The kiddos wait and wait for their big weekend of stage-time bliss where they get to run around under the bright lights shouting with their limbs bits of who they are and it feels to be them. It is my last moment to show them my thanks... gratitude I feel deep down in the innermost part of myself... filled with love because some lovely folks chose to stick it out with me all school year and dance.
Moms and dads, grandparents and close friends, even some community members with no little ones (or big ones) dancing come to see dance. Hip hoppers in neon shoelaces, barefooted modernistas, teenage tappers, and pointe-clad ballerinas put it out there and let the audience decide what to do with it.
I watch between quick costume changes as my students step up and meet themselves in that place where they can rock out and be proud. And I hold my breath until they find stillness and I can rush to them with waterfalls of enthusiasm.
I love that these moments are fleeting. I love that we work so hard, play so good, fill up a year with moving and only at the end of that year do we step on stage and shake our sweet, sweaty bodies in the presence of others. I tell the kiddos, "You've gotta love them work." Do I feel lucky... I love the work.