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During this morning’s 5AM workout I was very hyped and one of my clients stated, “What did you eat this morning? I need some of that.” I quickly responded, “LIFE!” Every day that we wake up is a blessing. We must remember, we only get one body and every day that the good Lord sees fit to wake us up, is a day that we are are auditioning for our lives. Will you treat it special? Will you prepare for the day? Will you nourish it? Will you exercise it in order to have a healthy heart and lungs, along with strong bones? The choice is yours. Just remember, your life is always on a stage. The stage of Life!

As a kid, I transferred to a new school for the 8th grade. Most of the girls I cheered with every summer since I was 7 years old went to this school and I wanted to spend my last year of middle school with my cheer buddies. It was a magnet school, and my mother had to stand in long lines just to get me into the school. Every year, they had this 8th grade production that they’d start planning at the beginning of the school year. I had never seen one of their 8th-grade productions so I didn’t understand what a big deal it was. Most of my cheer buddies were going out for the dance auditions so I signed up too. I didn’t take it serious, I practiced maybe twice thinking it’s just dancing how difficult could this be. My other school did not have any big productions or a dance team so I had no prior experience. I just figured if I can cheer, I can dance.

Let me give you a little background: I was captain of my cheer team; my boyfriend was one of the most popular guys in the school (he was auditioning for an acting role and got it). Many people just knew I was a shoe in, including myself.

Auditions were held after school, but I wasn’t nervous at all until…I started to get dressed. These girls had leotards with the feet out, tutus or outfits to match their dance skits. I had on a full black leotard with the feet in and no ballet shoes. One of my cheer buddies said, “Aren’t you afraid you will slip and fall.” This had never crossed my mind so I proceeded to cut out the feet thinking the material would just stay at my ankles. NOPE, they went all the way up my legs of course not evenly. So then I became very self-conscious of my outfit, and as I watched the other girls practice, I start to question my ability.

Auditions begin and I was number 5 to go onto the stage. Candice, one of my good friends, went first. She killed it with her leaps, turns and dramatic rolls on the ground. She received a standing ovation. You could tell she had taken ballet. The second girl went and she was as equally great, I literally started to sink into my chair in the auditorium. By the third girl, I was looking for the exit door. I was trying to come up with some excuse to leave, however my mother never raised a quitter. By the fourth girl, I decided I was going to throw some flips and turns into my dance routine. Remember, I had only practiced twice and now I was deciding to throw some extra into the mix. Let me just tell you that was not a good combination. As I stepped onto the stage, my legs were shaking. These girls did not come to play. They prepared, planned and executed.

The song I chose was Encore by Cheryl Lynn. I loved this song so much that I saved my money and walked to Chauncey’s Record Store to purchase it. As I started to hear the beat, I blacked out, and found myself adding cartwheels, splits, and leaps that looked like awkward jumps. I literally just threw a whole bunch of twist and turns that I had just seen some of the other girls doing with no rhyme or rhythm. By far, that experience is one of the most embarrassing and humbling moments of my life. As I was exiting the stage, I heard some girls mumble to each other, “What was that? That was horrible.” I knew right away they would not want an ENCORE of my performance. I was so concerned about how people would look at me now knowing my weakness. Would I still be popular? Would my boyfriend still want to carry my books?

After all the auditions were done, they posted everyone who made the 8th grade production on the bulletin board. Most of the students flocked to see who got what part. I was not expecting to see my name so I slowly walked over to get ready to congratulate my friends. Then my girlfriend Candice came running up to me excited and said, “You got a part!” I ran over to see what part I got and it was to be an USHER. Disappointed at first but then my mother gave me a huge reality check. She asked, “Did you do your best in the audition?” I admittedly said no. She then told me, “Everyone in life may not be in the spotlight, however, it takes everyone behind the scenes to make a production successful.” She told me to learn from this lesson now so I wouldn’t have to repeat it later in life. She encouraged me to be the best usher I can be. As I look back over my life I can truly say I now go into everything prepared, I don’t half do anything.

Here are a few other lessons I learned:

 

  • When I ask some of those same friends today about that day, they never remember my horrible audition. They always recall their audition. Bottom line: Get over yourself, learn, grow and move on past disappointments. Only you remember.
  • You never know what God is preparing you for. Ushers are important too. Without organization, there is disruption. I am proud to say I was the head usher of my church here in Atlanta for many years and I was excellent at it.
  • Don’t just jump into something you know nothing about without preparing yourself first.
  • You can’t be disappointed for something you put half effort into and expect to achieve great results.
  • What you put in is what you get out!
  • Just because you’re highly skilled in one thing doesn’t mean you will automatically master another without preparation, guidance and practice.
  • Always have a NO MESS spirit.

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