Monday, November 20, 2017

Hey, It's Okay

I got this idea from Glamour magazine. You can link up any day of the week. All you have to do is make a list of what you're okay about. Simple! Please do not link up a post that has nothing to do with Hey, It's Okay. It's rude and I'll delete the link.

Hey, It's Okay.... have enjoyed Justice League. We didn't stay throughout the credits though. My husband and daughter were like, "Our bladders! Have to pee!" So what happened? I saw the race, but was there anything else? be taking the kids to see Wonder this week. It looks like such a spectacular movie. Tom isn't coming. He doesn't like to feel things. be going to Sea World and taking a Christmas Tradition tour. We get to have dinner with Santa and Mrs. Claus and see a reindeer, plus a bunch of other fun activities. be mostly shopping Black Friday online, but Natalie is making me go to Target on Friday. This is because we're going to see her Daddy graduate the new airmen so when that's done, we're having lunch and shopping, which I love to do, but ack, crowds. She's lucky she's cute. And that I adore Target. be thankful I don't have to make all the Thanksgiving food. We're going to my parents' house. I hate cooking. have ordered our Christmas cards from Snapfish this year. They look like this:

Sunday, November 19, 2017

How To Cheer Up A Fifth Grader

I could tell she was upset. Her shoulders slumped a bit. She chewed on her lower lip. So I went over to see. And then I saw.

She didn't get a speaking part in the play she had auditioned for. She was in the choir. I could see her staring hard at the paper with the parts listed. Her friend beside her got a speaking part and squealed.

"Congratulations," my daughter said tightly. Her voice sounded a little wobbly.

Another friend also got a speaking part. I could see Natalie teeter a bit.

"Congratulations," my daughter repeated. "You'll do great." She looked at me. "I'm ready to go."

I nodded. My heart squeezed for her. I knew it was tough. As we walked to the car, I could hear another girl burst into tears behind us. "I got nothing!" I heard her wail.

"It's okay if you want to cry," I said. At least that other girl was owning her feelings.

"I know," Natalie answered tightly.

We got into the car. It was silent. Normally my daughter chatters about her day. ("And then Dominic told Stacy that he had enough and Stacy said, no, SHE had enough and stomped away.") It's amusing, really. But now it was quiet.

"There's nothing wrong with being in the choir," I tried again. "I auditioned for so many things. One time I was a tree. I just stood there."

Natalie sighed. "You know, you don't always have to try and be funny. It doesn't work anymore. I'm ten now."

I gripped the stirring wheel. In the past I could get her to giggle with a joke. Or with fart noises. But now. Now. She's ten. She's growing up. The things I could do before aren't always going to work. I'm going to have to adjust how to I speak with her when she's hurt.

"I know," I whispered, and then drove us home in silence.

When we got home I asked if she wanted to talk. She shook her head. A tear slipped down her cheek and she brushed it away.

"You were brave," I told her. "Getting up there and singing in front of all those people for the audition is not easy. Don't ever doubt that. Sometimes you don't always get what you try out for. You know I'm a blogger and I've applied for many jobs and have been declined. You might not feel like you're good enough, but you are."

My words didn't seem to move her. "I just want to be alone for a bit." And I watched as she climbed up the stairs, head down.

I know this is part of growing up. She's going to be hurt a lot. She's not always going to get the part she wants. Things won't always go her way. Middle school is coming. Middle school will get complicated. Middle school frightens me.

I didn't know what to do. Let her stay upstairs?

I was still wondering this when Tommy got home from school. I told him what happened.

"Do you think you could give your sister a hug?" I asked.

Tommy gave me a Look. "Why?"

"Well, she wanted a speaking part and didn't get one."

Tommy blinked. He could not relate. He would hate to have a speaking part in a play.

"Natalie!" I called out.


"Do you want to come down? Your brother is home."

Natalie came down the stairs, head still down.

Tommy said, "Next time do better." He has autism, and doesn't always understand what to say in social situations.

He read my expression, which is win for him, and quickly added, "You did your best. Good for you."

A tiny smile played on Natalie's lips. "Thank you, Tommy."

I wanted to keep that tiny smile going so I asked if she wanted to eat at Panera Bread, one of her favorite places.

The smile widened. "Yes!"

I asked Tommy if he wanted to go and he went, "No thank you. The salad you get looks like snot."

(I think it's the avocado that freaks him out. It's slimy.)

So we went to Panera Bread. And Natalie became Natalie again.

“Beth is using Nahara for her speaker so Nahara said she’s not her friend anymore. Beth says I have to choose between her and Nahara and I said I’ll be friends with whomever I want, thank you very much. Gosh, the drama is only going to get worse in middle school, isn’t it?”

(And she meant a mini bluetooth speaker. I was picturing Beth having Nahara doing the speaking FOR her and Natalie was all, "No silly, it's an actual SPEAKER for your PHONE so you can hear the music better.")

Natalie said, "You know, JoJo didn't always win in her dances, and now she has her own company."

I raised an eyebrow.

"JoJo. From Dance Moms. Hello?"

"Ooooo," I answered. "JoJo's Bows!"

"And JoJo's clothes. And JoJo's jewelry. JoJo EVERYTHING."

We giggled together.

"Thank you for cheering me up," Natalie said, placing her hand over mine. I looked down. It was still small, but it wouldn't always be. "I remember that you told me if I just got the choir that I should rock it."

"And that's what I'm going to do." 

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

My Daughter Auditioned For The School Play

"Mommy, there are a lot of people here. What if I forget?"

I looked around the room. Natalie was right. It was full. There had to be at least 100 people. Maybe more.

"Do your best. It's all you can do," I answered.

Natalie bit her lower lip. "What if I don't get a part and am just in the choir?"

This was a strong possibility. It looked like over 50 kids were auditioning for the school play and there were maybe 15 speaking parts, if that. The rest of the kids would go into the choir.

"Then you'll do your very best in the choir," I replied.

She leaned against me briefly. After all, she's in fifth grade and it's not as cool to snuggle with Mommy in public. But I held her close and whispered, "You'll do great. No matter what."

She shrugged and picked at her fingers.

The auditions started soon after.

Natalie was number 4. When they called her name, she took a deep breath.

"You can do it, baby girl," I said and gave her a thumbs up.

She nodded and climbed the stairs onto the stage.

I filmed her, and many of you might have already seen it.

When she was done, she rushed back to her seat.

"That was embarrassing," she whispered, cheeks a bit pink. "But fun. I got nervous. I wish I'd have danced, but there were so many people staring."

"It's okay. You did you best."

She wanted to stay and support her friends that auditioned. She clapped hard for every kid that went up there. Some walked to the stage and muttered, "I can't do this," and left. But you know what, that's fine. I couldn't do it. I hate being in front of people. Whenever I had to give speeches in front of the class, I would panic. But Natalie has so much more confidence than I ever did.

We'll find out by the end of the week what part Natalie got. And if she's just on the choir, she's okay with that. She was in school choir last year and was one of the only kids who did the arm movements with excitement.

Have you ever auditioned for anything?

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