If you ask me about my daughter’s dance class, more likely than not, I’ll roll my eyes and say, “Oh, you know. It’s pretty silly, a bunch of three-year-olds trying to tap. But what can you do? At least I get 45 minutes to myself.”
But here’s the thing: I actually really enjoy taking her to dance class.
It’s become a thing. Our Thing.
I hightail it out of work at 4:59 on Thursday so I can pick her up on time.
When she sees me, her face lights up. “Mommy’s here!” she says, jumping up and down. “I’m going to dance class! Dance class! Dance class! Dance class!”
Then I get her changed into her sparkly pink leotard (with pink tights, of course), and she chatters to me about her day. When we’re done, she gallops away and does a twirl for her teachers.
“Look at my dress! I’m going to dance class!”
They all tell her how pretty she looks and she beams. Then she gets serious.
“Mommy, are we going to a restaurant?”
“Yep, gotta get you filled up for dance class. How ’bout Wendy’s?”
“Alright. McDonald’s it is.”
And off we go to the land of greasy burgers and tasty fries.
She dances into the restaurant and ogles the toys while I get our order in. Then the grandmotherly-type woman who works there comes to see her.
“There’s the little ballerina girl. Can you do a spin for me?”
And she does.
As we eat, she tells me about her day; who bit who, what they made in preschool, how many times she pooped in the potty (still big news around here).
The conversations are small. Not noteworthy. But it isn’t often we get time like this, to just sit and talk.
After we’re done, I lift her up and she tosses the trash in the bin. Then it’s off to dance class. Where I do get 45 minutes to myself.
Sometimes I spend it gossiping with the other moms. Sometimes I get a little Plants vs. Zombies in. More often than not, I read my book.
When class is over, she returns, a whirlwind of smiles, and says, “can we get ice cream now?”
Sometimes we do, sometimes we don’t.
I like the nights we do the best.
But whether we do or we don’t, as we pull up in the driveway I hear, “can we go to dance class tomorrow, mom?”
“No. Not until next week, honey.”
“Oh. I love going to dance class with you mommy. You’re the best mommy ever.”
And for that one moment, I am.