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Welcome! This is a blog about life after losing my mom (on April 7th, 2014), running (or not, depending on injuries), being a 'mama' to Grace, 13, Genevieve, 11, and Joseph 6, and teaching 13-18 year olds in Philadelphia. Thanks for being here.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Grace

This past February my sister and I took our parents into Philadelphia to see a performance by the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater for my Dad's birthday, which is January 6th. I was thinking about the amazing performance yesterday, because I found myself singing "Wade in the water,/Wade in the wa-a-ter./Wade in the water/... Rock a my soul in the bosom of Abraham" as I put Joseph to bed (not the signature bedtime fare, but he had been baptized the day before, so perhaps that's why). In any case, this is the song that ended the February show and also the performance that made Alvin Ailey Dance Theater famous to begin with. In February, there was a video before the dance where people talked about their memories of seeing this incredible choreography for the first time and how it had changed their lives. There were lots of young African American girls at the performance with their mothers, and I remember thinking how wonderful it would be to bring Grace (though not African American) some day. She would love this! I thought. I know she would.
Alvin Ailey Dance Theater performing "Wade in the Water" (http://southernperlo.wordpress.com/2011/02/19/decoding-wade-in-the-water/)
So when the Kimmel Center for Performing Arts catalog came today,  I was so excited to see a November performance by PHILADANCO, a high-energy group that promotes African American dance traditions. Even better, the show featured a world premiere from a current Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater member! Grace was lying on the floor, coloring. "Grace! How would you like to go see an amazing dance show with me this fall?" Just me and her, I thought. It was hard to get enough time one on one with each other. This would be great!

Grace didn't look up. "Um ... no thanks," she responded.

Perhaps she didn't understand. I explained further about the show and how great it would be. "Well, maybe," she humored me.

Joseph, in his baptism outfit, with Grace this past Sunday
This in first grade? She is still so sweet, playing pretend with her younger sister one moment and telling me she loves me the next, but I can see walking towards me, from a distance, a Grace who doesn't always want me by her side. The way that I was with my mother, and the way my mother was with hers, I'm sure. Grace, sweet Grace ... I'm booking the tickets tomorrow.

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