Second P: Person


Dear Holly,Boy, am I struggling with disciplining myself to stick with my rule. More often than not I am so side-tracked! And honestly, I feel that it is not honorable distractions but pure slothfulness. If anybody has any advice on how to fight that I would sure welcome it. I have my rule posted on the wall, but I am so inconsistant at staying at it. The poor kids never know if I’m going to expect them to stick to it or not. I feel like such a failure in this... read more

After Dragging My Feet…

Dear Holly,After a few months of dragging my feet and coming up with a lot of “not so good” reasons to keep putting off starting a rule, last Wednesday I just began the Rule! I sat down and answered all the questions in each section of the 5 P’s and made the Rule. So coming up on a week now, I have to say it really has begun to change my life. I am now up with my husband in the morning. We are able to spend time together sharing a meal. And the joy and enthusiam he expresses at this “change of life” is encouraging. Our Rule includes daily Mass. My almost 2 year old is on a great schedule. So much fruit and graces have already come from this commitment. I just pray for discipline and... read more

How Not to Put "Mummy" on Hold…

Dear Holly, I am the adoptive mother of 2 beautiful little girls. But as you may know, adoption does not occur without a heavy financial price. Subsequently, I still have to work outside the home in a full time job. We are well on our way to getting our finances in place to allow me to stay home and homeschool our daughters (and any future children God places in our lives through adoption). I am jotting notes toward my own rule and keeping track of things so that I know what our individual “requirements” will be. I have discussed the 5 P’s with my husband, and he finds the concept challenging – mostly because they are not the priorities that he has used in his life. He seems to be buying into the whole thought process. I will tell you, though, that I do find the entire prospect very daunting. As a mother who has limited time at home, I find that something has to give, and usually that is my sleep time, which then is reflected in how I interact with my family. Do you have any suggestions regarding how to work things around and still be able to take care of... read more

Finding Personal Time

Dear Holly,I am struggling with finding some “my time” and some ideas of what to do to fill that time. I have currently 4 children under age 5. I thank God that my husband is very supportive of me doing something to fill the “my time” slot. The only drawback is that financially right now, we cannot afford anything- I can’t believe the prices! The other obstacle is that I only have a weekend nights open and free right now. Do you have any ideas of what I can do? I would preferably like a sport outlet to release tension and stress. Also, something that I can completely not focus on what I need to do at home. I have tried walking (I can’t run b/c of my asthma) but that is too quiet for me, I hear over and over in my head the children’s songs that we listen to all day long. Trips to the library are cheap but once again are too quiet! Please help- this mom needs an escape so I can come back a better well-rounded... read more

Personal Healing

Dear Holly,Thank you so much for your gift to Catholic mothers. Your story is so like my own, and I am hoping you know of a way to find a trustworthy priest who is able to pray over someone who has been through the same types of life trauma you describe — from coming from a broken home all the way to having your entire life/family/fertility devastated by a very spiritually ill priest who encouraged the use of “intermittent possession.” I need the kind of healing you describe. I am deeply wounded, cry regularly and have no where to turn. If you can recommend a priest near us… or an order or know how to locate priests who are able to heal in the ways you describe I will thank you... read more

Seasonal Affective Disorder & A Mother's Rule

Dear Holly,I read your book in July and LOVED it. I implemented a rule of my own and I was so happy with the change in my home and my heart. Here’s my question: I struggle with Seasonal Affective Disorder. The shorter days really affect me. I have a full-spectrum light and try to get time in front of it each day, which helps, but I am trying to discern how much to push myself harder and how much to accept that I am just less productive in the late fall and early winter than I am at other times of the... read more

Negativity re Rule

Dear Holly,I am involved in a mom’s bible study and your book is what we are doing. I am really enjoying it and think it is wonderful to have a “support group”. We have just started and are doing Chapter 3 right now 1st P – prayer. I have answered the questions at the end of the Chapter and started my prayer times. I will say this: when I answered some of the questions, as I look back at my answers, I see some negativity in my answers. Like setting up a prayer spot. My answer was no. There is nowhere I can go in my house that would not be a distraction, and then I find it hard to create a place because I have a 2yr. old who gets into everything. I know attitude is everything but will the negative answers change as I get into my... read more

Re The Second P – Obsession Issues

Dear Holly,Thanks for writing your book. I haven’t even finished it and have been recommending it to everyone! I have read up to the part of your book where you talk about ‘obsession’. In your book you quote the priest saying that “emotional turmoil is a clear sign.” You also list the three ways of having ‘obsession’. Are there other ways to have ‘obsession’ or is my emotional turmoil more an everyday mother turmoil? How can I tell the difference. Does the promiscuity part have to do with pre-marital intercourse? Does everyone need to have a deliverance prayer said over them? What if I can not find a priest to do that? Thank you for your... read more

Struggling With Scrupulosity

Dear Holly,Have you ever struggled with scrupulosity, or have any tips for someone who does? I never have, but recently read something from Sr. Faustina about a nun being in hell for breaking silence, and have been struggling ever since. (Hopelessness about attaining heaven for myself and my children). I think this is also coinciding with low thyroid and some postpartum stuff, but is still very difficult. Any... read more

Impatience and Lack of Sleep

Dear Holly,I am in the middle of reading your book and I believe I am already gaining some helpful insights from it. I have 3 children; a 12 year old boy, 7 year old boy and a 2 year old girl. None of my children have ever slept more than 2-3 hours in a stretch until they were 3-4 years old. My 2 year old is still waking 2-3 times a night and often will stay awake for an hour or more – doesn’t cry or fuss, just lies awake and chats or plays with her toes. Needless to say, after twelve years with little sleep, most nights just 3-4 hours, due to restless kids, I am totally exhausted. My patience has dwindled down to next to none. We’re in our fifth year of homeschooling and, overall, it is going well. My problem is the patience issue. I find myself losing my patience with the children, especially my 7 year old who is a very sweet soul but is full of energy and very little attentiveness. I’ve been posing this question to my husband and now I pose it to you. How do I get through the day as a patient and loving mother when I’m so tired I feel like I can’t even think straight, let alone, conduct a peaceful... read more
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