Sunday, July 15, 2007

Excuse me, I'm having a Moment.

Right before your child does something so embarrassing that you have to either laugh hysterically or let the ground just swallow you up once and for all, there is a Moment. Every mother recognizes a Moment, but it's just a second-and-a-half long at best, and that's rarely enough time for even the best mother to stop a Moment from becoming A Family Story. Someday I will share with you some of my Family Stories, but today--as it so often is in my life--it's all about Katie.

In the history of the world, I don't know if this has ever happened before, but Katie generated two Moments for me in one day. And the day isn't over yet.

Moment One: We visited a new church today and had to present ourselves to the visitor's center to have help finding where Will and Katie's classrooms would be. Katie had been in an unspeakably grumpy mood all the way across town, and I was extremely relieved that she was acting sane as we were being led down to the children's wing. In fact, better than acting sane, she was acting downright cheerful, chattering away with the woman who was our tour guide. I heard her chirp, "Know what? I know how to be safe." That was my Moment, because I could tell that the dear woman had heard "saved." Before I could do anything, the woman told Katie how wonderful it was that she had asked Jesus to come into her heart and be her Lord and Savior. Katie gave her a look that I can't even describe. Imagine a four-year-old looking at you like she's suddenly realized that you're mentally deficient but she's going to overlook it so that nobody feels awkward. "Safe," she said carefully, "means I don't have to hold my mommy's hand in the parking lot because I know how to watch for cars."

Moment Two: After church, we decided to have lunch at Don Pablo's. They have a beautiful three-tiered fountain in the center of the restaurant, and I told Will & Katie that if they behaved during lunch, they could toss in a coin before we left. (I got lucky and was able to scrounge two coins out of the bottom of my purse.) Will led Katie through the tables and over to the fountain, where he carefully flipped his coin into the top tier of the fountain. He turned around and gave me a victory sign. I heard Katie say, "I'm gonna throw mine in the top, too, William!" That was Moment Number Two for me. I still don't know why I didn't go over to the fountain with them in the first place. As I watched in horror--trapped on the inside of the booth--she carefully wound up her pitch and threw that quarter as hard as I've ever seen anybody throw anything. It sailed up, up, up...past the top tier of the fountain and well up over the top before it started to arc back down, where it bounced, presumably, under the table of some innocent bystanders. Scott and I were just sitting there, literally dumbstruck and slack-jawed. Then with a jolt, we both realized that the kids were now trying to find that quarter. "Get them, get them," I hissed, shoving Scott out of the booth. "Finish your lunch," he shot back. "We're probably gonna have to make a quick exit."

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