Do you know what stage you’re supposed to be on?
Do you know how to get clarity?
Mr. 4-Ever and I, along with hundreds of others, sat in a hot, crowded auditorium for hours to watch a parade of small girls in dressed up tutus and tights wobble and hop on the stage in front of us.
Every mother and grandma and friend of the family attending knew that the performances of the budding ballerina they came to see was likely to be awkward and poorly-executed, but we each, to a woman, swelled with pride when the little girl we came to see appeared on the stage.
In every performance, the tiny dancers took turns being out of sync, but as a group, they covered each other’s weakness, one remembering one part and another remembering another part so as a whole, they completed the number.
Occasionally, in moments of complete bewilderment, a ballerina wrangler – a preteen ballerina in matching leotard and tights – would appear from the wings to prompt and shoo her mini versions through their next step.
The sweet ballerina we came to watch, was on the stage for not quite two minutes. She was in lipstick and rouge for the first time. She bravely swayed and pirouetted nearly on cue. She curtsied to thundering applause and cheers.
After the recital, carried her flowers in her arms as if they were her infant, careful not to bump the blossoms or break the stems. She beamed under the praise and adoration of the few of us who were there just for her.
There are no dress rehearsals for life.
That recital was packed with life lessons for all of us!