I watch my children wade through these first years of life and I get caught up in being the referee. Often blowing the whistle in warning, and frequently jumping and shouting for joy. But, I too many times neglect the in between. The quiet instruction of what's to come. Not gilding expectations but, smoothing the edges and anchoring.
We arrived at the recital (with another half-dozen students and their entourages) straight from church. As we waited for the performances to begin. Dr. Gooch funneled his focus into keeping the pre-schoolers in check while I filtered Lucy's announcements that (in so many words), "This is the most bored I've ever been." Meanwhile, Seth sat still. The first student was called to perform on the Shiny Black Baby Grand.
Suddenly, Seth put his hand on mine. It was cold and sweaty. I took notice and glance at him. He asked, "What is going to happen?" This began a string of inquiries. "Are other people playing? Where do I play? Will my teacher sit with me? How long will we be here? Are there treats afterwards? What do I do when I'm done?
I realized, that this THIS was a first. One of those springboard moments that tint all "recitals" to come.
They will call your name. You will walk up to the piano and sit up straight and play your pieces. Ode to Joy first then Mary Had a Little Lamb. Then everyone will clap and you can come and sit back down next to me. Oh, and, there will be cookies.