So I got this e-mail from Kameron’s school this morning.
Christ, what did I forget? Confirmation for what? We’ve been over the hefty play schedule. The phone misplacement disfunk. The “I can’t wear those new school pants today – they still have tags on them!” His Spanish Teacher’s husband getting whisked away in an ambulance in the middle of church.
I mean, it’s been quite a week, and it’s Thursday.
I heaved a heavy sigh; what task lies within this email I wondered. I read.
If your son or daughter is 13 years old before September __, 2012 (I quickly did the math – and he is..) I read on. He/She is eligible for the Confirmation Program through OLG. I stopped; Confirmation? How is it possible that Kameron is old enough for Confirmation? Then my mind drifted back to the 5100 block of Norwaldo Avenue.
Confirmation as I recall was not a happy thing for me. Confirmation to me makes me remember fights. Threats from my mother to be sent to public school if I didn’t get confirmed. The questioning of my faith, even then as a teenager, but knowing I wouldn’t trade the familiarity of my Catholic School or my friends for this one hour debacle. Besides, there was no way I’d make it a week at Broad Ripple HS – even back then. So I’d do the damn thing and that would be that.
Then there was the dress. Oh, I remember that dress. It was one of those dresses that I look back now and wished that I would have been able to keep. It was in one of “those” stores. I can’t remember the name of the store, but it was one of those stores that people “south of the swamp” didn’t typically go into, because frankly we had no money. I remember seeing that dress and begging my mom – on my hands and knees – to please let me have it for my upcoming, very important, Catholic, Confirmation…
Long story short, I got the dress, I got confirmed, there was a party, I got some cash, some crosses, and that was it. I didn’t feel like I was closer to God, I didn’t feel anything really… I take that back, I felt relief that I was not heading to BRHS or IPS.
Fast forward 25 years, and my own opinionated child later.
I picked Kameron up from school after his initial play practice. (He’s going to be in Cinderella in March.) (Even though “it stinks because he’s in sixth grade and can’t try out for a REAL part.”) He got in the car, we went over how his day was, what kind of homework we were facing for the evening, and the most important question “what are we having for dinner?” Chicken Enchiladas was the call, he seemed pretty happy about that.
Driving on the back roads to our house gives me and Kameron time to talk, unless he’s not in the mood – which happens. We’ve talked about a lot of stuff on those back roads. Confirmation was the topic for today.
I told him I got an email from school (which always gets his attention – hahaha.) I told him it was about Confirmation and asked if his teachers had brought it up in class. He said that they did, and that he had to be 13 to participate. “Will I be mom?” “Yes” I said. Then it went quiet.
Until we came to our first of a few stop signs. As I turned left he asked “are you Confirmed Mom?” I didn’t look and said “yes.” The next stop sign came, and he asked “what does it mean, Confirmation, I mean, Mom?” I looked both ways, and thought, I’m going to have to be very careful the way I answer this. I said “Confirmation is like a promise to God bud. A promise that you’ll always pray, and that you’ll always do things the way you think God would want you to do them, to go to church, and to always treat people with kindness and respect.”
Hey – that’s a pretty damn good answer.
At the next stop sign he asked “why don’t we go to church anymore Mom?”
Instant lump in my throat; I looked at him, but for some reason, the way he looked at me, I knew he wasn’t going to give me a pass on this one.
Trying not to cry, I gave him the most honest answer I could. I said (very calmly) “I don’t go to church anymore bud because when Pop died, mommy didn’t want to go to church anymore.” He looked down, and then looked back out the window.
We sat there in silence for a few minutes.
“Kameron?” He looked at me. “Would you like to go to church sometime with me bud?” “Yes” he said.
I promised him I would, and that I would try just for him, because it was important to him. He said “thanks Mom” as we pulled into the driveway and he got out of the car.
Looking at him going into the house, I put my head on the steering wheel and thought “kid, you have no idea.”
So, are you there God? It’s me. I haven’t been around for awhile. Frankly God, I’m pretty pissed at you, and you know why. The thing is that I have this little boy that thinks I know everything. (Eyes Roll) So I’m doing this for him right now, and maybe a little bit for me. Don’t get too excited. We’ll see how it goes, I’m not making any promises. Deal?