As someone who ran 50 miles last fall with a small, stuffed pony strapped to her back (quite literally), it's not much of a stretch to say I'm superstitious. I'm a sucker for lucky charms. Luck of any kind, really. Trinkets, words, prayers, apparently. I've kept a rock from each trail race I've done. Have a collection of seashells from my recent trip to Florida. Carry a prayer card in my wallet. Keep a tiny unicorn in my pocket when necessary. It doesn't help that I'm also incredibly sentimental. Everything I touch has some sort of sentimental value. Just ask my parents. They're the ones who had to deal with boxes of stuffed animals when I was a child. I couldn't part with them, you guys. THEY HAD FEELINGS. Now, as an adult, everything has feelings, everything holds luck, everything tugs at a piece of my sentimentality. For those of you waiting with bated breath, the interview went great this morning, despite waking up to a sporadic blizzard and showing up in my boots. I actually felt at ease. We laughed and in between learning about each other, chatted about my running and novel-writing. Thankfully no one asked about my greatest weaknesses, so I didn't have to fess up to the nervous sweats or my affinity for cats. I left feeling good, confident and happy that the snow stopped pounding from the sky so I wouldn't die on the drive home.
What they didn't know is I had my tiny unicorn in my sweater pocket the whole time. The teeny, tiny unicorn that mom gave me in the middle of my 50-miler. Because if you think magical feats can be accomplished without the help of unicorns, YOU ARE MISTAKEN.
And a couple weeks ago, a friend passed along a prayer card for St. Anthony that her mom insisted I take. It was zipped safely in a small Ziploc baggie, and I've kept it in my wallet since. I've never met her mom, but she said several women from her church prayed to St. Anthony when they lost their jobs and it worked. Maybe it's not obvious here on this blog, but well, those who know me know I'm not much for church and Jesus and all things holy. I believe in them, and trust in them, just don't regularly (read: ever) partake in them. But the fact that a mom I never met thought enough of me to pass along her own good luck charm made my heart swell 14 times it regular size (and thank God for miracles because I didn't die from a then-enlarged heart).
So like a good, little follower of Holy Things, when I got home, I took the prayer card out and -- out loud -- recited the prayer. Twice. In case St. Anthony didn't hear me the first time. I imagine those saints hear a lot of prayers. Perhaps their hearing isn't the best these days. YOU CAN NEVER BE TOO SURE.
So yes, I prayed. Me. I've perhaps done it on a few other occasions when the situation called for it, but it felt very much like how talking to my invisible friends felt as a kid. Yes, I had invisible friends. Shut up, you did, too. I felt good about it, and I'll be darned if I'm not incredibly attached to this little Ziploc baggie and what it holds inside.
At this point I've done what I can. All of my luck and superstitions have been utilized, and it's in someone else's hands. Hopefully St. Anthony's because I'm putting a lot of stock in that man right now.
Thanks for the well-wishes! I'll keep you posted. In the meantime, recite this for me, like, all the time:
"O Holy St. Anthony, gentlest of Saints, your love for God and Charity for His creatures, made you worthy, when on earth, to possess miraculous powers. Encouraged by this thought, I implore you to obtain for me (THIS JOB). O gentle and loving St. Anthony, whose heart was ever full of human sympathy, whisper my petition into the ears of the Sweet Infant Jesus, who loved to be folded into your arms; and the gratitude of my heart will ever be yours. Amen."
(For the record, I copied that word for word, and the writer in me cringes at the excessive commas. I'm sorry, Jesus. Amen).