Sleeping Beauty was one for the books. I am overwhelmingly thankful for the memories made, and will hold on to them forever. Aurora was my dream role, and I am so blessed to have danced it. It was greater, and also harder than I could’ve ever imagined. Let me tell you, the first dress rehearsal on stage was rough. My nerves were out of control and I genuinely thought to myself, I cannot do this. I was too busy freaking out to remember who to call on for comfort. I lacked to meditate on God’s word and ask Him for guidance. The next morning for the first show, I spent about 10 minutes before my first entrance praying, and asking God to give me the confidence, strength, and endurance I needed; I asked Him to comfort me, help me shine my light on stage and do the best I could. And I can’t even begin to describe the difference it made. I felt confident, prepared, and ready to dance, as opposed to the night before when I was petrified, overcome with fear, insecure, and definitely not ready. Everything went SO much better than the night before. In the end, not one show was perfect. But the difference between that first dress rehearsal, and all the other shows, was that I focused on God, and it showed.
I just have to take a second to appreciate the costumes and crowns I wore. They were stunning! I still can’t believe I got to wear them. They truly transformed me into princess Aurora. I couldn’t have asked for anything better. But even without the costumes, the stage is always the best part. The lights, the faces in the audience, the marley floor, everything about the theater is inspiring and something I will always love. The camaraderie between the dancers on stage is so special and is one of my favorite things about being a performer. This show especially, I could literally feel the love and support on stage. The stage will always be the best part of it all, and a place I’ll forever call home.
Having this experience has taught me SO much about myself, my relationship with God, the people around me, and how much dance means to me. I was genuinely treated like a princess. I felt incredibly special, valued, and loved, and was truly so humbled! THANK YOU to everyone who made this show so memorable. In fact, it was so wonderful that after it was all over it took a couple of days to get through what I call “post-show depression.” As always, the final bow of the show is the most bitter-sweet part of it all, and I will never forget it. As I said, I am definitely putting my focus into other areas of my life, but dance will always be a part of me. For now this was my “final bow,” but I wouldn’t be surprised if I came back to the stage one day. Who knows? My goal is to keep an open mind and go wherever God leads me. I’ll close with a quote that represents my heart and mindset moving forward. “What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us” – Ralph Waldo Emerson.