So today we went to my mother in law's surprise birthday party. The logistics of getting all the kids out to be someplace by a certain time is something that has taken us a long time to work out, but we are getting better at it. Being on time is something I feel VERY strongly about. Actually I belong to the "If you are five minutes early, you are late" school of punctuality. I actually break into hives and begin to think apocalyptic thoughts if we leave more than thirty seconds after the time I wanted to leave.
The first few weeks Keira was born we started arriving to mass just as the organ was starting to play the opening notes of the processional hymn. The first time we were late I resolved to start waking up at 6:30 in the morning for to get to 10:30 mass.
The second time we got there just as the cantor was announcing the opening song, and I was not sure if it was still permissible to receive communion. So after the third time we got to mass "late" I did what any good Catholic should do about it... I went to confession.
I told Father that I was going to confession because we were getting to mass late, and he asked why, so I explained that we had just had a baby and that we were just having a hard time adjusting etc etc. So he explained the importance of trying to work as hard as possible to get to mass on time. Then he asked me if this was our first child, to which I replied, "actually Father, she is our fourth". Pause. After that brief moment of silence he replied with the wisdom only the Holy Spirit could have inspired. "You are an idiot." He then explained that although punctuality is a virtue, at this season of life our obligation is just to get the kids to mass...and to cut myself some slack.
It was an awakening moment.
Now I only need to get there 4 minutes early.