As we know from my last article about religion, my mother was raised Jehovah Witness and my father was raised Catholic. We grew up in a Christian household but my dad still practiced Lent.
Now for my non-Catholic friends, Lent is the 40 days before Easter. Traditionally, Lent is made up of three practices: prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. Fasting used to include not eating meat throughout Lent. But now, in modern times, people tend to give up a vice as a way to be closer to God and only give up meat on Fridays.
In the last four years I have practiced Lent. Why? Why would a non-baptized modern girl practice a religious holiday? Well, honestly, I just wanted to. I wanted to have some form of structured religion in my life. I wanted to see if I could give up a vice for 40 days and use this time to think about God and Life.
Now, when I was choosing my vices, I wanted to make sure it was a vice I did everyday. I wasn’t going to give up ice cream, cause I don’t eat ice cream everyday. But I also know my lifestyle and know that it makes no sense to give up alcohol. I will just be setting myself up for failure. So, the two vices I give up are caffeine and a “free space.” I give up coffee, mocha, lattes, cappuccinos, and espresso for 40 days. I allow myself tea. This is difficult because I rarely drink tea and everyone knows I love a good mocha.
The free space is something different every year. One year it was pasta, another year it was candy bars, etc. This year….drum roll please…being lazy. How will I give up being lazy? Easy, I will exercise for 10 minutes every day. Just a quick workout.
Of course, we will also eat no red meat during the week and I will say a daily prayer.
May you always remember the beauty of every religion.