Lately, its been a real chore to get my 2 year old, Gabs, to sit quiet and still during mass. I’m sure it has something to do with her being 2, her being bored, it being spring, and a laundry list of other reasons. The main reason being that she is 2. I am lucky enough to go to a church with , what I’d consider, to be one of the highest kid to adult ratios. In fact, I am sure there are more children then there are adults. When children’s liturgy convenes, at minimum, 2/3rds of the church disappears. Yes, they are true Catholics. Some parents have as many as 8 children. God bless them. I have 2 and it feels like 10. What must eight feel like? 40? These women look relatively beautiful and composed. I think I may be one of the most disheveled of the bunch. I always come to mass armed; snack, drink, book, baby, barbie. We normally don’t sit in the crying room because well, the entire church is a crying room (refer to inordinate amount of children:) The girls come in and sit right down in their pretty little matching dresses ( yes, I am one of those Moms. My girls match. Hey, they are 2 and 5, really, how much longer will I be able to do this? Don’t feel too sorry for them. I don’t dress them funny or anything.) and they sit down. They look so innocent. I always
think hope that this will be the day. This will be the day they behave for the entire mass. One can dream. Gabs normally gets bored about 3 minutes in; as soon as everyone stands up and she can’t see. I offer to pick her up. I really do. But if her big sister is standing, then darn it, so is she. Then we sit. She starts asking for snacks, quite loudly. “MOmmmmmma…me WANT snack!” Me (whispering. dying of embarrassment): “One second sweetie. Wait til Father is finished with the opening prayer,please.” Gabs: “NOW!!” Yes, I am pretty sure all 5 rows surrounding us, front and back have heard. Hell, let’s be honest…Father heard and now my secrets out. I’m letting my kids snack in church. Shame on me. Last weekend, the bulletin asked that “all parishioners” keep their area of pews picked up before leaving mass; not leaving behind any wrappers, crumbs, etc. Yeah, I’m pretty sure he was referring to the Cheerios that rain down all over that church. Oops! At least I’m not the only one. I try to keep them picked up but I swear those things have legs. I am bringing one of those tiny hand held Dustbuster in my purse next time. I wonder how they would feel about me leaving behind a child:)
Anyways, so that is mass. Gabs making up words to all the hymns. Worse yet, she thinks it is hilarious to sing louder than anyone else around her. Her sister, Bella, she doesn’t always sing but she likes to get her groove on at church. She dances and sometimes she tries to make others dance as well (like unsuspecting little copy cat toddlers, who giggle with delight, as I get shot a “can’t you keep your kid still” stare. NO, NO I Can’t. Can you?” As long as it is relatively quiet and and the girls pay as much attentions as their little brains can muster, I am good. A+ for effort. Then, when I think its safe and we are almost outta that joint until the next weekend, time for Eucharist. The most holy time of the entire mass. The receiving of blessings and the body and blood of Christ. I look forward to it. It helps get me through to the next weekend. The girls always want to accompany me; they think the blessing received from the Father is the best (even though they both have been known to try and swipe a little body of Christ). We head up to the front of church in a line that lasts for about 15 minutes (its a huge church with all these wonderful parents and the plethora of children that they are blessed with). The whole time ,I am praying “Please God just let me make it to Father and safely back to the return trip to my pew!” I know you are thinking , why doesn’t she leave those brats in the pew. Seriously, you know what would happen. They’d scream the entire time.
This past week, we went to the front. The girls were perfect. They received their blessings, said amen, and promptly turned to return to our seats. I see the light of the open door at the back of the church and I think to myself..one more week, I made it. We’re safe. Or so I thought. As we are walking back, I am in holy hang your head enjoy the moment mode. I look up and I notice everybody smiling, on the verge of giggling. What the heck. Is my dress tucked in my panties. That’s not very Christian….Help a sister out. Then I see the eyes are fixed on my Gabs. My deliciously wonderful, over the top, not giving a shit what anybody thinks..Gabs! Apparently, she thought she had been elected Queen of the Mass. She was walking down the aisle doing the beauty queen wave to all her loyal subjects, complete with big cheesy Vaseline smile! OMG!!!! I can’t take these kids anywhere.