Some of the same “mom” monikers attached with our children’s activities simply do not translate to us dads.
I wouldn’t consider myself a “dance dad” per se.
Or if, God help me, Addy starts to play soccer, a “soccer dad.”
This past weekend, though, I got about as close to defining that as I could.
While the “dance mom” label may be undesirable to some, it doesn’t have to be looked upon as a negative.
Just like soccer, karate, baseball, clarinet, painting or any other of a number of activities, dance “parents” put in the time with their kiddos, attend the classes and rehearsals and equally agonize when that big recital day comes, the lights go low and the curtain opens.
For me, I was just praying my Adaline had actually made it on the stage.
For as funny, quirky and sweet as she is, Addy is still 3. And prone to acting like it from time to time.
Juggling schedules often forces me to ask for help with Addy, and in this case, rehearsal was going to be with grandma prior to her showcase. She wasn’t having it, though, which led to some difficult conversations with her and me once grandma dropped her back off with me.
We tried again. And despite a few bumps in the road (and some calming talks with Miss Phyllis Balagna) Addy was able to rehearse that day. Sure, we had a few tears (mostly mine) but we got through it.
When your kid is 3 years old, you can’t pull them aside and say, “Look, silly, this is the 25th Anniversary Showcase for Steppin’ Out, Miss Phyllis has worked her butt off, blah, blah, blah…” I’ve tried that tactic before. I usually get a hug, but not much more than that.
However, when it came time to raise the curtain, Addy answered the call. Yes, she had to have her mom by her side right up until she walked out, but when she did, she turned it on, bouncing, dancing and bopping to “I’m a Little Teapot” and “Let’s Go Crazy” during her team’s time on stage at the recital.
Congratulations to Phyllis, Jill and the Steppin’ Out team for reaching this milestone and putting together an unforgettable weekend of dance for your parents, fans, dancers and this particular “dance dad.”
And, of course, congrats to my Addy for putting the stage fright aside and doing your thing.
I think I will look back at that weekend and chuckle. I hope Addy remembers just a bit of it, too.
John Beaudoin is the publisher of the Lees Summit Journal. To comment, call 816-282-7001 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.