Monday, October 24, 2016

Primary Program, say Goodbye to family

The Primary Sacrament Presentation is where all the kids ages 3-11 participate in the main church service by presenting the concepts they've learned about all year through songs and speaking parts. As the Primary President, I'm kind of in charge to plan it and practice it and make sure it all comes together. The thing I cared the most about was that the children's parts were authentic to their actual thoughts and feelings. I came up with a bunch of questions that covered all the topics we've learned each month and then I sat down one-on-one with most of the children and asked them questions. I recorded our conversations on my phone and then sat down at a computer later and typed it out. I tried to gauge what topics the children had the most to say about and then delve a little deeper with questions to really explore their testimony in that area. Then picked some thoughts of theirs to string together in a little part, grouped those by topic and tried to come up with a seating arrangement that spread out the younger kids amongst the older kids and take into account their height, where they're family sat usually in the chapel, who needed to sit closer to an adult and I tried to group kids together based on their topics.   I normally consider myself a non-stresser-outer, but for some reason I was feeling really really anxious about this. Not that I was worried about anything specific because I knew we had prepared a good program, I knew the kids had chances to practice, I knew I had prepared an organized way for the kids to be comfortable with the flow of the program (color coded song/parts), I knew the kids could sing their songs loud, I knew that it actually doesn't matter if anyone 'messes up' but for some reason, I just felt it looming over my head. Also, I had to think about what we would do in Sharing Time for that Sunday since it was a Teacher Council Meeting Sunday and it would just be me and one other leader for all of the kids. I can't imagine how challenging this must be in a bigger ward. We only have 21 kids between 3 and 11. I know a lot of other units have twice that!

The morning of, we got there early and I had time to make sure all the stools where in the right places and the program proceeded without a hitch! One little boy's mom told me ahead of time he wasn't going to say his part, and that is totally fine, and I super appreciated the heads up. I was so focused on making sure my prompt was on the right page, and that I moved the stool at the right time that I wasn't able to really soak in the whole feeling of the program so by the end when it was my turn to share my testimony, I didn't have a nice warm buzz to let me know that what I was saying was really true. I shared what I was thinking I might share and was just glad that it was almost done. I couldn't tell how it went. Everyone told me it was a great program, and were very complimentary about the kids' singing and their unique parts and how well it flowed etc.. but sometimes its hard to believe them when I didn't experience some great spiritual moment, myself. 

Anyway, It was SOOO nice to have my parents and mother in law there to help. They watched Freddy during the meeting since I needed Chris to sit up on the stand with the kids to help take the place of teachers who couldn't be there. Then my parents worked in the Nursery, and Dixie played the piano in Primary for singing time. 

I kept expecting to feel such a burden lifted and to feel so happy and joyful, but honestly I was close to tears most of the day and needed some time in my room to cry on Chris' shoulder in a confused state sometime in the afternoon. There were still so many decisions I needed to make and things to take care of even after the program ended that I still just felt a heavy burden and sharing/singing time was CRAZY with the kids who were so excited that the program went well and was over.  Maybe also the heavy feeling is the big Halloween Carnival, we are in charge of in a week. I don't know. But it was weird day.

Thom and Brittany left right after sacrament meeting. My parents and Dixie stayed until Monday afternoon. It was fun to go on another run with them, and have their help getting the house in order again: laundry, extra beds put away, bathrooms cleaned etc. Dad even installed a disposal for me!! Hurray!

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