Weeks ago, I knew a kindergarten music performance was coming up, because of a note attached to a T-shirt Julian came home with: "Please make sure your child wears this shirt on Monday May 24." At home, Julian was also singing a song in Mandarin again and again, practicing the gestures, talking about the song, and even learning to play it on the piano. "Mom, are you coming to the music performance??" he'd ask eagerly.
Gabriel, on the other hand....I'd ask, "Do you have a performance coming up too?" Shrug. "Are you practicing songs too?" "Yeah sorta....can I go out to play ball now?" Finally I looked it up in the newsletter and found that indeed, Gabriel had a music performance on the same day as Julian. 11:30 and 1:30. Great.
This is the sort of thing working parents must miss all the time, but somehow, I can't bear to. This is what having kids is about, and I know it means so much to them. Well, Julian at least. Gabriel hardly seemed to even know about it. So I really, really was looking forward to Julian's Mandarin song with all the gestures, but figured I should attend Gabriel's performance too, even though he didn't seem to care at all.
So I was bitterly disappointed when I arrived at 11:20 for what I thought was an 11:30 kindergarten performance -- that turned out to have started at 11:00...11?!
I did catch the whole kindergarten singing a goodbye song to the retiring principal (which I wanted to sing along with because I think he's sort of an ineffective nitwit).
(Julian is standing under the 'J' in the photo.)
But I was SO SAD!! I'd REALLY wanted to see Julian's songs, especially the one in Mandarin!
Another kindergarten mom told me that indeed, the time had changed at some point; I wasn't the only parent who got the time wrong. WAH! At least Julian saw me, and knew I was there for him, so that made me feel a little better. But I wish I'd seen his class's song!
I did make it to Gabriel's performance though. He hadn't said a thing about it, but it turned out he had a starring role as a bongo drummer for one song. I didn't catch video when he was actually supposed to be drumming, but you can see he enjoyed it.
(I have to wonder: do his music teachers pick up on his powerful musical connection, his perfect pitch, his uncanny ability to reproduce tunes and harmonize? I doubt it; they're probably just as harried as his regular teachers keeping him from distracting the class with fart sounds.)
To my surprise, Gabriel lit up when he saw me. He stopped and waved to me several times, which made me shrink back into the crowd. The music teacher had already admonished the parents that it's hard for the kids to perform when they're waving to parents.
But I learned that it means just as much to Gabriel as it does to Julian that I'm there. Gabriel hadn't even mentioned the performance, whereas Julian talked about it and practiced at home all the time. Yet both of them really wanted to see me there. My boys....so similar in some ways, so drastically different in others.