As I mentioned in an earlier post – On Becoming a Dance Mom – dance is a new thing for my family. Now that we’ve had two class sessions it’s been a series of trial and error on how to best arrive on-time to dance class and keep my daughter in class for the entire forty-five minutes. I THINK we finally figured out our best routine – at LAST!
I guess you could say that my daughter is a Four Year Old Diva Ballerina. Here are a few of her distinct qualities:
Diva Quality One – It’s ALL about ME. (Wait – don’t all kids think this?!)
She has a different, much slower concept of time, especially in the morning, which doesn’t coincide with actual, real world time. She cannot move quickly while getting ready. Breakfast must be consumed at her own pace. She often gets distracted in the morning, and I need to find different ways to keep things moving along. It can be a struggle getting out the door to put it mildly!
Diva Quality Two – Conditions MUST be perfect for optimum performance.
“Don’t pull my hair!” To which I respond, “I know honey. I am not trying to hurt you. I will give you a low ponytail.” By the end of class today, her ponytail was taken out entirely. I’m glad the teacher doesn’t care!
“My legs hurt.” This complaint was debuted before she went to her first dance class. I haven’t heard it in awhile, so maybe the growth spurt has since passed.
“I have a headache and my stomach hurts too.” She tossed this one out at me as I buckled her into her car seat last week. While she had a crabby look on her face, I didn’t buy it, so onto class we went.
“I’m hot.” Apparently the room IS hot where the girls dance. This can cause her skin to itch.
“I have the itchies.” We apply generous amounts of lotion prior to getting dressed to make sure her skin is adequately moisturized in this dry, winter weather. Sometimes this does the trick. Last week the itchies re-appeared even after putting on lotion due to a costume issue (read on).
When we have NOT prepared for dry skin issues, and I’m watching the class, she’s come out early because her skin is bothering her. As I once played in the gym with my son during her class, we came back to find her standing in one spot in class with a pouty, crabby expression. Naturally, I let her come to me to see what was wrong, and it was the itchies. Sigh.
Diva Quality Three – Some Costumes and Shoes WILL. NOT. DO.
“Cut out the tag. The (cut-out) tag (piece that still remains) is itching me. I need a band-aid.” Next leotard. Fortunately that was okay – a good thing since we only have two.
My shoes are pinching me (when worn without tights). One week I tried having her wear leggings instead of tights to see if that would be more comfortable and prevent some of the “itchies.” This just caused her ballet shoes to rub on her bare skin, so she left class early again! Sigh.
Diva Quality Four – Love your Audience
She covers me with kisses on both cheeks and even the lips when she leaves for dance class. When finished, I’m greeted with smiles and a big hug, and sometimes MORE kisses. Here are some pictures I took after one class of my happy little ballerina:
Dance Mama O.’s Closing Thoughts
Through trial and error of attending dance classes at our local YMCA, I have realized that I need to leave the viewing area during class to ensure she’ll stay in class for the ENTIRE TIME. This means two things:
- I get in a workout on a machine, while my daughter learns some new ballet moves. (win – win)
- I don’t get to see all of this cuteness during class.
Ballet class has been a good learning experience for both of us these past few months. Yet, I’m not jumping at the next opportunity to sign her up again because this is a beginner dance class for ages 3 – 5 that basically repeats the same thing each session. Nor am I searching for a more structured dance studio for her to further develop as a dancer. After all, she’s only four…giving her plenty of time to figure our what activities she really enjoys. I’m hoping we can downplay the “diva” and just break out our dance moves at home for awhile.
Has anyone else dealt with diva-like and general poky behavior getting out the door in the morning? Any advice along those lines is welcome!