One would think that "getting Kate successfully to church" means physically being there on time, carrying an extra clean diaper just in case. However, one must take into consideration the feeding issue. And my sister Beth put it well recently when she stated, "Gosh, breastfeeding certainly seems to take over your life." Well, it's true--at least for now!
So we thought we found the solution for this dilemma--physically feeding Kate and spiritually feeding Jen--by using the family room that's off the main sanctuary. Great idea! We got there early last Sunday and were the first ones in the room. It was pretty big, dark and cool, had a great view of the sanctuary, and had semi-comfortable chairs. Alright! The chairs were squashed together in close rows, but no big deal--we were the first ones there and had our pick of seats. We sat down, I arranged the diaper bag (which is the traveling Boppy) and off Kate went. We settled down to hear the sermon.
Fast forward twenty-five minutes. Almost EVERY seat is full. Children of every age are roaming to and fro. Babies are squalling. Adults are talking. Someone is adjusting the volume of the sermon in the room so it's VERY loud. (Jon turns it back down.) The child in front of us tries to take the receiving blanket off of Kate (while I'm feeding her)--it's a game. We say (gently) no, no, don't do that. Mom turns around and says "No--don't do that." Five minutes later she tries to do it again. And again. The cachophony throws us into sensory overload. Even Kate, who is a great eater (when she's awake) is tossing and turning and fretting from the clamor. Jon and I keep looking at each other praying LET US OUT OF THIS MADHOUSE. But of course, we are squashed right next to the wall with two other families and a host of baby paraphernalia between us and the exit.
Thankfully, someone comes in and tells the whole room "We have a new family who needs to be able to see the sign language interpreter." We jump up with the chance to offer our seats (though we're in the fifth or sixth row.) We climb over children, parents, blankets, car seats, strollers and chairs to the exit row, lunge for the door and...AHHHHHHHH. The calmness of being outside the family room. Two nice ushers find us empty seats in the sanctuary (oddly enough) right in front of the family room window. Kate has had enough food so she's hanging out contentedly in her seat. Someone is banging on the family room window behind us, a constant reminder of the craziness we left behind and we think Thank you Lord, for getting us out of that place.