My blog is on my mind about 99% of my waking hours, give or take one percent (don’t worry, my friend Anne is planning an intervention as I type). If I hear the kids say, or see them do, something funny, I write it down as fodder for a future blog post. Most of my spare time is spent writing stories or Top 10 lists. When I’m at church and I’m not thinking about Jesus, I’m thinking about my blog. I fight an almost constant urge to think about it, usually settling for jotting down any ideas I think of (or see) in the margins of my Bible.
Okay, that’s a lie. I just told a lie about church.I was trying to look holy. I don’t take my Bible. Because the print is too small. And the lighting is too dim. And it weighs as much as 12 Chipotle burritos. I do read it (somewhere between sometimes and often) at home under a magnifying glass and searchlight, and it never moves from my
Biblereading chair. Okay, I feel better. Back to my story…
We had our daughter, Autumn, dedicated this past Sunday. A dedication is a public declaration that you’re committed to raising your child in a way that they will know about God and His love and grace and stuff…that’s off the top of my head. So, naturally, I thought (hoped) maybe the dedication might produce something blog-worthy. Maybe Autumn would do something cute or silly, seeing as how she’s an active little extrovert. Like run around the stage, sing loudly, or sucker-punch her brother in the neck. Anything.
We were invited to come stand on the stage with another family that was dedicating their baby. The first thing I noticed was how dressed up the other family was. They looked like they were heading to get their family Christmas portrait, while Steve and I looked like something that fell off the Beverly Hillbillies’ jalopy, donning our jeans and Steve’s untucked shirt. The spot lights above the stage shone down on us somewhat like that blinding light emitted from the mothership in Close Encounters of the Third Kind. So I’m sure that added a little sparkle to our attire.
The pastor introduced Autumn. She looked absolutely precious in her flowery purple dress (that was on backwards), white tights and black patent-leather shoes (at least one of us was dressed up). She charmed the congregation by waving and saying hi. But nothing crazy enough for the blog. The pastor asked everyone to pray, but began by saying it wasn’t necessary to close our eyes since it was so hard to not look at the cute kiddos on the stage. That’s the first time I’ve ever heard someone say we could keep our eyes open during a prayer.
He said a prayer over the baby then turned to our family and prayed for Autumn. As he prayed, in front of the open-eyed congregation, Autumn reached her hand up and grabbed my boob, like she was turning the knob on a radio. I snickered, smiled meekly, and gently put her hand down to her side. Immediately, her hand sprung right back up to my boob, giving it her full attention, like she was noticing it for the very first time in her life and needed to inspect it, like an undiscovered species of animal. I could hear stifled laughter from the congregation, of which I could not see because of the mothership’s lights. I put her hand down to her side again and felt the blood rise in my face, and with it, a bout of laughter over the irony of it all.
|Here she is, grabbing my boob.
This was not what I meant by blog-worthy!
I fought off my laughter, but the whole situation just made me want to laugh more. You know those situations where you’re not supposed to laugh, but you can’t control it. Like at a wedding, or in a nursing home, or the first time you meet your future in-laws. This was a solemn prayer and I was chortling.
I thought about the other poor family on stage who probably had their parents, siblings and Auntie Tutu visiting just for this occasion and we were ruining their moment, their pictures, their video, everything, with my daughter’s booby-grabbing and my inability to control the volcano of laughter erupting inside of me.
I laughed harder.
Again, like a magnet sucking up a piece of metal, her hand flung right back up to my boob. I was laughing so hard I started crying, but at the same time tried, with all my might, to hold it back in the middle of the open-eyed prayer. I was thinking, Everybody’s looking at me! Everybody’s looking at my daughter grabbing my boob and inspecting it! Everybody’s looking at me laughing during this solemn prayer! This is so freaking funny! Kill me now!
I shifted Autumn to my other hip so I could hide my face behind her head. Aware of what was going on, the pastor stumbled over the prayer, trying to wrap it up. I moved her hand again and Steve finally took her from me as I turned my head away from the congregation to pummel my laughter. I almost snorted. If we had stayed on that stage any longer, I probably would have peed my pants.
We walked back to our seats, face wet with tears, I looked for an escape route, avoiding all possible eye-contact and thanking God for the dim lighting. And at that moment, I decided that that would be the last time I would hope to see or hear something blog-worthy at church again.
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