who is *not* in any way a morning person.

But, the other night, I was doing my early evening prayer at 5pm, and I noticed it was still light outside.  Not light enough for me to read my bible without a candle (I’m old school with my early evening prayer), but not pitch black as I looked out the window.

And I felt a flicker of…hope?  Was that hope?  Energy?  Spirit?

The sun gives energy to all living things on this earth.  Maybe this spring, I even with the March, the Lent, the Rain, The Evil Time Change, I can look to the light again.

Like a fish.


Fast Day

Fast Day

Today is a Fast Day for me, and it’s not the hunger that makes it hard, it’s the fog of brain fuzz I’m functioning through.  I take seriously the instructions to maintain outward calm and normalcy while fasting – not to make a show of it – but at work today I’ve trailed off midsentence, simply unable to find the next word.  I keep blinking and cleaning my glasses like that will help.

My fasting isn’t much – I eat vegan/whole grains only, and I don’t snack.  I switch to tea from coffee.  I mean, life could be harder, you know?

Yet.  Fuzz.

I’m trying to link it to prayer, as one should.  In the bible fasting is never mentioned outside of the context of “fasting and praying”.  So, when I look longingly at the cake pop in my office (my workmates keep bringing me cake pops.  I save them up and allow one a day.  It’s madness) or when I catch myself staring blankly off into space, I pray.

Dear God.  I am emptying myself to make room for You.  I am with Jesus in the desert.  A-men.

Let’s just hope I don’t get Friday-Fired in the near future…