She didn’t know all of the words. She couldn’t keep up with all of the choreography. Her sundress was stained down the front, and none of the other kids were wearing cowboy boots. But my daughter shined. In my eyes, there was nobody else on stage. It was her first time performing for a public audience, and I was mesmerized.
Afraid she would run to me if I caught her eye, I tried to hide in the large auditorium. But seeing her eyes frantically dart around the room for me, I stood up and waved. She beamed. Above the din of the crowd and kids, I heard her yell, “My mommy! My mommy came!” As much as I try to avoid cliches, I can’t this time. My heart swelled with pride. Filled my chest cavity and made tears well up in my eyes. Happy, joyful, proud tears. That’s my girl on stage. My girl. She was happy, confident and carefree. In her tiny little world, everything was ok. She was with friends, and singing about God. I want her to stay this way forever.
(She’s the third from the left in the back row, with the blonde pig tails.