Misty Copeland was rejected by a ballet academy at 13 years old for having the “wrong body for ballet.”

She is now, as of June 30, the first African-American female principal dancer for American Ballet Theatre. MistyCopeland

Here are the following reasons I admire her and am inspired by her to no end:

1. Ballet is one of my favorite genres of dance. So lyrical and moving, so classic and beautiful. So, yeah, ballerinas are everything.

2. She overcame crazy, crazy odds in her life. Poverty, a pretty unstable home life as a young girl, that wack rejection letter, loving a genre of dance that isn’t known for its diversity, starting in ballet older that most of her counterparts, the list goes on and on. But Misty came up on top.

3. This Under Amour commercial. It kind of slays me. And it gave birth to one of my favorite phrases, “I will what I want.”

4. She does her thing with power and grace. Not much more to add to that.

So that’s Misty. I hope to see her dance with my own two eyes on a stage one day, and soon. And if you hear about someone whooping uncontrollably from her seat every time Misty twirled and dazzled on that stage, you’re welcome.

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