April 28, 2009



I posted about the other man in my life a few months ago. Now it's progressed past crush stage.

We had our first kiss.

My young friend J is a treasure.

I teach Sunday School every week, and quite frankly, it's a dirge. I show up filled with enthusiasm, eager to open bright young minds and my class, more often than not is J and ... My own child.

My spouse stays because he knows that if all the students show, my hands are full. But that's rare. There are two or three other students who show maybe ever other week, but in essence, class is me, my child, my husband and J.

And J is in his own place. He is there because Dad takes him and he will leave "when Dad is here" and often he wants me to go to the car and make sure dad knows J was good.

I love J. Each week it takes every ounce of my willpower not to hug or kiss him and love him to pieces. He charms me.

I prepare my lessons hoping to find a spark of joy, a place my students relate to. It's rare. But I'm not doing this for me. I'm doing this... gosh yesterday I knew why, but the truth is, there are days I don't know why I do this.

J is fixated on the crystal cross he saw on TV with the Lord's Prayer he saw printed in tiny letters.

He tries to talk about Mario (from the world of Nintendo).

I tell him as soon as we finish the lesson. I forge onward. I talk about disciples, the spread of Christianity, the history of how it was learned. I talk about Peter as the first pope, James who stayed in Jerusalem, and Thaddeus who was rarely heard from again, but established the entire orthodox Christian following.

I am earnest. I have a lesson to share. J interrupts me again, wondering if the Dark Knight (the Batman movie he saw that weekend) had anything to do with this.

I explain that we can talk about that as soon as we finish the lesson. I pull out maps. I show journeys. I stress the amazing work of those early disciples.

J asks if Mario would die if the Dark Knight was in the game.

I smile and realize how futile my mission is. I tell J that everything I know about Mario I learned from him.

He smiles back and says, really?

Really, J. You've taught me everything I know about Mario.

How are you doing on the Lord's Prayer, I ask him. He again mentions the crystal cross he saw on TV. If I held it to light I could see all the words.

I hold J to light instead.

He shines.

Class is over, he comes to me and wraps his arms around me and kisses me on my shoulder (where he reaches) 4 times. He makes sure I know I just got "4 kisses".

They felt like 400.

I see all his words, too.


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