Today, my husband, son, and I went to Easter service at Houston Second Baptist in Katy. I was so excited about getting everyone dressed up, out the door, dropped off (although I felt so bad that Aidan boo-hooed buckets as we left him in the nursery) and to the service on time. What I was not expecting to find is that the service is no longer interpreted in sign language. The Spanish interpretation is still there, but where did the deaf crowd go? I admit that I teared up when I asked where the interpreters were and was told by a very nice man, who looked so disappointed to be the one to tell me, that sign language interpreting wasn't available for that service anymore. What the heck? I kind of felt like, in the moment, I was being tested to see if I could take the news on such a wonderful Holy day like a champ. Of course that made it worse because I was quickly wiping the tears as we sat down. Debby Downer arrives to the pews in a timely manner. *sigh*
I was really bummed at first, but then I thought maybe I could use the time to practice my listening skills. I knew I wouldn't understand much but every little bit of practice helps. Really, all there was to do was to make lemonade out of lemons at this point. James was obviously feeling bad for me, and I felt bad that he felt bad. I am too much of a novice with my implant to say I got a lot out of the service, but the songs from today were ones I've known for years. I miss my grandmother, especially at Easter, and the hymns were comforting and familiar and made me feel nostalgic for another time.
Before the service started after the singing, the room went dark, and there were loud booms, which were special effects that sounded like thunder (I'm pretty sure that is what it was supposed to be) and a narrative that unfolded around the story of Jesus' resurrection. Also, the main points were displayed in writing on the screens. It was very much like briefly being in a theater for an action movie with the compelling voice narrating (all I can tell you is that it was a deep male voice, but I would've known that with just my hearing aid) and loud theatrical sound effects.
The service was too complicated for me to follow. I could only catch a few words or phrases here and there as Dr. Young worked the stage. This was his televised sermon, and the cameras surround the stage, so he can pretty much move all over the stage, and he did. We sat behind the orchestra and had an up close view of all the frenzied, exciting action that goes on in the pit. There are also a lot of overhead television screens at Second Baptist that show the service as it is taking place and also includes the verses being read or the songs being sang which is really cool for someone that needs a little visual information.
After the service we made our way back to the nursery. Aidan was in a class solely for May 2007 babies. You know it's a big church when his class is only for 23 month old kiddos! I wonder if they celebrate all the birthdays in May? Aidan had some artwork for us, which included a butterfly and a cross he'd "colored" for us. I was already mentally deciding where on the fridge I was going to place them and what was going to have to go to make room for them. He was very happy to see us, and of course we were thrilled to see him. Have I mentioned how much I love my little angel with his lopsided halo?
We went out to eat at Red Lobster after church. At this point Aidan was tired (read: hyperactive, kicking, just a real pleasure. ;-) We knew it was a lost cause when the crackers were tossed all over the floor and table, and he was upset he was not allowed to "play" (throw, toss, hail Mary) with the (breakable) bread plates. James was still a little uncomfortable from the family picture a waitress took for us because Aidan chose that moment to kick his dad in the unmentionables as I held him. I must say as horrible as I felt for James, the picture itself is classic, a lovely blooper caught on camera to remember for years to come. Yes, I must figure out how to post the picture, which includes James' stunned "I've been maimed" expression, while Aidan completely turned his head away from the camera. We called it a day and took our lunches to go.
Maybe next year Aidan will make it through church and lunch. Last year his grandfather preached his last Easter service before retiring, and I had to take chatty Aidan outside for the service (small church and no nursery) but we made it through dinner at Luby's with the family afterwards. As for this year, we all went home, watched a little Micky Mouse, had lunch and took naps. Actually, I waited until James and Aidan were both asleep to break out my crab legs and shrimp while watching a DVRed episode of General Hospital from last week....THEN I took a nap... not too shabby! When all was said and done, I think I preferred my couch for lunch today.
Anyway, I really do hope we can find a Baptist or non-denominational church in Houston that we really like as a family (and is not such a long drive) and has interpreted services. There's a deaf church in Houston, but it's about thirty minutes or more from our house. I'd like to find something closer to our community so we can be more involved than just for a Sunday visit. I also hope God will forgive me for my gloomy mood earlier today because my life has been extremely blessed, even when things don't go as planned once in a while. Today is really about the ultimate gift God gave us. Everything else is secondary.
Hope you all had most fabulous Easter! :)