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Dance Mom Wanna-Be

Posted May 05 2012 11:12pm

Today Sophie was in her first dance recital and she was a little Candy Cane dancing to “Candy Cane Jane”. To honor the special occasion we had a little tea party at the dining room window and I gave her a little heart necklace to remember her first dance on stage. She was so sweet and really appreciative it. 

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We went through tech rehearsal and dress rehearsal and Sophie did great. I was concerned because it was at a High School auditorium and larger than any stage she has ever performed on. But she did really good.

And then came the real show today………and yes, those would be crocodile tears welling up and soon to be streaming down. Pitiful.

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She just got scared. The chorus room was one of the dressing rooms and there were about 50 giddy girls in there getting ready with their Moms for their recital. You can imagine the drama and excitement. It really was fun but it was a bit overwhelming for Sophie. She said to me in tears, “I can’t do this, Mom. I can’t do this.”  I really didn’t think she was going to go out there. But one of my friends and veteran dance Mom was a huge help and another Mom came to my aid as well. It was really sweet to see the other Moms and kids try to help Sophie feel better about it. And it worked. I slipped out and got my seat with Randy and Mitchell and just prayed through the entire first dance that Sophie would gain the confidence to go out there. And she did. She danced with excitement and confidence just like she had the other days. We were so proud of her and her class.

This was our first year and very quickly I realized there is a dance culture and atmosphere that most everyone else seemed privy to except me. It’s been many many years since I danced……. I know that thought is pretty funny but I have my old tattered pointe shoe as proof that I once was a ballerina. And really when dance is in your blood it never leaves you. I could sit and watch ballet, tap, jazz, hip hop ALL day long. And we won’t talk about the attempts at dance moves I still make. Yeah, like when I about threw my back out a few months ago because Sophie and I were dancing to Stayin’ Alive in the hallway. Ahem. Not good.

Back to Sophie…..

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Bad picture but had to include it for my own record keeping – preserving our heritage kind of stuff ya know.

Dance Friends…..

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She has some friends from church who have been dancing with the same dance company for a while and they helped show us the ropes.

This is one of Sophie’s babysitters and she was a huge help to us. She told us about wearing a cover up and even brought one of her t-shirts for Sophie to wear after her dance routine at dress rehearsal. She also informed me that stage makeup was different than normal makeup and how it needed to be dark. Otherwise we would’ve shown up with a tiny bit of blush and lipstick. We are total newbies at this and sometimes it most definitely showed….. like when we didn’t have her white gloves or ribbon in her hair and I said, “Oh it’ll be fine.” And then I realized Oh no, it wouldn’t be fine. So we went back and got the gloves and ribbon just in time. I had no clue how to get the ribbon in her bun so a real “dance mom” put it in for her. Sigh. But I’m learning. Oh believe me I’m learning. Next year she’ll have the glitter in her hair, flowers at the end of her dance number, and a Mom who can do dance hair.  Hey, I was proud of the bun my friends! She has short hair and I got it in a bun without sticking her head with a thousand and one bobby pins thank you very much. Yes, I’ll be glad to do your daughter’s hair next year. Just line her up with the rest of them. Ha! Kidding.

Some more of our friends from church who dance too:

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The recital started at 4pm and we left a little early at 7:30pm. But from what I hear this is shorter than normal. Yikes! That’s a looong recital. Of course we didn’t have to stay for all of it because Sophie’s number was second but we wanted to stay to see the others. There was one boy in all the dancers – probably 100 total. The dude was incredible. Eleven years old and has already been offered several college dance scholarships. Of course Mitchell sees this kid dancing like a wild man and he wants to do it too. He’s actually wanted to tap dance since he was about four years old and his father won’t let him and I can pretty much see why. But I’m not as opposed to it as Randy is. Anyways, each one of these recitals (we went last year to see the girls above perform) spurs on his interest in clogging/tap. So I’m not sure where that could lead. I’m having a hard time picturing Mitchell leaving soccer practice so he can go to dance class. I just don’t know about that. But Mitchell can get some groove going, I do know that. 

Another aspect of dance that I’m very unsure about is how all consuming it can become. I know some girls who are in like 15-20 different routines. $60 a costume. Every dance number has a different costume. That’s not even including the monthly tuition for each type of class. That many classes alone leave little time for church activities or family time. Sophie already asked tonight if she could take tap and ballet and jazz next year. So we had a little come to Jesus talk about being thankful for ONE class, ONE costume and ONE dance routine. So I’m already fighting the excess and abundance issue and we’re only five years old. This is actually the reason my Mom pulled me out because once you hit a certain level you really do have to keep taking classes to be able to keep up and I was having to commit to three days a week of classes and she wasn’t willing to sacrifice my academics for ballet. I was a more natural dancer than student if that helps put it into perspective. IE: I’d flunk out of school if I had to practice ballet three days a week instead of study. But each person is different so we’ll just take it one ballet class at a time and see where it takes us. We want to be wise stewards of our family’s time and money but also help equip our kids to be the best they can be for God’s glory. And that could include more of a commitment to ballet/jazz at some point. Who knows.

Well, I need to go stretch out before I pirouette over the couch. I just have to try out some of those moves I saw tonight. Have to.

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