Showbusiness – Day 160

Lessons from a young ballerina

It was my 12-year-old daughter who taught me some valuable life lessons this weekend. Saturday and Sunday were dominated by her dance school show and a few weeks previously, she’d missed some rehearsals and felt sure that she simply ‘couldn’t’ do her Chopin ballet waltz.

There were tears and tantrums. She was pretty upset too. I half thought about pulling her out of the show, but the teacher said that would be a terrible move.  Of course my daughter could do it she said, but she’d have to commit to extra rehearsals and work really hard.

When the first of the extra rehearsals came around, my daughter had a sore throat and felt sick and dizzy. She wanted to stay off school, but said she would make the dance class no matter how bad she felt. She had to. She’d made a commitment and assured me it was going to be okay, she was going to crack this routine.

She lost ballet shoes, hurt her foot, bruised her leg etc etc. Then she got anxious and couldn’t sleep for nights on end. So many obstacles seemed to get in the way.

She confessed that she hadn’t mastered the routine after the full dress rehearsal and I began to worry. Could she really do this? Would the pressure get to her? OMG would I have to sit there and watch her from behind my hands?

On the day of the performance, her ballet teacher asked me to bring her in to the theatre an hour early, so that they could go through the routine on stage. What? There were just hours to go, surely it was all too late? I didn’t say these things of course, I smiled sweetly, whilst inside I was in full panic attack mode.

As I sat there in the dark auditorium, stuffing crisps into my mouth to quell my nerves, my palms started to sweat when I heard the strains of the Chopin waltz.  I shut my eyes and prayed.

As soon as my youngest wafted on stage in a diaphanous dress I knew she was going to triumph. The look of self-assurance and concentration on her face was something to behold.  She moved with such poise and grace and didn’t put a foot wrong. I cried of course. I couldn’t have been prouder. She was AMAZING.

She had faith. She believed in herself, worked hard and accepted the help and guidance of her teacher. Bravo. I am going to try and be a little more like her this week. The pearly young skin and bendy body may be out of reach, but the attitude most certainly is not.

Personal manifesto

I am keeping the faith.


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