Aly awoke and knew exactly what the day held, and had a game face on from that moment on. In the pool, she was practicing moves. At lunch, she wanted to eat food that would "be good for her body for dancing." She asked several times during Jack's naptime if it was time to go. By the time that we were in the car to head to the auditorium, she was down-right agitated. She was not in a talking mood on the drive. Her nerves hit a high-point when we pulled up to the auditorium and she had to wait on me as I looked for my keys to lock the car. "Can you pleeeease hurry, Mama? We're going to be late. I really need to be in there." Bless her heart, she can't tell time and me telling her that we were an hour early had no effect on her anxiety.
This is a picture of her (forced-smile and all) at the top of the auditorium steps in the midst of pacing and chewing her nails:
And then there was Caroline, blissfully void of nerves. Her only concern was that we watch her dance. She was in such a zen-like state, that this is how I found her after our short 5-minute drive to the auditorium:
Granted, she's a year younger, but these are the personality these two have had since they first began displaying their personalities.
After fixing hair and make-up, I settled in next to Chad in the auditorium (a good 30 minutes before the curtain went up!) and told him that I thought that Aly was genuinely irritated with me and explained the story of her frustration and anxiety. He calmly said, "Have you ever been late to anything? No. Have I? No. We are anxious, timely, type-A people and she is our daughter. We can't expect that she'd be any different." I think that I've spent 5 years hoping that Aly would not be as tightly-wound and anxious as I am. Yesterday I realized that she probably is that way; now it's my job to help her cope.
So after this 4:00 parenting revolution hit me between the eyes, we were able to enjoy watching our two amazing (yet very different) ballerinas do what they love to do: Stand side-by-side and dance their hearts out.
Backstage (with plenty of time to spare!)
Well done, little girls.