My goodness…a whole two years have passed! Here is my 2016-2017 update in a nutshell…
I went back to classroom teaching! It was an unexpected but very blessed experience for our family that began in November 2015 at St. Anthony of Padua in Gardena. My children attended school where I worked – a first for the Dyogi kids – and they absolutely loved it. They made so many really good friends, and so did I! I was privileged to serve under one of my favorite pro-life heroes Mrs. Angela Baraquio Grey, principal and Miss America 2001. I came onboard because we shared the same vision and philosophy for Catholic education, and I gained so much as an educator in the SAP school community. The students and their families were amazing, and I couldn’t ask for a better faculty and staff to work with. My favorite moments were seeing my own kiddos running around at recess with their friends, coming up to hug me as we passed each other in the lunch line, and having their teachers share with me the beautiful insights they would volunteer in class discussions.
In late 2015, I was interviewed for “The Catholic View for Women” on EWTN and the episode called “The Vocation Journey” aired this past May. It has replayed a few times already and, thanks be to God, there have been women around the country who were able to identify with different parts of my story. The interview did not include details about my meeting with Mother Angelica in the summer of 2003 which was an integral turning point for my vocation, but it was a great honor to be featured on the worldwide cable network that she founded. Watching the show with my family gave me an opportunity to see my life for the first time through God’s eyes. Mine has not been an easy road to walk, as I’ve had to make some hard choices and reach for the hand of Christ after falling under the weight of my cross. I am realizing more and more that all I need to do is to stay faithful to what is in front of me and depend on the Lord for the grace I need to sustain me every step of the way.
Baby Dyogi #5 joined our family! Her name is Rosary Angelica named after my favorite spiritual weapon and favorite TV nun. She is a very sweet, charming little girl who is turning a year old next month already! I am so grateful that the Lord gave her to us because I can see how she pulls the rest of her siblings together and brings so much joy into our household. The pregnancy was a difficult one for me ridden with horrible panic attacks, but God is good. Rosary is healthy and has a very strong spirit. She has a keen observant awareness about her and already loves so generously. I cannot wait to see how her life’s mission will unfold as she gets older.
We are back to homeschooling! As of last June, Gary and I decided to once again have me stay home with the kids due to some new health issues that came up earlier this year. It was definitely not an easy decision to leave St. Anthony; however, we needed to choose what was best for our family overall. I have since been doing much better physically and continue to see Creighton clients part-time. I am also making a return to the speaking circuit and look forward to the new adventures that await us in the future!
Aside from all the “happenings”, this year in particular has been one of deep searching, healing, and transformation. My 40th birthday last December set me on a very interesting path – one that required a level of openness and humility that I’d never experienced before. I will be spending the rest of 2017 sharing my insights here on this blog, in hopes that my testimony will help someone out there discover the joy and peace that is possible in a life that is sprinkled (or showered) with suffering. As I said, God is ever loving and merciful, and He wants to give us so much more than we even dare to ask for. Because He has blessed me, I know He will bless you, too. Will you join me on the journey?