Saturday morning Reagan (my eighth grade daughter) and I headed to a local college for her chorus solo/ensemble competition. We took the wrong exit and Rea got more and more grumpy the closer we got to the school. I now realize she was getting nervous.
I’m starting to notice a trend with my teenagers: Tired= grumpy, nervous=grumpy, angry=grumpy, hungry=grumpy, breathing=grumpy.
We arrived at ICC, grabbed a bite in the cafeteria, which somehow she didn’t find as thrilling as when she was 5 and I was a student there and took her on a tour. Teenagers, so blase about everything. I, on the otherhand, still get excited over the cheese fries. (The cheese is NACHO. Nacho cheese fries! It’s like puppies and rainbows in your mouth… or jalapeno flavored cheese product. Same diff.)
She and her friend V. sang their duet, “Beauty and the Beast.” It went okay, but V. forgot her lines at one part and, at another part, she sang the wrong lines. Unfortunately, it was at a part where Rea echoed her words so Rea had to sing the wrong part, too!
They were rated a “2.” Which, like it’s bathroom namesake, isn’t exactly great.
We had a bit over an hour til her next performance, the solo “Flying Free,” bored we decided to make a “Sonic” run. Hmm.. maybe boredom eating explains my thighs? (Or maybe a love of nacho cheese fries is the answer.)
After ordering a round of banana milk shakes and chicken sandwiches we headed back to the college. Entering the home room with our bag o’fastfood goodness, we sat down to eat, directly to the right of the “No FOOD or DRINKS allowed” sign.
Our bad karma caused us to be surrounded by several kids who had a conversation about the “really tough judge in room 225A.”
“Rea, what room are you performing your solo in?”
Finally, it was time. We headed on our death march way to the performance room. I headed in, sat down, and realized, “um, where’s Rea?”
She had frozen in the hallway outside the room and was crying; surrounded by a group of girls from her class, consoling her. I started to approach, but then decided to see if they could calm her down.
Meanwhile, the executioner judge was getting impatient and the room was full of other Princeville parents, wondering what the delay was.
Finally, Rea and the other girls entered the room. One girl, C, graciously said that she was going first and Rea would go after her, so Rea sat beside me, looking like she might either faint, puke or bolt.
C. finished her song and it was Rea’s turn. She sat, frozen in her seat for the longest ten seconds ever, then got up, approached the accompaniest and stood in front of everyone. There was a delay in shutting the door and everyone getting settled down. Now I thought I might faint, puke or bolt out of nervousness for her.
The pianist started playing. Rea began singing. About halfway through, at the end of a line, she grimaced, then clearly mouthed the word “Shit” while the accompaniest was playing.
Shit, my child just said “shit.” Well, it wasn’t out loud, but any fool could have read her lips!
She resumed singing at the appropriate moment, finished the song and came and sat by me.
“Mom, I messed up a line!”
“I know, because you said ‘shit!'”
“I did? Oooo Noooooo!”
She hadn’t realized her mouth was moving.
Hopefully the judge didn’t notice as she was probably noting the mistaken words. But the performance was being taped for her chorus teacher.
Leaving the room, I told Reagan, “I’ve never been more proud of you.” She replied “But, but, I said ‘shit'” “Still, you were terrified but you got up there and did it anyway. That took an amazing amout of courage. I thought it was great. No matter what score you get.”
Rea proffered her theory that “Maybe they thought I said ‘pit?’ ‘Spit?’ ‘Chit?'”
To test that out, on our way home we played a new fun game. “Guess the swear word.”