Saturday, December 5, 2009
You know you're a mom when you are seated in an darkened auditorium waiting for a performance to start at 9.15 in the morning. More so if the auditorium is filled with fidgeting, giggling children who could not stay still or quiet if Santa's appearance depended on it.
I am a chaperone for the six year old's class trip to see The Nutcracker.
They are excited.
They have ridden on the school bus to get here - a fabulous adventure in itself.
The lights dim and the music starts. The wonder begins.
The 20 or so rows in front of us are occupied by pre-schoolers who are now asking, almost in unison,
"What is happening?"
"Why did they turn the lights out?"
"When does it start?"
It starts now. There is a collective gasp as the curtains swish back and the cast enters.
There's a real dog!
The dog causes several minutes of conversation as to whether or not it is actually a real dog. What will happen if it pees on the stage and who it belongs to.
I chew my tongue.
For the next 30 minutes the children are rapt. It is bright, exciting, colorful.
There are mice, soldiers, a magician and girls in pretty dresses. Something for everyone.
Just as the squirming becomes intense - intermission arrives.
"Do you like it?" I ask one of the boys sitting next to me.
"Yes!" he says "But there's too much dancing."
"It's a ballet" I say.
"Yes - with too much dancing."
We begin the bathroom trips. Taking 14 children to a three cubicle bathroom reminds me of shopping in the holiday sales. It is chaotic but we all manage to 'go' and get back in our seats before the curtain lifts again.
Now is the part the six year old has been waiting for - the dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy. She enters - this time the gasp is from all the girls. She is gorgeous. A vision of tulle and sparkles. Her partner enters to do the lifts. He looks to be about sixteen. He is wearing white ballet tights.
"MUM! I can see his penis!"
I would like to tell you this was whispered but we all know it wasn't.
She's right - you can see it. In great detail.
The little boys in the row behind are discussing it to.
"That's his penis right there."
"I think they have padding."
I think so too.
By this point there is not an adult in the vicinity who is not bent over trying not to laugh out loud. Our shoulders are heaving as we try to control our giggles.
Thankfully the woman with lots children hidden under her skirt enters the stage giving us all a reason to laugh out loud.
Finally the show ends and we exit into broad daylight. It is 11.15am. I need coffee.
The children board the bus and are gone.
I wonder which part of the show they will be discussing on the way back to school....