On Sunday, we were making our usual pilgrimage to church when the kids noticed signs at several churches along the way announcing various Ash Wednesday services and activities.
Being naturally curious, they wanted to know exactly what it was, what it entailed, and why we didn't do it.
Having had some good Catholic friends through the years, I felt well-schooled in the ways of Fat Tuesday, Ash Wednesday, Lent, and the like. [Wisely, I left out the whole Mardis Gras/beads/flashing of boobs component. I figure MTV will take care of that job for me in a few years.]
Fascinated with the concept of giving something up for Lent, my three began begging to have a family lent of our own.
McKay offered cheerfully to give up homework.
Chase chimed in and offered to give up yogurt (something he absolutely despises).
Not exactly how it's supposed to work, is it?
So, with the help of the Husband, we steered ourselves toward the abandonment of something much more painful: Dessert. As a family, we are giving up dessert. For lent. A holiday our own religion doesn't even participate in.
Realistic, and wholly unable to go 40 days, we opted for a week.
And let me tell you, this has been the longest week of my life.
I am on DAY THREE and I feel like I am starving. Not that I would have eaten much dessert over the last three days anyway, but the fact that I can't -- fills me with longing for it. I find myself craving donuts, brownies, ice cream, and pie. Things I don't even really eat anyway (my drug of choice will always be cookie dough, I'm afraid). I'm crabby. I'm irritable. I've got a pretend dieting headache. And the worst part is that I know it's truly all in my head.
Here's hoping we survive the next four days.
Maybe we should have just given up homework.