Monday, May 9, 2016

Pink Tutus and a Mom Failure Moment

Every Monday, for the past eight months, when Charlotte walked through the door it was a sprint to eat a snack, change into her pink tights and leotard, grab the dance bag with the tap/ballet shoes, and fly out the door to attend her dance class.

The original idea was brilliant (it always is, isn't it?) As the youngest child, Charlotte has spent most of her life attending her siblings' extra curricular events. Soccer games. Basketball games. Plays. Concerts. So as a second grader, it was finally her turn. She chose dance. Most Mondays it went well. There were the occasional forgotten shoes, and the more occasional tights with a mysterious new hole. But all in all, Charlotte liked the chance to socialize with her dance friends and spend time with the her dance teacher (sweetest woman on the planet: Miss Amanda).

To this point, however, Charlotte hasn't caught the "fire" of actual dancing. She can feel the beat and loves music. But it was frustrating for her when her feet didn't work like she wanted them too. We practiced shuffle-ball-change on the asphalt while waiting for the school bus many mornings.

All frustrations seemed to disappear as the dance recital approached. The lure of a real stage, makeup, and a gorgeous pink tutu costume overshadowed all previous complaints.

The day of the dress rehearsal arrived, and I did my best to have everything ready so we would arrive on time - 6PM. With lots of help from my older girls (Elise put Charlotte's fine hair in a bun and Madilyn applied her makeup), we got in the car.

I parked and rushed into the high school auditorium...relieved to know we were even a couple minutes early. You can imagine my surprise when I found the auditorium dark and full of spectators, the stage lights on, and a dance already in progress. And you can imagine my horror when I found out the rehearsal had started an hour 5PM.

We were 58 minutes late.

Ugh. Major mother failure.

The good news is that the sweet Miss Amanda let Charlotte's group dance on stage again.

The day of the recital was much less dramatic - thank goodness. Charlotte performed with her quintessential facial expressions raging from concentration to scowling at the bright light to a fleeting-remembered-smile. It was all very entertaining. She looked beautiful in her pink outfit, and she clearly had progressed in her dancing skills this year. Our favorite dance was the duck waddle tap number. Darling.

When we asked her if she wanted to do dance again next year, she thought for a minute. It was as though I could see her contemplating the rushed, after-school routine, the challenge of learning the steps, and the glory of the applause and flowers. She answered honestly, "Maybe. I'll think about it."