My son will be two years old at the end of the month.
He is our first child that is 'cradle Orthodox'. It has already been a wonderous experience....the baptism, chrismation and of course the first communion and all of those to follow. He has wonderful godparents whom we feel very close to.
His favorite activity is playing 'church'. It started over a year ago. He waves his plastic links, chained together, as though they are a censor. As time went on, he learned to kiss icons and crosses, so each time he sees one he must kiss it. It doesn't matter where it is....within reach or not, so sometimes this is a challenge as he gets rather upset if he can't. He also takes them off the wall or the dresser and walks around the house with it, holding the icon or cross, or yes, even the bible, high above his head, singing in a tone quite similar to that of the priest....Could it be? "Blessed is the kingdom......"
Now, in addition to bible and censor, we have vestments. His trusty blanket. This is the blanket given to him by his godparents on his baptism day. This is 'blankie'. This is the beloved item that goes everywhere. It now rests gently upon his shoulders, tied in a knot at his chin or, in a rather funny fashion, clipped on with a Pampered Chef Twix It Clip,..... But alas, it drapes across his shoulders hanging down past his knees in the back. He lifts up his arms, sings (Blessed is the Kingdom) and proceeds to do prostrations and crosses himself.
It is dear.
It is precious.
It is etched into my memory forever.