Its Wednesday evening, and we are about 10 minutes from the church we will be presenting at. We stop for a bathroom break and I decide to change our 6 week old son’s poopy diaper before we get to church, rather than at the church. I was unaware that this was not a normal poopy diaper.. this was a monumental blowout diaper!!! As I clean up this mess, he spits up. His little belly is now covered in smelly spit up. I am still trying to clean up his poop. The thought crosses my mind, “All he needs to do now is pee.” And the next thing I know I am trying to block pee from getting on my dress. At least now everything is out, except some more spit up, of course. I fish through the diaper bag and come up with his backup outfit, but can’t find his pants. No biggie.. they’ll turn up later. I get his onesie on, and what’s that? O just more spit up, all over his back up outfit. Note to self, “Bring 5 extra backups next time.” Back in his car seat, and on our way to the church, I find his pants. We arrive at the church and he is all smiles and giggles for the sweet lady who holds the door open for us, and the only evidence of our mess is a few wet spots on his onesie. SUCCESS!!!!
I was really nervous the first time we took Atlas to church with us. He was 1 week old and I was,of course, still COMPLETELY new at being a mom. We got up Sunday morning and went to church. We had a wonderful time, although I felt completely off-kilter. It has been a new experience, deputation with a baby, that’s for sure. Here are some of the things I have learned so far!
People Don’t Have Cooties.
I had to learn this when we first started deputation. I was a very shy person and was very intimidated to approach someone and start conversation. Now I had to learn that again. People love babies and love to be able to hold them. In that first service, people came over to see him. I asked if they wanted to hold him and watched, one by one, as their faces just lit up with joy to be able to hold a new baby. In that first service I also learned that, when it comes to holding babies, people are honest about their desire to NOT hold a baby. If someone does not want to hold him they say so. And I am sure to let them know that I am not offended in any way by that. I may not always be comfortable with it, but when I look back at the pictures we have taken, I know that our little boy has already touched many hearts in the time that he has been with us!
Nurseries Are Amazing!
It really is so sweet for women to volunteer to take care of our babies during a service. A baby takes a lot of time and attention during a service, and sometimes I even need to step out to take care of him. This makes it really difficult to listen to the sermon. So when Atlas was 2 weeks old and the church we went to had a nursery, I dropped him off and was able to be there to listen and support my husband with my full attention. And when I went back to get Atlas after the service, the ladies just went on and on about how they loved to hold him! My phobia of nurseries was gone!!
Plan Ahead (and remember to bring everything you planned)
Before we had the baby, my plan was simple. It took me 15 minutes to get ready, so I would wake up with just enough time and rush out the door. Those days, as every other mother knows, are gone! So I have been learning how to plan ahead. There is a lot that goes into this, from scheduling his meals (to eat before or after or between services-doesn’t always go according to the plan, but we try) to ironing our clothes to an extra pacifier to extra clothes and plenty of diapers. I have also learned to keep an extra bag of diapers and wipes in the car- learned this from my mistake of forgetting the diaper bag at home.
These are just a few things, and they may be simple, but I know that even in these, the Lord is preparing me for our ministry in Japan- to trust people with my baby, and to be organized and better prepared. I know there’s more to learn and I look forward to sharing more with you as Atlas grows!