Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The time VBS got the whole ball rolling...

I phoned my mother this morning to tell her that tomorrow I am going to put my daughter in Vacation Bible School for a day. It's crazy hat day, so in hopes that she'll fit in I went to Claire's and spent thirty bucks on a cute floppy hat, some fake hair, and these strange stringy things that I am thinking we will attach to the back of the hat. Hopefully it will look "crazy," but not too crazy, so that she doesn't make any friends. Even at VBS I think there is a coolness pecking order...

Anyways, my mother used this as a opportunity to let me know that the last time she babysat Stella dragged out her Easter book for Nana to read. See, Nana only gives religious gifts (Poppa only gifts gifts of silver but that's a whole other blog...) like books with Christian overtones or, let's see here, nope, that's it, books with Christian overtones.

So Stella dragged out the Easter book, which when we first got it inspired countless stimulating backseat questions like "what are soldiers" and "why did Jesus die". It only took me a week of trying to answer complicated theological questions before I started referring them back to Nana. The little bugger remembered all her questions, too, saved them up for the saint-like patience of Nana.

(I think that was also the time she told Nana, quite seriously, that you don't say F***. Only she did say it, plain as day, in her precise and clear diction. Nice.)

Nana gently informed me on the phone that Stella bringing out the Easter book is her way of asking me to go to church. I'm not certain that Nana isn't maybe projecting a little, it might be Nana who wants me to go to church, but blame it on the little ones, isn't that what Jesus said? So she sends the children to do the devil's work, pestering me with questions like "could Jesus break glass," the appropriate answer to which is apparently "yes, he could if he wanted to, but I can't think that he would want to."

So anyways, I have to admit, I have less than zero interest in going to church. If you looked at my history, which is such a long story I'll have to get into it over the course of the next, oh, ten years or so, I've probably attended more church than even Nana herself, by virtue of having to go to church a minimum of three times a week plus all sorts of spectacular extras, and I figure I'm pretty much all churched out. Yup, the word on the street is that it probably won't be happening much more for me, save weddings and funerals and events held in the basement of a church like a neighbourhood watch meeting.

But here is the conundrum that I'm faced with, and it's a doozy. Stella is four and I've been trying to figure it out since she was born, to no avail. How do I, as a practicing non-church going mother, teach her all the things I learned in my childhood, so that the choice she eventually makes is an educated one? Aha, I hear you leaping all over your keyboards, telling me I've answered it myself - I must overcome my unwillingness and go to church, for the sake of my children. Not an option, my friends, not an option. So let me have it. How do I handle this one? Let's hear it for the collective wisdom of my peeps.

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