On Saturday evening we were trying to decide whether to go to the 9 am Church service the next day or the 11 am one. We’re not really the best at being morning people so 11am would suit us better in terms of waking up and getting ready but if we go at 9 am then the kids can go to Sunday school whereas if we go to 11am they have to sit with us in the sanctuary.
For me it’s a no-brainer and the extra sleep wins. I voted for 11am because as I put it “The kids will be fine. They did a good job last time.”
Shaunie had a different take. According to her I frame everything around how much better they are now than they used to be. So basically, even though we sit in the back just in case we need to leave during the service and we bring snacks and we threaten to take away electronics if they don’t behave and we spend about half of the time shhh’ing them, I count it as a win because we make it through without any yelling or crying – which was not always the case.
She feels like they still have a little way to go and are better off hanging out with the other kids in a different room.
We ended up going to the 11am service. We made sure the boys were well fed before we left home. We gave the behavior speech. We let them bring toys. I packed snacks in my bag. We sat in the back.
For a long time I avoided going to Church altogether with the kids because it was just too much to handle. Due to their disorders, (ADHD and Autism if you are new here), I could NOT leave them in Sunday School while I sat quietly in a different room. I also could NOT bring them to the main service with me because they could NOT sit still or be quiet.
Making it through a Church service has not been an easy road for us. We’ve had to leave after only being there for 10 minutes. I have been known to leave Church services in tears. We’ve been given plenty of mean looks. I’ve had my kids crawl under pews and between peoples legs. They’ve dipped their hands into the wine cup during communion. They’ve gotten into arguments with other kids in the Sunday school room.
Yesterday, Ace only dropped one Lego piece which had to be retrieved from the floor two pews in front of us. Jay excitedly waved his $1 in the air that he puts in the offering plate but so what? Only one time did Ace ask, “How much longer?” Jay ate Oreos. They both shook hands during the greeting of the peace and before you know it, we were on our way home.
I think everyone would agree that it was a successful outing.
These things don’t happen by accident. They happen because you keep pushing yourself. You keep trying. You keep growing and getting better – Sometimes very slowly. You fail a few times (or most of the time) but you go back anyway.
There’s debate in school administration over whether to rate students based on their growth in an area or their proficiency on the topics. I suppose it’s safe to say I am #TeamGrowth.
Proficiency, of course, is the goal, but we’ve got to recognize and celebrate every little bit of growth and use that growth as motivation to keep pushing us forward.