Living life in the carpool lane..

Bess.

Posted on: March 19, 2013

Going to Mass on Sunday with a toddler is always an adventure…

There are weeks where she is absolutely great and we don’t have to stay in the little room made for noisy toddlers. 

Then.. there’s last Sunday.

We are Catholic.  That means that when we go to Mass, there isn’t an area where we can drop off our youngsters for nursery.  Most Churches have a “cry room” which is a small room where families with small children can go so that their noisy toddlers and infants won’t disrupt the main congregation.

For awhile, we had been going straight into the cry room.  But I realized that M acts up a little more when we are in the cry room because she follows the other loud kids. 

So we had been going into the main congregation and she had been relatively better.  It also helped that we had a small magnet doodle board that she would use to write on. 

M had recently learned how to do the Sign of The Cross (proud Catholic mommy moment!) and say “Amen” (another proud Catholic mommy moment!).  She loves to enter the Church, touch the Holy Water, and bless herself.  She says, “Bess.”

This past Sunday, she was all about the “bess.”

We tried to distract her with her doodle board, but it didn’t work.  All she wanted to do was “bess” herself with the Holy Water and she was going to fuss and fight.

So, I took her to the vestibule.

She began to run around, and I was NOT having that.  I took her outside of the main congregation, not for her pleasure, so she was NOT going to run around. 

Well, she wasn’t very happy with me. 

It was a battle of all battles.. mommy versus toddler.. who was going to win!?!

Well, I’d like to think I did.  I picked her up, she fought and cried.  So I took her outside.  She again, wanted to run around, but I didn’t let her. 

I told her that my taking her out of the Church was not a license to play.  If she understood, who knows.. but I don’t want her to think that what we were doing was a good thing.

I was losing patience with her misbehavior, but I had to keep my cool.  If I were to get angry, it would have made her so much more upset, and I didn’t want to cause a scene.  I remained stern without losing my cool and she eventually got quiet enough that we could return to the main congregation.

Sadly, I missed a good portion of the Mass having to deal with M. 

She’s a toddler.  Every week is going to be a different week.  Some weeks are definitely going to be easier than others.

My consolation is that she loves to do the Sign of the Cross, say “Amen” and often reminds us to “pay,” which means “pray” in M-terms.

How do you deal with toddlers and Church?

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