Sunday, March 20, 2016

Surviving Sunday... Part 2

I just survived my 12th Sunday as single parent.
Time has flown by!
Only 2 more Sunday's until I am no longer outnumbered by children!
To say that I'm excited is a HUGE understatement.

But let's talk about how I have been surviving Sunday lately.

I have to be completely honest with you.
I'm not sure,
since I turned 18 and left home,
that I have ever attended church 12 weeks in a row.
So this is a HUGE accomplishment for me.
I know that some people are shaking their heads,
rolling their eyes,
and now consider me weak.
It's the truth!

And considering that I have done it with 2 crazy children,
that I have made no excuses and attended church for 12 weeks in a row,
I am feeling like I can do anything at this point.

I have been so blessed to have my Mom come to several sacrament meetings with me.
She is so amazing!

Her help has really been awesome.
She always seems to come on the Sunday's when I definitely need her the most.
Mom's always know.

I feel as though I spend Sunday mornings before church swapping out books for the kids,
filling my bag with snacks,
swapping out toys,
and making sure all electronics are charged and ready to entertain.
Electronics have been my second parent on Sunday's.

More often than not,
Sunday mornings have been really rough.
Benson wouldn't nap.
Aniston would have a major meltdown.
I have been waking up feeling horrible.
I have had so many excuses placed in my lap to not go to church.
no one would care.
It would be fine.
But I know that it really wouldn't be.
I know that in my heart.

I had an experience yesterday at church that made me so happy that I have been going and that Aniston has been able to attend and more importantly,
love primary.
I need moments like that.
I need to feel validated in the choices that I have been making.
Especially when it involves me changing myself and my life.

Aniston was asked to read a scripture in opening exercises in primary.
If you are not familiar with the Mormon church,
each child,
is asked on rotation to either say a prayer,
read a scripture,
or give a talk.
This would be Aniston's first time participating in opening exercises in primary.
This would be Aniston's first time speaking in front of a large group.
She has participated in show and tell at school,
and of course she has danced and performed in front of people,
but even though we practiced every day for 2 weeks,
I wasn't sure that she would be able to get up in front of everyone and speak.
I was sure she would get up there and freeze.
I was sure that she would whisper the entire scripture.
I was sure that it was going to be rough.

I underestimated her.

She did amazing!

I was suppose to help her,
but Benson has become insanely clingy and wouldn't even let my Mom hold him.
So we switched roles.
Someone else came and took him so that I could record Ani for her Dad,
so yes,
that's Benson screaming in the background.

I am so blown away with how often my children impress me.
They are so strong and fearless.
not Benson so much.
He is definitely more timid and reserved than Aniston.
But still,
I was so impressed and so touched by her sweet little voice reading that sciprture.
And I bet you can guess what I did for the 10 minutes after we left her in primary...
That's right...
I cried.
I had no idea how spiritual it would be to watch my child read a scripture in front of her peers.
Watching her read that scripture was one of the most spiritual moments of my life.
I know that she doesn't understand the church,
and doesn't have the testimony that I have,
but to see her so excited and to feel her passion about having a role in primary,
that was just so amazing to me.

Every accomplishment that my children have.
Every milestone that they reach,
I not only feel so proud of them,
but I feel proud of myself.
Especially in these past 12 weeks.
I feel as though I have made an accomplishment too!

My Sunday's have been full of children coloring on the chapel walls.

Walking the halls for a minimum of an hour.

Snacking on children's food.

Feeling as though I am learning and getting absolutely nothing out of church.

But that's okay.

The growth that I have seen in Ani,
that has been mind blowing.
Every week she learns something new.
The other day I asked her if she knew who a little boy was,
and she turned to me and said, "Mom, I don't know his name, but I know that he is a child of God."
I was shocked.
I was impressed,
but so amazed by her saying that.
Watching Benson learn to fold his arms,
and seeing his excitement when the piano begins and the chorister begins to lead the music,
Benson always waves his little arms right in tune with the music.
He feels comfortable at church.
He enjoys church.
Sometimes I highly doubt that,
but I know he feels the love and spirit there too.

I have been so blessed by attending church.
My children have been so blessed by attending church.

I know that Sunday's are hard.
They are hard for so many people,
for so many reasons.
There are times when church seems like such an imposition.
Especially when it's 3 hours long.

attending church will bless your life.
It will build you up and strengthen your child and you in ways that nothing else can.

I only have to survive 2 more Sunday's without Spencer.
But that won't be the difficult part.
The hard part will be continuing to attend church when he gets home.
The hard part will be continuing the habits that I have been working to hard to develop the past 12 weeks.

I can do this.
My family can do this.
We can,
and we will,
continue to survive Sunday's.

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