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The Family 👨‍👩‍👧‍👦🚗⛪

Matthew Kwasnicki

August 14, 2016

They were running late again. The kids had all been ready for a while and were waiting quietly in the back seat of the car. Sarah still hadn’t started washing herself and was walking frantically around the house in her underwear.

“What’s taking so long? We’re all set to go.” John was all too familiar with his wife’s bad time management skills.

“I’m coming. Don’t pressure me.” Sarah knew they were all waiting for her but she couldn’t move at any other pace than her own. “Just go out and wait with the kids. I’ll be quick.”

John didn’t want to start an argument, so he reluctantly took her advice and went outside.

Sarah took a few deep breaths and started looking in her closet for an appropriate outfit. She tried to think about where she had put her favorite earrings. She looked in the kitchen and bathroom. She was able to find them in her purse from the living room. She went to the washroom to use the toilet and washed her face and armpits. She tried on a couple of outfits and finally chose one that had to be pulled out of the dryer.

Eight minutes after John went outside, Sarah came out the front door with her hair half done and wearing no makeup. She could finish beautifying herself on the drive to church. John started the car without expressing his built-up resentment. The kids stared down at the floor and sighed with relief and disappointment.

The drive was usually about fifteen minutes, but at the pace John was driving they could make it in ten, or so he thought. They lost some time by stopping a couple of times for slow-moving pedestrians and forgetting to bypass the temporary construction zone on their usual route. John vocalized his frustration with a few unsavoury curse words and Sarah reprimanded his use of such language in front of the children. The children remained dull and despondent.

They finally got to the church and luckily had no trouble finding a parking spot. Sarah and John walked briskly towards the church entrance while the kids followed more casually. They weren’t looking forward to the gawking faces that they were likely to encounter.

Despite their best efforts, the family failed to go unnoticed as they entered the holy building because of the squeaky old door and loud wood flooring. Many heads turned in their direction, some with disapproval, some with disdain and there was a quiet hush over the congregation. After a few seconds of embarassment, the family all nodded their heads apologetically and made their walk of shame to one of the available pews. The service resumed from where it had left off.

John looked at Sarah with a stern but loving expression. Sarah looked back bashfully and thankful as she grabbed his hand. They may have missed half the service, but John and Sarah knew God would forgive them for their tardiness. The children didn’t really understand what they were doing at the same place every Sunday and quietly escaped into their own imagination.