Last summer I finally read Holly Pierlot's book, A Mother's Rule of Life: How to Bring Order to Your Home and Peace to Your Soul. Now, I'm a pretty organized person and I rarely feel life has digressed into complete chaos around here, but Holly actually had something to offer that I could really use.
As explained in her book, a Rule of Life is usually found in religious communities, but lay folk can also benefit from living within a Rule. Basically, it's an ordering of one's life based on one's vocation. Holly divides the vocation of wife and mother into a hierarchy of priorities: Prayer, Person, Partner, Parent and Provider.
In my personal life, prayer is the one aspect of my vocation I could really use some help with. How to set aside time throughout the day to spend in quiet contemplation and prayer. Holly's book really helped. I wrote a basic plan for my day with all the daily necessities included; taking care of myself, making meals, teaching school, cleaning, laundry, taking care of the baby's needs, running to and from activities, taking time for my hunny, etc. Interspersed throughout my plan I scheduled time to pray. I knew that if I didn't schedule it, something else would come up and I would never spend time in quiet prayer.
This schedule worked great all of last year. I remembered to pray morning, noon, evening and night. I planned a nice, long, quiet time of prayer while nursing Baby Wingnut for his daily naps. He was always a very good napper and went down right after lunch everyday, and then, all of a sudden, he stopped following that schedule. It wasn't like he gradually changed his sleeping pattern it was a complete and sudden turn about. Ever since, my plan has been turned upside down and my prayer life has greatly suffered. I didn't realize how important that period of afternoon prayer was to my spiritual life. I guess its now time to get Holly's book out again and rework my rule. If I'm not praying regularly throughout the day, I cannot do what I need to do to be a good wife, mother or Catholic.
Holy Mary, Queen of Peace, Pray for us!