I know it shouldn’t bother me this much. I am, after all, almost twenty-four, in my “mid-twenties” — too old to need this kind of affirmation. I’ve had chances to shine.
I know who I am.
But every time I scan down the list, not breathing, and find my name at the bottom, lost in the tangle of Chorus Girl Number Ones and Guard Number Fours, I feel it just the same. I am eight, thirteen, sixteen, twenty, imagining the person I could have been on stage and knowing the image will live only in the back of my mind.
Every time, I feel the same gut-wrenching loss of possibility.
Then the moment’s over and I step into my master role: the girl nothing can touch. I smooth my face, disguise wiping my eyes with pushing my hair aside, smile broadly.
Deep inside, twenty-three-year-old me gives eight-year-old me a hug and tells her to keep believing, keep shining.
This is Chorus Girl Number Three, sending her love. Let’s rock this show.