Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Baby Take a Bow

We do very little in our family that isn't steeped in tradition.  Madaline's first pair of shoes was tradition.  Madaline playing soccer last spring was tradition.  Madaline taking swimming lessons is tradition.  And, so, naturally, it was tradition for her to also take a ballet, tumbeling and tap class.  And, of course, it would have to be at the exact same dance studio I took lesson from 30 years ago.  *sigh*

And, so, every Saturday morning, from September until this past weekend, I helped her pull on her starry pink footless tights, the smallest black leotard that I could find in the store, her fluttery pink dance skirt and I would braid her hair.  She would shrug her way into her favorite grey sweater - "Mama, the studio is cold and it's just like your sweater...Mama...." And, off she would go.  45 minutes perfecting her pliĆ©, her forward roll and shuffle step. 
But, this Saturday morning things went a bit differently.  We sat together in the living room, her nervous yet excited chatter filled my ears as I  twirled endless strands of hair into corkscrew curls.  "Am I pretty Mama...am I? Am I?" I highlight her already bright eyes with equally bright blue eyeshadow and swept a rosy pink blush over the apples of her cheeks.  "Pucker up buttercup" I said as I painted her lips candy apple red.  I helped her pull on her tan tights and the golden yellow costume that was lined with endless rows of sparkly sequins.  When we were finished, she twirled before me on her tip toes and did a delicate curtsey to which I finally said, "Yes, you are more than pretty....you look magnificently beautiful"....
And, later that night, the curtain came down, and the dance year had come to and end.  Two spectacular performances. A grand stage.  A whole row in the audience filled with people who love and adore her.  A little girl so in her element that she tap danced her heart out as if she didn't have a care in the world. I couldn't be more proud or more in awe.