Emma had her first dance recital on Saturday and it was quite the experience. As I alluded to earlier, I was fairly pessimistic about the whole thing. I’d been warned by friends with older kids that it was a lot of effort for a short performance, and just a lot of over-the-top stuff in general.
It turns out that it was. And it wasn’t. Parents were “banned” from the dress rehearsal, but I snuck in anyway. I acquiesced to Emma wearing makeup, and it was fine. The auditorium was poorly air conditioned, but we survived. Emma ate half a bag of goldfish crackers for lunch, and that was fine too. I paid $5 for a single rose with spray glitter on it, but whatever.
And you know what? Emma freaking loved it. She loved her dress, her lipstick, the “real stage,” the whole shebang.
And that’s really all that matters in the end. It was a long day, but also a fun one. And while she’s only 3, and this was just a little kid dance recital, I found myself taking away a much broader lesson about parenting in general.
I could have chosen to skip the dance recital and Emma wouldn’t have known the difference. She was oblivious to the jokes I made with the other moms about the day. But someday she’ll probably want to do other things that aren’t convenient or seem over the top to me, and she WILL notice how I handle it.
That doesn’t mean I have to support her every whim without fail. But after Saturday, I found myself with a renewed sense of purpose to be enthusiastic about and supportive of the things that interest her. And I’m excited to see what those things turn out to be!