Acedia at Eastertide

Acedia at Eastertide

I keep forgetting that it’s Easter and have been praying the Angelus at noon and six instead of the Regina Coeli. This small forgetfulness seems to me emblematic of my mood since last week. I can’t quite wrap my mind around the fact that Easter came despite my not attending any of the Triduum services.

Easter Sunday felt like just another Sunday. Sure there were more people and more flowers. Our wonderful cantor sang the Sequence so beautifully for just a minute I felt something like the Easter thrill I remember from former years. But there was the single entrance hymn with Alleluias and the rest were the usual collection of blah, blah, blah. Can’t we offer up anything more beautiful that the usual dreck on Easter at least? Is this really as good as it gets?

I love spending the holidays with family. And I hate it. All the kids get off their schedule—and I do too. They eat too much sugar and candy and desserts and not enough real food—and I do too. I don’t get my introvert recharge time. Because we’ve been rushing to get out the door the house is a mess. Monday morning dawned with Saturday night’s dishes still in the sink and on the stove. The floor was littered with Easter grass and egg shells and bits of foil candy wrapper and all the spring dirt and mud that the kids weren’t tracking in during the long winter.

Or perhaps it’s that I’m so dissatisfied with my own spiritual progress during Lent that I want a do over. I don’t feel like I’m a better person for having slogged through those forty days. In fact, I feel like I’ve backslid. Despite my New Year’s Resolution to make it to confession at least once a month, I didn’t make it to confession at all during the month of March. I didn’t finish my Lenten reading. I didn’t fast enough. I didn’t pray enough. I feel like I am less patient, less kind, less the wife and mother I want to be.

Or maybe it’s that I told myself the lack of sleep was part of my Lenten penance. And now it’s Easter and I’m not sleeping any better. Which is funny because now Ben is sleeping eight hours at a stretch in the office. But he wakes up between 3:30 and 4:30 every morning and I can’t get back to sleep. That really throws me off. So for whatever reason I don’t feel any more rested or less exhausted. (It’s quite possible the fatigue is in large part responsible for the meaner, less patient me. But I feel like I should be able to defy my body, my hormones and my exhaustion and still be sweet and smiling and the soul of patience.)

I went to the doctor for a medication check on my thyroid on Tuesday and he asked the expected question: Did I seem to be feeling better? I replied that, well, the medicine could very well be working perfectly but I can’t tell. I can’t remember the last time I got a good night’s sleep. It’s been months and months. I feel sure if I could just catch two or three good nights in a row things would really seem much, much easier, much brighter. He told me to go check myself into a hotel and get some good sleep. As if.

The sun is out, it’s ninety degrees today. And yet for whatever reason I’m not feeling the Easter joy. I feel dusty, dry, flat. I have a headache.

Here’s the place where I’m supposed to pull off a neat little twist about how joy isn’t about feelings and how Jesus rose whether I feel it or not. Or something like that. But I’m all out of positive feel-good messages right now.

I don’t feel much like blogging at all, really. But I’m hoping that by writing I may be able to purge this acedia demon. And maybe I can stop feeling envy of everyone else’s Easter. And maybe I can kick the impulse to leave melancholy notes on everyone else’s blog. Also, I feel a little guilty that this space is as dusty and neglected as every other corner of my life. And I feel vaguely like I owe someone somewhere an explanation, an apology.

I probably shouldn’t post this. I don’t want to get lots of well-meaning but unhelpful advice and posts like this seem to make people feel like they need to offer something. Still, its written, I might as well put it up. And maybe there’s someone else out there feeling the same way and reading this will help them out.

Join the discussion

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

1 comment
  • Glad to hear you are feeling a bit better. Sleep always makes such a big difference for me. Lately I’ve been accidentally falling asleep when I get Elizabeth asleep even while the other two are awake and playing.
    Elizabeth still wakes up a few times each night but she is also currently getting her two upper teeth, so I can’t really blame her if she is grumpy or having trouble sleeping.
    If I lived closer I’d offer a play-date or something but, living as far away as I do, I don’t know much more I can do besides pray.
    Just keep swimming. smile