Tag Archives: Catholic

What on Earth is a Marian Consecration?

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my spirit rejoices in God my Savior for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant. From this day all generations will call me blessed: The Almighty has done great things for me, and Holy is his Name.

Portion of the Magnificat, Lk 1:46-49

What on Earth is a Marian Consecration? That is what I thought to myself when I read some fellow Catholic bloggers mentioning the subject. I felt like such a bad Catholic having never heard of it (it didn’t help when I asked my parents about it, and they both said they knew all about it and had both done Marian Consecrations themselves!) So I did some research on it, and bought myself this book: read more

You Might Be a Catholic Mama If . . .

1) You are consistently frustrated that no one makes “Big Brother/Big Sister” baby onesies.

2) Going to mass is like preparing for battle. You must be armed with distracting yet quiet yet religious toys. And you still haven’t been able to pay attention to a whole mass in years.

3) You attend your children’s baptisms in a fairly large dress because you’ll be damned if you’re still wearing a maternity one.

4) You have more maternity clothing than normal clothing. read more

Birth Control: why I ditched the hormones and embraced NFP

Before I got married, I went to the gynecologist to get my first prescription for some birth control pills. Even though I was Catholic, it just seemed like it was the thing everyone automatically does. However, a few months before my wedding, I got curious about natural family planning and decided to take a few courses in it. Just so I at least knew what I was turning down.
I must admit, it did seem pretty overwhelming and a hassle for my first few classes. It involved a lot of charting and knowing how your body works. But then I paused and thought a moment. Despite all that extensive sex ed throughout my school days, I had no idea how my own fertility worked! I didn’t know what days I could conceive, I had no idea when I ovulated, and I barely noticed what my body did on a monthly basis. It was blowing my mind how much I was learning about basic female function that had been completely ignored in my primary education.
Then, I started learning more about the pill and the other forms of hormonal contraception, and it just didn’t appeal to me at all. I mean, if I don’t like synthetic hormones in my food, why would I want to be ingesting them daily through birth control? And it elevates your risk for breast cancer? And it just sounded like a pain to have to go to the OBGYN every so many months to get injected or have something shoved up my ….. well, you get the idea.
So I decided to make the commitment to use NFP. Luckily, my husband was very supportive, because he is awesome like that. That is why I married him. And we have never turned back after four years of marriage.
There are several different methods of NFP. They all involve knowing exactly when the woman is fertile and abstaining from sex on those days, which usually lasts about 5-10 days, depending on what kind of cycle the woman is having that month. Or, you can have sex those days if you are planning on having a baby, and you tend to get pregnant WAY sooner than if you are just winging it.
We started with the Marquette method when we first got married, which worked perfectly (with the exception of one slip up that I can only blame on us being newlyweds and throwing caution to the wind). But, Marquette was too difficult for me to use once I started breastfeeding, so we switched to the Creighton Method, which I like a whole lot better.
Common myths about NFP:
1) It is ineffective. False! Its effectiveness depends entirely on you. Instead of you medicating yourself and just hoping you’re not part of that 1-15% that gets pregnant on birth control anyway, you know if you had sex during one of your fertile days that a baby is a definite possibility. And if you do get pregnant, you don’t have to worry about that increased risk of ectopic pregnancy that comes with certain methods of contraception.
2) It is just for crazy Catholics. There has been a huge amount of NFP users in the more crunchy crowd in an effort to reduce their hormone intake and lead more natural lives. And it is great for breastfeeding mamas who are trying to keep their diet as wholesome for baby as possible. Also, a lot of women are finding that hormonal birth control makes them feel ill and want an alternative. It is also helpful for couples that have had some difficulties trying to conceive, and want to find out for sure if they are doing everything right before they spend all that money on fertility treatments.
I always think it is hilarious that people think that couples who use NFP and have lots of children is proof that it doesn’t work. Because who would have lots of children on purpose?! Well, we would. But if you aren’t super into kids right now, that is ok too. NFP will still work for you, with a little bit of self control, and a whole lot more communication and appreciation for the amazing things your body can do. read more