Yeah, this girl.
I’m a proud papa as this Father Day comes to a close. Sophia slayed a long weekend of dance performances, 37 numbers in four performances spanning three days, culminating an entire school year of dancing.
People ask me sometimes, “what does she dance, ballet?”
Yes, and jazz, and modern, and tap, and hip hop, and can-can, and in the senior company for the best of the studio’s dancers. The kid literally does it all, which was on full display with her performances this weekend.
Here’s what I was reminded of while watching my 15-year-old daughter:
- She’s beautiful…and fierce.
- She’s athletic…and artistic.
- She’s powerful…and graceful.
And, my God, does that girl have a stage presence. She lights up the room when she’s performing.
During the Saturday evening show Stephani and I both had friends contacting us out of the blue who were at the performance to say Sophia was absolutely killing it on stage. She was in the last number of the first act and nine out of 29 numbers in the second, so ya kinda couldn’t miss her.
Ok, great, you might be thinking. Your daughter’s a good dancer. You should be proud of that.
You’re right. But, that’s only part of why I’m proud of her right now.
I sometimes used to tell the swimmers I coached in college to leave it all in the pool, especially at a big meet. Tonight, before Sophia performed, I hoped she would leave it all on the stage.
She did. We could see it, closing out the show with the entertaining but absolutely grueling can-can act that ended each night’s event this weekend.
She spent some emotional time hugging her teachers afterward during the curtain call, and some fellow students. She gave Stephani, and I, and Joseph each a long hug later (yes, she hugged her big brother…teenage siblings can be nice to each other sometimes!).
Sophia and talked while I held her about leaving it all on stage. I told her I was proud of her for doing that. We talked about the tears that came when she hugged her teachers after the show. I confessed to her as she was still in my arms that I teared up too watching that.
And rightly so.
There’s a lot I’m proud of my daughter for being: a near straight A student in honors classes, for having a more intuitive and developed sense of right and wrong than most adults, for being hyper articulate, for caring like hell about the right things in life.
Those are topics for another day. Tonight I’m proud of how she danced, and how she showed what kind of all-around, gifted woman she is becoming. Thanks for exclamation mark on my Father’s Day, Sophia Leigh.