Okasaneko
(http://blog.hellokitty.com/okasaneko)
A Tubby Tabby, Three Konekos, and a Life with Hello Kitty and Autism

Mommy’s DAYS Out Part III

InvitationSunday, we brought Alex back to school early morning for Mass and more practice with his friends. I squeezed in a few errands after that and by early afternoon, I was dead tired. Three days of nonstop activities were too much for me. I was beginning to feel my age (Alex’s favorite line), it seemed, so I allowed myself a power nap before I got ready to go to Alex’s performance .

There’s a side story to this, one worth telling. I was so sleepy Sunday afternoon that even as I was debating with myself on whether to set the alarm on my clock or not, I had dozed off. I figured that I would wake up long before the time I needed to get myself ready. And so I slept soundly for the first time in days, drool collecting at the corners of my mouth, until I awakened suddenly…to the sound of my mother-in-law’s voice. Yes, my mother-in-law, now gone almost three years, and her distinct voice saying loudly and clearly “wake up…gonna be late.” I was startled into wakefulness. I jumped out of bed, put on make-up in a hurry, and made it with enough time to spare. (I did pass by the church ossuary to say thanks to Mom.)

Alex as Marat in “The Bashkir And His Prize”

(Alex, at right, as Marat, and friend R, as the General) 

And what can I tell you about “Unang Lipad?” Alex was part of  the play The Bashkir And His Prize, one of three plays they put up that night. This was a story of a Bashkir general who wanted too much but lost all in the end, an  adaptation of Leo Tolstoy’s short story “How Much Land Do You Need?” Alex played  Marat, one of the three Bashkir folk the General  met along the way. 

I was in awe at my son’s ease on stage and the way he said his lines with conviction. He exuded confidence so visibly that I was dumbstruck at his ability to relate to the audience. I’ve never seen him that way before. The Alex I know has always been a little reticent and often ill-at-ease with large crowds. Yet that night, I saw my son as I had never seen him before- a self-assured young man whose talents clearly shone through. He acted with flair, sang with a passion, and even danced (and believe me,  he never dances).

I was also amazed at the other aspirants and I felt as proud of them as I did my son. It was difficult to believe that these polished actors were 14 or 15-year-old boys, mere high school freshmen. Their confidence and poise on stage were unbelievable!

Singing Their Hearts Out

(The Aspirants)

Towards the end, just before a series of song and dance routines where every aspirant  was allowed to show off his talents, they spoofed the seniors of the Theater  Club, and the crowd went wild with their almost-perfect impersonations.

(see Alex below, in yellow Kobe Bryant jersey)Spoof Play

Spoofing Mr. P

(even Mr. P had his own impersonator!)

The theater was full that night and as the guests departed, the boys lined up to thank those who made it to their first performance.

Goodbye and Thanks to the Audience

Afterwards, A and I snuck back inside the theater to watch the boys in a huddle with their beloved mentor, Mr. P. Surrounded by a circle of boys, Mr. P prayed with them, lavished the boys with praise and encouragement, and dispensed timely advice.  The boys’ faces shone with respect and pride: they had made their teacher proud.

Post-play Huddle

The Dream Team with Juniors

We made it home near midnight, tired, hungry, but happy. To see Alex welcomed in a circle of friends filled our hearts with joy. Here, at last, he has made a place for himself under the sun. It was a beginning.

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