I almost started crying when I entered the room with the high ceilings. I could still hear our laughter and heavy breathing as we darted in and out of the rows of pews. Fresh in my mind was the vision of us kids running around in the darkness while our parents socialized in the next room. I could still see him looking up at me, for I was taller than him the last time I encountered his presence. That has changed, I’m sure.
It was weird to be back, albeit nice. Except, there were things that weren’t nice. My grandma was scowling like a jealous schoolgirl and things had changed too much. Not only was the basement a mess, but the parsonage had been burned to the ground. Stress was something I could feel strongly in the air. Its prominence burned me much like the charred pile of former house innards laying out in the January winter.
There was no choir. There was no organ; just piano. There were no children that I recognized, there was nobody my age up in the back, getting ready to snuff out the candles after the service to signify their job as an acolyte.
“We stopped doing that,” she said. Well, I think that kind of sucks.
There was no comfort. Or, at least there was very little. The only times I cracked a smile was when Papa fell asleep here and there and when I heard the voice of my favorite choir member singing behind me. At least he was there to provide me with a sense of normalcy; even if it wasn’t a very big chunk of it.
There’s also the issue of not necessarily believing. What am I to do about that? I know I pleased my grandparents by acting as their chauffeur and acting as something they could show off to their friends, but I don’t know if I see this becoming a regular thing. It was fun to make them happy, but if I don’t believe, what am I to do? Sit there every Sunday with a blank look painted on my face, much like I displayed today?
I’m glad I did it. I don’t regret it. I just wish I wasn’t so shrouded with disbelief. Believing comes to other people so easily…why can’t it be that easy for me?