Things I learned on First Communion Weekend

IMG_0096After spending much of the weekend in Church attending not only Georgia’s First Communion but my nephew Mac’s as well, I’d say that I’ve earned the right to act all holier than thou.  In between numerous Hail Marys and trips to the altar, I came up with Alex’s Five Commandments when Attending a Whole Lotta Church.

Though shalt bring small bills.  Why I never remember this is beyond me.  After the first collection on Sunday, I gave myself a mental pat on the back at having stuffed enough $5s and $1s in my wallet to parcel out to all of the kids.  When the second collection came around just minutes afterwards, it was either feast (all $20s) or famine (a CVS receipt and Qdoba loyalty card).

Thou shalt not resist bathing before church.  I’m not sure if it was because I was enforcing two consecutive early morning showers, but both times I was met with eye rolls and backtalk.  Even the blessed little First Communicant herself whined, “but I showered YESTERDAY before church!” as if I had asked her to give up a kidney or, Heaven forbid, floss.  I did what any good Christian mother would do: I threatened her with no cake and eternal damnation.  Eventually, she acquiesced.

THOU SHALT CHARGE THY CAMERA BATTERY BEFORE BIG EVENTS.  iPhones are fantastic when you’re in a pinch but when it comes to getting a clear picture as your child is speed-walking down the aisle, you’ll need an actual camera.  Lest you call me an Apple hater (I am anything but), I give you Exhibit A and B:

IMG_0092 This is my nephew Mac, doing about 65 mph on his way to the altar.

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Here’s Georgia, sprinting back to the family pew.

Thou shalt consider leaving the under-4 set at home.   

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After two days with Quinn on my hip in a hot and crowded church, wearing tight skirts and heels, trying to keep him pious and behaved (read: quiet) for hour-plus masses, I came to the realization that First Communions are simply not the activity for a child like him.  Let’s just say that while I should have been focusing on the sacraments being bestowed upon the First Communicants, I was actually praying for patience and forgiveness for the horrible thoughts I was having.  Amen.

Thou shalt let them eat cake.  FAST.  On both days, as soon as the kids came home from church they asked to dig into their cake and change their clothes. My sister Jennifer had cleverly taken all pictures immediately after mass and let her son have his cake as soon as he finished; the result was a happy (and sugar-buzzed) boy.

annoyed alex

I opted instead to dig my heels in, hold off for cake and presents and take family pictures when we got home.  This resulted in an extremely annoyed family and first class ticket to the very edge of my own sanity.  Behold, the most telling photo of the day (right).

Remember to keep holy The Five Commandments in your heart (and purse) during all church events – baptisms, weddings, funerals or even just a weekend Mass.  If you break even one, well…may God have mercy on your soul.

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