Because She Did, I Can: A Conversation with My Young Black Ballerina

This is a post I wrote this morning about Princess Bella. Hope you enjoy!

Off The Soapbox

Those were the words Lela spoke to me as we listened together to the interview of Misty Copleland, talking about being the 1st African-American Prima Ballerina at the American Ballet Theater.

Lela is a dancer. I knew this was true of her even before I held her in my arms. She was in constant movement.

Yesterday she completed finished her last class of Summer Intensive at The Washington School of Ballet. She has been studying ballet there since she was four.


Four weeks ago, she came home from her first day of class and said, “Mommy, there are only two of us brown girls in the class.” 


I took a breath in. Finally, I thought, the day has come.

“How does that make you feel sweetie?” I asked.

“I don’t know, a little weird I guess.”

We shared hearts the entire ride home about what it is like to be “the only chocolate…

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