The eagerly awaited “Holiday Program” happened at our local PAC last night.  I have excitedly, yet hesitantly been waiting for its arrival.  I had NO idea how it was going to go.  I think that’s what has made the wait SO hard.

I prepped Christian with a social story for a couple of weeks.  Made arrangements to have a therapist meet us there to help him wait with his class.  They have had multiple rehearsals at school and a final dress rehearsal at the PAC yesterday morning…

…I was filled with anticipation all day as I waited to pick him up from school.  Did it go great?  Was he scared?  Did he flip out with the massive size of the PAC?  My mind raced and wondered.  I had to stop myself from running into the school to pick him up, but he.Did.GREAT!!!  He LOVED the stage!  He loved it SO much that while he was waiting for the other classes to finish their rehearsal, he wanted to go back up on stage and be the center of attention.  😉  Wow!  Seriously?!?  I was beyond excited!!!  🙂

We got to the PAC roughly 15-minutes before showtime.  CS, Christian’s therapist, met us in the lobby.  There were hundreds of people milling around.  Christian was excited to see CS, but wanted me to come with him, too.  Sigh.  He dropped to the ground.  CS picked him up and headed to the area where Christian was supposed to meet his class.  (As I prayed that he would be able to calm down.)

I had a hard time waiting for his group (the first ones) to come on stage.  I was nervous for him and had a hard time sitting still.  How could ten minutes feel like they were a couple of hours?!?  Finally, the house lights flicked.  Everyone scrambled for their seats.  The kindergarteners started filing out to the stage.  Oh, there’s Christian’s 3 friends. Oh, there’s Christian.  Oh, there he goes backstage…

…My heart sank.  He was scared.  I could tell.  Yet I continued to hold onto the hope (and prayed) that maybe once his class started singing, he would want to join in.  After each song, I waited and wondered if he would appear from behind the black curtains.  He didn’t.  At the end of the third song (with one more to go), I left the auditorium to go to the “meeting spot” and see if I could find my boy.

After a couple minutes of waiting, he walked in with his teacher, tears still streaming down his face.  She told me that anytime they had gotten to the doors that lead to the backstage area, he would sob, “No church!?!”  Oh, my boy.  He was even shaking a little bit.  I scooped him in a huge hug and found a table where we could sit down and he could eat his banana.  Phew.  He started calming down.

His teacher and I were talking about all of the things that we could have done to make this more successful for him… meeting her at school (where Christian is used to separating from me) and riding over with her; having me sit behind him on stage (to be his comfort); having CS be at rehearsal in the morning and working on separating then, too; etc. …who knows, though, whether or not these would have been effective either.

Oh well, maybe we’ll get it figured out before next year, right?!?

Also, next year, I think I’ll sneak into dress rehearsal in the morning and take video footage just in-case the nighttime performance in front of hundreds of people doesn’t work out again.  😉