Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Ballet or Not

"I've often said that the most important thing you can give your children is wings. Because, you're not gonna always be able to bring food to the nest. You're... sometimes... they're gonna have to be able to fly by themselves." -Elizabeth Edwards

This is my conundrum: Maeve has shown a strong interest in ballet lately, and our local rec center offers an introductory ballet class for 2-3 year olds, which is only a month long and very affordable.  There is a class that has only three children in it, so it's very small and she would get a lot of attention.

But here's the rub: it's a drop-off class.  I have never dropped Maeve off anywhere, let alone with strangers in tutus.  I would stay there in the building and read, so that they could come get me if she was totally losing it, but I don't want to traumatize her!

I bet this is one of those things like sleep training your kid.  It absolutely kills you and makes you wish you were dead, but after a week you are SO glad you did it.  But is this the right time?  Should I push my little birdie out of the nest, or is it too soon?

I mean, the worst thing that could happen is that she hates the class after five minutes, never gives it a chance, and refuses to go back, and we've paid $35 for her to cry in a leotard.  Right?  That's the worst thing?  She's not going to hate me forever or be scared every time we go somewhere new?

I'd honestly like to give it a try, I think her interest warrants trying something new, and even if this isn't the right time, one of these times I push her out of the nest, she's going to fly, and maybe it's now.  And as much as I would dearly love to, I can't keep her in here forever.  Ack.  I don't know.  Weigh in, if you'd like.  I'll just be wringing my hands over here in the corner.
Practicing her Gene Kelly


  1. Not being a parent, I'm not really qualified to have an opinion, but I do know that as much as I HATED when my mom had to take us to daycare, in the whole scheme of my life, it was a very insignificant trauma. It's really only hearing my mom talk about it that makes me remember it at all. So maybe even if it is a little traumatic for Maeve, she really won't mind in the long run.

  2. I think it would be good for her to try it out and I don't think that it will traumatize her. She may cry a bit but I think in the end she will love it!

  3. You know I don't have kids, but I've been working with them for a long time and my advice is take her. She may cry when you leave her, but she'll have a lot of one on one attention and she'll get some social interaction. Let's be honest, since you've never left her she's going to cry, maybe you can take her for a half class and build on that. But my best advice from a teacher stand point is this, before you go, since Maeve is very smart, explain to her that she'll be with her teacher, friends etc and that she'll be safe. Tell her you'll be back to get her after she's done dancing etc. Then when it comes to the big day at drop off (this is the hardest) Tell Maeve why she's there and tell her you'll be back soon, give her a hug, and tell her bye and go. The crying is hard, but the teacher is going to know what to expect, especially if you tell the teacher this is Maeve's first time in a drop of situation. But I know how hard it is to leave a crying child, because I see it frequently, but although they may cry a lot the first time , they gradually get used to it and cry less and less.
    But I think Maeve would have a great time, and after the first time she might say she doesn't want to go again, but you shouldn't give up after one try (if my parents did that I would literally have no students left and they love school) but if you continue to talk about it and such I think she would love it. That's my general experience. Besides, it will be good to get Maeve used to be separated from you before she starts preschool or kindergarten. Just gradually break her in and pretty soon she'll be a pro at separating.

    1. It didn't look that long in the preview sorry :(

    2. Thanks, Mags, I appreciate your input, especially since the kids you work with are close to Maeve's age. I did ask her about it today and she seems to like the idea of a teacher. We'll keep talking about it, but I am leaning towards enrolling her.