Noelle informed me before we even got all the way home that I had to post this on my blog. She's bossy.
Noelle did her first individual at a competition this last Saturday. She wasn't a bit nervous (and neither was her mom) but told me a few days before, "Mom, I REALLY want to win". No pressure. I knew she was good, but I'm her mom and could possibly be a little bit biased. I also knew that nerves and judges both come into play at a competition and I didn't want her to put that kind of pressure on herself, but I didn't tell her that. I just told her that no matter what happened she had worked very hard and had improved so much as a dancer. If she just went and did her best, that's all that matters.
We got to the competition early so that she could get warmed up and ready. I worried that at this point she would start to get scared, but she's not really the shy type and she seemed fine. The competition started and she (being #11) waited and watched until it was her turn. Still not nervous. She ran onto the floor, they started the music, and she danced as well as I have ever seen her dance, smiling ear to ear the entire time. When she finished she was so pleased with herself that I quit caring whether she won or not, it had been a really good experience for her.
After 3 hours of watching other dancers the awards were given. She was announced as 1st Runner-Up in her division. I have to admit, I turned into one of those moms. What? Are you serious? She danced circles around that queen!! But, I managed to keep it to myself, and was pleased that she had done that well. It was her first time, and she still had lots to learn. She was happy and smiling, but I could tell she was disappointed. They gave her a trophy and we headed for home. Since she hadn't won her division, I knew an Overall Award was out of the question. We talked on the way home about how she won in my mind and she had done an amazing job. We read her judges sheets and I still couldn't figure out how on earth she didn't win. About 10 minutes out of town, my cell phone rang. There had been a mistake. Noelle had actually out-scored the other dancer by 19 points! I knew it!! We turned around and headed back to get her new trophy and her crown. As we pulled into the parking lot I got another call that said to just park anywhere and run in. They were handing out the Overall trophies and she had won that too!
Needless to say, she has been on cloud nine since. We have called everyone she can think of, invited people over to see her loot, and hauled her trophies, crown and sashes around showing them off.
On the way home (the 2nd time) she giggled and asked, "Now are you more proud of me mom?". I told her that I couldn't have been any more proud than I was before. Queen or not. She did awesome and we are so amazed by her skill, determination and her nerves of steel! Keep up the good work Noelle! We love your guts!!