Tag Archives: parents

The Dance Class: A Parent’s Reality

The realities of taking a 3 year old to Dance Classes…..

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Realities of Dance Classes for Parents

Last year I thought it was a great idea to sign Nancy up to dance lessons. It was one of those thoughts, where you think ‘it’s probably time I left the house and started to initiate her into a social world,’ and in paticular I was looking for something for her to do so that she gets worn out and I didn’t neccessarily need to do much to achieve it. It suddenly dawned on me that athletes, musicians or dancers started this stuff when they were really small. So in order to ensure she has the best chance of turning into the next superstar, I duly signed her up.

She actually attends a lovely dance class where she does Tap and Ballet every Saturday. I didn’t think when I signed her up, though, how much of a commitment it is for me, and how you get sucked into the world of dance classes. This is the reality of The Ballet Class:

1.The Early Start

I have to get up every Saturday morning and get her to Ballet for 9.15am in the morning. On a SATURDAY. What the hell was I thinking?

2. Uniform

Every week she has to wear the dance uniform. Which comprises of a leotard, tights and a caridigan, as well as the right shoes. Not only did it cost me a fortune, I have to remember to wash* it and make her look presentable as well as getting her to the start for 9.15am. On a SATURDAY….

I also am still ramming her into the leotard as I refuse to buy one until at least September. Same goes for the shoes, I ordered them a size larger and it was only when she wore them the first time I realised they could slightly affect her dance skills, but she’s better now she’s grown into them a bit.

*I admit there may be weeks where the uniform may not get washed and she may look slightly dishevlled and smell slightly like a PE kit.

3.  Waiting

When I signed her up for classes, I couldn’t wait to watch her in her cute little pink uniform and watch her gracefully piroet around. Well, I wouldn’t know what she actually does, as I have to wait outside the class in a cold church hall. I can’t go anywhere in case I need to help her get to the loo.  It is 45mins of pure me time though, I guess, as long as I take a jumper and a flask.

4. Other Parents

The waiting room looks like a parent wasteland. I’ve seen some parents in their Pyjamas, although I haven’t done that yet. Some look hungover, some look tired. Some look absolutely pristine and as if they’d just got off the jet from St. Tropez. Not many people talk to each other, and seats in the corners by the dividing door to the class are a premium, as you can spy on your child through a crack. My idea of meeting more Mum friends hasn’t really become a reality as yet….

5. Noise

No-one thought to tell me that  group of 3-5 year olds in a tap class are LOUD. There is half an hour of out of rythmn, tap tap tapping as well as children roaring like lions or singing the Frozen theme tune whilst they stomp about the hall like elephants. Also, the teacher is loud. She has to be, to keep it in order. I sometimes wonder if she needs a drink after the class.

6. Progress

I keep taking her, because she seems to enjoy it. But can she actually dance? I have no idea. mainly because we are always too late so I can’t look through the crack to see if she is actually moving. I ask her to show me what she does at home but all I get is a roaring lion and a shuffle on the kitchen floor. So we keep on, keeping on. Maybe I have the next Darcy Bussell right here….

7. Once you join, you can never leave

Once you’re a fully signed up member of the dance class, attempts to leave are futile. You need to give one term’s notice to leave, and not that we are planning to, but I would never be as organised as to work out when that would be! I can barely remember NOT to turn up when it’s half term….

8. You do as you are told

If the teacher tells you to buy something, you buy it. You label all the clothing as you don’t want to get told off by the teacher. You get your fees paid on time and you sit there every week and smile even though you may be dying inside.

9. The Car Park

The car park is a war zone. The later you are, the more likely you are to abandon your car in the middle of the car park, blocking off 5 cars in the process. Some people wedge themselves sideways just so that they can park in the car park. I don’t know if you’ve ever seen a school at pick up time, but parents plus cars equals carnage. I am surprised no-one has been run over as yet. Once the first class ends, the real issues begin as people attempt to leave, and the next class attempt to park.

 

My go-to toddler white lies

Sometimes, a little teeny weeny white lie just makes life so much easier…..

1. If all vegetables have ‘crisps’ or ‘chips’ at the end of their name it makes them irresistible

2. Peas and sweetcorn are “sweets”. If you hand them to your child in a conspiratorial manner, sort of hesitate and say “I’m not sure you should be eating these but go on then”……it makes them even nicer 

3. Is there butter on that? Well,  that’s an interesting question. That’s just how the bread is, OK?

4. If you run out of orange juice, just tell them apple juice is like orange juice just a bit more applier

5. When they ask if everyone is asleep, you always say yes.

6. The TV shuts down at 6pm, doesn’t it?

7. You can only have one glass of water from the water dispenser at the Dentists, it’s the law. 

8.. The Peppa Pig Car Ride machine is sadly broken but you can sit in it for a minute. 

9. Peaches look a bit like pumpkins, and pumpkins are in Cinderella……so there’s a tenuous link to use

10. The police will always be called in utter crisis situations. And for emergencies there is Father Christmas. 

Keeping Schmum

A few friends are having babies at the moment, and I am finding that I am increasingly having to keep my mouth shut when they speak. I am trying to keep schmum.

You know, I am sure loads of people were dying to roll their eyes at me when I was pregnant. But it’s so hard not to start chuckling and to start pissing on your friends pregnant parade. I’m smug – I know how it goes, what happens, the reality. Of course some aspects such as birth are individual but there are always relatable aspects. It’s not fair I don’t think to keep chipping in and telling people how it happened for you. Sure, if they ask for advice, then by all means give it. But it’s pretty hard not to feel smug that you know how it feels, and they don’t, but they soon will, the poor buggers.

I’ve found myself saying ‘get some sleep!’ Or ‘you won’t know what hit you!’ And I cringe inside. It’s so annoying when someone says that stuff. But I can’t help it. There’s other stuff I could say, so it’s probably better I say that, than the other stuff flying around my head.

Here’s just some of the thoughts I’m just dying to tell people, but I know I shouldn’t. Probably because they’d think I was insane.

Keeping Schmum:

– my initial thoughts on motherhood was that it was the worst thing I’d ever done. No unicorns farting rainbows here.

– Breastfeeding was not easy. And you just start walking around naked because it’s easier.

– yeah you’ll be awake for probably the first 168 hours after birth. Nothing can prepare you for that, even a week or two lying in till 11am watching loose women

– take full advantage of the only time you can ever justify takeaway 7 days a week

-You’ll smell sick and/or poo wherever you go. You WILL smell of poo. And sick. And it’ll be in your hair. And you won’t even care coz you’re too tired.

– Poo. In a few weeks all you’ll actually care about is poo.

– In 18 months time, no one will give a hoot how you fed them, trust.

-Meconium only comes off with sandpaper. (Well, it seems that way, or use at least a bag of cotton wool per poo)

-Try not using you’re arms for a few weeks before the due date. Get nifty opening doors and packets of crisps with your feet.

-you will never be alone, ever again. Even in the toilet.

– Yeah, sure you’ll take turns. It’s just you’ll have way more turns than he does.

-I guarantee you’ll argue about washing up within 2 months of the birth.

– but it’s all great and lovely and almost 2 years later, I can look back without flinching.

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