Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By by Tara K. E. Brelinsky

5/13/2014 (7 months ago)

Blessings In Brelinsky (brelinskyville.blogspot.com/)

Thank you God for protecting Pio.

Standing there in the chapel, I looked around at those 8 bowed heads and counted my blessings by name. And I thought, this is the good stuff of family life. The reality checks that keep us grounded. The events which drop us to our knees in petition. The gifts which swell our hearts with gratitude. Countless opportunities to practice patience and forgiveness. And the chance to turn our dirty sock-strewn, toy-riddled, noisy home into a domestic church within which precious souls are formed and made ready.

Babies are draw to stairs like a magnet.

Babies are draw to stairs like a magnet.

Highlights

By by Tara K. E. Brelinsky

Blessings In Brelinsky (brelinskyville.blogspot.com/)

5/13/2014 (7 months ago)

Published in Blog

Keywords: accident, fall, parenting, gratitude, adoration, children, thanksgiving, domestic church, God, faith


ZEBULON, NC - Doing the baby jig at the rear of the adoration chapel, I glanced down at the book of thanksgiving. Perusing the list of gratis for health and healing, family and friends, my eyes were drawn to two lines in particular. The familiar scratching of P. I. O. called my attention. Truly this wasn't the first time my nine month old's name has been sprawled in childish print in that book, but on this day he was mentioned in two consecutive entries.

Thank you God for protecting Pio.
For keeping Pio safe.

Instantly I jumped back in time to that late morning less than two weeks ago.

Crouching on the family room floor next to the coffee table while attempting to finish grading a lesson, my second eldest son had me stop and proofread his assignment. With my hands baby-free for a few minutes I felt like I was actually making headway in keeping the school day on track so this interruption wasn't troublesome. It was a good day.

Light a Virtual Prayer Candle for someone you love.

Off in the distance a commotion erupted which I was fully ready to ignore, figuring it was the umpteenth "he did-she did" of the morning. But my son leaped up like a guard dog that's caught whiff of danger and my internal radar said to follow. The next minute (which was really more like ten seconds) felt like a slow motion scene as my brain tried to clue in to what was happening. Five steps in, I watched that son break into a sprint as he flung the dog/baby gate open. Close behind him, my own movements felt less conscious and more reflexive.

Then my ears registered the words, "THE BABY." My body stiffened and my head starting spinning like a twister as I instinctively prepared.

My concern-faced,7 year old son rushed at me and thrust the crying infant into my arms, as he explained that the baby had fallen down our basement stairs. Nausea rose up as I scanned little Pio from head to toe. Running my fingers over his hard skull to feel for lumps, I stared into his dark brown eyes to be sure he was fully coherent. Bending and rubbing chubby limbs, I tried to remember not to overlook any part of him.

The kids were talking rapidly, questioning one another. Fear was palpable.

Sweet Pio was simply happy to be in his usual spot, my arms, and so his crying ended quickly. My jarred nerves were not so rapidly soothed as I spent the remainder of the day on watch trying to decide whether a nap was indeed a routine nap or the signal of a concussion.

By the grace of God alone I managed to remain calm in front of the children although internally I was anything but. I was angry and scared, worried and fearful. However, I knew that the children were watching me for a reaction and it would set the tone for theirs. The child who had accidentally allowed the baby to get out of sight was gripped by remorse and anxiety and there was a delicate balance to be struck to prevent the siblings from laying overwhelming blame.

Once the story unfolded and the pieces were fit together it appeared that the baby had only slipped part of the way down the actually stairs before free falling over the open side of the staircase straight to the hard basement floor. Thankfully, he hit a stack of plastic crates which probably slowed his descent. Standing at the bottom of the steps trying to play detective, I had a distinct sense that Padre Pio had been a party to this event. Hard to explain, I just knew he had been there.

Although I've offered abundant thanks and praise for the blessing of my sweet youngest, that day reminded me again that life is a precious, fragile gift. Without any advanced notice, everything can be rearranged. For as easily as joy can fill us up, just as swiftly sorrow can rush in. Like the thief that comes in the night, a moment can steal away our well-crafted plans.

Reading those scribbled words in the chapel book, it seemed clear that the gravity of the situation had not been lost on even my young ones. Our family life has exposed them to much of the realities of life and clearly the lessons are sinking in. How beautiful it is too, that even though they fuss and fight, they are able to recognize in small ways that we must be thankful in the moment to moment of life together.

Standing there in the chapel, I looked around at those 8 bowed heads and counted my blessings by name. And I thought, this is the good stuff of family life. The reality checks that keep us grounded. The events which drop us to our knees in petition. The gifts which swell our hearts with gratitude. Countless opportunities to practice patience and forgiveness. And the chance to turn our dirty sock-strewn, toy-riddled, noisy home into a domestic church within which precious souls are formed and made ready.


Tara K. E. Brelinsky is a home schooling mother of eight living children, with six more heavenly ones who intercede. Married to her childhood sweetheart, they make their home in North Carolina where they teach Natural Family Planning, grow a garden, raise two dogs, a cat, ducks, roosters and a flock of hens (in addition to all those wonderful kids). Tara studied journalism a lifetime ago in college, but now she writes simply for the the glory of God. You can read more of her musings and inspirations on her blog "Blessings In Brelinskyville" (www.http://brelinskyville.blogspot.com/).

---

personal blog



Comments


More Blog

Triage in the Confessional

Image of Confession heals and makes us whole.

By by Tara K. E. Brelinsky

Last year, at around this same time in Advent, we were sitting in church. Mass having just been celebrated, Monsignor Williams was announcing the upcoming events on the calendar when he invited us all to a penance service. Ever eloquent, his description began to ... continue reading


Who Will Step Up This Christmas and Speak the Truth in Love?

Image of God's love is eternal.

By Michael Seagriff

This is one of the two times each year when, I believe, our Lord most dreads the silence that will envelop far too many of our parishes. Someone needs to give voice to His yearnings. Where is the zeal for the salvation of souls?  What follows is similar to some of ... continue reading


The Pagan Who Helped Build the Catholic Church

Image of Gaius Valerius Diocles was born sometime around the year 244. He took the Roman throne, persecute the early Christians but give the Church its base structure that survives to this day.

By Michael Clark

As we approach the Christmas season and the celebration of the birth of Jesus (and by extension, the Church), we would be remiss if we did not learn more about the pagan who helped give the Church its structure and the means to expand throughout the world: the Emperor ... continue reading


A Simple Reflection on Mary's Fiat

Image of Mary's 'fiat' changed the eternal fate of mankind.

By Michael Seagriff

In today's Gospel (Luke 1:26-38) we hear the angel Gabriel's familiar greeting to our heavenly Mother Mary: 'Hail full of grace'. We repeat that salutation every time we pray the 'Hail Mary.  As a result, we sometimes forget the significance of those words and the ... continue reading


Everything we have is a gift from God!

Image of Give God everything you desire, everything you are fighting to hang on to. Then wait for the Lord. In quiet and in calm, wait for the Lord. 'By waiting and by calm you shall be saved, in quiet and in trust shall be your strength' (Isaiah 30:15).

By Jackie Stammen

Nothing here on this earth is actually ours. Nothing. Our family is not even technically our own - they are on loan to us, a gift from God to help us through life and hopefully make us holy in order to obtain the ultimate gift, Heaven. NASHVILLE, TN - Even though I ... continue reading


When We Lived in the Wild West

Image of A would be burglar caught by police.

By by Tara K. E. Brelinsky

A fierce rage swelled inside of me as I considered the events of that night. My children and quite frankly I were unsettled at the notion that a stranger was casing our house, inventorying our belongings. I was annoyed that my neighbor wasn't free to unload his ... continue reading


Thank You for never giving up on us, Lord

Image of Lord, grasp my heart that I might always seek you and draw closer to You.

By Jackie Stammen

My heart has been all over the place today. This morning, I left those I love the most (my family) and made the 400 mile drive back to Nashville. A holiday weekend filled with the love of family is just what I needed, but it also stirred a multitude of emotions within ... continue reading


If You Have To Paint, Make It A Painting Party

By Jackie Stammen

It's been a really long time since I lasted posted on here, but I haven't forgotten about this blog.  NASHVILLE, TN -  Truthfully it's not even that I've necessarily felt uninspired. So many times over the past few months I have thought about writing, but my ... continue reading


Are You a Contractual Catholic-Christian?

Image of During mass at the Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish, Cubao, Philippines

By Andee de Jesus

Every week, we celebrate the Lords day. We attended the mass not due to compliance and wishes. Our desires inspire us to keep moving, yet there are more reasons on how we should live our everyday lives with our Creator.  QUEZON CITY, PH - One Sunday afternoon, in ... continue reading


#StopEbolaStrike, Protect America

Image of Ebola has a very high death rate.

By Cheryl Jones

There is currently a #StopEbolaStrike under that hash tag on Twitter. LOS ANGELES, CA - Those who are studying this out, scientists, say that this Ebola is a different strain from those that have gone before. It may spread easier. It may go airborne. It may have an ... continue reading


All Blog News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Second Samuel 7:1-5, 8-11, 16
1 Once the king had settled into his palace and ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 89:2-3, 4-5, 27, 29
2 for you have said: love is built to last for ever, ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 1:26-38
26 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by ... Read More

Reading 2, Romans 16:25-27
25 And now to him who can make you strong in ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for December 21st, 2014 Image

St. Peter Canisius
December 21: In 1565, the Vatican was looking for a secret agent. It was ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter