Yesterday I was lucky enough to have the chance to share about the hows and whys of Twitter with a dear friend of mine at our parish. She and I worked hard putting together a presentation and a nice hand out. We were going to deliver it as a team, passing back and forth and enriching what each other had to say. I was, needless to say, excited for the chance to help out. Our little Twitter tutorial was scheduled to happen after the Tuesday Coffee Social after morning Mass. The perfect time to bring the kids because there would be snacks to keep them happy and it was early enough in the day that they wouldn't be exhausted. We had even arranged for someone to entertain the kids, a friend of whom they are extremely fond. Unfortunately (well, really fortunately when I think of it!) he got called in to the work so I was flying solo. But that's okay! I am a pro Mom. I know how to prepare. I packed the kids up in time to get to Church a little before Mass and I brought up a kids table to set up my laptop so the kids could watch Netflix while we gave our short presentation (yay free wireless at the Church!).
We settled down in our regular weekday pew for Mass (yes, we have a regular spot). Our friend showed up and the three oldest kids stayed with her the whole time, happily cuddling and trying to kid with her. She and her husband are just like family. They're actually going to be baby boy's Godparents. We're so lucky to have them joining our family officially. But I digress. The kids were generally speaking awesome during Mass, excluding one outburst from the oldest boy who seems to believe that he can't pass through the line for Communion without getting a blessing from our parish priest, even if we're in another line. Huge drama if he doesn't get his blessing, regardless of how much I explain it's not appropriate to scream over a blessing and that he can get one AFTER Mass. Ugh. Anyway.... So Mass went very well all things considered.
After Mass was over we made our way to the room where we were giving the presentation. I set up a movie on Netflix, one I knew the kids would LOVE. I then snuck out to the reception and got a plate full of sweet and treats. Enough to make a lunch for my brood. Feeling like one of those Moms who can have it all, I get ready to help give the presentation about Twitter. A good number of people come in and take a seat and we get ready to start. And then the action really starts. Out of nowhere, my 4 year old boy loses it. Completely. For reasons that are completely obvious to him but ridiculous to me. He hasn't thrown a tantrum of that magnitude in half a year. It was epic. There was tears, screeching, screaming and begging. I had no place to put him in time out to cool off and his voice was so loud in the relatively small room. After lots of struggles I finally got him to quiet down. How, you ask? I ended up having to hold him, with his toy and book he brought, as well as a few crayons and a never ending supply of fresh paper for him to drawn on. I'm sure you know this, but I am over 8 months pregnant. Not exactly comfortable. But at that point I was willing to do just about anything to get him to calm down so my friend could be heard over the din and I could help in some small way. Crazy times.
Last night, as I sat steaming over my day, I couldn't help but laugh. My boy is usually such a gentleman, especially in public. I'm sure he's either over-tired or coming down with something. In the moment I was swept up in the thought that he should know better than to act that way. In my late night reflection, I wondered if this is how I look to God? Are there times when I should know better, that I cry out to God in frustration and anger for things I don't really need? Am I a spiritual toddler, screaming in anger, telling God I don't love Him anymore because I can't have MY way, even if MY way isn't good for me? The difference is that while my patience was wearing mighty thin with my boy yesterday, God is endlessly patient with me. He sees me ignoring my blessings and crying out in my anger, but He still smiles at my littleness. He wants me to be better, to act my age (or spiritual age in this case) and make the time to listen to His voice rather than my own for a minute. He carries me through my weakness and then teaches me how to be strong. All I can hope to do as a Mama is to try and imitate God's fatherly love for me when my kids push my buttons, and hope that when I'm the one throwing a tantrum, that I learn to quiet my heart so I can hear Him whispering comfort and truth in my ear.