In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Gut Feeling.”

This wasn’t the last time but this is when I started really listening to my gut.  This was such a momentous occasion for me that I have always listened since and not just listened – acted!

My son who was 8 then is now close enough to 19 to call 19.

My son said “Mom, Can I go to the church next door?” I was working late and there was a church next door to my office.  I said, “Sure.”  But my gut was telling me, Do not let him go.  I remember arguing with myself, “Not letting him go is stupid.  Church is church.”  I talked myself into letting him go but could not shake the sense of doomsful foreboding I had.

A few hours later my son came back. He said, “They told me there was no such thing as Santa Claus.  This was around December 8 or so that this happened.  I was crushed.  I as a mother get to tell my children whatever lies I want to tell them.  This church had stolen part of his innocence.  Children are scared of Santa until they get almost too old to believe in him. He had not enjoyed that many years of conscious ignorant bliss yet.  I told my son, “If you don’t believe in Santa he won’t bring you any presents.”  My son and I did not speak of this again and while he pretended to be happy and surprised when Santa came for the next few years, I knew in my heart that part of his childhood had ended – wrongfully stolen by someone with no rights who – with a misguided since of righteousness decided to in “God’s name” steal from me and my son precious memories and moments that could never be replaced.  Being a mother of six, I remember the moment each child stopped believing or started questioning the reality of Santa.

This same night my son said, “They gave me a gift”  With trepidation I asked, “Really? What did they give you?”  After the shock of Santa nothing could be worse right?  He said, “They taught me how to speak in tongues.”  He proceeded to start babbling, smiling happily at me.

I sat him down and said, “Son, our church teaches if you speak in tongues there is someone around that can interpret what you are saying and you don’t just babble for no reason.”  I promptly called my sons’ Sunday School teacher and said please do not ask my son to pray in church for a while.”  The tongue speaking he did was beautiful as tongue speaking goes.

I did not allow him to attend that church again, but I did learn a valuable lesson.  If your gut says don’t do it, or don’t allow it, I don’t.  No questions asked.


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