Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Twirling in the Night

I watched with delight as my daughters twirled and twirled in their new holiday dresses. The satin and tulle was like a cloud of gold as they sashayed and pranced around the living room. Their sparking shoes picked up the glint of light in the room and their squeals of laughter were contagious. They were excited and gave a show to Diana Ross's, "I'm Coming Out"

The occasion for the new dresses was that their father was singing with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, a black tie affair. My fashionista and style conscious six-year-old declared new dresses were in order. They joyfully tugged their father to the van as they went out on the clear, dark night of winter in December. The trio, accompanied by their brother, would spend the next two hours reviewing the glitter and glamour of little princess adornment.

My girls are delightful to watch in their wonder of everything. The newly minted four-year-old always looks to her big sister for guidance, but isn't shy about voicing her own opinion. She was the choreographer for the evening show. She reluctantly disrobed from her stunning attire when the dancing stopped. I assured her she could do a command performance in two days when she was fully arrayed with her curly tendrills in ribbons and bows. Her big sister began to make an out-loud checklist of everything they needed for their debut as they glided offstage.

I could hear their chatter about how well they danced. One of the girls uttered she wasn't nervous and really needed to do a curtain call. They pranced back into the living room for their final bow and swayed around the living room stage as my husband announced their names. Where did they learn to curtsy? Was that inherent with being a little girl? Each girl came forward and like a ballerina in a music box, turned with her dress catching the wind beneath her. She knew magic was coming. Their little hands joined and they did a theatrical bow together, each with her arm sweeping out as if to capture the entire audience of two in their joyful exuberance. They stage exited with their eyes glued to us. I was smiling and laughing with sheer delight.

I closed my eyes for a moment as my husband was shutting down the video camera, and I imagined this scene in 10 years when my daughter prepares for her cotillion. I imagined her descending the stairs like an ebony princess, glowing and shimmering in a golden dress. My eyes quickly shot open as my now-pajama-clad-daughters jumped in my lap with shoe boxes in hand. They smothered my face with butterfly kisses and I kneaded their pudgy soft bodies.

My girls were still playful little princesses and I look forward to more twirling in the night!

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