Lent began yesterday and I’ve been struggling with what I want to sacrifice this year. I’m sure by now it comes as no surprise that I’m Catholic, so you could assume that every year I give up something for 40 days, and that would be true.
Before I start though, did you know Lent is actually 46 days? It is only 40 days if you don’t include Sundays. That is why some people believe that Sundays don’t count for your sacrifice.
According to Catholic.com, which seems to be a pretty legit source, “the penances are lifted on Sunday, because every Sunday is an Easter celebration.” That little fact would have made my life easier a few years ago.
So back to my dilemma of what to give up.
One year I gave up all junk food. Anyone who has had a meal with me knows that was quite the sacrifice. (I lost five pounds and didn’t change anything else about my lifestyle. That tells you how much junk food I really eat.) Anyway, I’ve been there, done that and, for the past month, I’ve had a bet with my friend that I couldn’t last without cookies. I have, but I’m ready for that bet to be over. Plus, Girl Scout cookies will be released soon so, giving up food is out.
I’ve also considered committing to exercise twice a week. Again, you’d think that is a given, but my life adds up to weird hours and no dedication to the gym. I really like to keep my Lenten promise, so that’s out, too. I will attempt to continue going to power yoga though.
One year I decided to give someone an honest compliment every day. I did it successfully, but I got tired of it and everyone just returned the compliment which made theirs and mine seem fake. If I tell you I like your haircut, you don’t have to look me over and decide to settle on “liking” my coat. I’m not a Facebook status, no need to fake like me.
I’d love to give up listening to T-Pain. I can admit that “I’m on a Boat” was a good song the first ten times I heard it. The next 390, were less enjoyable. But that could never happen. The other editors would prevent me from keeping that promise even an hour into Lent.
Out of my own Lenten ideas, Google searches resulted in a few suggestions: French fries, swearing, smoking, drinking pop and reading the newspaper.
French fries are OK, but not a staple. Smoking would be a challenge, but only for people who smoke. Swearing is something I definitely do more now than when I was in high school, but still not that frequently. As for reading the newspaper, I don’t think that would be my best decision since I’m so involved with this thing we call The Carroll News.
Drinking pop is a realistical possibility. I have more pop in a day than any other drink. There are no redeeming values to drinking pop, except that it keeps you awake when you forget to do your homework or are working on the newspaper. But, I think I could learn to do without. I will not consume pop for the next 40 days. If I start to shake or look miserable, you can assume Lenten pop withdrawl has set in. I’ll grow accustomed, but until then I better learn to like coffee.