I didn’t go to Edel. And I didn’t die.

Last weekend, through a ridiculous conflict of events, there existed a fancy hotel in Austin hosting many of my online friends and inspirational women of all sorts, while simultaneously in Roseville, CA, there  was a not-so-fancy-but-still-very-nice hotel in which a bunch of my family members converged and made a huge scene, as per our usual behavior.

60 of us, all lined up in birthday order.

60 of us, all lined up in birthday order.

Of course it was the same weekend.  Of course.  Because at the time of the planning of the Edel Gathering, I had only one weekend busy during this entire summer.  So naturally these two un-missable events conflicted.  Because, hello: my life.

I made peace with it!  Months ago, as soon as I realized the conflict, I knew where I would be and I knew (after a very brief cry and a short lament to Kevin) that it would be okay.  Better than okay: it would be wonderful.  I went north with a light heart and converged with my family and oh, boy, was there a lot of noise.  And laughing.  And hugging cousins I haven’t seen since my wedding a dozen years ago.  There were pool games and card games, and Un-Talent Shows (a family reunion tradition) and dancing and singing and just wonderfulness all around.

 

But #edel14 kept popping up in my news feed!  Whenever I had a down moment and hopped on Facebook or Instagram, I’d see all these women whom I felt I already knew, standing alongside other women whom I longed to meet.  And they were together!  Having fun!  And doing, ironically, many of the exact same things I was doing, but far away from me.  So I got jealous, because, don’t you know?  That’s how the devil likes to worm his way into my life.

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In N Out. At least they don’t have THAT in Austin… Oh. Nevermind.

All of the sudden, (and YES, I do realize how ridiculous this is about to sound) the joy and peace I had from being with my own family, many of them from a long way off, was lost in the longing to be elsewhere.  I truly think this is a dangerous trick to a lot of us.  Ole Red Legs backdoors his way into our experience and suddenly it’s gone sour.

So I locked it down.  I says to myself, I says, “Self.  You are where you are because you are supposed to be HERE.  God wants you here.  Be here, in this moment, and relish this time, and do not let old Scratch steal your joy.”

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What’s that? Crazy eyes, you say? I’ll show YOU my crazy eyes!

For the most part, I didn’t.   Sure, there was a part of me that felt again like the nerdy kid who didn’t get to go to the party, but the greater part of me rejoiced because I was – truly – right where I was supposed to be.  And the icing on the cake?  I was surrounded by people who love me.   Which is no small thing.

So, no.  I did not die from a severe lack of Edel fix.  I missed out on what was, by all accounts, a raging good time, an inspirational time, but I have my own sweet memories, plus a little more humility than before.  And as soon as that date for Edel ’15 gets booked, I’m on it.  Who’s with me?

Comments

  1. I think if I had gone I would have spent far too much time stressing about whether I was having enough fun to justify the expense! That being said, it seems as though it was more of a retreat-conference hybrid, rather than just a conference, and I think it might be worth it for the spiritual renewal! But I’ll have an 8-month-old and my babies tend to be craaaaaaazy high-maintenance at that point, so we’ll see…
    Rosie recently posted…Why I Worked, Part 4: Another Baby, Another Move, Another Job SearchMy Profile

    • Kevin and I don’t really take much time away from the family (on our own) but we both understand when one or the other feels the need to do it. And I’m glad that it was a renewal-type experience, because if it was more conference-y or network-y, I would feel weird since I don’t make any money off my blog!

  2. I would love to go next year, but I don’t really see it happening for me then, either. Part of me thinks it would be awesome if there were different conferences in different parts of the country (like an EdelWestCoast, EdelMidWest, EdelEastCoast, but then of course people would miss out on meeting peole that lived across the country

    I can definitely relate to a lot of what you said about feeling jealous and letting Old Scratch steal your joy! I do that a lot and have to consciously remember not to.
    Amelia @ One Catholic Mama recently posted…Our Whooping Cough StoryMy Profile

  3. I love Amelia’s idea! But Edel15: you, me, our babies, let’s do it!
    Jessica recently posted…7QT: Such a long to-do list, I think I’ll blog.My Profile

    • I’m for Amelia’s idea AND seeing you at Edel ’15. I have a good friend in Austin who may even be able to hook us up with a reliable babysitter for a couple hours. 😉

  4. I had the same experience. Except my weekend was really really hard and not fun at all. It’s funny, because I was pretty okay with not going. Brian was leading a retreat, a really really important thing and I just couldn’t justify dropping almost a thousand dollars for a couple of days anyway. But the closer it got and during the weekend, it was really hard not being there. I didn’t expect that. I’m trying hard not to feel like all these people are besties now and the rest of us just don’t “get” it. I know that’s stupid and I feel like I’m back in middle school again but I keep reading about how amazing it was and wish I could’ve been a part of it.

    On a different note, thank you for changing your settings so that we can read you via reader now! I’ll be able to keep up with you so much better 🙂
    Mary recently posted…Firmoo Review and a Rainbowhead UpdateMy Profile

    • I’m so sorry your weekend was hard, Mary. That’s why I wrote this; I figured for every one person on the “inside” there were probably five of us on the “outside.” Sometimes the blogging world is hard, and we (I) compare our real lives with the online lives of our friends. But it really is a tool of the Enemy. All that middle school junk – ew. I hated it then, and I detest it now. Let’s just leave that behind us, and hopefully we can still form bonds with all the amazing women who did end up going.

      You can thank Rosie for the change in settings. I didn’t even know it was set to that! I hate the truncated posts, and as soon as I found out about it, I switched it. 🙂

  5. Hi Micaela, through a few clicks from the internet, I’ve stumbled across your blog 🙂 So glad I did! My friend Amy and I went to Edel and we didn’t really know anyone and weren’t too framilar with a lot of blogs prior to Edel (now we know so many great ones through!) and we were talking about how even being there, we struggled with feeling “not part of the blogging world”….which is totally the Enemy “worming his way” into our lives. It was a great time and we hope it works out to go next year…I hope you can too! I saw that you were in Roseville…are you from Northern California? We live in Sacramento…we love it here and have a great Catholic community 🙂
    Kelli recently posted…30/52My Profile

    • Hi Kelli! Welcome! Isn’t it funny? Even on the inside, we can feel “left out.” I’m glad you were there, though, and that you had a good time. Maybe we’ll run into each other next year! 🙂

      I have quite a bit of family up in the Sac area, but we live in So Cal. My brother is a priest in Loomis/Granite Bay, my grandmother lives in Roseville, and we have cousins all over Grass Valley, Auburn, etc. We’ve considered a move up there but for now we’re still southern Californians.

  6. I didn’t go to Edel this year (really wasn’t in our budget), even though it was only a few hours away and I knew several Houston moms going. I struggled with middle school-esque feelings that weekend as well and tried to turn that energy into thinking how I could build community in my real life here. But I had to be on top of those feelings all weekend!
    Catherine recently posted…WWRW: The Wonderful Wizard of Oz & MoreMy Profile

  7. As soon as I get home you + me + Blythe = Edel West. What do you say? Who else is SoCal?
    Kendra recently posted…Mailbag: What Is Up With Old Testament God?My Profile

  8. I don’t know if it will work for me for Edel’15 but I like your thinkin.
    Joy recently posted…So much to write ~ no time to writeMy Profile

  9. Thank you for writing this! First-time commenter to your blog and I love your style — both writing and family. 🙂 I wanted to let you know there are probably more of us out here feeling that than you know. I’m not a blogger, but frequently read several of them, and was definitely feeling that sad/jealous feeling occasionally that weekend. Thank you for reminding me where that feeling came from, and also what is most important. And hey, maybe Edel ’15 will be our year! 🙂

  10. PS, if you and Kendra do EdelWest, please publicize it — I’m in SoCal, too. 🙂

  11. Micaela, I really did miss meeting you, but am so glad that you were able to be with your family. Honestly, I went there on a whim (And, truthfully didn’t think I was going, but husband had to go all wonderful on me and surprise me with tickets). But, in that I went on a whim, I didn’t know anyone! So, I was the creepy, “Oh, hi, so great to meet you, I read your blog.” person. Pretty sure, you, Rosie, Mary, and Bobbi are the only ones that have happened on my little online space and been sweet enough to engage for longer than one post. So, just so you know, I appreciate your wonderfulness very much! And, pray that our paths really do get to cross at some point 🙂

  12. Micaela, I really did miss meeting you, but am so glad that you were able to be with your family. Honestly, I went there on a whim (And, truthfully didn’t think I was going, but husband had to go all wonderful on me and surprise me with tickets). But, in that I went on a whim, I didn’t know anyone! So, I was the creepy, “Oh, hi, so great to meet you, I read your blog.” person. Pretty sure, you, Rosie, Mary, and Bobbi are the only ones that have happened on my little online space and been sweet enough to engage for longer than one post. So, just so you know, I appreciate your wonderfulness very much! And, pray that our paths really do get to cross at some point 🙂 Also, sorry for the double post-I think I did something funny with the first one!
    Amanda recently posted…Chango skillsMy Profile

  13. Love this! I also didn’t die (just barely). I’m petitioning for Edel15 in Chicago, which is only 3 hours from me 🙂

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