Sundays. It became obvious that Sundays were our worst days of the week. We both worked, I traveled a lot and when Fridays showed up, that was laundry night. Saturdays were our days to do what I called, “the world tour.” The world tour consisted of hitting Costco, Banana Republic, TJ Maxx, Walmart, The Gap, and the mall which was a sub tour-stop from our main world tour. Our tour did not include the never ending and ongoing outside projects. When Sunday came around, it was the day we stressed out the most. It was the day when I questioned humanity, my existence, and why all great sporting events competed with god’s awful schedule.
There was nothing more aggravating than trying to get yourself, two kids ready, (one on a strict gluten free diet) and support the wife’s effort to get herself ready. Clothes were thrown around like dead cats in a tornado, makeup and hair products covered every inch of bathroom counter space that looked like a basement science lab from a 50’s horror movie. You can imagine who the crazy scientist was along with crazy sidekick.
Voices were raised, blood boiled, clothes were tried on, and re-tried on with every combination possible until the right material, pattern, and color matched perfectly. Like a well trained crazy sidekick (with limp and all), I ironed whatever was given to me. I knew the iron well. Whether it was cotton,
I told my wife once that I felt like I was the morning manager at Denny’s. Everything depended on me for the shuttle launch at the perfect time and it failed every Sunday.
I threw the kids in the car and cinched their seat belts and then waited……..
We waited…..and waited……for my wife to stumble down the stairs in the garage and she gave me this look of utter disgust as she threw the car door open and jumped in. The drive to church was, well, painful to say the least. “You kids need help us get to church on time!” she would yell. It was like driving with a pissed off platoon commander on your way to the firing squad.
Arriving at church, we could see other sinful later goers shamefully shuffling through the parking lot like depressed zombies. We, meaning the kids and I, are still being scolded as we get out of the car, and I am trying to re-tuck my long sleeved, JCrew shirt back into my J Crew pants, while adjusting my J Crew belt. My daughter slumps out of the car and I grab my son out of the car seat like a backpack and I end up carrying him that way.
The strange this is, the walk from the car to the doors of the church are strangely calm, but still quite depressing and I realize that I am now grouped in the other zombies I saw when pulling into the parking lot.
We make our way to the back rows where there are vacant chairs for those of us who can never make it to church on time. I affectionately called this area ‘the bottom dwellers.” Like us, no one is happy in the bottom dwellers section of church. Some pretend to sit up straight and listen (my wife was one of them) but the others better.
Three hours of meetings where you are trying to keep a four year old from acting like a four year old was our ritual, our way of life. This depressing ritual was amplified during the Summer months. Our church was near the city pool and at just the right angle, you could see the “unclean” or the not-keeping-the-Sabbath-Day-holy people have fun. That was self torture so I made sure to never look in that direction.
Why were Sundays our worst day as a family? Besides the fact that I was attending to keep the peace, would it have been any different if I was a true believing Mormon (TBM)? I dreaded Sundays so much, that I would get pains in my stomach knowing what I had to look forward to. As a family, Sundays didn’t bring us closer together because it didn’t give us time to BE closer together. We were too busy going through the rounds to magnify our callings, make us appear as faithful among the other members of the church, who were no doubt, going through the same crazy shit were going through!
What are Sundays like now? I would describe that to you, but I need to cool off in the pool first.
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