"It's finally my turn! I can't wait!" After 2 years of having to stand behind a closed studio door, listening to the muffled sound of beautiful music and stampeding feet, reading the same 4 books in the waiting room, patiently waiting for her big sissy to finish--it was finally Elsie's turn to start her own dance lessons.
As a younger sibling myself, I empathized with Elsie's desire to finally have something of her own. After all, we younger siblings enter the world sharing EVERYTHING and it can be easy to think that nothing is our own, even our opinions. Finding our own voice can sometimes feel more like "fighting" for our own voice, trying to find a place to step out behind our older sibling's shadow and shine brightly as an individual. At the same time, being a younger sibling was comforting at times; to be able to retreat in the shadows of our big brothers or sisters; to not have to be the trailblazer for every new experiences. Before Elsie's class, I wondered if she had these same feelings.
The excitement in the waiting room of Ballet Arts before class was frenetic with all the little girls giggling in their billowing tutus and underwear bunched up in their tights, getting their hair brushed into tiny ponytails and buns. While I already knew these were closed door classes, in my mind the helicopter stage mom in me was frantically yelling out "What if she's scared or too shy to do something in front of everyone? What if she needs to use the bathroom and is too afraid to ask? Maybe if I smush my face on into the floor at the crack at the bottom of the door, I can see what's going on? Baby, you're water bottle is out here if you need it!" But once the teacher rang her bell, I found myself taken aback at how intensely focused Elsie was as she walked in on her tip toes with her fellow classmates. The moment the door closed, I knew Elsie wasn't the baby anymore; that it was her time to shine.