I was really honored, I can't lie or hide that fact. There were a lot of people he could have asked to give a talk, he's got plenty of aunts and uncles, he has both set of grandparents, a primary teacher, the works. I was honored and then incredibly nervous! I have never spoken at a baptism. I've been asked to say the prayer before, which is also nerve racking for me, but talking to my nephew about baptism just threw me off. So I wrote and rewrote trying to make sure I wasn't going to be talking over his head, trying to keep all the knowledge I had gained since I was 8 out of it (I don't mean that to sound as snobby as it does, it's just that I would start writing and then be like, "But wait, there's more!" and really this kid just wanted to be dunked in the water. Baptism to an 8 year old means something different than it would to say, a 20-something being baptized. It's a step in life for an 8-year-old, something they have been planning for quite some time, they haven't lived a life searching or making mistakes. So I tried to keep it to what baptism is.
Before the baptism, everyone who was participating (speakers, prayers, etc.) had a little meeting in one of the rooms just to go over the program. Jake was in there too and when his uncle (who was conducting the meeting) said when I would be speaking Jacob looked at me and gave me a big smile and a thumbs up.
I felt like I had a pretty good talk prepared (when I say pretty good I mean a good length) and then it came time to go up there and give the talk. So here's what I didn't account for:
- The noise - no joke, I'm not used to having kids around at baptisms (or church in general) so the noise was overwhelming.
- The uncontrollable shaking of my knees (really? I thought I had gotten past all that).
- Jacob's attention span - I had his attention, I lost it, his dad nudged him and I had it again, then I lost it, then I had it again for a brief shining moment* because I brought a visual with me.
It was a very interesting experience for me, being at his baptism. I think for me more so than other people because it had a similar feel to my own baptism (forever and ever ago). I mean, it was the same room, and it was set up the same as it was when I was baptized (it may have even had some of the same chairs!) I was baptized in January too, and during my baptism there were basketball games going on in the gym ('tis the season). I could remember my own excitement to be baptized and I could tell on Saturday that he was feeling the same kind of excitement.P.S. Jake picked the flag, he's so patriotic.