Last night, TGC showed me a Tumblr post by a popular dancer. Although the language is a bit salty, what the dancer says also made me think.
WARNING: Some language in the attachment to this post is (not may be, is) inappropriate for some readers.
Although I don’t think I have ever ‘consciously’ told TGC she needs to be more like [insert famous dancer name here], I do push her. Am I pushing to hard? Am I focusing to much on the competition aspect? I ‘think’ TGC wants to win, but is my trying to help her win sucking all the joy out of it for her?
Click the image from the Tumblr post to the left for a bigger view, and hopefully to be able to read the entire thing. It summarizes what one dancer thinks about being ‘dance-famous’ and all that goes into it. She calls it a rant, I call it insightful, and maybe I need to reconsider how I do things.
Sorry for the size of screenshot, just grabbed what was there.
I think that all good parents ask themselves this question at some point or other when they find themselves urging their child forward when they themselves seem content where they are. I know that I have certainly done so. Miss M has had a love/hate relationship to some aspects of Irish Dance almost from the beginning. She loves the competition and hates to lose, but Irish Dance is NOT her main passion, and it does not define her to herself. According to her teachers, she has the talent to do much “better” than she does, but never (and I do mean never) practices outside of class, even for Oireachtas. She just missed recalls this year, but she was happy anyway, because she came close, not toward the bottom as she feared she might, but her teacher was disappointed because she doesn’t think Miss M is living up to her potential, and I am caught in the middle. I don’t want dance to cease to be fun for her. But if her teacher is frustrated with her and thinks she’s not trying and thus gives her less attention, won’t that happen anyway? If I insist that she practice outside of class because it’s a heck of a long way to Minneapolis and a lot of money to spend (not to mention missing our family Thanksgiving) to miss being recalled when a bit more effort might have carried her across the line, does that make me as bad? She’s only got a few more years of this, then she’s off to college, where I doubt that there will be time and energy to continue to dance competitively, so, at this point I’m doing what I’ve always done and let her take the lead. She’ll do as well as she wants to, and as long as she is still enjoying it at the end of the day, that will continue to be what I want for her. :-)