When in doubt, unplug

The printer at work was giving me a run for my money last week. If it wasn’t callibrating, warming up or asking for new toner (it needed all four cartridges replaced in three days time), it was going into power save mode and to wake it up I had to open and close the paper tray several times which usually does the trick. More than once I simply turned it off, took a few deep breaths and turned it back on. And of course this is going to happen when the workload that requires a bunch of printing is at it’s height!

My job is not stressful. I work in the Faith Formation office at my Catholic church and spend most of my three day a week gig organizing for the in-person weekend mass as well as corraling volunteers to help give out communion in the parking lot. My favorite part is talking to parishioners who call to sign up for mass and I get to learn about the intricacies of their lives as I become a trusted listener.

But I have found in any job, there are times of heightened activity around special events and ours happen to be the Sacraments of First Communion and Confirmation and everything needs to be special and precise. Confirmation was cancelled this past Spring due to COVID but now that we’re working our way toward normal (which is still a long way off), we are catching up on these missed Sacraments and Confirmation is scheduled for the upcoming week.

This is where my problem with the printer began as I tired to pump out programs on our office ink jet that is not made for the job. The large copier didn’t have the quality we needed for the beautiful programs that these families will use as keepsakes for this special day, a day that is going to be so different than the original plan. There is a maximum capacity for the church during this time and the candidates and their sponsors are going to tap it out. No parents, siblings or relatives to share the pew and witness this major milestone in their religious life. Thankfully technology allows us to live stream the event on YouTube.

Sometimes we are given these little annoyances of life, like a cranky printer to remind us to slow it down. Unplug. Things always get done whether we stress about them or not. This reminds me of the second item from Anne Lamott’s inspiring and often humorous Ted Talk titled 12 truths I learned from life and writing.


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