I am about to become a competition dance mom.
Three years ago when my sweet, third grader declared that she wanted to take dance classes, particularly hip-hop, jazz and tap, I was all for signing her up. I was more than willing to take her twice a week where she spent and hour learning how dance like a Dance Star. It soon became clear that this little girl was born to dance as she took to tap and jazz as if she had been doing it since she was a fetus. She probably was considering how active she was in utero.
As a child, she has had many other things to keep her busy and entertained like Awanas, student council, spelling bees and just being a kid but she always came back to dance. Every time I turned around she was shuffling her feet under the dinner table and practicing turns up and down the empty grocery store aisles and under the Big Top. Soon she began to express her wish to audition for the competition dance team and when mom and dad agreed she devoted much of her summer vacation to choreographing and practicing her audition piece. Trust me, her klutzy-mom was no help in this effort. All her hard work paid off because she made the team and was awarded a solo and a duo as well. The last few months Jods has danced her little heart out 4 days a week at the dance studio and has loved every minute of it. While we playfully teased her about becoming a dance studio rat, we were proud of her discipline and drive as she also continued to maintain her 4.0 grade point average, serve on the student council at school and represent her school in the county-wide spelling bee where she placed 19th. This girl is seriously driven. We aren’t surprised considering she declared her college plans when she was only nine.
Last night while she and I packed away her assorted competition costumes and shoes for her first competition this weekend it was clear that this girl is ready. She is more than ready.
Mom, on the other hand, is a nervous wreck. Over the years I have pretty much proven that I am not a very good soccer mom, color-guard mom, basketball mom, volleyball mom, gymnastics mom or cheer mom. I am not a very good competitive mom. I am a great slacker mom though. But it is clear that at a very tender age, this golden-haired child of mine has discovered her passion so here I am, ready or not, proudly wearing my “Dance Mom” t-shirt and hoping that I don’t mess up her stage hair and make-up too much.
Thankfully, the other team moms are pretty nice and encouraging as they take me under their wing so I will have help and, hoo-boy do I need help…LOTS of help!