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Story Time: The kindergarten program

Posted on Tuesday, February 14, 2023 at 12:25 pm

By Lorry Myers

The doors to the gymnasium opened at six o’clock, but the line to get in formed long before that. I stood in the night air and shivered; certain half the town was waiting to get in. When the doors opened, and the throng of fans rushed to get the prime seats, I told my daughter that it felt like I was in line for a rock concert instead of a kindergarten program.

It was a full house.

My oldest grandson, Ivan, had a part in the musical play, and I was slightly concerned. I had visions of Ivan just standing, shy, unsure, and forgetting everything, or he would break into his Travis Kelce dance, or jump off the top riser just to see if he can. These are kindergarteners, after all. There could be terrified squalling, stubborn attitude, or excitement fueled wildness.

The possibilities were endless.

The loud crowd settled down when the kindergarteners took the stage; each of the classes grouped by specific-colored t-shirts. Standing on the last riser was Ivan, one of the tall kids, destined to always be on the back row. When the teacher stood up and announced the play, she first gave the children permission to wave to their fans and get their wiggles out. With that, a stage full of children wiggled, giggled, and waved like it was a planned part of the show. Everyone, except Ivan, who barely lifted his hand despite me being a fool and waving like a crazy person.

Which Ivan has seen before.

Then, a stillness came over the children as they were well rehearsed and knew what came next. In that quiet moment, their music teacher took her place, proud and confident and grinning like this was no big deal. It seemed for one moment that she scanned the risers, acknowledging each child with her wide smile. With one hand motion, all eyes were focused on her, and then, the music began…and so did I.

I began to cry

What was happening? What was it about watching kindergarteners singing silly songs that had me wiping tears? At first, I was focused on my grandson and was transfixed by his in-sync movements and heartfelt singing. He was moving and shaking and being the rock star we came to see.

For the complete column, see this week’s edition of the Centralia Fireside Guard