Today I was accosted with too many ideas to even try and condense into a single post. From looking at the relationship between Islam and Christianity, to questioning one’s beliefs, assimilating and finding home links, the ability to ride my bike again, the beauty of taking a sunshine walk, awkward texts, writing letters. So much. But, maybe it’s generic of me, however, I am aware that today is ‘Shrove Tuesday’. Shrove coming from the Medieval word ‘shrive’ which is to confess one’s sins before entering into the period of Lent, fasting, letting go of worldly desires and focusing in on God before we reach Easter.
Often people give up chocolate, fast food, smoking, sex, gossiping etc. I always find these types of fasting, not contrite but another word in the english language which I don’t know. I don’t really have ‘addictions’ or cravings for such things as those listed above. In primary and secondary school i used to Fast, but then I’d spend the whole day focusing on when I broke my fast which would be followed by unwarranted gorging of foods as though I was suffering from a daily acute famine. I think I probably focused less on God in those days than when I wasn’t fasting.
I am someone however, who likes to be in control of themselves. Not necessarily situations but in control over myself. I just recently finished a year of not eating meat because I come from a culture which doesn’t seem to understand the concept that chicken + rice is not an absolute for every meal. I wanted to be in control of what i was eating: to regain the choice to eat or not eat meat. I gave up Facebook during exam periods – and was sorely unimpressed by the relatively minor backlog of notifications: it was then i realised how unimportant I was to my friends *enter self-pitying music*.
But I’ve spent the day thinking about how to shrive myself. I confess, I lack a lot of control. If there is a biscuit on the table blink and it will be in my tummy. If I smell a yum yum and have 99p in my pocket, I shall leave said store with a crumpled receipt and an already opened plastic box.
A friend suggested giving up makeup – but it isn’t something i depend on. Maybe i should give it up. Yet i feel as it isn’t a crux in my life and I regularly do the au naturel look ( let’s be honest, those 15 minutes putting on eyeliner et al, is a quarter of an hour in the comfort of my pillows.) it wouldn’t be a major sacrifice.
So, how will i prepare myself for this Lent period. I don’t think I’ve really given it much thought, which is ironic considering it’s something i should be dedicating myself to mind, body and soul.
But, for the next 40 days and 40 nights, i think, no, I will…imperatives are coming out…give up…
something personal to be shared between myself and God.