We stood on the porch of the singing church that was filled beyond limit. The rest of the attendees flowed to the porch where we waited in our Sunday dresses: my cousin, my friend and me. We waited for our names to be called because we were there to sing. Church singings were the place to be on a Sunday afternoon with your family—back then.
The name we gave to our singing group escapes me, but we had one. When our name was called, we clawed our way through the standing people on the porch, the large group inside the foyer and scooted sideways down the aisle between folding chairs shoved at each end of the wooden pews. When we finally stepped up on the platform, at the front of the room, one tween and two teens faced a sea of staring faces.
What seemed like hours was only seconds as we waited for the pianist to start the song we would sing: At the Cross. To help my nerves, my eyes searched the room for my Grandma Sadie who had a seat inside. Some people smiled at us, some glared and others carried blank expressions. Finally, my eyes touched her sweet face and smiling eyes.
Afraid we would miss our musical cue, I jumped in singing a little too soon, a little out of key and my voice cracking under nervous pressure. When a new confidence exploded in our egos, our voices sang out, blending into one beautiful sound.
After the song ended, we enjoyed the crash of applause but hurried back down the aisle to escape. On the way out, people patted our shoulders and said things like “You need to sing again sometime.” And, “Girls, you've got talent.”
As I remember it, we never sang together again. Probably for the better. We might have become famous, and well—you know.