My Dad, the father of five kids, used to call Sunday “Dread Sunday,” referring to the Herculean efforts required to get all those bodies out of bed and to mass. I’m beginning to understand why. With four young kids of my own (ages 4, 3, and 10-month-old twins), I’m becoming quite familiar with the expression. This past Sunday was Easter, and though the Church views this as the most important occasion of the year, my kids still see it as another opportunity to test the limits of my faith.
In the middle of the most recent mass, Char got up to take Grace to the restroom to change her diaper. (As a side note, we had both families in town for the holiday, so Easter was spent a little like Christmas: we left our house at 9a and got home 12 hours and nearly 100 miles later. This is important, because you have to understand that when we left the house we had to prepare for the invasion of Normandy. In all of that confusion, we left the baby wipes behind.) So, with Char in the restroom fighting a squirmy baby without wipes, things got a little hectic back in the narthex. (We have learned a few things; we’ve yet to return to the inside of church after “the incident”. But that’s a different story.)
By the time Char returned, she had missed both readings and some of the homily. I looked at her at one point and asked, “I thought going to mass was supposed to lower your blood pressure?”
Following mass, we loaded everyone into the car and headed for my sister’s house. While enroute, Char asked what the homily was about, so I briefly recapped the story the priest shared about a young handicapped child. She then asked me to summarize the readings.
“Oh, the readings?” I asked. “They were: Jack, sit down! Lily, get off the floor! Both of you, be quiet! Get back here! Put that down! Shhhh! Quit kicking the pew! Stop that!”
Char laughed and said, “So they were the same as last week?”
She thinks she’s lost a step since staying home with the kids, but I attest that she’s as quick as ever.