In the wake of all that has happened in this last week, I’d be lying if I said that I am posting without mixed emotions. Like any proud parent, I rejoice at the accomplishments of our children, and dance recitals for me are almost magical–the lights and staging, the performances, and the chance for the kids to do something that I never got to do. I (almost) forget how exhausting all the hair and costume manipulations, plus the extra practices, can be.
The other side of me looks at them and asks the same questions that many African-American parents are pondering right now, if only to themselves. I stare at the pictures, and I cannot imagine that anyone would not hold them in as high esteem as I do; I wonder how they could possibly be killed in such a senseless and appalling way as I’ve seen on the news. But…they could. Young Mr. Sterling, Mr. Castile, Eric Garner, Trayvon Martin, Rekia Boyd,… (the list goes on)? They were.
I saw a CNN reporter speak my heart very succinctly on Friday morning: I simply want a chance to raise my children.
As far as the recital, this was a special year for both the children.
It was our daughter’s first year on pointe…
…and she was, indeed, on point. (You see what I did there)?
This was our son’s last year, and as the only male dancer in our studio for most of his years, it almost seemed fitting that this year’s recital was a performance of Disney’s “Aladdin.” He and fellow senior “Jasmine” were a gorgeous pair to watch.
And he was something on his own, as well.
They’ve each had spectacular individual achievements, but what I most enjoyed was seeing them together.
Believe it or not, in sixteen years, all three of our children have only danced on stage together once–five years ago!
So, with another year, another dance season is in the books.
As for the pondering? I relish these moments all the more, and I don’t take for granted the chance to speak with them on the phone, or to hug them or say frequently, “I love you,” or “I’m proud of you.” I pray, and I worry, which are in direct opposition to one another, but real for me. Join the fight and pray with me, won’t you?
‘ For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.’
Ephesians 6:12, KJV