Pret ~ a manger

Last week when I was at ISC I got called back from London by the school ~ it was thought that my last born had a suspected case of 2nd time around Chicken Pox.  I have to admit being over 2 hours away I panicked ~ and made them do the glass test ~ imagining the worst ~ that another bout of HSP had befallen her.  It hadn’t.  What looked most definitely like Chicken Pox all up one arm and over her belly button ~ which had suddenly appeared throughout the morning whilst at school ~ resided itchy but dormant for 7 days before disappearing.

However on Sunday on the way home from a beautiful refreshing God Blessed dog walk with the children along the sea-front, Eliza after browsing through the window of her favourite itsy shop suddenly wanted to leave and get home as quickly as possible.  She had come over extremely weak with severe stomach cramps.  She went down hill very quickly. Adrenalin always kicks in at this stage (ever since I found my twin baby boy, blue in his crib.)

I phoned the emergency out of hours doctor, where these days they insist on asking you a thousand questions.  However the girl on the end of the line could hear my daughter crying and whimpering uncomfortably in the background, and during the 10 minute phone call she was getting progressively worse ~ she was bent doubled up in pain, half on and half off the bed.  The girl could hear her distress and said “Im calling an ambulance” ~ I said “No, I am driving her to the hospital myself right now.”   And I left with my child and a mixing bowl.

En route she was sick 4 times.  At the hospital she was sick at least ten times.  Poor tiny darling had to be given a saline solution of 6 mls every 5 minutes for 3 hours.  I had to monitor every bout of sickness and every passing of urine and bowel movement.  We spent that whole day in hospital only being released at night time.  Ive had enough of hospitals for a life time.  This week she was there for Gastroenteritis ~ Last week for HSP ~  The month before that she put her tooth through her lip.  Before that it was Maria, and before Maria it was endless bouts of childhood croup ~ usually in the damp winter months ~ usually out of doctors hours ~ late on a Saturday evening ~ in the accident and emergency department ~ with the drunks!

I Am tired of hospitals.

I Am grateful for hospitals ~ and all of the angels that work in them.

My last born was off of school for a week since the spots first appeared. This week we especially had quality down-time together ~ just being in the present moment ~ and most often in the stillness ~ grateful that we could enjoy each others precious company and comfort during the daytime.  She returned to school this Thursday.

All this was on top of an already catastrophic few weeks.

Yesterday I had to make myself go to London.  I knew I would be passing close by to Mary Moorefields Catholic Church near London’s Liverpool Street Station, and so I informed the Medaille Trust that I would put the Josephine Bakhita + Our Lady’s prayer cards for anti-slavery on display there ~ for people to take ~ along with the few Medaille Trust Magazines which I had in my possession.  I didn’t have the heart to throw them all away. Me being invisible The Medaille Trust didn’t respond ~ however on Wednesday their IT chap mistakenly phoned me from Caritas ~ to put me online? (tricky conversation that one.)

Having trusted this was ok, I entered the church and laid the prayer cards upon the back table.  I notice a woman in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament  ~  and as I noticed her, my eyes were then drawn to a movement on the opposite side of the isle in horizontal alignment to a pew.  It seemed as if in slow motion and yet simultaneously like a scene unfolding in a reel of film ~ that at the same time as I had laid out the prayer cards ~ my voice opened ~ and before I knew it I had offered the homeless person a cup of coffee. This in itself is not unusual as I have intentionally done this before again and again and again ~ but this time it was different in that it was spontaneous.

The man was wearing an all in one, dull, grey kind of inner fleecy lining for a snowsuit ~ like a big onesie ~ his shoes were removed, his feet were bare and I have the image of them being wrapped in rags ~ however I think this is the image from my old blog.  He turned to me and said “Instead of a coffee can I have something to eat?” I said “Yes sure ~ you wait here and I will bring it back to you.”  I didn’t want him to have to come out into the cold ~ He began to put his shoes on as if to get up and follow me ~ and I rushed out.

The closest food shop is Pret a Manger ~ It’s mega expensive to buy hot foot in there ~ but today I had caught the later train, and I didn’t have enough time to go elsewhere ~ so I joined the long queue behind all the city gents who were waiting in line to be served, browsing the food counter to see what hot nourishing food I could buy the homeless man ~ and then it suddenly dawned on me that I hadn’t even had the respect to ask him what he wanted (or even if he ate meat) ~ he had darker skin and looked like he was of middle eastern origin ~ he was of slight build and looked like he hadn’t eaten a decent meal in ages.

As I am waiting in the queue ~ he suddenly appeared walking past the glass window of the restaurant ~ My insides panic as I flash-back to my time at Heythrop when a homeless man with mental issues charged into a shop after me, screaming and swearing whilst I was buying him a coffee.  I try to look discreet, however my long hair and hat are a complete give-away.  The homeless chap enters Pret in his onesie amongst all the suits, and makes his way straight over to me, now almost at the front of the queue. I take a deep breath and ask him if he eats meat.  He asks for a cake ~ I say “You need something more nourishing.” All the suits are looking at him as he peers into the glass counter.  They are polite and don’t make us feel uncomfortable ~ but they are looking.

In confidence I hand a panini to the lady at the till, and ask her for a cup of tea and a cake as she looks back at me ~ I am awaiting her rejection of the situation ~ and I look directly into her eyes.  As we are waiting the lady ask me  “Are you eating in or taking out?”  I turn to the man and ask him what he wants to do.  He asks to eat in.  As he waits at the counter for the tea to be made, and the panini to be cooked, I chat to him and I ask him if he sleeps in the church ~ His English is poor ~ and I cant make out if he is allowed to sleep there over night or not.  He says “my socks and shoes are still wet.”  I tell him to “try and find a radiator to put them on to dry.”

I ask to pay for the goods quickly as I need to leave to get to ISC in time ~ It’s almost £8 ~ Today I will have a Fast day.

I turn to the man shake his hand and gently look at him and say ~ “Have a good day my friend ~ God Bless.”  And with the suits looking on, I leave.

And I thank God with my whole being in that moment ~ for blessing me.

Because just yesterday for the first time in over 2 years I didn’t even feel like being here. There is little motivation anymore.

Im not doing very well I’m afraid ~ I appear to have spun off the spiritual cliff edge expecting Him to catch me  ~  and no one did!

Just yesterday I had written “Im supposed to be at ISC tomorrow and I don’t feel like turning up.”  One term deep into my 3rd year and so far I haven’t missed one session.

In fact I don’t feel like doing anything anymore ~ I can’t see the point to anything what so ever.

Most of all I feel as if I’ve lost my very special worship space.

Not going to Mass doesn’t serve me well ~ neither does going and feeling ruined by the Catholic Church.

I Am not sure what to do anymore.

And yet God is here ~ looking back at me all the while ~ holding me in His presence ~ as if expecting me to look deep enough into Him, that I might see what He is trying to tell me.

Only there is silence and I can’t hear anything.


About mags

Beloved apostle of His Soul x
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