She was dancing. My crippled grandmother was dancing. I stood in the living room doorway absolutely stunned. I glanced at the kitchen table and sure enough-right under a small, framed drawing on the wall-was a freshly baked peach pie.
I heard her sing when I opened the door but did not want to interrupt the beautiful song by yelling I had arrived, so I just tiptoed to the living room. I looked at how her still-lean body bent beautifully, her arms greeting the sunlight that was pouring through the window. And her legs… Those legs that had stiffly walked, aided with a cane, insensible shoes as long as I could remember. Now she was wearing beautiful dancing shoes and her legs obeyed her perfectly. No limping. No stiffness. Just beautiful, fluid motion. She was the pet of the dancing world. And then she’d had her accident and it was all over. I had read that in an old newspaper clipping.
She turned around in a slow pirouette and saw me standing in the doorway. Her song ended, and her beautiful movements with it, so abruptly that it felt like being shaken awake from a beautiful dream. The sudden silence rang in my ears. Grandma looked so much like a kid caught with her hand in a cookie jar that I couldn’t help myself, and a slightly nervous laughter escaped. Grandma sighed and turned towards the kitchen. I followed her, not believing my eyes. She was walking with no difficulties in her beautiful shoes. We sat down by the table and cut ourselves big pieces of her delicious peach pie.
“So…” I blurted, “How did your leg heal?”
“To tell you the truth—my legs have been well all my life,” she said.
“But I don’t understand!” I said, “Your dancing career… I mean… You pretended all these years?
“Very much so,” Grandmother closed her eyes and savored the peach pie, “And for a very good reason.”
“You mean he told you not to dance?”
“No, this was my choice. I am sure I would have lost him if I had continued dancing. I weighed fame and love against each other and love won.”