Wednesday, May 31, 2006
Opening Night Nerves
Brianna was in the annual Dance Recital on the weekend. This was not the first...she has been a part of these recitals since she was 8 or 9...this grandmother can't necessarily remember when exactly she started. She dances hip-hop...and she is so good. Nobody was allowed to take pictures during the event; I had to be content with taking photos of the preparations for her dance.
Bree and Heidi, my daughter, are very similar. Long before I got to their home, I shielded myself, and asked my guides for help. I was expecting to face tears and rants...but it never happened. Both of them worked really hard at not allowing opening night nerves to overtake their preparations. Both of them have learned how to deal with each other in a situation such as this.
Heidi tells me her parenting is based on mine. But she is a teacher, and, as such, has learned much more than I ever knew when I brought up my children. It will serve her well...Bree is a free spirit, who cannot understand why anyone even bothers to tell her what to do...she will do it if it feels right to her. She is not an easy child to bring up. My world has rocked a few times when she tells me her opinion about something...usually something a child of eleven would not know anything about, in the ordinary scheme of things.
She's a Sagittarius in a crowd of Pisces, Cancers, and Taurus's. The website Lifescript has a quick explanation of Sagittarian traits. Bree's a fire sign.
And Heidi is a water sign. Fire can boil water. Water can put out the fire. These two, Brianna and Heidi, have found a balance. But then both these signs are mutable...flexible. Open to change. With Heidi's intuitive abilities and Bree's sense of adventure and inability to be confined, when they both give a little, it's a great match.
But I digress. When we arrived, the tummy butterflies were showing...and Bree had a long time to wait until her part in the pageant was performed. She was keeping every muscle, cell and bone in her body on a very balanced keel...she was concentrating hard. Heidi seemed breathless...a sure sign to me that she was also concentrating hard on being even. As a child, her words would spill out of her when excitement hit. As she grew older, she tried to camouflage this, and she started to breathe in small, shallow breaths. I notice now that she is recognizing this, and taking deeper breaths once more. Life is such an ongoing learning experience.
I was invited to help Brianna get ready. But my aid was not really required...a bun in Bree's hair was quickly fashioned by Heidi...and Bree kept quiet. I had to stifle laughter at her body language, though; her face showed her disapproval of the whole thing very eloquently! And then came the stage makeup. Everything went great until it was time for the mascara...and I totally understood Bree's reluctance to have this put on her eyelashes. I haven't ever let anybody else put mascara on my eyelashes...those brushes are lethal.
But the whole thing was done before the squawking grew too loud. She was transformed. But with typical pre-teen blase behavior, Bree went back to holding herself tightly, informing anyone who would listen that she didn't want to do this dance. It was a hard assault from a beloved granddaughter, one who I would do anything for. When I realized I was thinking of ways she could blow off her stage performance, Gray and I left for something to eat. And high time, too, who knows what may have come out of my mouth, had I stayed any longer. Nammy (the name Bree uses for me) to the rescue!
She danced beautifully, of course. I really was not aware of the choreography, the other dancers or the music...she was the star that shone the brightest for me. Her agile, dancer's body listened and lived the music and the beat. And, as a grandparent now, watching grandchildren, the emotion I experienced was far different from a mother's. I was awed by the gifts Bree had been given, and so full of gratitude that she had chosen me as her grandmother. So full of unconditional love for this child.
Heidi had watched Bree dance parts of this dance for the entire year; Heidi, also a dancer, danced along in her mind with her daughter, pulling so hard for her...sending strength to Bree with everything she had. She knew her daughter well; the devastation that can wring Brianna dry at any mistake was not a pleasant experience, emotionally draining for all involved. And she loves her daughter; as any parent, she bleeds when she's hurt, sometimes long after the incident has passed. She had a lot invested in the success of this performance.
And what a success! Her smile proclaimed how well she felt with herself, as she ran out the door into the most wonderful hug her mom and I and Bree shared. It was one of those hugs that you can feel for weeks afterwards.
Opening night nerves might never have occurred.