I am overdue in writing about a magical day, but I didn't want to let the story slip by without being told.
A week ago Sunday (8/16), Abbie and I, along with her nurse Leila, met my friend Nina at the ballet!
Ballet Hawaii has a 3-week summer intensive, combining local dancers with professionals from the mainland. At the end of that whirlwind 3 weeks, they stage a complete production, with this summer's offering being Peter Pan. Could be there be a more perfect first-time ballet for an adventurous girl like Abbie?
The ushers and fellow patrons were so kind, and we were easily seated and ready, complete with the light-up Tinkerbell wand Nina gave Abbie. I could not believe that Abbie was finally going to see real ballerinas, after wearing out so many DVDs watching them.
As the curtain rose to reveal an enormous, beautifully decorated stage I think the joy temporarily propelled me out of my body, to observe the whole thing from above. After a while, I noticed that Abbie, being seated at the end of the aisle, wasn't getting the best view. So, I moved her onto my lap and her experience really began.
Magical...truly, truly magical. I wanted to bottle those moments to keep forever. We were at the ballet, listening to lush, enveloping music, watching lithe, joyful bodies, and merry, rascally Lost Boys. It was a moment I envisioned the night Abbie was born -- a vision that had drifted away to the point of disintegration until Nina invited us to join her. How thankful I am for precious friends who restore lost hopes.
I was reminded that, although others may view her as limited, Abbie has a big life. During intermission, folks were filing past to go outside for refreshments. As one particular group of girls stepped by, one said, "Oh, hi Abbie!" I still don't know who she was, but my heart leapt that Abbie had a friend there. I was also reminded that we are never alone, even when we feel lonely. A gentleman approached just before the show started to let me know that he and his wife still pray for Abbie daily. Wow...how do you thank someone for that??
As Wendy and her brothers flew back through the bedroom window, I whispered in Abbie's ear, "They're HOME!" She grinned so broadly that Nina saw her dimples in the dark. Even adventurous girls realize that home is a very nice place to be!
I was still trying to process the whole event as we strolled outside to the stage door. Nina's good friend is the artistic director of the ballet, and we hoped that she would facilitate Abbie actually meeting some of the ballerinas. Since we were among the last to leave the theater there was already quite a throng gathered outside the door. But, there was Pam -- even amidst of the closing show hullabaloo -- outside looking for Abbie. As soon as she saw us she parted the crowd to usher Abbie inside. We met several of the Lost Boys, some of the fairies, and the hilarious, scene-stealing crocodile. And then, Pam escorted us onto the stage...
There she was, on the big stage, looking out at all those seats -- my amazing, brave ballerina. I could not stop the tears then.
A keepsake day, to be sure. And, a reminder that though the route of our dreams may change, they do not have to die.
Bless you, Nina, for making one of those dreams come true!