Keith and I went to a dance recital at his elementary school the other night. The little ballerinas in the show were as delicate and beautiful as spring flowers in their tights and gauzy tutus, hair caught up in chignons. The music started, and they twirled and stood on tiptoe (or tried to), their little arms fluttering gracefully, like iris petals in a soft breeze. The audience was enchanted.
But it was the older girls, the tap dancers, who caught my eye. Their outfits exposed bare bellies, and none of them were the kind of midriffs that would work well in a modeling layout. Only two came anywhere close. But the girls danced anyway, jiggly tummies, and all, happy and shyly proud, and they were beautiful in their trust that we would find them so.
God, there is so much about me that is imperfect, physically, emotionally, and in every other kind of way. But I know you love me just as much as you love people whose lives are poised and graceful.
I want to thank you for lifting me up in your arms and telling me that I am beautiful. Thank you for watching me with eyes full of affection as I stand bare, jiggly tummy and all, and learn to dance.