We made quite the impression at church today. I should have known to pack it in and head for brunch when we went to get Wes after Sunday School and found him in the baby nursery, barefoot and wearing a backup pair of shorts. Apparently he secretly drank a Route 44 in Sunday School and just couldn't hold it for the whole hour. Happens to everyone, kid, don't worry about it.
But instead of cutting our losses and going out for pancakes, we pressed on, out into the courtyard in the fifty degree weather, with our son in shorts and no socks, into the sanctuary and up to the front row, where we sit because Charlie likes to watch the piano player.
A friend stopped me on the way to ask kindly "You sit up front, right? How does that work?"
"Oh," I responded with great hubris, "They behave much better at the front because they can see what's going on!" I smiled and headed to our seat.
The kids were wiggly, so I was relieved when it was time for them to go sit on the alter steps for the children's sermon.
As the congregation sang a hymn, the kids walked up to the front. Wes walked up the steps to sit down. And kept going. And going. And going.
People around us were giggling. The woman leading the children's message was unsure how to react.
Wes kept walking. Around the sacristy table, between a couple of microphones.
Finally the choir director, WHILE CONTINUING TO LEAD THE HYMN, patted him on the head and gently turned him in the right direction, back to the steps, where he settled in next to Charlie.
The leader asked the children "Have you ever been on a trip?"
Charlie piped up. "We went to the Gulf of Mexico!"
The congregation smiled. I smiled. The leader continued. But then Wes was talking.
"We stay in a house on da BEACH! It was WAY UP HIGH!"
The leader somehow continued on with a message about the wise men. "And what are some gifts we can give Baby Jesus?" she asked, purposely aiming the microphone away from Charlie and Wes's side. Charlie leaned over and answered "Prayer" into the microphone.
Another kid said something nice. Charlie wasn't finished. He made his way back around to the microphone.
"We give him our bodies when we die!"
Like right now. Jesus, you can have my body right now.
"AND WE CAN DO NICE THINGS FOR OUR FAMILIES!" continued the leader. Her voice was strained.
Charlie continued to talk, which made Wes continue to talk. It was one big interrupting party.
I hissed from our pew "STOP INTERRUPTING. CHARLIE. WES. QUIET. IT'S TIME TO LISTEN." but we were too far away.
Fervent prayers were coming from our pew. OMG GET THAT MICROPHONE AWAY FROM MY KID.
Finally it was time for the children's prayer and for whatever reason, that made them STOP TALKING.
They returned to the pew like nothing was amiss and proceeded to wiggle and squirm and try to lie down and otherwise make church a total circus. But I heard most of the sermon while Ryan took Wes to the Narthex for time out, so it wasn't a total loss.