You would think the title of this post would be about how elated we are that Marissa has reached that magical nursery age, but you'd be wrong...
I said I was going to write about my emotional breakdowns. One occurred last Sunday. I was already having a not so good morning, but church was all right until I got asked to speak with one of the counselors in the bishopric. Now, I have never cried when I got a calling before. I cried when I got released from a calling, but never a minute after they told me what a new calling was, and we are not talking tears of joy or "feel the spirit" tears. That new calling, of course, was nursery leader.
Honestly, before I had kids I would not have known what to do with kids this age. My only real experience with kids was babysitting 6 rowdy hooligans on a regular basis in middle school that I had absolutely no control over. They all survived, but it was not for any talent I had with children. At least now I am used to little kids and my vocabulary already consists of phrases like "we don't hit", "we don't color on the table", "puzzle pieces aren't for eating", "go throw that chewed up cheese that you threw on the floor in the garbage", and "someone smells poopy". You would think there would be no problem with this calling.
So why did I cry? Honestly, I don't know. I feel bad for the counselor giving the calling, especially since he is a good friend of ours, but I couldn't hold it back. I quickly said, "I guess so. Can I go to class today?" and headed straight to the handicapped stall to dramatically slide down the wall, sit on the cold tile and cry out the rest of Sunday School (it's always worth it to slide down the wall). So lame, I know. I didn't have a problem with the calling per se, in fact I thought nursery would have been a great place to be 6 or 8 months ago when I was in the hall doing nothing with my pre-nursery aged child. But to call me now? When I spent a good part of a year counting down until I could happily hand my child to someone else in charge of nursery, go to class and find out I am still using the manual two prophets ago (because that was the last time I went)? When I am going to have a baby in 5 months and feel like this is my only window to breathe before "it" starts all over again? When I already spend all my time with children this age? It was slightly hard to understand.
I wasted the last opportunity to go to class and had a good breakdown instead. But I have since come to terms with the calling. I still don't think I'm cut out for this age, but I'm okay with it. It's like coming to terms with the fact that going to church with a 12 month old means standing in the hall for two (or three) hours. I had a hard time with this the first time around, but it's been so many years now that yes, I have come to this realization. I had expected to be able to go to class, but it was not to be. Surely when my child bearing days are over or when I'm in retirement I will not have these same feelings. I just know that church for now will mean chasing after Marissa for the first hour (because if I try to stay with the other kids while Jared takes her, Alex screams for daddy--so it's always me in the hall) and back with the little kids for the rest of the time.
I'm still trying to make some sense of it all. Maybe I need to spend even more time with Marissa for some reason. Maybe I need to learn to love that age even more. Maybe it's just a test of my faith. But whatever the reason, I am the new nursery leader and you better believe I will be chowing down on the snacks faithfully every Sunday. Hey, pregnancy has some perks, like "needing" to eat every couple of hours and having emotional breakdowns and being able to say, "yeah well, I'm pregnant."