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All of the lights.
The bright spotlights,
That will soon be pointed directly on me.
People ask, 'Are you nervous?'
I say, 'Of course not, I've done this a million times.'
But inside, I am shaking, quivering.
So nervous I can hardly breathe.
I could hit the wrong note,
My dress could tear.
I might mess up the dancing,
I could fall.
All day I wait for the moment that I will go onstage.
Suddenly the clock seems as if in fast-forward.
And then it is time.
I sprint to meet my group.
We go backstage.
Everyone is running through the perfect performance in their minds.
The announcer calls our name.
As I walk onstage,
I paste on a smile,
Hoping it doesn't look too fake.
I hear three clicks from the drummer,
And put my head down in unison with everyone else.
The music starts, and we sing.
Louder than ever before!
Not just going through the motions,
But dancing with our hearts!
With the first movement, all my nerves are washed away.
I feel like I am floating!
I lock eyes with my partner,
And I see sheer joy on his face.
I hope that is what I look like.
And then, all too soon, we are on the second song,
And then the third,
And the last.
We nail the final pose.
All you can hear is the screams of our parents.
I try to look for mine,
But the wonderful spotlights blind me from seeing anything but my teammates that are onstage with me.
We run, screaming with excitement, offstage.
You can feel the happiness rolling off of people.
Shooting out of their pores.
They all know that the performance we just finished was our best.
We wait for the awards.
Did we do well enough to win?
They call third place,
We politely clap,
But all that is going through our minds is the mistakes we made,
And how that might cost us first place.
You can still feel emotions flying around the room,
But it is not excitement this time.
Now all you feel is anxiety.
The stress in the air is almost unbearable.
Everyone looks up to the announcer opening the envelope.
He finally says, 'and first place goes to''
We all jump out of our seats!
Yelling, screaming with joy!
Everyone has real smiles on their faces now.
And the stress in the air has been lifted.
Leaving room for only gratitude and exuberance.
We grab our trophy,
And run back to our bus.
Preparing ourselves for a long, happy bus ride home after a day filled with many different emotions.