July was upon us once again. It was time for the Inter-House Music Dance and Drama Competitions. It was time for the talented people to stand in front of the line and shine and for those that were mediocre or untalented to stand in the back and provide moral support to the talented people.
I couldn’t understand why I was always kept in the back. I felt talented. Whenever I sang along to Mariah Carey’s songs, I felt that I was able to do all the vibratos and hit the high notes with almost as much precision as she did. Whenever I danced, people cheered and laughed hysterically and I took it to mean that they were impressed. Sure I had never won any awards but then again the authenticity of the results had always been questionable to me.
Once or twice, I had been told that I wasn’t as good at dancing as I thought I was. In fact, I had been bluntly told that I couldn’t dance at all. And while hearing such comments upset me, I got over the negative criticism very quickly because thankfully, someone had already invented the word “haters” to define the critics and had already advised everyone to ignore them.
Just a few minutes before my house was set to perform a traditional dance, one of the dancers, through no fault of my own, got a sprain in her foot. The fact that it wasn’t my fault cannot be overemphasised because even though I pushed her to the ground, it was only because I had been pushed by the person who was standing behind me. Nonetheless, the house prefect blamed me for the fall and ordered me to replace her.
With no time to spare, I was left behind to dress up as everyone else made their way to the stage. As soon as started dancing, the crowd went wild and the applause lasted until the performance was over. I made my way to the back door of the Main Hall feeling accomplished and only then did it occur to me that the hem of my skirt had been tucked in my underwear the entire time. I have not danced in public since then.