All parents who have been to at least one church service with their young kids know what that it is near impossible  to get through even a half an hour of service without some sort of raucous. This morning I was reading an article from AOL by Jamie Brueshoff that recalled my last experience involving babies and church.

I last time I went, which I’ll admit has been awhile, I felt so embarrassed that I spent the better part of the service listening from outside of the sanctuary. This is because Peyton, being the normal active baby that she is, made it extraordinarily difficult to even focus on the service for 10 minutes. TEN WHOLE MINUTES! She wouldn’t even give me that! She started off great, she even fell asleep, but I guess with the singing and whatnot he was quickly aroused….that’s where things went left.

She kicked over her cereal, then she refused to sit still, so after squirming uncontrollably I let her stand on her own. She proceeded to engage the woman sitting next to me in a game of what I’ll call tag and when she tired of this she began trying to walk around the pew to get to the newborn baby behind us. After she became bored with the above actions, she started to scream and attempted to exercise her newly acquired walking skills by trying to stumble down the center aisle.

Nothing I tried worked and then I started to get the stares and if you’re a parent you know what those stares mean. They deliver a blast of scolding, embarrassment, and shame all in one TIMES the number of people staring at you. That was it! I quickly removed myself for the last time and sat downstairs where I had to strain to hear what was going on, but could still catch pieces of the service without the added discomfort or the worry that my child was ruining everyone’s holy day.

The entire time I held out hope that she’d realize the importance of why were here and that all I wanted her to do is to stay quiet and still for just a little while. I’d also hoped that her behavior was not somehow her form of rejecting the religion. I kept telling myself that this is only temporary and that soon she’ll stop and maybe even go right back to sleep. But, then reality hit and I realized that her antics had nothing to do with acting against God nor would she settle down because she is a baby and she’s merely doing what babies do; she is a highly active little girl and she won’t be stopped, not even by a perfectly good worship service.

Next time I think I’ll just have to add “nursery” to the list of my church requirements.



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