Here are a few great tips for those who are watching their little ones at church, but more importantly, here's one crucial reason why attending all of church is worth the effort, even when our kids can make it difficult.
For the parents, grandparents, and primary teachers in the hallway with little ones: I feel your pain.
There’s that moment when all of the classroom doors close and it’s suddenly silent, and there you are, sitting on a couch in the foyer. It’s easy to feel completely alone in these moments. But before you pack up your treats and toys and head home, there are a few things you can do to make your hallway experience more meaningful and less painful.
Reach out to other parents stuck in the hallway with their kids. If you’re feeling lonely, they probably are, too. You never know how meaningful reaching out can be.
If you have a chance, read the scriptures or a conference talk on your phone while your noisy 1-year-old plays with toys.
Volunteer to help in nursery. It will give your kiddo interaction with other kids, and you’ll be able to talk to the other leaders.
Take shifts with your spouse. Depending on your husband or wife’s calling, you might be able to take turns. It’s much less isolating to be in the hallway for an hour than all of church.
Look for spiritual opportunities elsewhere. When you’re a young parent, church is about teaching your children correct habits. If church feels like a zoo, find time later in the day and throughout the week to grow your testimony.
I was a new mom of a six-month-old, in a new ward full of friendly, but unknown faces. While I attempted taking her to Sunday School and Relief Society, it usually ended in my baby screaming, babbling, or laughing so loudly that everyone in my half of the room couldn’t hear the instructor. I had to take her out to the hallway.