Tuesday, May 16, 2017

A Beautiful Baptism

Johanna was baptized into the Catholic faith on Mother's Day at our church, Most Precious Blood, here in Denver. Her godparents are my cousin Jason and his wife Amy, but they live in Ohio and are coming to Colorado in July, so they couldn't make it for the ceremony. But my parents came in from Michigan and Zack's dad and stepmom visited from St. Louis, and everything went wonderfully.

We ended up getting really lucky with how things worked out. Children over the age of one are usually scheduled to be baptized at a quarterly post-Mass ceremony at our church, so our plan was to go to the 10:45am Mass and stay afterward for her noon baptism. I was pretty bummed that just because we had adopted an older child, she couldn't be baptized during the Mass.

But earlier in the week, I found out my friend Mark DeMott (we grew up together in Michigan), who is now a priest, was going to be in Denver over the weekend saying the 10:45am Mass! He was specifically coming to perform a mutual friend's baby's baptism at that Mass, and he pulled a few strings and worked it so Johanna could be baptized by him too! It was so much more special than it would have been if the original plan of the post-Mass ceremony done by the associate pastor had happened (no offense to him!).

So Johanna was baptized at Mass and did great! She really held it together, even with sitting in the front row, being the center of attention, having lots of strangers reaching out to bless her, getting water poured over her head, and posing for lots of pictures. She was most excited about getting to wear her fancy white dress and big bow! Some people wondered where I got the dress and if we brought it back from China. No, it was just from Amazon! I didn't want a First Communion dress, and Baptism ones are usually baby-sized, so I thought this one worked well and honored her Chinese heritage as well. The big white bow with a cross in the middle was ordered from Etsy!

After Mass and pictures, we all went to Beau Jo's Pizza for lunch and cake and presents. After naps, we continued the fun with family, playing outside and enjoying a dim sum dinner and marshmallows cooked in the fire pit. It was a wonderful weekend, with great weather, good food, and fun family time.

Johanna did have two huge meltdowns on Monday as a result of the emotionally charged and overstimulating weekend, but today (Tuesday), she seemed back to normal (happy, sweet, and helpful). Even Jonas had a bit of "grandparent hangover" yesterday and was extremely sensitive and grumpy. I think it's hard for our kids to have so much fun and get all that attention and love and then have to say goodbye after just a few days.

Mother's Day was a perfect day for Johanna's Baptism, and I loved being able to celebrate the holiday with both my son and my daughter (and my own mom)! I'm so glad everything went smoothly and even better than expected. Now we've just got to get a corrected baptismal certificate made, as the one given to us has Johanna's middle name as "Wayne"!