Saturday, November 24, 2012

Great To Be Eight

My brave boy was baptized earlier this month.  It's still kind of hard for me to wrap my head around the fact that this day, a day that I have been worrying about for nearly 6 years, has finally come and gone.  And it did so fairly smoothly.

I am so grateful for that.

Back when J refused to talk to anyone outside of our family, I worried about this day.  And when he'd screech if someone looked at him or asked him a question in the grocery store, I worried.  And when we saw how negatively some of our extended family members reacted to his anxiety related behaviors, we circled the wagons.  And we worried.  And we wondered how on earth he would ever tolerate being in the spotlight.  Something that baptism requires you to do.

I was always afraid that he would just freeze when he saw all those eyes watching him.  So I spent a good deal of time preparing him for this day.  We talked about the why's, the how's, the when's, and the millions of what if's his little brain came up with.

He was nervous.  He was scared.  But he understood how important this ordinance is, so he pushed through all his fears and went ahead and got baptized.  Right in front of all of us.

I am one proud (and relieved ) mama.
CTR--choose the right.  He did indeed!
It was a sweet experience for Shaggy to baptize this boy.  After he had done his best to answer J's last minute anxiety-induced questions.  "Is the water cold?  Are there fish in there?  What if my feet pop up?  How will they know when we're ready?"

I was biting my lip, trying to calm my stomach that was all tied up in knots as we listened to those questions through the curtain as Shaggy led him into the water.  I prayed that J wouldn't take too long, like he does sometimes when he's working through his fears.  I prayed that those around me would be understanding.  I prayed most of all that even through his fears, my son would be able to feel God's love and strength and peace.  That the Spirit would be able to calm his heart and mind in ways that I could not.  I prayed that he would be able to feel as surely as I did, that he was doing the right thing.
And he was providing such a great example of courage to his little sisters.
Whose turn will come soon enough.
This is one of those completely serendipitous photo accidents.  The sunlight streaming through the window turned the glass in front of the font into a mirror of sorts.  I noticed it in the previous shot and quickly recomposed to get this one.  I love it! 
I'm not so crazy about this one, but there's only so much you can do with challenging light.  And a cheesy two-year-old.  And a nervous boy.  And an impatient family.  It captures the moment pretty well, though.

It was taken just before the baptismal services began.  And other than a wild B who would not sit still to save her life and J refusing to sit up front to get confirmed (after several uncomfortable moments of listening to Shaggy and I try to cajole him into going up there, they came to him and confirmed him in the pews), things went pretty well.  Spectacularly well, in fact.  Especially considering  my 5+ years of worry.  That is a burden that I quite happily lay to rest, at long last.

I'm happy that my boy has chosen to become an official member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, even though he had to go waaaay outside his comfort zone to do it.  Life is funny like that--the hardest things to do are the ones that end up being the best for us.
Grammy came to visit for J's baptism, even though Hurricane Sandy scrambled her travel plans a bit.
We tried to take a few photos before leaving for the baptism.  But since everyone was a little stressed and frazzled, that didn't work out too well.  So we tried again once we got home.  That was much more successful.
I really, really love this family of mine!
And I could blog forever and not be able to capture just how proud I am of this boy.
What started out as a nice, calm father/son photo very quickly turned into this:

If I didn't know better, I'd say those two were made for each other.


Lynnie said...

Just found your blog!!! Awesome story and awesome pictures. I think we should be great friends ;-) I love the one of the girls in the glass during the baptism. Incredible!

Mom said...

J is an adorable, sweet, brave boy and his baptism was wonderful. I'm soooo glad I could be there for his special day.

Rebekah said...

I love your blog!! Such a great day for you guys!! Way to go J!!!