Monday, August 3, 2009

My Tiny Dancer

Anyone that knows me well, knows that dancing has been part of my life since I was 3 years old. Ballet, Tap, Jazz and Modern dance classes consumed my life from ages 3 to 18; not to mention that I just love to dance. I spent most of my after school afternoons at Bounds Dance Studio in Chapel Hill. My parents will tell you about all the driving to and from class they did weekly before I could do it myself. (When most parents dreaded for their teenagers to get their license, mine were happy...NO MORE DRIVING to the dance studio twice a day, 5 times a week). They will recount the lengthy (and probably boring) recitals they had to sit through, only to see me onstage for 3 minutes and the costumes, oh the costumes they had to buy yearly for not one but likely 4 different dances of a recital. Then there were the group and individual pictures, videos, and t-shirts that my studio sold, and of course I got them all. I still have every dance costume I ever wore, every video of every recital, and I think I even have all my dance shoes....and they have all been stored away in a Tupperware container waiting for the day that I had a little ballerina of my own (God willing) to share them with. Well my friends, my little ballerina came and our dance days have begun. One of Emerson's closest friends in her class is Ms. Haegan. She and Emerson adore each other. Well last week Haegan's mom, Kerry, mentioned to me that Haegan's next dance class was "Bring Your Friend to Class" week; and she asked if we wanted to join them. Dance class?? Are you kidding me, of course I wanted to go and take Emerson. She already loves to dance and like any toddler, is finding out how to dance to the rhythm of different kinds of music. It was going to be so much fun to actually see her in a structured dance class. So this past week, I headed to Target to buy Emerson a leotard and skirt...I was almost giddy in the children's section picking this stuff out!!! I talked about this all week to Emerson and she knew that on Saturday morning we were going to dance with Haegan.
Saturday morning we headed out to dance class but not before taking some pictures (of course!!!).
Take note: she looks really happy in these pictures and is very excited about going to class.
We got to class about 5 minutes before it was to start and waited for Haegan and her mom to arrive. Danny says that from the moment we walked into the studio, Emerson was grabbing his neck just a bit harder than before we walked in, but that all seemed to change when she saw Haegan. Since everyone was there we ventured back to the classroom and that's when excitement and joy turned to terror. Haegan and Emerson both started crying when it was time to go into the classroom....but the teachers were great and just whisked them in and closed the door. It was hard though, because I could see Emerson crying....and if you know Emerson, you know she isn't much of a cryer; so she when she does cry, you know she is really upset or unhappy. It was hard on me as well...I thought I was going to be able to go in and sit down and watch the class but that wasn't the case. I completely understand why you can't do that though, so I tried to take some pictures through a small window in the door. Emerson was crying and Haegan just sat there....for some reason, our ballerinas, were not in the pirouetting mood that day. Emerson did seem to get a bit happier when they brought the beanie babies out...... I tried to get these pictures as discreetly as possible but I guess Emerson could still see me. At one point a teacher came out and asked if we could move away from the door because Emerson was asking for her mommy (Heartbreak city!!). I ended up going to the lobby and watching the class on a television monitor. All the kids were running around, and dancing. Emerson never moved off her purple star. Even when everyone else was pretending to be tired and falling fast asleep...our ballerina just stood there in the middle of everyone. She did end up playing with the bright colored parachute towards the end.
I put her name next to all the pictures!!
After class was over, and Emerson was happy (she got two star stamps instead of one on her arm) we ventured into an empty dance room to see if I could get some non-crying, monitorless pictures. Emerson and Haegan had a ball running around the room. If only she would have had that much fun in the real class.

On the way home, I asked Emerson if she had fun, her reply, "Yes, but I cry lot". Yes, Emerson, you did cry "lot" but that's okay...we know you will be a great dancer one day. In true dad form, Danny asked Emerson if she wanted to be a dancer or a golfer, and she replied (much to the delight of her mother) "Dancer!!" I guess we didn't traumatize her too much although golfer wouldn't be a bad runner-up!

My favorite picture from the day!!

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