No, I did not buy the whole confectionary section of K-Mart. But yes, I came pretty close (and fyi, this is not even the whole stash). And it’s because, come this Sunday, this Wordsmith would have given up chocolate for 40 days of Lenten sacrifice, in recognition of Christ’s suffering/fast in the desert. So how am I planning to spend the sad and sorrowful Passion Week in between the two joyous Sundays of Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday?
As a Catholic, Passion Week is very important to me. It is the week that my Lord & Saviour was welcomed joyfully back into Jerusalem only to be betrayed by disciple/good mate Judas on Holy Thursday (after the Last Supper banquet), and tortured and crucified on what we term Good Friday. But it didn’t end badly for Jesus, who Christians believe rose from the dead three days later and opened up the gates of heaven for our salvation. We call Christ the new Adam, because he gave us another chance at Paradise and a good relationship with God, after Adam’s disobedience had humanity shunned from Eden (the garden of Paradise) for ever. So why did the Son of God (and God himself for that matter, but that’s another story) have to die such a horrible death for people he didn’t even know? Apart from fulfilling prophecies dating back thousands of years, it was because the one who had to repair our relationship with God had to be worthy enough in God’s eyes, and who more worthy than His own son?
The Christian faith is essentially all about sacrifice. Well, if you practise it right anyway. You’re supposed to forgive even when you don’t want to (because a world without grudges is a nicer place); turn the other cheek when you are judged/criticised (because judgement of one another doesn’t fulfill this happy, nicer world plan); and bend over backwards for your neighbour. It’s all faith, hope and charity really, and, at the risk of sounding nerdy or uncool, the most beautiful thing in my life.
Not that this is a religious lesson, so pardon me in that regard, because I am just as fascinated by the traditions and protocols of other belief systems as I am my own. Which means that this week, I will be spending a lot of time in quiet prayer and meditation, contemplating how I can be a better human being to better fulfill the plan that God has for his happy, shiny world. This of course will be aided with some readings from a book (see above) on Christ’s death – why he did it and what it meant – as well as a couple of church visits, a breaking of the Lenten fast with my family at midday on Good Friday (anyone want to come enjoy a vegetarian Lebanese feast at mine?), a rosary said (with Catholics all over the world) for peace in the world at 3pm on Good Friday, and finally, on Easter Sunday, a big lunch with my family and the joyful, slow and thankful devourment of all the goodies I abstained from this Lent. Including the giant bucketload of lollies and chocolate eggs (eggs are critical to Easter time because they represent a new life, and the new life we have thanks to Christ’s sacrifice).
I’ll also use the break to better peruse the 10th anniversary edition of Instyle magazine (check out the home of Wheels & Dollbaby designer Melanie Greensmith, it’s to die for), and, because Lenten sacrifice is just not enough, to see what lessons are to be learned on matrimony from bestselling author Polly Williams in her book How to Be Married (Headline, $29.99). Then again, compromise is sacrifice, is it not? And compromise does a good marriage make.
As for you guys, make sure you stay tuned to Wordsmith Lane as I will be a decent blogger this week – with a post coming on both Tuesday and Wednesday. Would also love to hear feedback on how you’ll be spending your breaks, so make sure you comment and let me know.
It’s a busy week ahead with all of the above, but should there be some spare time, I am really keen to see what all the fuss is about with regards to Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat, Pray, Love. Come to think of it, that book pretty much sums up my whole week. Food, faith and fulfillment. All the ingredients for a perfect week…and put it simply, a perfect life.
Happy Easter everyone xx
PS – Speaking of new life, I am attempting to breathe new life into this blog by merging it (slowly, and cautiously) with my professional portfolio. While a domain under my name remains the ideal, I feel my ethnic surname is often a struggle when people look me up or try to say my name (though this could just be identity paranoia). Besides, as you all know, I am rather fond of the title ‘Wordsmith Lane’ and can’t bear to part from it. Fiance tells me I can still use the domain of my professional name to direct to this website, so it could still work in my favour and I could have both sarahayoub.com and wordsmithlane.com come to this very blog. A pretty good compromise, no? I feel like I am jumping the gun, but when I do get my book published (positive thinking) I feel that my publisher would say it’s good to have a web presence under your name, so I think it’s essential to work with wordsmithlane which I love so much, and Sarah Ayoub, who I happen to be. But instead of having to update two websites, I’ll only have to work with one. Especially because I’m quite happy with the format of this site, and it’s just so easy to work with, so I might stick it out. I am in the early stages of testing, so as you can see I have added a new category (writing portfolio) where I will update my articles (although they are listed, by alphabetical order of publication) on the Writing tab. I have also added a tab on my speaking gigs (a modest but growing number of engagements to my name thus far), a tab on my research project (which I ought to be working on a little more) and a tab on my resume so far. I am also toying with the idea of keeping the gallery page as is. This has an even more modest number of attributes to it, but they’re still special and notable to myself. So anyway, let me know what you think. These things are small and shouldn’t stress me out in the bigger scheme of wedding/mortgage/thesis/book/full-time job, but, as I hope you have learnt, when you are an aspiring up-and-comer in the competitive writing world, your online presence is sometimes all you have, and you should really make it work in your favour. Anyway, give me some feedback to aid in my decision-making process, will you?