Thursday night, I went solo to the baptism class offered by our Catholic church. We aren't sure when we'll get Lexie baptized, because church was one of two places doctors told us never to bring her, because of the multitude of germs swarming about. (Grocery stores are the other off-limits category.) We were hoping to get the baptism done this summer, if it fits in the church's schedule. But we weren't sure -- we are still thinking of waiting until next summer, by which time her immune system should be caught up with those of her peers.
During the class, the instructor mentioned something about "a private baptism," which would be for sick babies or baptisms that expect a very large crowd. After the class, I approached the instructor and mentioned Lexie's prematurity and weak immune system, asking if this was an appropriate reason to schedule a private baptism.
"Oh," she replied. "You have a fragile baby?"
For a split second, my mouth hung open. I was at a loss for a response. What the heck does that mean, a "fragile baby"? I sure didn't want to answer in the affirmative.
So I burst out laughing, tears collecting in the corners of my eyes.
And the awkwardness descended upon us like a cloud.
Then I explained that I didn't like to think of my daughter as fragile, although she does need a little extra help and protection. I think the woman was a little chagrined at the exchange. She did say that we could probably arrange a private ceremony, although scheduling could be a challenge.
But I keep thinking about the term fragile. She was definitely fragile when we brought her home. I was terrified that she'd just stop breathing, or that I'd drop her and mortally wound her tiny body.
But now she seems pretty hardy.
Fragile? I don't know. What do you think? Is there a better term out there?