"And With Your Spirit..."
Grade school, aka grades kindergarten through eighth, are some of the most formative years in a young person's life. There is an unspoken bond between kids whose parents sent them to Catholic school. From plaid skirts to the nerve-wracking experience of confession to the some of the ridiculous things you parents and teachers made you endure, here are some painfully relatable experiences that make us Catholic school kids cringe and laugh.
If you wore nail polish or makeup you might as well have been a devil worshipper
If you had on mascara or nail polish that was a color other than clear, you were immediately sent to the office. I once had a teacher that reasoned the no-polish rule by saying that if someone was unconscious, their nails would turn blue. This always confused the heck out of me, because if someone was unconscious, you could probably tell by the fact that they would be laying on the ground unresponsive.
The Eucharist was way overhyped
The most disappointing moment of a Catholic child's life is the first bite of the Eucharist, when you realize that your teachers have actually been finessing you this whole time and the Body of Christ actually tastes like a cardboard box. At least you got to drink the stale wine though.
Maybe you hoped you would become a Saint one day
True story: I had this phase in second grade where I prayed every night for God to make me a saint. It never happened.
When they randomly changed all the rules??
Does anyone else remember when they changed "And also with you" to "And with your spirit?" What was that all about? Chances are you still mess it up every once in awhile.
It was one of the biggest decisions of eighth grade. If you picked a stupid name, you probably regret it to this day. There also was probably beef with the choir kids, because half of them chose Saint Cecelia as their confirmation name.
The sign of peace was a social event
That 30-second interval when you were allowed to talk was the only sweet release from most hour-long masses. Chances are, you reached across, behind, diagonally, and two pews over to greet your friends and give them the "peace be with you." You hoped you'd be sitting by your crush for this moment too.
The epitome of fashion was all about incorporating accessories
If you owned a collection of neon Lululemon headbands, Nike Elite socks with Sperrys, and giant pearl earrings, you were automatically untouchable and the coolest kid on campus.
Going to confession was not a fun experience
"Did you see how long Tyler was in confession for? He must have done something bad." Your first confession was probably terrifying. However, that meant First Communion was right around the corner, and you would soon be too rich to care. #moneybaby
Everyone was named John, Matthew, or Peter
It's inevitable. All the basic boys in class were named after the same three saints. There were probably more than three Graces in the class as well.
Your kindergarten teachers probably friended you on Facebook
Catholic school is bound to be a tight-knit community. You probably see your old teachers at the grocery store and they ask how your family is. It's pretty endearing, actually — except when they cross the line into social media.
Spending Ash Wednesday comparing ashes
Ash Wednesday was also the day Lenten promises were made. "Sorry, I can't. I gave it up for Lent" would become all too familiar over the next 40 days.
"This Little Light of Mine" was a banger
There were a few songs that you could get really into during Mass. "Our God Is An Awesome God" and "Amazing Grace" are a couple of examples of these. No shame.
"Saint Anthony, help me find my..."
"Hi God... It's me again." The prayer to Saint Anthony always magically helped you find your missing items. It was always quite eerie, actually, even if that was the only reason you prayed.
Your public school friends will never understand
Maybe there was beef between your school and the nearby public school. Also, your public school friends' parents probably used the notion of Catholic school to scare their kids when they were acting up. The truth is, they will just never get it.
Maybe you went on to attend a Catholic high school. Maybe Catholic school scarred you for life and made you resent organized religion (I seriously don't blame you). Either way, Catholic school is a niche experience, and you definitely have an unbreakable, permanent bond with those that endured it by your side — whether you like it or not.