Wednesday, May 24th 2006
Little Pink Cloud, Adrift

Balet Maybe it’s the time of year that has me thinking of my first dance recital. May was always the month of ballet and piano recitals. Or maybe it’s something else. But my first dance recital took place in a very small town in central Texas, and I was 4 or 5 years old. My class of aobut 10 girls were doing a ballet dance and would be called Little Pink Clouds. I thought it sounded glamorous. Now it sounds kinda stupid, but that’s ok.

We were all dressed in pink leotards with silver squiggles of sequins on the front, and short sticky-out pink tutus. On our heads… oh, get this! On our heads we wore clear headbands with silver squiggles of sequins – my first and only tiara.  Go ahead, sigh with me…

Our teacher’s name was Patti, and she danced the routine in the wings, where we could see her but the audience could not. I remember my mom pointing out that the audience knew she was there because we all kept our eyes glued to Patty, so we’d know what step came next.

At one point in the dance, the Little Pink Clouds were supposed to bourre in  one large circle. (that just means you put your feet close together, take tiny steps on your toes and we held our arms above our heads in a semicircle) So we did, and I started at the back of the circle, and my friend Christal was at the front of the circle. The circle slowly went around, each Little Pink Cloud taking a turn at the front of the stage.

I was a shy, quiet kid, who totally got lost in the moment. I remember getting excited as our little circle turned and my turn at the every front of the stage was coming up. All eyes on me. Maybe it was the tiara, or the bright lights, but for some reason, the thought was wonderful and i remember clearly what it was like to bourree with all my heart and look up and see the different color gels over the stage lights above me. I put everything i had into that moment, getting lost in the limelight, utterly.

There’s a photograph somewhere, taken exactly at that moment. A circle of Little Pink Clouds on an elementary school stage. All of the Clouds are looking in one direction. Not at Patti in the wings, but at one pink drifter at centerstage. She has her arms up, eyes up, head thrown back, and is completely unaware she’s drifted out of proper pink cloud formation. The other little four and five year old clouds are giving her a ‘what the HECK!?’ look. It’s priceless.

For years i felt stupid when i thought of that moment – the perfectionist in me would cringe at the memory. But now I love it that I can remember the details of that one moment when I just let go and danced, centerstage, and left everyone else to do their own thing behind me. It was glorious.

I should do that more often.

I guess the silver squiggles all over our costumes were our ‘silver linings’. Funny how I never realized that until now…


45 Comments on “Little Pink Cloud, Adrift”

May 24th, 2006
3:42 pm

I love this post. Love it. Yes, remember that moment. Good for you.

May 24th, 2006
3:43 pm

I love this memory!! thanks for sharing it. We should all try having a moment like that as often as possible!!! Well, I guess if you have to try, it’s not the same huh?

May 24th, 2006
3:44 pm

What a great post! I love it too! I’m so glad you don’t cringe over that anymore. That is how beautiful and genuine kids are, and you remember it! :)

May 24th, 2006
3:51 pm

Awww. So cute. How great is that, that you remember that! I only seem to remember having fake eyelashes glued above my eyes and feeling like I could barely keep my eyelids up. I think I was a peacock. I don’t remember dancing at all.

May 24th, 2006
4:08 pm

I totally am not surprised you were into ballet. It so seems to fit you (in a good way of course!)

I think it awesome that you got lost in the moment!!

May 24th, 2006
4:37 pm

Oh, such a cool memory! I wish that I had one of those moments to recall, but I don’t recall ever getting that happily lost in a moment. I know how to now, and I can’t get enough! Thanks for sharing..

May 24th, 2006
4:39 pm

So sweet – I can’t believe you remembered something when you were four? Must have been pretty special…mind you – I have a horrible memory. Loved the name too, Little Pink Clouds, awwwww!

May 24th, 2006
4:45 pm

Beautiful memory, glad you can enjoy it now :D I think we all should be lost in the moment of pure joy more often!

May 24th, 2006
4:53 pm

“Work like you don’t need the money, love like you’ve never been hurt, and dance like no one is watching.”
–Satchel Paige

What a great motto to live by. And you have a memory of doing just that at least once in your life. I’m going to find and frame a picture of my 10yo daughter, when she was a little 3yo ballerina, so every time I look at it I’ll remember your story & be inspired to “dance like no one is watching.”

May 24th, 2006
5:50 pm

I hate to repeat everyone, but what else can I say? Awww…such a nice post! You should get lost in your own wonderful moments more often.

May 24th, 2006
6:09 pm

I understand the embarrassment in the memory. I am so glad that you are fighting that and focusing on how good that moment felt. It is a beautiful post.

May 24th, 2006
6:21 pm

Hello! I am a new reader- I’ve seen your name on so many blogrolls, I just had to come check you out- and now I know why- you are just so fun to read.

I have a memory very simimlar to your ballet memory, although it was the only time I ever played pee-wee basketball. I was so pleased with myself for finally making a basket during a game, until i realised it was for the opposing team! So I’m totally with ya on the embarrassment mixed with the enjoyment of the moment thing ; )

May 24th, 2006
6:44 pm

I get dance review nostalgia this time of year, too – such sweet memories. Every little girl should be a princess at least once…. :-)

May 24th, 2006
6:47 pm

What a fun story!! Isn’t it funny how long it takes for us to be able to look back and laugh or see the good side of things sometimes??

May 24th, 2006
7:07 pm

Living in the NOW. Isn’t that great?
on the other hand, how sad that we don’t all have *more* of those moments!

May 24th, 2006
9:25 pm

this is a really sweet memory. i loved it. and i think *someone* is in need of a proper tiara.

May 24th, 2006
9:36 pm

Funny. I was just thinking/writing about “abandon” vs. “reserve” this evening. I can’t remember a moment in my life when I’ve really just let go and enjoyed the moment like that…well not in public anyway.

Thanks for sharing your very sweet memory.

May 24th, 2006
9:56 pm

I want to be a pink cloud.

May 24th, 2006
11:16 pm

fun story!!

May 24th, 2006
11:17 pm

It took me THREE tries at word verification to post that there two-word comment, above. Only thing I can figure is, I must be an automated robot

May 25th, 2006
12:58 am

I wish I had words to describe it, but when I read that post, I felt like I was there. Great portrayal of such a personal moment.

May 25th, 2006
8:13 am

precious. In my first recital I KNEW, or thought I did, a step and a more dominant personality thought the step was different and everyone followed her. I think it was the direction of the arabesque (that must be butchered) My photo has me arabesquing oposite of everyone else. Lovely. The one time I’ve held to my convictions….

May 25th, 2006
8:21 am

Embrace your inner pink cloud.

That is such a sweet memory, thanks for sharing it with us.

May 25th, 2006
12:31 pm

I know Little Pink Cloud. She’s been a little windblown lately, but it’s good to see her again.

May will always be recital month – piano, choir, ballet. We had quite a social calendar for kids with no particular musical genius!

I will remind HolyMama that she has had at least a few other dance moments: Blue Christmas, in the kitchen. ABBA, also in the kitchen for some reason. Her 2 year old at the time was absolutely mortified, but we had a ball.

May 25th, 2006
2:54 pm

I think that picture might be floating around somewhere….mwaaah haaa haaa haaa.

May 25th, 2006
3:40 pm

Beautiful memory Kelsey.

I want to hear about the ABBA in the kitchen!

Diane J.
May 25th, 2006
8:22 pm

What a sweet memory. Isn’t it strange the things we remember in such detail at that age? Okay, for me, it’s hard to remember anything at any age. :-)

May 25th, 2006
8:51 pm

I just love that image… conjures up familiar memories of my own. :)

May 26th, 2006
8:24 am

What a great memory! A good reminder to “just let go” a little more often–thanks!

May 26th, 2006
10:26 am

awwww….what a sweet memory. :)

i had a similar experience when i was in grade 5 and my class did a drama to “the wizard of oz”. i tried out for the drama and was cast as a…..tree. a tree! we did a “tree dance” and i kinda got lost in the lights. :) a moment in the spotlight and it all went to my head. haha

God bless you….have a great weekend! shalom!

May 26th, 2006
10:29 am

What a great memory. I have a similiar one but being poor,min is in blue tights, white top and no tutu or tiara. I’d love to see the picture.

May 26th, 2006
11:06 am

That’s so cute! I never danced, but I remember the first moment that I stopped being shy about singing. I’d always been timid because my sister has this AWESOME voice, and my dad does too. So I was like I’ll never match up to them. Then one day I belted it out, and it was like whoa…I can sing! I haven’t shutup since (In the singing realm anyway!) Thanks for sharing this memory!!

May 26th, 2006
11:36 am

I can’t wait until my daughter is old enough to take dance class. 3 year-olds in tutus, is there anything cuter?

May 26th, 2006
3:16 pm

I love this! It’s especially fun because my almost 3yr old is in dance and has been doing her bourre ALL over the place lately. :) Now I know how to spell it.

May 26th, 2006
6:13 pm

Oh, I’d like to hear about that Blue Christmas and Abba in the kitchen! Thanks, Holy Sister, for the revelation. ;)

Pink Chihuahua Princess
May 26th, 2006
6:42 pm

I loved this story! I can see how it could be interpreted differently now that you’re older. I danced ballet for over a decade and my favorite childhood memories are similar to this. Thanks for sharing this cute story.

May 26th, 2006
8:54 pm

Funny how time changes our perceptions. I agree, we all should get lost in wonderful moments more often.

May 26th, 2006
11:33 pm

This post made me giggle. Heehee. I can just picture it. thanks.

Patrick B
May 27th, 2006
12:05 am

To quote my Worship Dance teacher, “There are no mistakes in dance, only short unplanned solos.” And trust me that with my two left feet I danced many unplanned solos.


May 27th, 2006
1:19 pm

What a great memory, and so well-written. I’m curious — what small town in Central Texas? Anywhere near Waco?

May 27th, 2006
7:25 pm

That is so cute!I love the other commentor Patrick’s quote: To quote my Worship Dance teacher, “There are no mistakes in dance, only short unplanned solos.”

You left a comment on our post about wordpress – thought I would give you a quick answer: Yes WordPress is free but you do have to pay to host it somewhere. I think Typepad is free for that…right?
We are so happy with WordPress though. It is totally worth the extra cost and the extra effort learning to use it.

June 18th, 2006
4:38 pm

neat memory and good point!

Visiting from the blogging chicks carnival

June 19th, 2006
12:31 am

Thank you for sharing this wonderful moment you had on center stage. I think sometimes we need to move to a different kind of beat…
I am here via the Blogging Chick’s carnival.

June 21st, 2006
3:12 pm

Hi, I’m visiting from the Blogging Chicks carnival.

What a sweet memory of childhood! I’m trying to picture the photograph you’re describing, and laughing a bit just thinking about it. It reminds me of my ballet recital days (my first one was at age 4 – all the girls wore pink tutus and danced to some song called Me and My Teddy Bear while holding teddy bears. I can still remember the song to this day!)

June 25th, 2006
5:41 pm

Memories like those help us get through the hard times. How precious it is.

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