I have never been a girlie girl. I was blessed with two amazing boys before my little girl arrived and it happened that way for a reason. I needed to get the dirt and rough and tumble play out of the way before I was blessed with a girl. That being said, my daughter is the best of both worlds. She is quick to wrestle with the boys but also loves her princess dresses. So when she was old enough to start ballet, we jumped in with two feet. When the package arrived with her ballet attire, I couldn't open it up fast enough. Her first lesson was a week later and we couldn't wait.
A's was so eager to begin when we reached the building and quickly yanked off her sweater.
Here mama, I don't need this anymore. I have my ballerina stuff on.
Her chunky toddler legs skipped to join her teacher. Arms flapping to the sides like a butterfly just emerging from it's chrysalis.
She watched as her teacher stretched and prepared the music to begin the lesson. It was only 30 minutes long which seemed like such a short amount of time. I had forgotten how short attention spans are for 2-3 year old girls. I was about to have a quick lesson in how attentive my daughter would be.
The music came on as the little girls began to skip around the floor. My heart jumped a little and a perminent smile spread across my face. I'm sure that I could have been mistake for the Cheshire cat if someone had looked through the window.
My little lady quickly worked to please her teacher and I couldn't help at marvel at how quickly the concentration on her face turned to adoration towards her teacher.
The upbeat classical music played while the girls listened to their teacher's instruction and looked to see what needed to happen next. A was having so much fun dancing and skipping around the room.
Then the atmosphere changed....the sweet, skipping music lost it's carefree nature and became slower.
The real work and learning were about to begin.
The teacher's broken English counted out stretches while she moved from one little girl to the next, teaching them how to stretch their little bodies in ways they weren't normally used.
I giggled as I watched A scrunch up her face while she pulled her chin to her knees and forehead to her toes. She was determined to copy her teacher exactly.
After stretches were done, the bar was moved out to the middle of the room. A bounced on her toes in anticipation. She had watched enough cartoons to realize that this is when the fun stuff began. She bounded towards the bar with reckless abandonment. Her face a mixture curiosity and eagerness.
A bounced up and down on her toes to the rhythm while the teacher gave directions.
A watched as the teacher turned her toes outward. A moved one foot at a time, doing her best to copy the movements that were modeled. The teacher moved each girls toes with ease and a gentle touch.
A moved her legs apart one at a time....being careful to make sure that her feet stayed in the same position that the teacher first put them in.
I watched as the concentration and enjoyment turned to frustration.
What are you doing?
A released the bar and ran towards me with full force. Quickly informing me that this was too hard for her and that she was ready to go home and have lunch.
Oh sweetheart, you can't give up now. The really fun part is about to begin
I glanced at my phone and saw that only 20 minutes had past. We still had another 10 minutes of dance left. How in the world was I going to keep my strong headed little lady focused.
The music picked up again and the little girls skipped to the wall. A quickly swiveled her head to see what she was missing. She gave me a second glance and then skipped to join the group.
Phew! Crisis averted.
Everyone began to dance and skip around the room. The angry scowl that had covered my little girls face a moment ago was a long gone shadow. The twinkle in her eye returned and the focus and determination were back where they belonged.
I let several giggles slip from my lips as I watched this little being of mine hop from one spot to the next. She had just been grabbing bugs off the sidewalk and was now a vision of the little lady she was to become.
I marvel at her daily as I watch her balance the joys of being a girlie girl and the stubbornness of wanting to be tough like her brothers. She is perfection in my eyes and I am so happy to watch her blossom in both areas.
Did you have fun honey?
Yes...but mama my body doesn't want to move like that.
You will learn with time and practice. Do you want to practice right now with mama?
Until another day...I'll keep these memories treasured as I'm sure we'll go through several different styles of dance throughout the years to come. But for now, it all began with