Stages in (my) Life

Five or six years old, watching Annie, the broadway play.

Natalie’s face, wide-eyed and hypnotized.

The back of her dress, red and rippling as she ran toward the stage.

Dads arm barley misses her white, laced collar.

The dress matches Annie’s and suddenly, unsuspecting Annie’s solo turns into a duet.

Third or fourth grade,

standing in a flower pot, because I fit the best.

Swaying in the fabricated breeze, I scan the rows of metal chairs in the gymnasium for mom and dad.

At 18, I stared at the empty stage.

I closed my eyes and imagined walking across, to the podium, accepting my diploma instead of settling for my GED.

A college cafeteria, a makeshift stage.

My name is Melanie and I’m an alcoholic.

Last year, back stage.

I forgot my notebook.

I’m sure I looked pretty cocky being the only comedian NOT last-minute cramming before my name is called.

Under the spotlight

This is the first time I felt like I’d ever been on stage and I never wanted to leave.

After years in the shadows and the darkness, it was my time to envelop myself in the arms of artificial light and shine.

Next stage?

Being an advocate for Natalie and others. Giving a voice to those who have lost their own.

“All the world’s a stage”

What role will you play?

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