My boyfriend is a ballet dancer
and performing out of state for the first time.
The distance is difficult,
but phone calls and video chats help make us feel a little bit closer.
I’ve been worrying about money
and can’t afford the trip or the tickets to his show,
so I try to make sure he feels loved and supported every day.
He called me last night well after I had gone to bed,
so when the call woke me up I answered with a sinking feeling.
He’d had a rough rehearsal ,
and a snooty dancer had hurt his feelings,
but this wasn’t what the call was about.
He had been awake thinking about me; missing me.
He was going to be getting his paycheck for the week,
and was offering every penny to me
so that I could come to the show.
As a young dancer, he doesn’t make much.
The long hours in the studio make it hard to hold an outside job,
and each venue pays differently.
The money he does make goes to the necessities
with very little if any left over.
To offer me his money is a big deal.
To offer me his check is for him to go without for the week.
Little did he know that I, too, was trying to get myself to his show.
I have been finding side gigs and selling things here and there to save up,
thinking that even if I end up traveling for a day on the Greyhound,
and even if I have to stand in the lobby instead of sit in the theater,
I am going to be there for him.
I think sometimes we get so focused on merely surviving
that we forget about what’s important.
It was easy to say “Oh if I don’t have the money, I can’t go.”
until I realized that it was about more than that.
It’s about supporting the ones you love
and being there for them,
in whatever way you can be.
We are both willing to sacrifice what little we have… for each other,
and I think that’s worth everything.