Guest Columnists

Saying Goodbye

by Therese J. Borchard

DURING THE AUTUMN of 2001, I was holding my four-month-old son when I received an unexpected call from Catholic News Service. A pleasant editor introduced herself as Carole Greene and said that she had been given a copy of my book, “Winging It: Meditations of a Young Adult.”
“Would you consider writing a column for us on young adult themes?” Carole asked me.
And, because worry and anxiety are deeply embedded into my DNA, my first question back was, “What age qualifies as young adult?”
She said I was cool if I wrote to a readership of 40 or below.
So my second question was, “What about when I turn 40?”
With her signature calmness and melodic tone, she responded, “We’ll cross that bridge when we get there.”
We eventually got there, so my column morphed into family-life issues. I tackled topics relevant to most of the young parents that I know: How can I make enough money to pay for food, heat, and water and still be an involved mom?
How can I best pass on the Catholic faith to my kids without appearing as a hypocrite?
How can I live out the values of the Gospel when on some days I seem allergic to kindness, forgiveness and patience?
How do I lessen the impact of today’s media exposure on my preteens? How can I care for my kids and my aging parents at the same time?
But after 10 years, the time has come to say goodbye.
As many of you have experienced yourselves, the feeble economy has turned our household upside down.
Since architecture and freelance writing/publishing are two professions quite affected by our country’s financial crisis, my husband and I have had to brainstorm about ways to generate revenue, venturing in directions that we never envisioned for ourselves a few years ago.
Securing good health insurance has been especially problematic, because neither of us is presently aligned with a large employer.
To meet these needs, I’ve begun a full-time corporate job, leading the communication efforts of a local technology company that specializes in cloud computing and semantic web technology.
I have yet to get through “Cloud Computing for Dummies” and “Semantic Web for Dummies,” because this tech talk is certainly a foreign language to me. But just like I learned French well enough to live in France for eight months, I shall persevere in this new world.
My husband Eric gets homework duty with the kids and most of the shuffling to sports.
There’s no doubt that I, like Mary in Luke’s Gospel, have the better part, or at least the easiest.
Remember the joke about the guy who died, went to heaven and asked God why He didn’t save him? God reminded him that He sent a raft, a boat and helicopter.
Well, God won’t have to remind me about the help that He sent. While I will miss writing this column and much of my freelance work, I can’t help but view my opportunity in my latest career move as the lifeboat that God has sent to our family in the flood.
I want to thank all the editors at Catholic News Service – and especially my main editor, Carole Greene, who has become a dear friend – for giving me the opportunity to write this column for 10 years.
And, most definitely, I’d like to thank you, readers, for all of your encouragement and support over the years.