When I first sat down in front in front of my screen, it was to write about my two tiny dancers, who, unlike their mother before them who took ballet for many, many years in the basement of a bowling alley and danced, poorly, for many many years learning to do things like play mice in The Nutcracker while her mom perfected her pick-up on a 7-10 split, take a ridiculously good weekly hip hop class. And recently, my first-born came to me and said, “I want to take competitive dance.”
Who? What? Where? What’s she talkin’ about Willis? Competitive dance? Is there such a thing? Is she talking about, like, JonBenet Ramsay type competition here or, like, a Bring It On-esque cheerocracy? I didn’t know children danced in competition. I thought they danced for fun. And for the exercise. I told her that I would look into it…but, really, the only thing I looked into were pictures of me in leotards. Because that’s how my brain works. I was too lazy to get my ass up to start googling “competitive hip hop dancing Toronto what is this craziness” so I thought, what better way to distract Emily from this crazy idea than to show her hilarious pictures of LittleAli in tutus and dance get-ups.
And what I found was so much better. Because in addition to tutus and leotards and various dance wear, it seems clear that my love of Â hoodies started at a very young age…
Emily was not as thrilled as I was about this treasure trove of hoodie pics that I discovered. Instead, she brought me my laptop and wanted to look into competitive dance. She also demanded that we find video evidence of when Mikey calls Brand “Josh” in the Goonies (We found it!) and that we look at brown belted puffer coats (We found one!). What we didn’t find, however, was any information about competitive dance. I don’t really know how I feel about that, actually.
You see, this whole competition thing is not something I had ever thought about. My boss Jen‘s kids competitively play hockey, swim, run and they love it. I don’t know, there’s something about it that I find very appealing, since my kids (well, Emily for sure) are pretty competitive in nature, and it could give them a competitive outlet, a place to compete, so they wouldn’t have to compete with the world (or each other) over anything and everything. And I imagine on the right kid, it’s super positive for building healthy self-esteem. Although on the other hand, it’s putting a lot of pressure on kids who are already under a lot of pressure with school. So, on the wrong kid, I can imagine it being super negative for the self-esteem.
The thing is…how do you know which type of kid yours is?