On Flying

Erika Petrelli
Erika Petrelli

She did it.

A few weeks ago, I shared that my six-year-old daughter Marlowe had big dreams to put on a production of “Peter Pan” in our house.  If you missed the post, stop reading this and go read it right now.

Seriously, I’ll wait for you.  Just click right here to read about it.

Okay, so now you have the back story?

Here’s what happened:






This past Sunday, NINE (yes, n-i-n-e) of Marlowe’s friends and classmates joined her and Dylan (and a brief appearance by hubby as Captain Hook-- check out that get-up below!) for a performance of Peter Pan, complete with four different set locations, seven musical numbers, three costume changes, and one post-performance autograph session.

Friends, I tell you it was spectacular.

There was a lot that changed from Marlowe’s original vision; for instance, she finally let go of the whole literal flying thing already (no ladders or wires for us), and she acquiesced that it might be a tad difficult for her dad to be both Captain Hook and Tick Toc Crock.   She realized someone else needed to be Tiger Lily and that she didn’t need to re-create every single scene from the play.

And then there was a lot that just got better—she and her dad created a spectacular backdrop that’s now hanging in her room, we had a house full of candy and balloons, and her program design was simply inspired.   She stepped into her courage in a way I've never seen her before, belting out her songs in a crowded room full of parents and recording devices...and feeding the rest of the cast their lines before they even had a chance to remember them themselves.








It would have been one thing for this have all to have happened with just Marlowe and Dylan putting on the show for me and the hubby… and a pretty cool thing at that. But the girls that joined her—they were amazing!  They were pirates and mermaids and Lost Girls and they made the production magical; they made it real.  They were so courageous and beautiful...it kind of takes my breath away when I think of it.

And beyond that, the girls’ parents who supported this whole crazy process, and my family that gave up half of their Superbowl Sunday, and Marlowe’s teacher who took the time to come… that fabulous audience squooshed themselves into our four different set locations when there was hardly even room for the cast themselves, and they flowed with the chaotic giggly performance, and they took picture after picture, and they clapped and clapped and clapped… that audience made those girls (and young Dylan) feel like STARS.

The whole thing just reminded me that when you say YES to the impossible, suddenly the impossible not only becomes possible, it becomes unforgettable.












It can seem so much simpler to just keep walking with our head down and our feet on the ground, dismissing the whispers in our heart that tell us that perhaps we might be able to lift off the ground—with a big idea, a new project, a new relationship, a change of scenery.    Gravity is indisputable, we tell ourselves.  Flight is simply not possible.   But what if it is?    Why not just say yes, and see where your feet lead you?

Where can you take flight today? 


Interested in having Erika’s blog come directly to your e-mail each Tuesday? Have comments to share?  E-mail her at erika@tlpnyc.com.   Find all her previous blog posts at www.tlpnyc.com/author/erika


Erika Petrelli

By Erika Petrelli

Erika Petrelli is the Senior Vice President of Leadership Development (and self-declared Minister of Mischief) for The Leadership Program, a New York City-based organization. With a Masters degree in Secondary Education, Erika has been in the field of teaching and training for decades, and has been with The Leadership Program since 1999. There she has the opportunity to nurture the individual leadership spirit in both students and adults across the country, through training, coaching, keynotes, and writing. The legacy Erika strives daily to create is to be the runway upon which others take flight. If you enjoy these blogs, you should check out her interactive journal, On Wings & Whimsy: Finding the Extraordinary Within the Ordinary, now available for sale on Amazon. While her work takes her all around the country, Erika calls Indiana home.