Friday, December 18, 2009
Why are my bad parenting moments always in front of an audience?
This week was The Evergreen Spiral at the six year old's school.
It's a truly beautiful event. The children walk through the spiral, light their candle then place it on a log on their way back through the spiral.
There is some beautiful music playing and the mood is 'quiet reverence.'
This in itself is a Christmas Miracle. There are fifty, six to eight year olds. It takes an hour for them all to walk the spiral. It is a truly beautiful moment in the rush and hustle of the holidays.
Of course we all want to see our children walk, so the hall is also filled with parents and siblings.
I debated having a sitter for the baby but I wanted her to be a part of it so I decided to take her. She was being a trooper - very quiet, if a little fidgety. After half an hour she is no longer content in our laps. We head to the back of the hall so she can walk around. There are some steps up to the stage. Perfect! She LOVES steps. We ascend and descend waiting for the six year old to take her turn in the spiral.
With one child to go - the baby makes a misstep. She falls off the stage and disappears underneath in a pile of poinsettias. There is that silence before the scream - I wrench my back trying to grab her out of there before the cry.
The entire half of the hall near us is gasping, staring and is turned around in our direction. In my head all I can hear is quiet reverence, quiet reverence.
We make it out of the hall just as the howl is emitted. I am so torn. I'm checking the baby for injury but in my mind I know the six year old is stepping forward for her candle.
Why? We have been there half an hour - why does the fall happen just at THAT moment?
We calm the baby, she seems uninjured, we insert a pacifier and scurry back in.
I am tearful when I see that another child has gone and the six year old is still in her seat.
We didn't miss it. The six year old steps up. She carries her candle with six year old reverence and after lighting it - sets it carefully on a log. Then in a nod to her inner pageant queen - takes her dress in both hands and holds it out to the sides. She then does something that can only be described as sashay back to her seat. That's my girl!
I am still getting emails and calls asking if it's true that my baby fell of the stage at The Spiral. At least everyone in school knows who we are now.
There is no such thing as bad publicity right?