via Daily Prompt: Anticipate
“I’m really anticipating your performance!” She says with a grin, making a few marks on her clipboard.
“Thank you,” I respond, averting my eyes as she reaches for her walkie-talkie.
“Yes, bump down the backlight a bit… Good, good, lock it!” The woman paces away with a wave.
I take yet another deep breath. Two more performances.
The current dancer finishes. One left.
The lady comes back to push me closer to the stage. I gaze through the curtains and give up on controlling my racing heart. All or nothing… go big or go home, right?
She’s done. The announcer says my name.
I glide on stage as the first beat escapes the speakers. I can’t see the audience, which is an instant comfort.
My mind is blank. I’m relying entirely on muscle memory, freestyling slightly more than I should be.
But the thing is… I can’t bring myself to care. Here, I’m different. I used to fake this confidence, but here… it’s real.
The song’s almost over, and I throw my whole being into the last verse. Faster, faster, faster, more feeling, keep it neat, keep moving, down then up then step, get lower, more power, faster.
I blow a kiss to the faceless claps and dash away as quickly as I can.
Backstage, a blonde girl gives me a high-five. “Good job!” I somehow manage to respond with a heartfelt thank you. I want to compliment her, but I couldn’t watch her routine. She walks away when my dance teacher confronts me.
“Awesome! You did so well.” She hugs me, and I laugh, embarrassed.
Fake it ’til you make it, right?