How we humans can overcome is remarkable and we hear stories constantly of how people have won against all the odds. I’ve witnessed it first hand with all of my children on too may occasions to mention. Having said all of that, even I was gobsmacked on Friday evening!
Unbeknown to me, Nikita had entered a local talent contest called Kenilworth’s Got Talent. She entered late and was told she would only be able to compete if someone dropped out. Thursday afternoon someone dropped out so with only 24 hours notice she was in the contest. Uh oh….thought me….she’ll never make it onto that stage. Nikita has struggled all of her life with sever autism and a myriad of other related struggles. She has never sung in front of any of the family as she’s been too shy to do so, how was she going to get up in front of 200 people and sing?
15 minutes before she was due to be there she wasn’t dressed and was adamant she wasn’t going to do it. I didn’t try to persuade her as that doesn’t work but did keep reminding her that she had to decide quickly if she was going to be there in time. Suddenly she appeared dressed, with CD in hand and announced she was going!
Me with the amazing Nikita!!!
Time to panic!
I duly dropped her and Mirie at the venue so they could do a sound check and went back to collect the others. Feeling extremely nervous, to put it mildly, we all arrived and sat down with Nikita and Mirie. I had no idea how this was all going to ensue, Nikita was the ninth act out of 14 so she had plenty of time to back out! We sat there with me expecting her to run away at any moment but she stood her ground.
Eventually her turn came and she walked with Mirie to the backstage area ready to go on. I’d warned the lady organising the event that Nikita is autistic and for the compere to keep his questions simple. As she walked on I was still wondering what was actually going to happen! The intro to the song Adele’s ‘Make me feel your love’ started and she stood, microphone in hand waiting for the point where she came in. At the perfect moment she started singing and the expression on my face must have been priceless! She has the voice of an angel and the emotion she projected into the song left me with tears in my eyes.
When she finished she received the most rapturous applause and the judges comments were all very heartfelt as they told her how magical her voice is.
We waited for the judges decision with baited breath, the competition had been very stiff so I wouldn’t have been at all surprised if she didn’t win. As the compere read her name out as one of the finalists it took a good 10 seconds for her to take in what had been said and with a little prompting finally stepped forward to receive her envelope.
Meanwhile, we were going mad in the audience and she had a mixture of bewilderment and delight on her face! I cannot stress enough how I never thought the day would come when Nikita would be able to overcome her problems and actually be able to do such a thing. Once again, I’m an incredibly proud mummy on so many different levels. For her to combat her fear and do it anyway was mind blowing. I do believe she has a future in her chosen field of performing arts.