Last night was Damon’s winter music program at school. Sounds fun, right? Yeah, um, not really.
If you’re a long-time reader of my fabulous blog, you might remember this from last year’s program. Damon is definitely NOT a performer. But, as his proud and doting mother, I had high hopes for this year. He’s a full year older and more mature (HA!), and honestly, he’s changed a lot in a year’s time. But, then again, maybe not…
Last night was traumatic, to put it lightly… for Damon, for his grandparents, and especially for his poor old mom.
Damon stood on stage with his fellow first graders to sing 4 or 5 songs, complete with very limited, simple choreography (wave your hand to the right, to the left, now clap… that kinda thing). When he first got on stage, Damon scoured the audience until he saw his Grampy stand up and wave to alert the child to his biggest fans’ location. And he actually smiled and waved at us. That was the happiest part of the evening; it quickly went downhill from there.
He smiled and waved at us, and then got an irritated, bored, embarrassed, “please-don’t-look-at-me” scowl on his face. Uh oh. Warning bells were going off in my head.
He started to sing along with the first song, kinda sorta… then when his classmates started their crazy choreography, Damon didn’t join in. Instead, he lowered his head (in prayer maybe?), and quit singing altogether. Hmmmm, the grandparents and I were chuckling a little… oh look, isn’t that cute/funny, ha ha. Then, Damon wiped his eyes with his shirt sleeve.
The poor kid stood on stage for a horrific 15 minutes or so… and cried. In the midst of 60+ fellow first graders and in front of a HUGE audience of doting parents/grandparents/siblings/teachers, he cried. And cried. And wiped his tears with his sleeve. (Did I mention that he cried? wahhhhhh!)
And, I sat paralyzed in the audience. My heart was absolutely breaking for the poor kid. I wasn’t sure exactly why he was crying… was he embarrassed in front of an “audience?” Did he forget the words to the songs? Did he not know the stupid choreography? Was he about to vomit? Regardless, he was visibly upset. I just wanted to run up there, snatch my son off the stage, wrap him up in a huge hug, and cry with him. But I did none of the above. I just sat, paralyzed, praying that he’d get it together for the next song. He didn’t.
Sometimes I wonder WHAT I’m going to do with Damon. He’s the sweetest child (at times) and he’s actually full of personality, all his own. But, unfortunately, he takes after his mother… he’s ultra-sensitive. I wouldn’t say he’s a cry baby, because honestly, he’s not. I think he’s your pretty typical rough and tumble boy… but he does have his moments where his feelings are hurt and his heart breaks and the world knows it. As his mother, of course, I want to protect him from anything and everything… and stop the tears. Last night was just one of those instances where I couldn’t. The first of many, I’m sure.
Tomorrow morning, Damon and his classmates will be performing the same program in front of their entire school. God help him…