This past February all of the Winter Guard parents were asked to contribute a short story or memory about our Winter Guard Director. She would be celebrating her “-Mumble, mumble -th” Birthday in March. Her son wanted to put together a book of memories for her.
DC has been a participant with this special needs Winter Guard team for 6 or 7 years. He really loves it, even though at first he had a really tough time focusing and rarely did anything close to the moves that everyone else was doing. He didn’t care. He wanted to wave his flag. He has improved very much over the years and still enjoys participating. He loves the performances most of all. He loves the attention – he loves the applause. He is the only one to take a bow while the rest of the team is in the “end of performance” pose. (I am sure there is a proper and official name for that, but “end of performance pose” is the best I can do)
I wrote up my memory, DC drew a picture and we sent it along to the director’s son. Had I been really thinking, I would not have told DC about the birthday. It was still 3 weeks away and DC is always very excited about birthdays. DC also does not understand “surprise” or “secret”.
A secret, is DC whispering in a raspy voice louder than his already very loud voice.
A secret is pizza for breakfast.
There are times, not often, but there are times, when we have left-over pizza in the house. When there is left over pizza, DC loves to have it for breakfast. This happens all of once every couple of months, but I know my son. If anyone were to ask him what he had for breakfast, he will answer pizza. If someone should ask him the next day, he will answer “pizza”, not because he had it again, but because 1) That is what he would have wanted to have 2) It becomes a standard answer because he is tired of answering questions 3) That was his favorite breakfast that week so that’s his answer and he is sticking with it.
Not wanting people to think I give him pizza every morning, we decided to call it “Secret Breakfast”. Well…. as I said, DC doesn’t understand the concept of a secret, so anytime we go out with friends for pizza, or we are at a party where pizza is being served, he always asks for “Secret Breakfast” – then I have to explain what “Secret Breakfast” is to my friends or other parents, (because of course, they ask – wouldn’t you?) completely defeating the purpose of the secret part of “Secret Breakfast”. At this point “Secret Breakfast” is just something we call pizza, people now just ask him if he wants to take some home for “Secret Breakfast”, and yes, they also call it “Secret Breakfast” when they offer.
A surprise pretty much runs along the same lines as a secret. If we buy a gift, and I tell him not to say anything because it is a surprise, the very first thing he will do when he sees the person that we bought the gift for is:
– Go over to that person, point at them and says (to me) “Don’t tell anyone, surprise, shhh” and many times he will even tell me what the surprise is. I suppose because he is addressing me and not the person, he thinks he is not giving it all away.
Knowing all of this, I should have realized that the next time we went to Winter Guard practice, he would ask about Mrs. F’s birthday. It was still two weeks away. I was worried that if he mentioned it in front of her, she would know that something was in the works. There would be no reason for DC to know that her birthday was coming. I reminded him over and over and held my breath for the next two weeks. Fortunately he did not give it away, not for lack of trying though – he did mention it a number of times at practice but luckily she was not close enough to hear it.
I saved the story to post at a later date, after her birthday. My mind, being the steel trap that it is, filed it and forgot to post it.
We were out tonight for pizza with DC and his friends when DC asked for Secret Breakfast and I remembered the post – because this is the way my mind works.
Here is the “Little Bit of Faith” portion of this post.
Happy very belated Birthday, “Mrs. F”!
The one event that always sticks out in my mind is the High School Ice Cream Social performance in 2011. The performance was a last-minute addition to the Team’s schedule. Being so last-minute, many of the Buddies were not available to perform with our children.
The Team had never rehearsed, never mind performed without their Buddies before, so this was something totally out of their comfort zone. But there we were anyway, with 3 buddies. Mrs. F. had faith that they would be able to do this. I am not sure that many of the parents had as much faith, but Mrs. F. did.
There was a little bit of time to do a few quick rehearsals before the show but as I said, this was a very new experience for them – a few quick rehearsals without their buddies would be like starting from scratch. Mrs. F. gave them a pep talk before and after each run-though and made it very clear to all of them that they could do this!
She gathered them around for one more pep talk before they went out to perform. She believed in them so they believed in themselves. They knew they could do this!
And they DID! The show went off without a hitch. They gave a fabulous performance! How proud they were to be able to do this without help! Mrs. F. had faith and in turn, so did the Team (and the parents)…… All it took was a little bit of faith…….. And THANK YOU for the faith you have in, and the encouragement you give to our children!
There is no one better! Thank you for everything you do……..