Please Pray

Please Pray

Please pray for Dwija and her family.

Her little Nicholas Robert Borobia went home to Jesus on Monday, July 15th at the tender age of 21 weeks and 3 days gestation after surviving for seven weeks without amniotic fluid.

Dwija writes:

He had tiny ears and long fingers, just like his big brother Paul.

We all miss him so.  Please pray for us.

Merciful Father, grant them all peace.

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  • This is a little embarrassing, but I used to watch the OC, one of the few shows I’ve ever watched regularly. I really enjoyed the relationship of the main parents (Kristin and Sandy, I think. It’s been a while). There was plenty of conflict- parenting teens, family issues, neighbors, jobs, and despite their surreal soap opera life, they really felt like real people, doing their best, together. It helped that dad wasn’t a buffoon, unlike most of television.

  • Kathryn, Oops. I did know that. I read them all when I was little. I was careless when cutting and pasting.

  • +JMJ+

    I was a sort-of fan of “The O.C.” too, Michelle! (I say “sort-of” not to be dismissive, but to say that I definitely liked it but did not prioritise watching it regularly the way a real fan would.) These days, when I sing it’s praises, it’s usually to say that the unrelated Seth and Ryan act more like brothers than some “real” TV brothers do, because they never swapped girlfriends. One thing I hate about a lot of teen shows is that everybody will eventually date everybody else, with no respect for history or other people’s feelings. But Seth and Ryan (and Summer and Marissa) seemed to understand implicitly that you just don’t go after your brother or best friend’s ex because it’s what will make you happy at the time.

    * * * * *

    Melanie, this is a great list that got me thinking! I’ll have to scan my bookshelves tomorrow to see if I can come up with more.

    Would you, by any chance, remember our discussion about Meg Murry-O’Keefe? When her daughter Polly takes over as a protagonist, two different older women hint that Meg and Calvin’s marriage isn’t as happy as it seems—that Meg is letting her single-minded scientist husband drag her from island to island because keeping her family together is the only way she can compete with her mother’s achievements. And one of them predicts that Meg will shock Calvin someday, when she has finally had enough and decides to leave him.

    I’m a little surprised that the Bullstrodes of “Middlemarch” didn’t make this list. Yes, the husband is one of the worst characters, but the way his wife forgives him and stands by him is beautiful.

  • Michelle, the buffoon dad trope drives me crazy too.

    Enbrethiliel, I was hoping you’d jump in. I’m sure you’ll come up with titles I’ve missed here.

    I’d have to read the Polly books again. Do you think we are supposed to trust the negative older women or are they meant to be nasty=spirited gossips, or just the kind of women who can’t understand why a smart woman like Meg might prefer to shelf her own ambitions to support her husband and raise her children?

    I’m pretty sure Middlemarch did come up in the Facebook discussion. I might have missed it. Yes, even though the marriages are unhappy, perhaps we can say that looking at the ways they are unhappy can help us to see the things t avoid. And yes, Mrs Bulstrode’s forgiveness is truly beautiful. I

  • +JMJ+

    Given that one of the women who criticises Meg is her own mother, I think we’re supposed to take her analysis seriously. =( I personally think this selling short of a really great character is the lowest point in L’Engle’s series.

  • Several years ago, my family liked to watch a show called “Joan of Arcadia.” The main character was a 16/17-year-old girl, but her parents actually played a fairly major role and got their own plot arcs and stuff. The mom and dad had to deal with family health problems, financial/empolyment issues, differences in how they approach religion… (I am being vague here so as not to give spoilers). They’re not a perfectly happy and harmonious couple at any point, but they’re also not one of those couples who are always arguing or who seem to despise each other. (And the dad is definitely not a buffoon. smile)

    Disclaimer: The series is intended for teens and up, and I can’t make any promises you won’t be scandalized. My parents watched it with us, though, and I don’t recall there being any extremely awkward moments. You’re an adult, make your own choices, etc.

    Disclaimer 2: Season 1 is good; Season 2 is sporadic in quality, and then the series was cancelled altogether. So it might not be as satisfying as a book that wraps up neatly or something of that sort.

  • I’m so glad you mentioned Amelia Peabody!  I later learned that Barbara Mertz (aka Elizabeth Peters) began this series as a married woman, and continued it after her divorce.  I was so impressed that she didn’t let the fallout in her personal life ruin the happy marriage of her protagonist!

    Also there are Jan Karon’s Mitford books, which begin with a bachelor Episcopal priest beset by eligible middle aged women, and continue with him as a (happily) married man.  If you haven’t tried them – do!  Also Katherine Valentine’s novels, which don’t have any particular couple at the center, but do have many happily married couples in them.

    It is hard to find role models outside of real life.  And thus, sometime hard to persuade twenty-somethings that marriage is worth it.  I had a young woman tell me last week that marriage is a “stupid institution” – she had had a glass or two of wine and was upset about a friend’s divorce (after about a year of marriage, but several years of living together).  But I suspect these are her current sentiments, although she is too polite to say so most of the time.

  • Sojourner, I never watched Joan of Arcadia, but I remember hearing good things about it.

    Scotch Meg, That is interesting. I devoured Elizabeth Peters books when I was younger. Such fun. I’m guessing they are still a little mature for Bella, but someday….

    I’ve never tried the Mitford books, but they’ve been recommended so often that I think I shall have to someday.

    The more I think about it, the stranger the dearth of role models seems. And the more critical it seems to when now more children are being born out of wedlock and being raised in households that are not composed of a married father and mother and children. As you say, many people don’t even understand why they might want to be married. And even those who do want to try for marriage may not know how to go about it.

  • I think there is a basic problem with sound marriages in modern literature: we don’t know how to write hopeful books these days.  That is, we don’t know how to write a book with a sense of the world’s underlying purpose – even if a particular story’s character ends badly, the world itself will end well (in God’s good time).

    I did remember a few other examples.  In children’s literature, look at the families in “Sun Slower, Sun Faster”.  Some of Madeleine Polland’s books also model good marriages, in particular, “The Queen’s Blessing” and “To Kill a King” – the marriage in question is that of St. Margaret of Scotland.  In adult nonfiction, look at “Karen” and “With Love from Karen” by Marie Killilea (if you can find them!) and also the von Trapps in “The Story of the Trapp Family Singers.”  These were all books that led me toward the Catholic Church when my parents’ marriage was getting worse and worse, precisely because the families in these books seemed to believe in God (and act like it!) outside the hour at church on Sunday.

  • I think maybe it’s impossible to write hopeful books if we ourselves don’t have hope.

    Oh I’d thought of the Von Trapps the other day and forgot to write it down. I haven’t actually read the book, but I’ve heard it’s good. My sister-in-law, Patti, is in love with The Sound of Music and all things Von Trapp.

    I haven’t read any Madeleine Polland but that sounds fascinating.

  • Oh I just thought of another one that might bear looking at. Sixpence in Her Shoe by Phyllis McGinley. A very funny look at motherhood and family life.

  • Mr & Mrs Quimby from Beverly Clearly’s Ramona series. Great example of a family that has hardships, but clearly values each other.

  • Love’Mrs. Mike’ by a couple, last name Freeman. Fantastic story about a teenage girl who marries a Canadian Mountie and grows up as a wide and mother. The way the marriage deepens throughout the book, when she has to take the hard choice for marriage, is amazing. There is an abortion in it, discovered by the main character, but so vaguely written that I only realized what happened upon reading it as an adult. It’s not promoted in anyway, but just so you know.