I long to accomplish a great and noble task, but it is my chief duty to accomplish small tasks as if they were great and noble
Helen Keller

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Positive Inspirational Stories

Positive Featured Inspirational Story - June 1 to June 30, 2007

One more time for Mum

'I just don't have the time,' she said. 'So many things have changed since then.'

'But you love performing,' I said.

'Yes, yes I do,' she said softly.

I could see it in her eyes. They sparkled at the very thought of it. She had this smile that only comes from sweet memories. Her arms were crossed and her one hand was on her chin as she slowly shook her head yes, and yet ... she was saying 'I just don't have the time.'

'When was the last time you did theatre?' I asked. 'Well, I can tell you I haven't done it since my mum died.'

'Is that the reason?' I replied

'Well, it's time and,' she paused for a moment. 'My mum was our biggest critic. She was there at every performance. My sister and I always knew she'd be there watching.' I watched her as she talked about her mother. If I could see inside her mind, I'd see a million flashes of mum stepping through her memory like an old slide show. She stared at the wall in front of her as if she were watching a movie. She lifted her head a few times as she came to remember those special things about her.

'No, I just couldn't do it again,' she said. She did. But it wasn't easy. It was a small community theatre. They take about a month to put a show up that happens all in one evening. For her, it was like breathing. She did it so naturally, but she needed it so badly.

With all the pomp and flash of a big Broadway opening, the theatre was packed to capacity. The house lights blinked to warn the audience the show was about to begin. The four-piece orchestra began on cue as the stage lights brightened the room. The curtain opened and she stepped on stage. Making her way on to the stage, she carefully stepped to the beat of the music.

If you've ever performed in a theatre, you know the stage lights can be blinding. Most of the time you can only see the first few rows of the audience. The rest are silhouetted against the back of the house. If you are any kind of a good performer, you still have the jitters in the first few moments on stage. Not being able to see the entire audience helps.

The orchestra played a few bars over and over waiting for her to take her cue. She readjusted her position and looked down at the very front row. That's where mum always sat. Every time, every night ... always. That is except for tonight.

Once again the music came back to the beginning. The audience began to sense there might be a problem. But being the professional she was, she wouldn't let her emotions get the best of her.

Placing her left hand on her hip and lowering her right hand, palm up, toward the very spot where mom should have been, she said ... 'One more time, for Mum!' And the show went on.

Afterwards I asked her how she got through it all. 'I can't say it was easy, but I did it for her.'

'When you looked down at the front row seat and found someone else there, did it hurt?' I asked.

'No one else was there. I bought the seat and left it empty. I placed a program there and sang my heart out,' she said. Then all the pain, all the grief that she kept inside for the last few hours trickled gently down her face.

She did it ... 'One more time for Mum!'

Written by Bob Perks

Bob Perks is a professional speaker, author, vocalist and member of the National Speakers Association.
Bob also produces a free inspirational newsletter - I wish you enough and for Bob's contact details please visit . . . Positive Inspirational Links >>>

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