Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Dreams Come True

I spent Memorial Day weekend in New York City with my mom and sister. This trip, however, was not just a fabulous girls' trip and quality time with two of my favorite people in the whole world. It was also the fulfillment of a lifelong dream.

My sister is a musician. She's an amazingly talented flutist, pianist, and piccoloist. She's also an incredibly talented and devoted teacher. She teaches at San Jacinto College (South Campus), and their community choir was selected to participate in the MidAmerica Productions Choral Spotlight Series at CARNEGIE HALL. Lynne was asked to join them and accompany them on stage. My sister played Carnegie Hall. Let me repeat that for emphasis: My. SISTER. Played. CARNEGIE. HALL. (flawlessly, I might add). I'm incredibly proud of her—really, people are probably tired of hearing about it –and always have been.

Saturday night, I sat in the red, plush seat on the floor of the hall. The house lights dimmed and the choir came onstage. It was so quiet you could hear people breathe. I couldn’t wipe the grin off my face and my heart pounded in my chest with excitement and pride. As I often do these days, I thought of my boys, of how it would feel to see them fulfill similar life dreams years from now. As soon as that thought formed, another, more powerful one hit me: how must Mom feel about this? My mom was part of the choir performing—she has a lovely alto voice—and while I know she was excited to sing onstage, the real highlight of the trip for her was witnessing Lynne realize a performer’s dream.

Since hoping that your children fulfill all their hopes and dreams is a universal mother's hope, and since, unfortunately, so many dreams of the Carnegie Hall nature don't come true for so many people, I had to know what this moment was like for Mom. I wanted to file her answer away in my mind, so that later on, I'll have another "so this is what Mom meant" moment.

The conversation went something like this:

Me: Mom, I’ve gotta know. What was it like for you to see Lynne play Carnegie? To really and truly see her dream come true?

Mom, eyes immediately welling up, shaking her head: Oh, I'm so proud. It was amazing and wonderful! But I couldn't look at her during the performance, not even a peek! Because I knew if I did, I'd cry, and if your sister saw me, she'd cry.

(Note: it's REALLY difficult to play the flute if you're crying.)

I think the pride on my mom’s face really said more than her words ever could. I’m not sure who beamed more that night.

There were so many other wonderful things on this trip, but seeing my sister’s performance dreams come true was definitely the tip-top moment. Have you ever watched a dream come true for someone you love? What was it like for you?

Julie Daneman is wife to Bryan, Stepmom to Jacob and Caleb, and Mommy to Sam. They are a boisterous, loving, happy interfaith family.

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