Thursday, March 14, 2013

Smoke, Bells, and Tears

I totally wrote this yesterday, but didn't publish. In the 24 hours since he stepped on the balcony, my love for Pope Francis (Francis! The first pope Clare will remember is Francis!) has just grown and grown.


I want to remember today for the rest of my life. So I write in spite of one million other posts on our wonderful new Holy Father, Pope Francis.

When Benedict was elected, I was sitting in Criminal Law, and got the word (passed to the token Catholic friend) from my new-surfing friend, who, ironically, was still a couple of years from his own conversion. I was in RCIA, but didn't have much emotion about the Pope -- either JPII, or Benedict. *shrug* another Pope.

After the abdication of Pope Benedict, my fire and excitement for the Conclave grew and grew.

Today, I was so sure that the moment wouldn't be until Thursday that the plan was to hang out and see black smoke, then load up and head to Target.

Playing, a bit less interested than Mama.

Clare got bored staring at the smokestack, so she went exploring. She learned to take the DVD cases out of the TV stand.

She found Daddy's hiking maps (taken away and put up high uber-quickly, since he would be very sad if she somehow managed to destroy them). Then, she learned to play guitar.

**I would not recommend if you are not related.

It was getting close to 11. I pulled her out from behind the desk (where the guitar is stashed) and we started chanting. "We want smoke! We want smoke!" Suddenly, there was smoke! And it was . . . grey? So that means black? No! White?!? White smoke! I appreciated the EWTN commentators going through the same thought process. White smoke!!!!! (are there enough exclamation points to express my excitement?!? I think no.)

Suddenly, I found myself crying and hugging my baby girl and praising God. The goosebumps. The chills. The joy. They were real in a way I just.did.not anticipate.

As I shot off a just-in-case text to Charles, the bells started ringing...

Then an hour of singing, dancing, praying, praising, anticipating.

Charles called on his lunch break and as a family we waited (and waited and...)

Waiting for-ev-er.

A Jesuit! From the New World! Francis!

Praise God! Habemus Papam!

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