We did a wedding yesterday, and brought Nicholas with us instead of having the babysitter keep him with the other kids. A few weeks ago I tried this when I did a wedding by myself, and he did beautifully—nursed half an hour beforehand and slept all the way through the wedding.
Yesterday, he wasn’t quite so cooperative—he didn’t want to go to sleep. But he was content to lie on the floor and kick and look up at the lights. The first two preludes went well; then he started whimpering. He was right under the mic’s, so I had to pick him up and hold him while I sang.
In the middle of the first reading, he burped loudly. I know what follows a burp, so I lunged for the nursing cover and put it under his mouth, and just in time, too. Christian and I gave each other a “whew, that was close!” look, and I put Nicholas in the car seat so I could go up to sing the psalm.
I was halfway to the ambo when I felt the wetness on my leg, and horrified, looked down to see—what else? Spitup on my black skirt!
Well, after that I didn’t pay much attention to the wedding. After the Gospel, five bridesmaids sat down and crossed their legs in unison, which struck me as funny. Just as I started singing “One Bread, One Body,” Nicholas decided it was time to fuss. Christian and I traded panicked looks, and he pulled the mic closer so he could take over singing if I had to bail. I finished out the refrain and started to go pick Nicholas up, only to find him conked out.
But perhaps because I had Baby on my mind, things struck me differently yesterday than usual. “I will bless the Lord at all times,” I sang in the psalm. “Praise shall always be on my lips.” Even when my child is in the hospital. Even when my child is throwing tantrums. Even when I’m standing in front of 150 people as a paid singer, and there’s spitup on my skirt.
There’s a line in “How Beautiful” that says, How beautiful when humble hearts give the fruit of pure lives so that others may live. I don’t know the meaning Twila Paris intended, to me, that line seems to speak to parenthood, and in particular, it’s always struck me as an NFP teacher.
When it was all over, people commented on how cute our baby was, with his one sock (Julianna had pulled off the other one and I never had time to replace it), and how good he was (which really, he was), and how beautiful the music was. So it all worked out. And maybe it’s a good witness for a married couple to bring a baby along when they do music for a wedding.
But I can’t help squirming and thinking it’s a little unprofessional to be covered with spitup while I sing a wedding!