The Afterglow is Glorious.

Shane was in the school play this weekend.

His part was minimal – but substantial. While his role was originally a no-named character with no lines, somewhere along the way he got a line – and he delivered it beautifully.

Shane opened one scene, carried a prop gun across the stage during another scene, and managed to be in Havana, Cuba and New York City simultaneously, for two separate scenes. He sang; he danced; he had a ball.

As a parent, it’s such an adventure watching from the audience. From the stories Shane told me about rehearsals, I could chuckle at some things that happened on stage that I may not have otherwise noticed. In spite of Shane’s relatively minor role, it’s impossible for me to take my eyes off of him when he’s on stage. I’m interested in every smile, every gesture, every step, every wink. I don’t want to miss a second of it.

And when, for one scene, he steps behind a curtain and I am on the wrong side of the audience to see his smiling face, I glance around at the other three dozen kids – and notice their talents, too.

Shane had a wonderful time working on the play, discovering the nuances of performing in a group, following a work from script-chunk auditions all the way to three, full-blown musicals.

Shane said that his favorite part of the play was just before the curtain rose, when the lights went out and the anticipation was so thick, it enveloped the entire group. And he felt the sheer joy when the production went off without a hitch, and as the curtain closed, the entire cast shrieked with delight.

When he talks about it, Shane reminds me of those few moments in my own school career, when I felt “part of” something tremendous. I played sports but for me, those moments came from deadlines before the school newspaper went to print, and all-nighters during the final weeks of yearbook production, Even proms and graduation were relatively meaningless moments in my memory, compared to the excitement I had during the finalizing of something my classmates and I created together.

And Shane’s weekend was just that – a spectacular culmination of months of hard work.

The afterglow is glorious.

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